Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Important Announcements for Grade 5/6 (December 17th, 2013)

No Movie Day tomorrow....


Christmas Concert is rescheduled to Thursday evening, 7pm!

See you all there!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Exploring 2D Geometry 2013

We've spent the past 2 weeks looking at 2D shapes and their properties and all the cool things we can learn from them such as angles, area, perimeter, etc.

It's been a fun exploration! We've learned so much!

Some of our learning has taken us off on tangents.
For instance, what is that thing used for, anyway?

Do you know what this is?!?

I could have easily told them the answer, but instead two students took it upon themselves to research this thingamajig and find out how to use it and apply it to what we were doing in class!

Jacob, the researcher

Jacob & Innis went on the search & then taught the class all about it & how to use it!

In other areas of the class we were busy trying to construct triangles with specific angles, trying to prove our statements about triangles:
(Can a triangle with one 60 degree angle only have 60 degree angles?!!? Or can a right angle triangle have a 60 degree angle as one of its angles?!?!)
 We learned so much through hands-on, self-directed exploration that it was a unit we're feeling really good about!

Here are some links to pages we used to further our learning, too!



We also noticed the importance of triangles in engineering and building.

Anyone recognize this?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Continuing with the Global Read Aloud 2013

In Out of My Mind we've read about Melody, a young girl with cerebral palsy who is looking to find her voice.

In the first chapters we were first surprised by the many different words the author uses to explain how one expresses themselves. This led to a great conversation on synonyms and using colourful words in our writing.

 In chapter six, the author tells us about Mrs. V creating flash cards for Melody in different colours. Green for adjectives; blue for verbs; pink for nouns. 

We looked at words that described Meoldy's mother so far in the book: (notice the colour)

Monday, September 30, 2013

Starting the Global Read Aloud 2013

Today marks the start of the Global Read Aloud Project. My class has been taking place for the past 3 or 4 years.

This year's book is Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper.

Below are our predictions about what the book could be about, simply from judging a book by its cover.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Hey Parents / Guardians...

My lovely students are coming home with homework for YOU tonight! They're going to find out if you know where you live!


Saturday, August 24, 2013

A week + away...

WOW! Where did summer go!??!

It's been a fast one, folks; and it's almost back to school time!

I hope you've taken the time to check out the school supplies list. The list is the same for grades 4-6 this year.

I don't yet know which grade 5s will be in my class or the grade 4/5 class; I know many of you have been emailing, wondering, etc. That is up to the office... so stay tuned...

Enjoy what's left of summer!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A "shining moment"... pun intended...

We spent a good amount of time today working hands-on with many pieces of electrical equipment trying to make complete circuits, testing out materials and determining whether they were insulators or conductors, etc. It was a fun day! Some groups even self-discovered series circuits and how an increase in voltage can mean much brighter light bulbs!

Perhaps one of the best moments of today, though, came from one of my "brightest" students:
photo used with Logan's astounding permission

While I praised Logan for being one of my "brightest" (wink, wink) students with his electric necklace invention thingy, he trumped me...

He exclaimed he was,

"a shining, creative gangster... the battery's in da hood!"

Oh the chuckles we had about that one!
Good one, Logan!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Independent Novel Project.... May 2013

Dear Students & Parents,

Here is the link to the pdf which has the information regarding the expectations of your novel project:
Independent Novel Project Info

The information is also listed below:

Independent Novel Project
May, 2013

Each student is to select a novel (chapter book) to read between now & May 31. Students may finish the novel project as quickly as they wish, as long as they have asked for my permission to use the book for this project. Students are expected to be reading their novels during silent reading time and using any free time in the school day to be reading or working on their selected reading response (outlined below). 
All novel projects are due on or before May 31.

Students are to complete a formal book report as outlined on next page and also choose one of the following ways to follow-up their reading of their novel. Students are encouraged to be referring to this outline as they are reading so that they can be making notes, jotting ideas and deciding which follow-up best suits their book.

Formal Book Report Format

Every written book report will need to follow these guidelines:

1.  You will need to have a title page with the title of the book, the author of the book, the publisher's name, your name and the date.

2.  You will need to describe the setting in detail. Describe how the setting changes the mood of the story.  This section needs to be labeled "Setting" and should be about five lines in length.

3.  Who are the main characters in your story? Describe at least three people who make a difference in how the story evolves. This section needs to be labeled "Main Characters" and should be at least six lines long.

4.  What is the climax in the story? What event happened that changed the way the story ended? Sometimes there are several climaxes. Choose the one that is the most important to you. Describe what happened in detail. This section needs to be labeled "Climax" and should be approximately 6-10 lines long.

5.  In every book there is a moral to the story, or a lesson that the author wants you to learn. What is the lesson in this book? Think about this. Sometimes it is very subtle. This section needs to be labeled "Moral of the Story" and should be about five lines long.

6.  What did you think of this book? Did you enjoy it or not? Why? Label this section "My Opinion" and be specific in your reasons why you did or did not like the book. This should be about four lines long.

7.  Write a ½ page summary of the book, labeled “Summary”.  Include the problem, but not the ending.  Example:

 This magical adventure is about a boy struggling to learn all he can while he solves life-changing mysteries.  The main struggle is good against evil, and the boy has his friends and some of his teachers to help, but mainly is on his own.  The setting, Hogwarts School, is extremely important to the development and understanding of the story, while adding to the sense of adventure and mystery.  A lot of the events that happen here are impossible in the ‘real’ world, but the bonds shared between the main character and some of his friends, are very realistic.  Read this book and you will be routing for Harry to be victorious in his struggle against Voldemort, to save himself as well as the world.  
Novel Follow-up Project Ideas:                      Choose one (1).

1)      Write a poem about the book, one character in it, or some other aspect of the book. The poem must be at least 16 lines long, but does not have to rhyme. Orally present the poem to the class.

2)      Make a poster that relates to the novel on poster size paper (11X17). Share the poster with the class.

3)      Write a 1+ page in-depth report on a character in the book. (What traits does the character have? What motivates the character? Is he/she well developed by the author? Do you agree /disagree with the way the character handled events in the book? Why? Would you like to meet the character? Why? Etc.) Orally present the character report to the class.

4)      Write a 1+ page “review” of the book for a newspaper or magazine. Orally present your review to the class.

5)      Write a 1+ page biography on the author of the book. Include a list of other works written by that author. Orally present the biography.

6)      Write 3 new titles for the book. Write 1+ paragraphs (5-8 sentences) supporting each new title. Orally present your new titles paper to the class.

7)      Imagine that you are one of the main characters. Write a diary account of daily thoughts and activities for 2+ weeks (14 days) in the life of your character. Orally present your diary to the class.

8)      Construct a pictorial time line that summarizes what happens in the story. Orally present the time line to the class.

9)      Select parts from the story that were the funniest, saddest, happiest, most unbelievable, most frightening, etc. and write a 1+ page paper explaining and supporting your choices. Pick at least three parts. Orally present the “choices paper”.

10)   Dress like a character in the book and read excerpts from the book to portray that character or act out parts of the book as the character.

11)   Locate phrases in the book that appeal to the 5 senses—hear, smell, touch, taste, see. You must have 2 phrases for each sense. Be sure to tell the page and paragraph of each example.

12)   Find 10-15 vocabulary words in the book that are new to you. Create a crossword puzzle using the words and their proper dictionary definitions. Present the crossword puzzle to the class. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A message in a bottle!

We read this article:

and looked at Google maps to see the distance:

View Larger Map

What kind of a journey would that be?
We tried to speculate / simulate what the journey might be:
(not even sure if this will work!)

View Larger Map

What would you send as a message in a bottle?

Friday, April 5, 2013

David Kawapit's Journey of Nishiyuu

I (Dawn, the teacher) was at an in-service in Halifax when I saw the news clip speaking of David Kawapit and his journey from Northern Quebec to Ottawa. I was moved to tears as this quiet, shy, big-smiling Cree boy reminded me so much of a student in our class. I immediately knew that his story would resonate with my students.

We had talked about Idle No More before in class; it was a very abstract concept for many. David's journey seemed like a more tangible connection to the message of Idle No More. So, I had them look through newspaper articles covering David's journey. The questioned how fair his treatment was as he reached the Peace Tower in Ottawa. They spoke of his commitment, how he is an inspiration. They looked at his route on Google Earth and Google maps, marveling at the distance. Then they dug deeper into his story; each group being responsible for an aspect of the "underlying" story.

Here are their snippets of the background story.
Here is the work they are so proud of!

Make your own photo slideshow at Animoto.

Try our slideshow creator at Animoto.

Make your own photo slideshow at Animoto.

Make your own slide show at Animoto.

Try our video maker at Animoto.

Please share David's story through our eyes.
Please be inspired.
And if you can make this post reach David Kawapit, please share it with him.

-- Grade 5/6 class

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Black History Month in Gr. 5/6

We've started reading through stories as part of Black history month.
Here's today's response about our book:
Viola Desmond Won't Be Budged
(Listen here for an audio clip about her  experience & words from her sister, Wanda Robson.)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Social Studies :: Country Report

Hi, stormy-stayed folks!
Hope everyone is enjoying and making the most of their storm days!

Your social studies projects were supposed to be due this Friday, February 15th. (Drake's birthday, remember?) 

Although we've been working in class on this since the beginning of January, I am going to give you until Monday, February 18th to have it done, since we've had these two storm days and you all may not have taken your materials home to work on them.

I'm also going to post the pdf as an example of the final poster. Please use this only as a guide if you're working from home, researching your country. I have all of the final copy posters printed at school on the large 11X17 paper.

Remember the research questions in the little booklet were to serve as a guide to:
a) help teach you proper researching skills
b) help you in practising reading for information
c) help you learn information about your country

So, the poster is posted below as a guideline.
The final / good draft of your poster is now due Monday, February 18. You must also submit your question booklet at this time, if not before.

Hope this helps.

Country Report Poster (*large copy to be given in school)

Friday, February 8, 2013

Forces All Around Us

We read an article about the forces that are all around us. Each student group was responsible for explaining an everyday force as indicated in the article. Here are some snippets from their presentations:

The importance of wheels.
This group started their presentation by trying to roll the large green box.
"It would be much easier to roll this box if it was circular in shape."
The they explained why the bin table at the front of the room had wheels, showing how much easier it was to move. The wheels help reduce the amount of friction between the item being moved and the surface it's being moved on.

 "When you take a step, your foot is pushing down on the floor."

If the ground is cement, and you just step on it, it's not going to make a movement.

We had to voice record Logan's explanation:

Size matters. Gravity.

This group worked hard to explain and show what gravity does. They demonstrated dropping articles of different sizes and weights to show how gravity works on the various items. The interesting part was when they added a makeshift parachute to an item. How do parachutes work against gravity?


The girls presenting the section on friction thought this video and song best outlined the concepts from the article.

Push or Pull

A push and a pull is something everyone is familiar with.  Have you ever considered it like this?

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Who has the biggest fist in our class?

Disclaimer: It's not as bad as it sounds. This was a non-violent experiment ;) 

We've been looking at volume and capacity in math class. 

Currently we've explored the volume of a cube:
We've been working a lot with unit cubes in the classroom to explore various measurements of volume:

But, perhaps the most fun exploration was using water in containers to see who has the largest fist in the class! (and learning about capacity and displacement)

We try not to be too boring in here...

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Science Lab Report

Please complete the following form based on our science experiment the past few days.
Reports are due Monday, Jan. 28th by 3PM.
Please state your name at the end of your conclusion.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Exploring 3D figures

First day back from Christmas vacation and we dove right into creating 3D figures using marshmallows, toothpicks & straws.

Here are some pictures of our progress:

I think the class would agree; it was a great way to ease our way back into things!