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!

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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