Thursday, April 26, 2012

Is Your Child In My Reading Class?

If so, please check out today's post on the reading class blog:


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Forms, Dates, and Such

If you haven't turned in your Exhibition sign up sheet, please do so ASAP! Exhibitions begin May 23.

Also, here are some important end-of-the-year dates:

June 11--Bowling Party @ the Garden Bowl. 12:00 PM-2:00 PM (Bowling, pizza, and pop)

June 13--Field Day at WSU (including cook-out lunch)

June 14--No School for Fifth Grade ONLY

June 15--Promotion Breakfast 8 AM (for parents & student only), Promotion Ceremony 9 PM (students dismissed following ceremony!)

To cover costs for all this, we are seeking $25 per family.

Please mark your calendars! And stay tuned for more info.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Some things I'm noticing

We are working very, very hard to get the 10 Places Project typed up this week. I've been giving time each day, but some students are still moving slowly. I'm trying to "get on their case" in a nice way, to keep moving. This whole exhibition is a test of their ability to use time ultimately it's up to them to work hard. I think it will be okay, but I'm worried it could get "ugly" if they don't use their time a little more intelligently. In other words, they'll be trying to type 10 paragraphs the night before their Exhibition if they don't start working a little harder.

One thing you can do to help is to have them work on it at home. They know what to do. Also, please make sure they're bringing their 10 Places worksheets to school every day. It's impossible to get any typing done without them.

If possible, you can also make sure they come up to my room at 8:00 each morning to get their typing done.

Finally, please take some time to look over their work. I know these are their first drafts, but we're really looking for this to be an example of their best writing. I'm seeing a lot of paragraphs that are NOT written in students' own words, so please be on the look out for that. NOTHING should be copied and pasted for this assignment (or any other). I'm also seeing some errors that are easily fixed such as starting every sentence in the paragraph the same way. If you take some time to look at their work, you may be able to provide some extra help.


Exhibition Announcements

First, starting tomorrow, students who arrive early can come up to my room to work on Exhibition projects. I'll be available at 8:00 most mornings (except April 23 and 30) so that students can come in and get some typing done.

Also, coming home today is a memo that details every project that's required for the Exhibition and what students need to be doing at home. Please note, some projects have been removed/combined, so this new list becomes THE official list of Exhibition requirements.

Finally, attached to the list will be a sign up form for Exhibitions. Please pick 3 times that work for you (number them in order of preference) and send the sheet back to school ASAP.

Of course, if you have any questions, let me know.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Menu for Thursday

For our field trip to the University of Michigan on Thursday (if you haven't sent your $5 and permission slip yet, please do so by tomorrow!), we'll be eating lunch in the West Quad dormitory cafeteria.

Here's a link to the Dining Services page, if you want to check out a menu:

Also during our trip, we'll be taking a walking tour to see classrooms, libraries, the recreation center, and the football stadium. It should be pretty awesome. Stay tuned for photos and more after the break.

Next Phase of 10 Places

Our 10 Places project continues...students are now working on typing their paragraphs onto a page in the class wiki. This could take some time, and is something that can be worked on at home.

We will be working on it all week in school, but if more time is needed, please encourage your child to work on it in the evenings and during Spring Break.

After everything is typed, I will guide them through adding images, videos, maps, and hyperlinks.

Here is a link to the wiki, if you need it:

This is another example of me trying to help students develop independent work skills. Given the time, many of the students are doing a much better job of making every minute count. Their study habits are improving! Of course, there's still work to be done. Want to check up on your child and see what they got done today? Go to THIS PAGE and click on their name. You'll see how much they got typed up in about an hour of work time. :)

Monday, April 2, 2012

What We're Up To This Week

We have started our Digital Poetry project today (National Poetry Month started yesterday...yay!). Students are "translating" poems by Langston Hughes into digital movies. It should be pretty cool. This is one of the Gateway Exhibition requirements. Hopefully, videos will be done by the end of this week.

We've also done some exploration of the Trayvon Martin case. We talked about it with our returning Skype guest, Mr. Steve Goldberg, last week, and we're continuing to explore it as part of our ongoing Current Events Project (also a Gateway assignment).

Coming up, students in the reading classes of me, Mr. Robinson, and Mrs. Martin will be starting a Mythology project. Students in Ms. Dinning's class won't be held responsible for this. It's going to be totally awesome, and I can't wait to start it after Easter break.

Also, starting after break, we'll be starting a Geometry unit for math. We've been lagging on math homework for awhile here because we've been working on our Stock Market project. Don't worry, expect much more homework after the break.

Finally, please don't forget to send in permission slips and $5 for the field trip THURSDAY!!!