Thursday, November 29, 2012

Fact Families and Bats RULE!

Greetings Thursday Thinkers! We finally finished our Thanksgiving inspired work board and will be starting a new work board tomorrow! Woohoo! We've added some new options, like listening center, art, and a variety of "orange bin" choices! Awesome! In math we stretched our learning about 13 and worked with fact families! We talked about some important math vocabulary like "equation", "sum", "difference", and "addend" while composing all the math facts up to 13! We noticed turn around facts, and even talked about how equations for 13 will never have a "double" because 13 is an odd number!! GREAT thinking today, and great work with numbers, equations, and 13, friends! Some readers shared their bat research today as well! Aine and Ethan shared their bat books, talked about how they collected their research, taking care to cite their evidence from the text, and how they converted what they learned into an eye catching colorful, fact filled poster! Great job friends, accompanied by some very thoughtful, articulate presentations! Bats are pretty cool... who knew?? Justin lead another great math meeting, and Abby introduced us to a new greeting at her morning meeting, koosh behind the back! Well done Abby! We spent some time this afternoon talking about each of our responsibilities when it comes to learning and listening. When blurting and excessive chatting and joking become part of read aloud, writing workshop, and work board, it can really interrupt and interfere with our learning. After some thoughtful reflection, we talked about what could be different tomorrow, and I'm sure tomorrow will be a better day! I'll plan an extra long writing workshop in celebration of our commitment and LOVE for writing! Can't wait for fun Friday tomorrow!!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Howdy Friends! Last catch up day on this work board before a new one tomorrow! In math today we practiced writing equations using our beans for concrete reinforcement! How many math facts do you think there are for all addends up to 13?? 14 is CORRECT! Well done friends! This might have been some of the most organized and neatest work I've seen in a while! Well done! Justin lead another excellent math meeting, and Niko followed with one super morning meeting! Speaking of morning meeting, what would YOU do with half a billion dollars? That was our question this morning, inspired by all the power ball hype. Responses ran the spectrum from buy a mansion to buy 100 horses and 100 puppies, to go to Florida, to get some more yo-yos! Nice! In the afternoon we talked about what good writers do and how good writers sometimes get stuck! Since we'd never ever waste a single second of writing workshop, we learned about how to write about things we know... story ideas about us! Library books tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

SNOW and Surveys!

Great Tuesday Everyone!! SNOW!! It didn't amount to much, but it sure was pretty to look at today! Our math meeting helper Justin was able to put our very first "snowy day" picture onto our weather pictograph at his meeting! Woohoo! In me stretched our learning about graphing and data and conducted our very own survey! 16 students answered the question and collected their data using tally marks (because they're neat, and easy to count). Next, we applied our data to a bar graph taking care to include a title, observations, and careful counting, of course! Taking a proper survey that delivers true and accurate (even organized) information takes a lot of work! Well done friends! We worked on our spelling rule, long a vowel sound in word study and practiced ABC order! Writing workshop focused on how to "keep going" in a story, adding detail and painting a picture in the reader's head! Students worked on all kinds of writing today, personal narratives, fiction, and even poems taking care to include rich detail and describing words! We ended the day in PE with obstacle course and Ms. Gebo! Great day friends! Take some time to go to brain pop jr. and do your math homework! It's super fun! Try the "write about it" and "draw about it" options too!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Welcome Back Thankful Thinkers!

Howdy Friends! What a great first day back after a long Thanksgiving Holiday! We started with work board and reading groups, as usual. Our focus lately has been research and finding evidence to support our learning. Awesome! In math we reviewed what we learned about bar graphs and stretched our learning to line plot graphs! We collected data and represented our data on our line plot. Next, we used our line plot to answer questions! Using words like most, least, more than, less than, we took a critical look at our data and learned a lot about reading graphs! Our brainpop homework this week is to watch our data/graphing video clip at least 3 times this week (remember, it's only 4 minutes long), and try the easy or hard quiz! You can even try the "draw about it" or "write about it" options as well! Our new spelling rule is long a vowel sound and we started today by looking at all the ways to make long a!! Using ay together and ai, along with a consonant silent e, we get the long a vowel sound in words! Great practice and lots of fun! We wrote our weekend stories in writing workshop and learned how to narrow down your story to one event, one topic, instead of listing all the events that happened on the weekend! We'll talk a lot more about "zooming in" on a topic or story idea in our writing! Doing what good writers do... that's the way we like it!!