Every newspaper structure withstood numerous amounts of weights!!!! The students were so excited last Friday to test out the strength of each structure. Each Science Notebook is filled with detailed drawings and evidence why each structure was strong and stable. The pictures are priceless!
During Computer Lab on Monday morning, students continued to study how real structures can withstand the forces of nature and weight. They were able to SEE how forces affect structures. In a “lab,” they were able to test out materials that engineers use to build BIG! Students explored the loads that big structures need to withstand. Last, but not least, students were able to study the different shapes to determine which is the strongest for building. Indeed, 3F students are budding engineers!
This week, each student built a toothpick and marshmallow structure, and groups of students built structures with different materials, (tin foil, spaghetti, and plastic cups). As you can see from the pictures, pupils applied the information they learned from internet research, and building with newspaper structures last week, to these new structures. Building knowledge and applying knowledge to new situations is a goal these students are familiar with!
Solving “mystery numbers” also proved how well 3F students could apply their addition, multiplication, and less than and greater than knowledge to solve math clues, one at a time. Every day there were new challenges, and 3F students worked hard to solve them. Place value was also stressed at the end of this chapter. Students took an assessment this week for Chapter Four, and we are on to Chapter 5! Students played a math game on Wednesday. Each student in a group of four rolled four die, each student writing down the smallest number they could. The four students then put their numbers in order, from the least to the largest number. Four points were given to the person with the smallest number, three points were given to the person with the next smallest number, two points were given to the student with the next number, etc. The Lab Book focused on writing whether one large number was “greater than” or “less than” another large number. Students continue to work with number lines, and rounding numbers to the nearest tens or hundreds.
Students have now written their third personal narrative/memoir. Each narrative contains the elements of great writing – interesting lead sentences, detailed setting descriptions, varied sentence structure, similes, the internal story, sensory details, and thoughtful conclusions. 3F students are learning the art of SHOW, DON’T TELL to add description. I spoke to the coordinator of Language Arts on Friday afternoon, and was beyond thrilled to find out that a new Lucy Calkins kit will be bought for the primary teachers in Brookline. I began my teaching career, teaching writing the Lucy Calkins’ way. She has remained my writing mentor for over 37 years!
Eating snack and sharing our reading logs in small groups every Friday has been the hit of every week! Students share one specific language arts reading standard each week, no repeats! When students read at home, they are showing that they are “thinking” as they read and paying attention to descriptive language that will transfer into their own writing.
3F students began small non-fiction reading groups this week. I bought leveled reading books of different structures throughout the world. Students will read Time for Kids and think about the non-fiction text features in that magazine to write their own magazine about the structure they are reading about using non-fiction features such as faraway and close-up pictures, frames around each page, captions, information boxes, poems, etc. This project will start in November and continue through December.
Next week our buddies will be making Thanksgiving cards, drawing a variety of turkeys, step by step. My best friend Carol just came back from Vietnam and Cambodia. In Cambodia, there were sixty students in a first grade class. Materials were limited. I have also visited classrooms in India where students did not have furniture. There is much to be thankful for at Baker School and in Brookline.
3F students will also be reading a variety of Thanksgiving poems written by famous poets. Students will choose the style of poem they like best to write their own Thanksgiving poems in that style.
Every child has now shared his/her Massachusetts Family visit! The presentations, the rich comments and “thick” questions were remarkable. I am so proud of the 3F students! Every project has been hung up in our classroom.
I will not write a blog next week since it is a short week. Please don’t forget that Wednesday ends at 12:00. The shopping and cooking will begin. Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!!!