Friday, December 16, 2016

January Calendar

Author's Celebrated!

Thank you all so much for being a part of our Author Celebration on Thursday. It was an incredible event designed specifically to engage our writers in celebration, sharing, and confidence building. I say how proud I am all the time of these writers, but on this day you had an opportunity to really see the work in progress and the development of your writer. Over the break I would encourage your student to continue to write about his/her adventures remembering who, where, and what happened. I hope you enjoyed some time in our classroom as we surely loved having you!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

A Special Performance

On Wednesday we were lucky enough to have a special showing of The Leeves featuring one of our very own classroom parents! The Leeves brought us some very fun and educational songs all about the traditions of Hanukkah. We have and know so many Christmas songs but we don't hear of many songs about Hanukkah so The Leeves wrote some tunes to help us learn about this Jewish holiday. It was a great introduction for us as we are going to be studying Hanukkah traditions next week including a special Hanukkah treat, potato latkes! The Leeves will be performing on Sunday at Port City Music Hall in Portland at 3:00! I would highly recommend this entertaining and educational experience!! A big thank you goes to Portland Ovations and the Gardners for coming and putting on such a special show.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Sink the Boat STEM Challenge

Our newest science unit is a study of wood. We began this unit by reviewing that wood comes from trees (our previous unit). We explored a variety of wood types: pine, basswood, redwood, sandwich board/plywood, and particle board. We talked about the similarities and the differences amongst the wood types. We then explored the classroom for things made of wood. It was surprising to see how many things in our space are made of wood!

In the next lesson we tested a piece of pine to see if it would sink or float. Following the scientific method we first asked the question, made a hypothesis, and then tested the wood. Wood floats! We then took our knowledge to the next level: If wood floats, how can we make it sink? Working in groups of 3-4 students were given a tray of materials (paper clips and rubber bands) to sink their piece of wood. It was awesome to watch student thoughtfully plan out how they would sink the wood and what type of teamwork would be needed. It was a lot of hands on, collaborative learning had by all!