Here is a summary of what happened in our classroom:
In Langauge Arts...
Students read narrative non-fiction this week. We talked about the characteristics of this type of genre. Students learned that narrative non-fiction is when a text presents true information in a style very close to fiction. The two narrative non-fiction stories we read this week were Prairie Guard Dogs by Wonders and Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! by April Pulley Sayre. Using these stories we answered the following essential question this week: What are the features of different animal habitats?
Using Prairie Guard Dogs, students learned about main topic and main idea. The main topic was Prairie Dogs and the main idea of this text was that prairie guard dogs works hard to protect their family from danger. After determining the main idea, students identified 3 supporting details that support the main idea. Some of the details included the prairie guard dog peeks his head out and makes sure the coast is clear, then tells his family when it's safe to come out of the burrow; the prairie guard dog is restless and constantly looks around for danger; when the prairie guard dog saw a badger he barked to warn his family to get to safety; and prairie guard dogs take turns with shifts to guard.
Students then had more practice determining main topic, and main idea with supporting details with the text Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! We talked about the title and how it can often give us a clue about what the main idea might be about. The main topic was turtles and the main idea was that turtles face many dangers within their habitat. Students found many details to support the main idea. Some included if the egg nest is found, the eggs can become food for raccoons; cars can drive over the egg nests; when they become hatchlings, they can become food for cats, herons, and raccoons; when trying to get to the ocean, hatchlings can sometimes get confused on which light to crawl towards and might crawl toward street lights or homes instead of the moonlight above the horizon; once in the ocean many other dangers present themselves like becoming food for other ocean predators, fishing nets, and garbage that looks like jellyfish!
Grammar lessons included more review on the prefixes re, un, and dis and the suffixes ly and ful. Students learned about abbreviations, or a way to shorten nouns, such as Mistress (Mrs. or Ms.), Mister, Doctor. Students also learned about the differences between common nouns, proper nouns, and collective nouns. Students practiced sorting various nouns using a tree map. They also learned that proper nouns need to begin with a capital. Using A Cache of Jewels by Ruth Heller, students learned many new collective nouns and realized they already new some themselves! Some of our favorites were a gam of whales, a pride or lions, a batch of bread, a bouquet of flowers, a parcel of penguins, a forest of trees, a kindle of kittens and of course a school of fish. Lastly, students learned how to properly use commas in a series of items. For example: For lunch I ate a sandwich, chips, juice and an apple.
Students have learned that they must become an expert on a topic, pulling information from many sources, before they can write an informational writing piece about the topic. As a class, we have been reading a lot about the ocean, specifically, the coral reef. Students have added a lot of new information to their schemas. Until they are ready to begin their writing, students are studying how different authors use a variety of writing techniques and text features that helps to organize information.
Students took an informational writing pre test using one source called A Tree Full of Life by Susan Evento. The children learned a lot about the Eucalyptus Tree, then students wrote about how this tree is food and shelter for many animals.
Students learned how a hundreds chart can be a useful tool when adding. They practiced moving their fingers down to add ten and to the right to add ones.
Students practiced their skip counting fluency using a number line. They practiced adding 10 to any given number, not starting at 0. For example 52 + 10 or 27 + 10. They also practiced skip counting by 5s. They noticed patterns as the skip counting continues.
Students used the number line to add numbers. They learned to start at the larger number, then decompose the other addend to more friendly jumps. For the example 57 + 12 students should start at 57 then decompose 12 into 10 and 2. Then do a jump of 10 first, then a jump of 2. We call this strategy the "Jumps-of-Ten."
Students learned that numbers can be decomposed in other ways to stop at 10s on the number line. For the example 58 + 9, students learned to think 58 + 2 + 7. They would jump from 58 to 60, then 60 to 67 on the number line. We call this strategy "Make-ten."
After practicing jumps of 10 all week, students learned they can be even more efficient by combining the 10s. For the example 43 + 25, they learned they can start at 43, make one jump of 20 to 63, then a jump of 5 to 68.
We have begun our PLTW unit on form and function. Students are learning the form and function of things found in nature and how man-made objects can be made modeling after the form and function of things found in nature. As they are engaged in this unit students have already begun exploring plant life cycles and seed dispersement. They will be helping to design and build a product that will help the characters in this Unit's fictional story to disperse seeds over a large field.
REMINDERS AND ANNOUCEMENTS
Our Turkey Trot event will be held on Tuesday, November 21st. Your child must be wear shoes to participate. Also, please have your child bring a water bottle labeled with his or her name.