Enjoy your winter break!!
It has been a busy February in fifth grade so far:
The Science Fair this week was a great success. In the weeks leading up to the big event, students thought of scientific questions they could answer through experiments, and then committed to taking on one question and experiment to share at the fair. It was a wonderful culmination to our units on chemistry and heat; students applied what they had learned to their own experiments, and were proud to share their work with the school community on Tuesday. We’ll switch gears and learn about microscopes and cells after the break.
Our “workshop”-style math class has been working well for the last couple of weeks. Students have been moving through a variety of tasks at their own pace, sometimes independently, and sometimes in partnerships or small groups. Our work has been focused on fractions, with students working through ideas having to do with visual models, equivalent fractions, and adding and subtracting fractions with like and unlike denominators. Some students are also working through a collection of challenge problems in between their other assignments. When we get back from the break, we’ll expand the workshop model to include some games and projects in a menu of options from which students can choose throughout the week. Some activities on the list will be requirements, others will be optional, and students will have some choice about when and how they complete their work during the week.
Writing For Understanding: Classes have recently discussed The Boston Massacre and analyzed various depictions of the event. We have also read from multiple sources about the battles of Lexington and Concord and are comparing our research to Longfellow’s poem, Paul Revere’s Ride. When we return from February break students will work with partners to research specific events and important people that impacted the road to the Revolutionary War. Partners will design a slide for their topic and we will compile class slide shows to share our findings. Upon completion of this Prelude to the Revolution project, students will select a book from this era and we will hold small group book studies. Students will read and reflect on various texts and then choose a format to share with the whole class. We are continuing with our class read aloud, Chains, and will conclude this unit with an opinion piece.
Extras: We had a fun Valentines Day class celebration, and also spent some time with our Buddy Class weaving paper heart baskets. It’s always nice to watch the older and younger students interact; helping each other and learning more about others’ interests.