December Calendar and Newsletter

Sunday, November 27, 2016

I have uploaded the December Specials/PLC Calendar and the December Newsletter.  Hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving!!

Election Process

Saturday, November 19, 2016

In the month of October, students began working on a Project Based Learning (PBL) activity for the 2016 Presidential Election.  The objective of the PBL was for students to learn how to become informed voters.  Students began the PBL by learning about the 3 Branches of Government, the roles and responsibilities of each branch, and what groups made up each branch.  This was a vital part of the PBL, since students would spend time researching and participating in activities related to the Executive and Legislative Branch.  

Students spent the month learning about the history of the Republican and Democrat Parties, the candidates for each party, the biographies for each candidate and how each candidate felt about issues related to our country.  Students researched the issues of Economy, Defense, Taxes, Education, and Healthcare and compared each candidates views.  

Using Close Reading strategies, research skills, graphing activities, and technology, students were able to develop an understanding of each candidate.  From that point, we spent time learning about the difference between a popular vote and the Electoral College.  

To wrap up the Election Process PBL, students participated in a mock election on November 8th. Each student casts their vote on a private paper ballot.  Results were tallied, with the entire grade level present, and the result were 21 votes for Hillary Clinton and 28 votes for Donald Trump. Using those numbers students created a bar graph to compare their votes.  On Wednesday, November 9th, students used a U.S. map and recorded the number of Electoral Votes per state and then colored in how each state voted.  

Spending time working with students on this PBL was so rewarding.  Students were able to discuss issues and concerns with each other and with their families.  I even had a few parents that mentioned their child informed them that they were voting for the wrong candidate.  When they questioned their child as to why they thought that, the student was able to inform them based off of the information they learned through this PBL. 

I hope you enjoy the pictures below.  There are a lot of them!


November Calendar and Newsletter

Sunday, October 30, 2016

I have uploaded the November Specials/PLC calendar and newsletter.  Take a moment to look at the Home School Letter for Chapter 1.  It gives a short synopsis of what students will be working on in Unit 1.  Unit 1 contains only one chapter, however, it has 12 lessons within the chapter, so it will take a good part of November to complete, especially with days off.  

Math Time

Saturday, October 15, 2016

We have spent the past 7 weeks working on becoming fluent in multiplication!  They have learned how to use repeated addition, make arrays, skip count on a number line, make equal groups, and use properties of multiplication (Commutative, Distributive, & Associative).  Students are working with square tiles to help them make arrays to solve problems.  In the pictures below, they are using square tiles to make arrays to help them solve for an unknown factor in an equation.  

This concept can be taught at home, using any small objects (buttons, coins, cereal, etc.)  Any object that can be easily used to make straight rows and columns, can be used.  Students know that in multiplication, the first factor is the number of groups (rows) and the second factor is the number in each group.  So, if the equation was 6 x 4, students should have 6 rows (each row is a group), with 4 objects in that row (group).  If they line up their array straight, then they should easily be able to find the product.  In this case, the product would be 24.  

If you do not have objects at home for your child to use, they can always use this same concept by drawing arrays on a sheet of paper. The process is still the same.

D.E.A.R. Time

I know I've been terrible about posting this month.   There seems to be so much going on, that I can't seem to get caught up or get ahead.  So, here it is, a Friday night at 9:15, and I've been home from work for 45 minutes.   I decided to stay late, in hopes of getting things done.   Now I'm home and still working, but at least it's with my sweet husband and little puppy, Maggie!

I snapped some cute pictures of some of my kiddos reading during D.E.A.R Time (Drop Everything And Read).  I'm usually reading while they are, but I couldn't resist snapping these!  I had to do it fast or they would have gotten on to me for not reading during this time! LOL

Don't they look like they are enjoying reading?  I love that this class loves D.E.A.R Time and enjoys reading so much.

Blog Recognition

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Thought I would share with all of you that our class blog was listed as one of 8 classroom blogs that a professional blogging company recognized as exceptional.  I use items from this company to create our class blog, so this is truly an honor!  Click here to see the article.

Learning about Communities

Saturday, September 17, 2016

We began learning about communities and how they work.  Students started with looking up information in their Social Studies textbook and becoming "experts" in the community that they sit in.  The community worked together to read and answer questions and then we shared with the other communities how different and similar their community is from the other communities.  The students did a fantastic job working collaboratively and sharing out with the other communities.  

Freedom Walk - September 9th

What a great day we had for our annual Freedom Walk to commemorate September 11th.  Our service men and woman have sacrificed so much for our country, since that terrible day.  I am so thankful for all that the military does to protect us each and every day.  I hope that children continue to learn about September 11th, so that we never forget what happened to our country.  For Heroes Elementary, we commemorate the day with the National Anthem, Pledge of Allegience, and then our walk around the school.  Parents come out to walk with their children and to share this special day with each other.