Science: In science over the past week, we have been learning about owls. We began by transforming our rocket ship in drama to a tree. We learned that owls often find a home in a tree. They return to the same spot year after year to have their babies. The children enjoyed doing research on various types of owls on the computer. Our highlight of the lesson was dissecting owl pellets for two days. The children practiced safety precautions using dissection tools and safety gloves. They were amazed at all the small bone pieces they found. After the bones were thoroughly cleaned with bleach, they sorted the bones based on which body parts they came from. They sorted them into the following categories: leg and arm, body, and head. Some of the children determined that the pieces were part of a skull, and they even tried to reconstruct the spine pieces.
Writer’s Workshop: We have been working on the unit “Writing for Readers.” In this unit, we have been focusing more on writing conventions. Students are learning about spacing and sentence structure. To help with spacing, each student has a “word spacing buddy.” This is a Popsicle stick with a design at the top. They place the stick after each word to create a space between the word. We follow some new writing rules while making our word more “readable.” They are: easy to read writing has spaces, has several letters per word, and not to write on top of eraser marks. They are learning that we write for the purpose of others reading our stories. It is amazing to see that even the children have a much easier time rereading their own work already!
Math Patterning: In math workshops, we have been learning about patterning in many ways. The students are already very strong in their patterning abilities. They can create ABAB patterns, and extend on more complex patterns. We have played games of the “mystery pattern” where students work in partners. One child makes a pattern, and then covers the end of the pattern with small paper cups. The other child has to guess what color is under the cups correctly in order to have their turn. We have also been creating patterns with various math materials, such as pattern blocks, unifix cubes, and square tiles. Their work is being collected to create a pattern book.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: We have finished our chapter book of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, written by Roald Dahl. As we read this book, the children completed a journal page for each chapter. While listening to the story, they drew a picture about what was happening. Look for their completed journal in their bookbag and ask your child to describe their work to you! (As an extension at home, you could watch one of the movies with your child and ask them to tell you what was the same and different between the movie and the book.)