- Thursday, December 6th - Cottonwood Spelling Bee
- Wednesday, December 12th - Ms. Buman's last day! (student teacher)
- Friday, December 21st - Last Day of School Before Winter Break! :)
We are well into Unit 4 - Time, Measurement, and Fractions! In this unit students will tell time and calculate elapsed time (how much time has passed), measure mass and volume to solve problems, and model and compare fractions in different ways.
We have been working hard on telling time to the nearest minute and solving elapsed time problems. Telling time is a difficult concept and any extra practice or support with this concept at home would be wonderful! Here are some ways you can help your child master reading a clock:
- ask your child what time it is during different parts of the day
- time flash cards (I have a few sets of these if you'd like to borrow one)
- time apps (there are a few free ones and many for purchase)
In our character study unit we have learned how to pay attention to the characters thoughts, feelings, and actions to help create a theory or big idea about the main character. We've also learned how to make higher-level predictions based on the character's past actions. This week we are focusing on noticing how the character reacts to challenges they come across, and then using those observations to form a theory about what type of person that character is. We will also discuss the roles that secondary characters play in the main character's journey.
Students are practicing the strategies mentioned above as a whole class with a mentor text, as well as with their book club books. The conversations that kids are having around the characters in their book club books have been so insightful and deep. I am really proud of them!
One of my most favorite books to read this time of year is In November by Cynthia Rylant. The illustrations are beautiful and the use of descriptive and sensory details makes it a perfect mentor text for writing using the 5 senses. After reading the story, each child chose a month that is special to them. We brainstormed ideas for each one of the 5 senses, and students used these ideas to write a short, descriptive "book" about the things you would taste, smell, see, hear, and feel during their chosen month. These illustrated books will be coming home this week.
To complete our unit of matter and energy, we invited a scientist from the EPA to come do an engaging and informational demonstration for the students. Students saw experiments involving dry ice and liquid nitrogen that showed them how matter changes from one state to another. Ask your child what their favorite experiment was!
We are now shifting gears back to social studies. We will begin learning about another region of the United States - the southeast! This week students will learn which states are part of this region, and we will complete a geography challenge to familiarize ourselves with this part of the country. We will also begin to dive into the land and water use, climate, products and natural resources, as well as the famous landmarks and culture of this region.