Spring break is finally in sight! We are still doing instruction though up until the end since each day is important. We are now entering our test prep phase of the year. However, we feel that the best test prep is to keep teaching and reviewing strategies. Students also need to be reading to continue building stamina.
And that is what we did today. Students read two folktale stories, one African and one Native American, in which a character is a trickster. Students then wrote down which one they liked best and explained why using an excerpt from the text.
We began the month of April by reviewing for tomorrow's third and final MAP test. We went over the importance of taking one's time, focusing on each question and answer choice, going back and referencing the text, and double checking before going to the next question.
Tomorrow is their chance to show how much they have grown over the course of the year so far.
Students were given four sheets of colored paper. Each sheet was folded into eighths, numbered, then stapled. This is for the purpose of showing their work during the test.
Lastly, students were introduced to Epic! which has books for students to read. The link and class code are on my Launch page.
Today was the retake for the students who did not get mastery. The others worked on their narrative writing.
We began the literacy block with a warm-up shown below. It is a nonfiction text that allows students to review context clues.
Afterwards, the students who scored at least 80% on yesterday's test went onto Clever and then to Studies Weekly to do an activity of their choice. The others met with me and did a review by using the following text with comprehension questions. Students tomorrow will be given the opportunity to retake the test.
In science, the students took their test on rocks and minerals using Mastery Connect.
Today was the day of the Q3 End-of-Quarter Literacy Assessment. This was to see how the students are doing as we are currently 3/4 of the way through the school year. After spring break, we will be focusing strictly on review and preparing for the actual End-of-Grade test that will occur sometime in the last two weeks of school. The actual test dates have not been determined but they will be added to the calendar and in the newsletter.
Though students were expected to take their time on this, students who finished early were able to work on their narrative writing.
Students were given the following graphic organizer to write a narrative. This narrative can be either fictional or nonfictional.
We are comparing and contrasting a poem and a work of prose today. First, we did a warm-up with point-of-view:
Students were given a paper copy (I do not have an electronic copy) of two works. On the left side was the poem The Spider, by Jane Taylor (1883). The other one was an African folktale featuring Anansi the Spider: Why Anansi Has Eight Thin Legs. The first task was to compare and contrast both.....what did they have unique to each piece? What did they have in common? We used a Venn Diagram to express the comparison and contrast in a visual manner.
The students then worked together to answer the four questions pertaining to the Anansi story. Below are both texts side-by-side:
The Wax Museum has come and gone. As I had mentioned before, I was very impressed and pleased both by the effort of my students and how much they took ownership of their work. Though it was time consuming, I feel that it was well worth it considering how students were able to apply what they had learned in literacy and do something that they were interested in! I believe we will soon be shifting towards a science project once we really get into the ecosystems unit of instruction. As always, any relevant information will be shared via Parent Square, the newsletter, and by creating a dedicated page on this website.
First, we began with a warm-up to review theme:
In literacy, we are continuing the study of how poetry, prose, and dramas are similar and different from one another (comparing and contrasting). For today's lesson, I had the class get on their Chromebooks and do a Nearpod lesson. I originally had it as a live lesson then switched it to self-paced.
In science, we are finishing up the rocks and minerals unit. Our focus today was a hands-on simulation of the Law of Superposition and of metamorphic rock. The Law of Superposition states that with sedimentary rock, the lower layers are the oldest ones since sedimentary rock is the result of a gradual build-up. Sediment gets dropped in layers (sedimentation). As layers above it accumulate, the lower layers are hardened over long periods of time into rock (cementation).
The simulation involved each student getting a sheet of wax paper and five Swedish Fish in different colors (after washing their hands). The Swedish Fish represents layers of sediment.
Students placed layers of "sediment" one after another on top of each other to make a small stack. We waited one minute between layers and wrote down the time on the wax paper. They then noted which layer was the oldest (the bottom) simply by looking at the times written down.
The second part of this simulation involved metamorphic rock. As layers of rock accumulate more and more on top of existing rock, the heat and pressure eventually become great enough to cause the rocks to change, which is exactly what metamorphosis means. This process was simulated by covering the layers of the "rock" with the rest of the wax paper and smashing it down. After unwrapping it, they drew a picture of how it changed.
At long last the Wax Museum came! The students were excited and nervous but as us teachers knew all along, they did a fantastic job!
Today was the fourth and final early release day of the year. What we did was review the differences between poetry, drama, and prose. Then, students worked on a practice quiz.