Did you see our bulletin news last week?
A good chunk of our language arts time this week was spent completing our MAP tests. Not fun or glamorous, but the kids worked hard and did their best! Next week, we are back to our genre study in reading and we will be having our first writing celebration as well! We're also starting Spelling Tic-Tac-Toe next week, which will have the students choosing 3 ways to practice their words throughout the week. I gave them a preview on Friday and they seemed excited about it!
In science, we continued to look at how animals are classified. One activity we did included watching a Discovery Channel video and categorizing the animals as either mammal, fish, bird, reptile, or amphibian. It was a lot of fun and the video was so cool!
We also did a little crossover work with math this week! We worked on measuring, and also talked a bit about how plants grow when we were looking at our pumpkin in math.
In math, we continued working on our equal grouping lessons and also started looking at our math facts. We're going to be hitting the multiplication facts pretty hard in the next few weeks, so flashcards would be great practice for the math logs in the coming weeks. Some of the students are still struggling with addition facts, so if that is the case for your child, I would start there (multiplication facts are much easier once the addition facts are mastered). I also started working with leveled groups this week, which went pretty well! It was an admittedly boring week for math, so next week I'm hoping to mix it up a little! (It might get a little messy!)
We continued working on Michigan's geography this week and focused on the mountains and resources of our state. The students are making some AMAZING maps that I can't wait to show off. Most of the groups are finished, or closed to being finished, so next week we will just need to add a map key!
We started our study of Michigan this week! Super exciting! The students specifically focused on the geography of Michigan and are in the process of creating some pretty amazing maps! They've already located a number of important cities, added rivers, labeled our bordering lakes and states/countries, and some have even added mountains. We'll be finishing these up next week by adding some of the important natural resources of our state!
We also took part in our 2nd Mystery Skype, and our first international Mystery Skype! The students did a great job figuring out the continent, country, county, and even the city where the mystery class was located! We found out that they were in Newhaven in Sussex County, England! The students couldn't wrap their brains around the fact that the kids in England had to go because their school day was almost over even though ours was just starting! We'll have to spend some time talking about time zones! Keep up to date on our Skype adventures on our Mystery Skype page!
We continued splitting numbers into equal groups this week. One of the things we did this week was creating spiders with our multiplication and division fact families! They used googly eyes to make arrays on their spiders and wrote the math problems to go with the arrays on the spiders' legs. They turned out so cute! They will be in the hallway outside of our room for about the next week or so if you want to stop by and see them! I can't believe I forgot to take pictures, but if I go in this weekend, I'll try to get a few pictures to post.
Without a doubt, the best part of this week (for the students AND for me) was the Cardboard Challenge! The challenge started a few years ago and aims to get kids playing and using their imaginations, both of which I also think are super important for learning! Since we are a class of Makers, I thought this would be something that the kids would really enjoy; boy, was I right!
We started by watching a video about the little boy who was the inspiration for the Cardboard Challenge. It is really a great video and it really got the kids excited!
Pumpkin Fluff Recipe
I also made the kids a special treat for fun Friday! Pumpkin Fluff! All of the kids that tried it, loved it! It's not super unhealthy and is a yummy fall treat!
Hi! I haven’t received this month’s fliers yet, but wanted to let you know about the book order so we can be sure to get our books before the end of the month (there are lots of great Halloween choices!) The fliers should be here early next week, but in the meantime, you can order or browse online at Scholastic.com. Use the code L49RZ to join our class.
Paper orders will be due Friday, October 16 and online orders will be due Sunday, October 18.
What a busy week it was! Where do I start? Between Mass, a field trip, and Blessing of the Pets, we had a crazy, but fun filled week!
In religion this week, we spent our time preparing for Mass. We had a very LONG and challenging set of readings, but the kids did so wonderfully! We also had a few new songs to try out. It was a little tough, but they made it through! I think our next Mass will be November 5, but since that is the week of All Saint's Day, the Mass may be switched to earlier in the week. I will let you know as soon as I find out.
Next week, we'll be finishing up chapter 1 in our religion book.
We continued learning about behavioral and physical adaptations in preparation for our big field trip to Seney National Wildlife Refuge! We had so much fun! We started our morning by meeting Ranger Jen and learning about how a refuge helps animals by giving them the things they need to survive in the wild. We also learned that the refuge is over 92,000 acres in area and was originally designated as a refuge specifically for birds. After that, we took a hike through the woods. We played a really fun game that showed how animals use their physical features and behaviors to survive in the wild. We split the students into two groups. One group was the predators and one group acted as the prey. Ranger Jen led the prey group into the woods to hide. Then the predator group had to sneak through the woods to try to spot the prey. We learned how important camouflage can be for both predators and prey, and how sometimes even bright colors can be an advantage, like when trying to find a mate! After that, the students did a plant study. They each found a plant that was interesting to them, did some rubbings of the leaves or bark, and took notes about what made that plant special and different from those around it. In the coming weeks, we will be looking more into plants, so this will be a good point of reference for the students.
When we were done in the woods, we headed back to the visitor center for a picnic lunch on the deck and time to explore. One of the great things about the Seney National Wildlife Refuge is how interactive it is. The students were able to touch (and smell in some cases) a variety of pelts, skulls, bones, feathers, and other artifacts. Some of the students made tracks in the sand table or touched (fake) wolf scat! We then wrapped up our visit with a pond study. Ranger Jen talked to the students about how animals can be classified (we'll be working on this in class next week). The students helped sort the animals in 2 big groups - vertebrates and invertebrates, then into 5 smaller groups: mammals, fish, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. Once they had a good idea of how classification works, the students were given some nets and taught how to take a sample. The students collected a variety of creatures and ended up figuring out that they could split them into two groups - animals with shells (mollusks) and animals with legs (in this case, insects). They did such a great job and I think they all learned a lot! They were so well behaved and really made me proud!
We are continuing to work on splitting numbers into equal groups in math. The students have done really well with this so I'm planning to move further into multiplication/division next week. We also took some time to work on First in Math this week. We're in the process of seeing who knows which facts to I can focus our attention on where the most need lies. We're also going to start our leveled math groups so that I can better focus in on what each student needs and so I can provide extra challenge or support. (No food in math this week, I might have to do something about that next week!)
Yet another thing to make me proud of these kids! We raised $136 to benefit the Alzheimer's Association and research towards finding a cure! We didn't end up winning the pizza party (6th grade had $150), but I plan on bringing in a special treat because they worked so hard!
Alzheimer's Disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the US, and the SECOND leading cause of death in Schoolcraft County. It is the only disease in the top 10 without a treatment plan and the number of people diagnosed continues to rise. This cause is especially close to my family. My husband lost his grandmother and 2 beloved great aunts to the disease. It is a heartbreaking, awful disease. We don't have a cure yet, but I am so proud that our class was able to make such a great contribution to the cause.
Hi! I'm Mrs. Erickson and I am the 3rd grade teacher at St. Francis de Sales. To learn more about me, click here.