Spent many hours this summer drawing some Finding Nemo & Finding Dory characters! Decided to turn the cubby area into an underwater theme. Hoping it brings smiles to my new second graders each day as they come in to hang up their coats & backpacks!
Welcoming lots of change this year! A new grade and a new classroom means lots of fun summer projects. If anyone asks what I did this summer, my answer is "Labels. Lots and lots of labels!". Organizing a classroom and decorating for new kiddos is the highlight of my summer.
Thank you all again for sharing your children with me and for being so supportive this year. I'm so grateful to have played a small role in your child's life. And I have loved watching them learn and grow! Happy Summer!
Below is the End of the Year Share video with many photos from our field trips.
Below is the Breakfast Share video from February 2016.
For the month of December the students of 3W will be going out of their way to do one "Random Act of Kindness" each day until winter break. This morning students read a poem about kindness and we talked about what it means to be kind, why it is important, and how small acts of kindness can be. We followed our discussion with an interactive read aloud of The Quilt Maker's Gift, which is heartwarming tale about the power of kindness and doing things for others.
Students were given a check list to choose from for their act of kindness each morning. At the end of each day, we will be sharing out what we did to make someone's day a little brighter.
Check out the videos below to hear the students of 3W singing their new geography songs! The first song is called New England States. The second song is called Me On The Map, which was meant to help us practice the difference between a continent, country, state, and town!
The New England States
Me On the Map
Today 3W learned about what it means to be a veteran and how important it is to thank veterans regularly, not just on Veterans Day. Students took the time to make thank you cards & Happy Thanksgiving cards for the many veterans at the VA hospital in West Roxbury, who won't be able to spend the holiday with their families. Students wrote extremely heartfelt messages explaining how thankful they were for the veteran's service and risking their lives for our freedom.
All cards will be delivered to the VA hospital on Thanksgiving by my best friend, who is a nurse at the hospital. Our hope is to not only express our gratitude, but spread smiles and cheer!
Math stations have officially been launched in 3W! For the last several weeks students have been learning the routines, procedures and expectations for math stations.
What are math stations?
Math stations are similar to centers in that students work with a partner on various math games. Typically students complete two math stations during a given math block with their partner. The goal of stations is for students to be getting the extra practice and reinforcement with the skills we are learning on non station math days. Also, stations act as a spiral review in that occasionally students get the opportunity to engage with a game that requires them to review/ practice skills we've already covered. (i.e. addition & subtraction) Students use the station work-board (pictured above) so that they know what stations they will need to complete in a given day.
On the station work-board there are student's names with various number/color cards. These cards correlate with the number drawer students take to their station spot.
What is in the station drawers?
The games! Each drawer contains various games & game materials. Also, the games are differentiated so that they can be made more challenging as skills become more fluent for students. Students have spent weeks learning the rules for each game, as well as "math talk".
What is "math talk"?
Math talk is the math language students are expected to engage in with their station partner. (i.e. skip counting, math vocabulary words such as product, sum, difference, array, and conversations that explain each others thinking)
Where are stations headed?
Ultimately, the goal is for stations to take place 3-4 times a week. Eventually, students will be able to work independently in each stations, while I pull students to work in small groups on differentiated instruction & teaching.
Over all, your child has been working tremendously hard on maintaining there routines, procedures and expectations. They continue to impress me with their incredible teamwork and math thinking!!
Over the course of the last few weeks 3W has been learning about where we are located on a map. After many read alouds, silly songs, and two geography projects we are finally understanding the difference between a planet, continent, country, state, and town. If you're ever able to come up and visit 3W, please be sure to check out our amazing social studies work hanging in the hall!
Before leaving for Thanksgiving break, I thought it would be fun for the kids to learn one more song that wrapped everything we had been learning into one. Today students learned the song Me On The Map, which goes to the tune of The Green Grass Grows All Around. I simply changed the lyrics so that they are all about geography!! Please use the lyrics attached below for your child to practice at home! It has sure become a catchy tune in our classroom!
Over the course of these last few weeks, we have been learning a great deal about structures. One of our main focuses has been around what a structure needs to be sturdy and stable. We've also spent a lot of time on the difference between an engineer & an architect. Engineers build things (not just structures) to solve problems, where as an architect usually just designs a structure (typically buildings) and oversee the construction. This has certainly become a favorite unit & favorite time of day for all third graders!
Newspaper & Tape Experiment:
Paper clips & Straws Experiment:
This week we have been talking a lot about our classroom rules and expectations. Our very first classroom expectation in 3W is to be kind to one another. In order to get students thinking about kindness, we used toothpaste! Yes, toothpaste.
At first glance, the students had no idea what we were going to do. Many began asking "are we going to brush our teeth?!" However, what I asked them to do with the toothpaste soon filled the room with surprised faces & giggles galore.
There is the saying, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me." I find this statement to be the farthest from the truth. I wanted the kids to understand the gravity of their words and why it is so important to speak to one another with kindness.
After partnering the students up they were instructed to decide which partner would take "job 1" and which partner would take "job 2". However, they had not been told what the "jobs" would be. This was when the surprise kicked in. All students who chose "job 1" were instructed to squeeze all the toothpaste out of the tube and onto a plate. After the initial shock, everyone followed the direction with confused looks and giggles. Once all the toothpaste was on the plate, I then asked my friends who chose "job 2" to try putting all the toothpaste back into the tube. The room erupted in laughter. Right away, students knew they couldn't put it back, but it didn't stop them from trying.
After a few moments of solid attempts and partners crying from laughter, we all regrouped and came back together. I asked the students why they thought we did this? I am proud to say, that as the students shared their hypotheses and brainstormed ideas, they eventually discovered the correct answer on their own. Students learned that their words were similar to the toothpaste. Once your words come out of your mouth, you cannot stop what's been heard, and it can really hurt and effect those around you. You can ask for forgiveness and say your sorry, but those words still have a lot of weight and can't be taken back.
We concluded this lesson with a read aloud that kept us thinking about kind words. Over all, it was a very fun lesson filled with smiles, laughter, and most of all lots of good thinking about friendships, kindness and our words!