Friday, March 24, 2017

Break time!

Greetings!

I'll admit I need this spring break! 

A full week away will do me and us wonders. There are a couple things to mention and a lot of photos to share from our busy week. 

If you are traveling or not, we could use more seeds for our April sign project. If it's not forbidden to bring dry seeds from a visited faraway land, cool, we'll use them. Right? We're international. Bring seeds from around the world, if possible.

It was Francophonie Week. The French teachers and students did excellent work!


French Spelling Bee

Le Lollipop Grand Prix

Francophonie Assembly

Francophonie Assembly
Francophonie Assembly
Francophonie Assembly

Francophonie Assembly

We further explored philosophical thought with language and meaning discussed over the week. It all started with Knuffle Bunny, a book normally read in Pre-K. The light story helped us form heavy questions.   


Philosophy book

You could support one key point from our discussions: The more words one knows, the more knowing is possible. Pardon my attempt at an aphorism, but the idea is valid. An expanded vocabulary paves the way to greater knowledge. Yikes, I did it again. You get the point. Use a rich variety of words to tantalize your child's curiosity about language and so strengthen her or his ability to build knowledge. Perhaps you could make a fun challenge to figure out the meaning of a new word by how you are using throughout the day. It's an idea. 

One language, two minds, and what result?

One language, two minds, and what result?


We continued to read weekly stories with our little Pre-K schoolmates. 


Reading Buddies

Reading Buddies


Reading Buddies
Reading Buddies



















In science, we exercised the idea of force by pushing basketballs and pulling bodies. There were a couple surprisingly strong third graders. 

Pushing 

Pushing 

Powered by Orange Juice

Powered by Yogurt Cake

The yogurt birthday cake view...

Yummy Good Time

Today's Francophonie concert was superb but the same could not be said for my photos of the show. Look at our Facebook page perhaps for concert snaps.

Happy Spring Break! 

Oh yeah, last thing: The kids were given an optional Spring Break Book to collect information for an essay they'll write upon return. Optional.  Also optional will be time on IXL or RAZ-Kids ahead of the computer-based MAP test in April. It's not an urgent deal. They get computer time in class and should be fine as is.

Go have fun! 

Don

Friday, March 17, 2017

Every Picture Tells A Story

Greetings! 

Lots of activity this week, so let's let the pictures and your child tell the stories. 


Pre-K Reading Buddies



Pre-K Reading Buddies
Pre-K Reading Buddies

Pre-K Reading Buddies

Pre-K Reading Buddies
Pre-K Reading Buddies
Pre-K Reading Buddies
Pre-K Reading Buddies














G3 Creatively 

 "Outer Space" Grand Opening

Outer Space Mindfulness


Space Station 


Force of Weight
Gauging Gravity
Incline Plane at Work







Solving the Tipping Problem
Modeling a Friend

Life Lessons in Simple Tales

Ask too about South Sudan, the Philippines, Bolivia, Pakistan, Costa Rica, Russia, the US, and Spain. These places helped our weeklong look at bravery. For example, we saw challenges faced by disabled job seekers in the US and South Sudan's internally displaced persons' search for food, shelter and safety. We also saw the Running of the Bulls in Spain and a marathon held in frozen Siberia, where runners "braved" the cold.  Each location presented a unique and topical example of what might be called bravery. The big question: What does it mean to be brave? 

Bravery prompted philosophical discussions, with responses and attention in conversation that reached excellent depths.

I hope you have thoughtful talks too. 

Happy Weekend!
Don

Friday, March 10, 2017

How Was Your Day?

Greetings! 

Today's Friday Film was Princess Mononoke (1997) an acclaimed Japanese anime about nature's battle against human short-sightedness and industrial greed. The kids were riveted by the allegorical tale.


Our reading included a heartwarming story about sisters Maya and Catrina. In Ghosts (2016) the girls' family relocate from the city to a seaside community to help ailing Maya deal with cystic fibrosis. It's a sweet, empathy mustering book.


In science, we whipped together an old-fashioned, non-electronic toy. But we need to improve either the design or the discipline for handling a delicate device. In any case, the toy demonstrated incline planes, patience, and skill, as expected. Fun stuff!



Finally, ask your child about school today or any day. If there is no recall, perhaps I failed to engage them, or daydreaming captured her attention, or his bedtime came too late. Whatever the cause, the more often you ask, I truly believe, the better we forge an association with school learning outcomes and family values. 

If your child easily recalls worthwhile events of the day(s), please play, play, play. The kid earned it!

COMING SOON!



If you have interesting, dry seeds around your garden, we'd love to have them for a soon-to-be project. 

Enjoy your weekend!
Don






Friday, March 3, 2017

Let's Party!

Greetings!

Third grade contributed the most clothing and toys to a local school for the disabled support drive organized by Ms. Owens (G10). The kids were awarded with a popcorn party. 


Perfect timing for our popcorn party! Dr. Seuss' birthday was yesterday. 

Click to see video

We watched two short stories today. 

First, The Lorax.  

The Lorax is a poignant tale about animal conservation, industrial greed, consumer excess, Bernie Sanders, environmental exploitation, and public ignorance. The kids loved it. 





The Butter Battle Book came next.  The story was about a bilateral arms race that escalated to both sides having weapons of mass destruction. 


Click to see video
I explained how the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States was pretty much the same scenario. 

Theodor Geisel was a good cat whose work and birthday we happily tipped a hat to. 



We laughed. We ate popcorn. We drank juice. We partied. We learned. 

A few kids have Flight Checks on RAZ-Kids. If yours does, and it's possible, I'd appreciate doing the recording at home where it's quiet. No big deal if you cannot. We'll make do. 

Happy Weekend,
Don