Monday, December 3, 2012

December 3, 2012

Upcoming Dates
Dec. 6 - Southwest and West States Test
Dec. 6 - Choir Holiday Performance - 8:30 AM , 2:00 AM, and 6:15 PM
(Please check with Mrs. Dixon if you have any questions regrading this performance.)
Dec. 7 - Spelling Test
Dec. 14 - Vocabulary Test Lesson 7
Dec. 20 - Winter Parties
Dec. 21 - Noon Dismissal
Dec. 24-Jan. 7 - Winter Break
Jan. 8 - Back to school from Winter Break

We have been working on Expository Writing, which is nonfiction writing.  We have worked on coming up with a central idea and then finding ideas to support it together. The students and I have written a paper together using this idea: My dad is important to my family because he supports us. Everyone had lots of great ideas to contribute to our paper. Next, the students will look at their own brainstormed topics and will choose one to begin drafting their own Expository paper.  Once the drafts are completed, the students will revise and edit, and then write a final copy.

We have been reading many nonfiction articles and finding different text features such as: Table of Contents, Index, Glossary, Headings/Titles, Subheadings/Subtitles, Types of Print, Photographs/Pictures, Captions/Labels, Information Boxes/Sidebars, Charts/Graphs, Diagrams, Maps, and Timelines.
The students have been working through the articles to identify these text features.

The students are working in book club groups with fiction books.  The students are reading together and discussing the content.  They are making Text to Text, Text to Self, and Text to World connections as well as discovering new vocabulary, setting, characters, problem and solution.

We have spent lots of time with multiplication and division. We have talked about representations with pictures, model drawing, using the algorithm, and problem solving with these skills.  The students took a test over these skills on Nov. 30.

We have been working in stations reviewing past skills and working on problem solving.  Some students have been working with me to have some reteaching on skills they have struggled with in the past.  

Our topic of study has been land forms on the surface of the earth. Then we moved into learning about how the earth changes through volcanoes erupting,  the plates moving below the earth to cause earthquakes, weathering, and erosion. The students worked in groups to create a comic strip about our changing Earth.
The students had to choose an idea.  Some chose volcanoes, so their comic strip had to show what was learned about volcanoes and somehow come up with a comic strip idea to convey this topic.

Social Studies
We have been studying Native Americans of Texas.  The students have learned the location for each in Texas, type of home, whether or not they traded with others, food methods and government. We read and filled in a chart about the Caddo, Karankawa, Jumano, and Comanche.  We read about others, but these were the ones we focused on for the chart as a way to record information.

Monday, October 29, 2012

October 30, 2012

Upcoming Dates:
Individual Picture Money Due - Wednesday, Oct. 31
Spelling Test - Friday, Nov. 2
Vocabulary Test Lesson 5 - Nov. 9
Class Pictures - Friday, Nov. 2
Fall Book Fair - Nov. 12-16
Thanksgiving Break - Nov. 21-23

We started our study of Poetry.  We have discussed different characteristics of poetry such as the idea that  a poem can rhyme or it does not have rhyme, that it looks different than other writing, and that any topic could be used for the idea of a poem. We learned the difference between free verse and lyric poetry. The students are working to write their own poems.

We are reading poetry in class.  We have read all different types and some were funny and silly and others were more serious.  
The students are also working in Book Clubs reading nonfiction books and practicing their note taking strategy.  These notes will be used to write a summary about the nonfiction book.

We are continuing with Bar Graphs, and the students have learned how to gather information and make a bar graph from it.  The students will also be using their addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division skills as we read bar graphs to solve problem solving problems.

The students are finishing up a project about the Water Cycle.  We have discussed all the parts that occur in the water cycle, including the definitions of each and the fact that the sun plays a major role in starting the evaporation part of the cycle. Once the evaporation happens, then the rest of the water cycle occurs. 

Social Studies
We are working on our culminating project for the Regions of Texas. Each student has chosen a region and is in the process of making a travel brochure.  The students will use the chart that each has filled in to help them with the information that will be put onto the brochure.