Sunday, November 23, 2014

Ottawa 67's Hockey Field Trip Reminder

Dear Parents,

Just a reminder that tomorrow students will be travelling to the Canadian Tire Center to see the Ottawa 67's play hockey. Our students will be going with the grades 4, 5 and 6's to this event. In order to prepare for this event students are encouraged to:

  • Be on Time! We will be taking attendance promptly at 9:10 and leaving with the school bus right after that.
  • Bring a Healthy Lunch! Students are not permitted to buy their lunch or snacks while at the event.
  • Bring a bottle of Water!
  • Dress Warmly. The inside of the Canadian Tire Center is cold, so students are encouraged to dress warmly.
  • No Backpacks. Backpacks are not permitted inside the CTC. Students will be travelling with their lunch boxes only.
  • Again, please do not send your child to school with money to spend for snacks or a lunch.
  • Students will be back in time for dismissal at the end of the day!
Students are very excited and looking forward to the event!!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Student Blogging

Our Blog Posting Criteria created by students!

Our students have begun blogging over the past few weeks. Students came up with a Blogging criteria where we determined what we could blog about. Students brainstormed ideas for our KidBlog posting criteria. This list will help our class to determine what we can blog about. Currently, students have blogged a few times while at school. We are learning how to navigate on our KidBlog accounts on iPads and Chromebooks. Some students are already experts and are helping friends to post on their blogs for the first time.

Students are also learning how to write meaningful comments. We are using comments to give descriptive feedback and to promote conversations. Students will continue to work on how that looks over the next few weeks.

Students are also using their Blogs to demonstrate their digital citizenship. We are careful about how we post. Students are beginning to edit their work before posting and are ensuring that what they post is kind and safe. We will continue to work on how that looks like. Students are eager to add their own avatar's to their Blogs too.

Students are encouraged to blog from home if they would like. They can view our Blog Post Criteria to determine what they might post. Students are also encouraged to read over our Blogging Etiquette guidelines. An etiquette contract will be sent home soon. In the next few weeks, student login information will also be sent home. Many students have already memorized their login password. Follow the link to view our blog page! 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Patterning Review

Over the past few weeks we have been working on patterning in math. Students are exploring repeating, growing and shrinking patterns.

Students are encouraged to review and practice what we've learned about patterning this weekend. I have attached our success criteria. We reviewed what we know and what we remember about the various types of patterns. 

Next week we will continue to review and finish the week with a patterning quiz. Students are encouraged to practice making patterns with both numbers and objects. Reviewing math vocabulary such as pattern core, changing attributes and pattern rules will be beneficial. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Global Read Aloud Learning

The 7 Peter Reynolds stories that we read during the project.
The Peter Reynold's author study has come to an end and our class reflected today on what we learned throughout the project! We chatted in small groups and participated in mini talking circles to share what we learned and what our favourite parts were. Students reflected on the 7 Peter Reynold's books we read over the past few weeks. We used the stories to inspire our writing and our creative ideas in many ways. We got to share and tweet with many different classes and we participated in Google Hangouts with some classes too.

The students really enjoyed getting to read differing perspectives. We shared a lot of our learning online using many different apps and on Twitter. The study allowed us to demonstrate our digital citizenship as we modelled what safe and kind online practices looked like. We benefitted from our class tech experts who were great leaders and showed us how to post and share our ideas on apps like AudioBoom, 30 Hands, Padlet Twitter and more!

One highlight from the study was when Peter Reynolds replied to one of our tweets! We had been sharing with him what we were learning and one day tweeted him our Part 2 ideas to his story North Star. We were surprised to see that he replied to our message with a Huge Twitter Secret.

Twitter is amazing for connecting us with the author of this study. The students were so pleased that he could read our tweets and they wondered if any of their North Star part 2 ideas inspired the real part 2 of the book. We hope to read his Part 2 story soon so that we could find out!!

Participating in this Global project has demonstrated the power of online collaboration and the connections you can make from shared learning opportunities. We regularly chatted with many other classrooms (Mrs. King's Grade 3, Mrs. Caluori's Grade 3 and Mrs. Mason's Grade 1/2) and learned from one another. We reflected on safe and kind digital practices during Digital Citizenship week and students made connections with our Global Read Aloud experiences.

We hope that you have enjoyed this journey just as much as we have!

Below, students posted some of their learning from the project using the 30 Hands iPad app. Have a listen to what we learned and what we loved about participating in the author study. A huge thank you to the organizers of the Global Read Aloud Project as well as to Peter Reynold's himself for inspiring us through his wonderful stories. Through this project, my students have grown to understand what it means to show grit, be creative and use your imagination. We hope that our learning below inspires you too!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Digital Citizenship

This past week was Digital Citizenship Week. Students learned about their digital footprint and how to be kind citizens online.

In our class, students are very comfortable with digital citizenship as we use many online tools on a daily basis. We already have a digital presence and students related their classroom experience to many of the videos and lessons we viewed this week.

As the week went on, students learned about the smart choices they should make while participating in online learning. We talked about the importance of keeping some personal information private and how we can show kindness in our online interactions. 

Students wrote paragraphs on how they can be good citizens. We also chatted and tweeted how we are safe and kind online. We decided to make posters to encourage others to make safe online choices and the importance of showing kindness in our interactions. We chatted about what kind of digital tools we use in our classroom as well as tools that students use at home. We hope that our posters inspire students in our school to make a positive digital footprint and to share their thinking and learning like we do!

After creating our posters, some students blogged about digital citizenship and what they learned about online safety this week.  We posted on our KidBlogs. Please follow the link to read about our learning from this week.  Our Student Blogs: KidBlog

Parents, for more information on how you can keep your child safe online, please visit Common Sense Media's website. Common Sense Media

Saturday, November 15, 2014

GRA Week 6: So Few of Me

This week was the 6th and final week of the Global Read Aloud Project. Students wrapped up the project by reading one more book from Peter H. Reynold's collection. So Few of Me is about a boy who wonders if there were more of him...that maybe he could get more work done. Suddenly there are 2, 3,4, and 10 Leo's doing house work and other chores.

 As we read the story the students wondered who all of the boys were in the story. We had a very interesting discussion filled with many possibilities. Students came up with many potential guesses about who all of the extra Leo's might be. We clearly added many words to our personal dictionaries this week. Students had a long discussion about their guesses. Some guesses featured words that some of us had never heard before. We wondered, could the extra Leo's be his doppelganger...his twin....his illusion...a hologram...a dream?

We were really happy to learn about some of these new words. The Global Read Aloud has taught us so much and now we have added new words to our vocabulary!

If you would like us know what these words mean, ask your child to explain them. You can also send us a tweet on our class Twitter account @MrsCiampaClass and one of our experts can help explain it for you!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What does Peace Mean?

We used this video called Peace for Kids to help us come up with describing words for peace. We created a Wordle to share our ideas. Have a look at our adjectives for peace.

If you would like to see how schools in our school board are sharing their learning for Remembrance Day, please follow along with this hashtag:

Sunday, November 09, 2014

GRA Week 5: Going Places

This week's read aloud for the Peter H. Reynolds Author Study was the book Going Places. We read the book as part of Week 5 of the project.
Going Places Talking Circle

This week students interacted with the story in many fun ways. After reading the story, students had many personal connections to share. As we chatted, we wondered what the author's message was. We decided to hold a Talking Circle to discuss what Peter Reynolds wanted us to learn or what he wanted to teach us through his book Going Places. Luckily, I was able to capture some of our student's thinking by recording part of our Talking Circle on the AudioBoom app. Have a listen to what some student's believe the author's message was!

Peer-to-Peer Feedback
Students wrote about what they believed Peter Reynolds wanted us to learn from the story. They also added some text-to-text and text-to-self connections as well. We continue to be inspired by the messages in his stories. He continues to inspire us to use our imagination, be creative and show grit even when we feel that something is too challenging or too difficult. Going Places also taught us about the importance of working together, cooperation and to think outside of the box!

Students shared their ideas and had the opportunity to read with partners. This allowed them to share their thinking and receive peer-to-peer feedback. Peer feedback is one of our goals this year. We will be using oral and written peer feedback to help improve our writing and expand our ideas!

Students received Twitter messages from classes who are also participating in the Global Read Aloud.

One other way that student's interacted with the book this week was through a shared-Padlet with a Grade Three class we have collaborated with before. Students used the AudioBoom app to record themselves reading their connections to the story Going Places. Last year, many students became experts since they used the AudioBoom app all year long. This week, our Tech Experts helped friends who are not familiar with the app. They demonstrated their expertise and helped a friend to record, take a picture and save the AudioBoom recording. We have a number of Tech Experts in our room so we are fortunate that students can leverage their expertise to assist others to become experts on this app too. After recording their AudioBoom, we added our readings to a shared-Padlet with Mrs. King's Grade Three Class. Students in both of our classes shared their connections, predictions and thinking on various iPad apps. Mrs. King's class used Pic Collage and Tellagami on the Padlet. On Friday, we took time to read and listen to the thinking posted on the Padlet. This shared-Padlet allowed our classes to collaborate in a truly interactive way. There are so many great ways to use Padlet. Collaborating with another class provides students with so much rich dialogue and a variety of opinions about what Going Places can mean to different people. 

I am very thankful that my students have had the opportunity to participate in this amazing Global Project this far. We only have one more week to go. This project has truly inspired my students and I am happy to see how much they've grown in their learning already!

Skip Counting Problem Solving

In Math, we continue to work on recognizing patterns in numbers. We are learning how to skip count in multiple ways and from multiple starting points. Students are practising how to skip count forwards and backwards by 2's, 5's, 10's, 25's and by 100's!

We read this book by Margaret McNamara that focused on counting a large number of pumpkin seeds. We are learning that when we need to count large number of items, we must use skip counting strategies to group the objects. This will help us to organize and solve problems in a quicker way. When we counted the pumpkin seeds, many groups of students skip counted the seeds by 1's.

This week we looked at other ways to sort and skip count. Students worked in small groups to solve math problems. Students used manipulatives and what they've learned about skip counting strategies to help them solve the problems. Students are learning to read the problems carefully to see which skip counting strategy to use when solving the problems. All students recalled that when we solve problems we can use pictures, numbers or words. Excellent cooperation and problems solving was observed.

At home, students are encouraged to continue skip counting items by 2's, 5's, 10's, 25's and even 100's. You can use coins, pasta pieces, rice grains, beans, toothpicks or any other items you can find at home.

Friday, November 07, 2014

GRA Week 5 - Shared Padlet

Together with Mrs. King's Grade 3 class, we posted what we thought the Author's Message was from the story Going Places. We read our predictions and our connections on iPad apps such as AudioBoom and Tellagami. We also used Pic Collage to post our thinking on Padlet. This was a shared learning opportunity between our two classes. Students had the chance to read and view the thinking of students in our class and in Mrs. King's class. Click below to listen and read about our ideas!

Saturday, November 01, 2014

GRA Week 4: Ish & Sky Colour Connections

This week, we completed Week 4 of the Global Read Aloud Project. Hard to believe we are past the 4 week mark already. Students are very engaged in the project and look forward to seeing what new Peter Reynolds story we will read next. This week as we began reading Sky Color (spelled coloUr with a "U" in Canada), students quickly made many text-to-text connections with other books we previously read during this project. Primarily, their text-to-text connections came from the story ISH.

After reading Sky Color, students made many connections to our on-going discussion on showing grit. In the story, they said that Marisol showed grit by not giving up on creating a sky - even when she did not have any blue. We decided to see what skies can look like without using the colour blue. Have a look at our fun sky colour creations!

In Language, our current focus is writing descriptive paragraphs using adjectives. To prepare students with their ideas for writing, we had our first Talking Circle of the year. Our Talk Circle focus was on Explaining our text-to-text connections and agreeing or disagreeing with the ideas shared.

The Talk Circle helped us to listen to the connections of our peers. We explained our ideas and shared our similar or different viewpoints. Ish and Sky Color have many similarities and the Talk Circle helped us to come up with ideas for our paragraph writing. A lot of rich dialogue was shared - excellent job friends!

Students used the Talking Circle to help them write about the text-to-text connections between Sky Color and Ish. They all believed that the stories are similar. We worked hard on our paragraphs. Students are using a paragraph checklist to keep them on track. The checklist helps them to edit their work to see if they have all of the criteria. The paragraph writing format has inspired many students to write detailed sentences. Adding adjectives helps us to be more descriptive.

Some students had the opportunity to share their work with friends. After writing, we read our paragraphs on the iPad app 30 Hands. Students are learning to use this app to create slideshow presentations featuring photos and audio clips of their work. We hope you enjoy our Sky Color and Ish paragraph reading. We are wondering if anyone has similar text-to-text connections like we found? We are also wondering if anyone has different text connections than what we wrote about? Please share with us on our Twitter page!