Although it has been a bit gloomy outside, we have been busy in our cozy classroom. Our main focus in Language Arts class has been poetry; the rhythm, sound patterns, meter, and magic that can result from the right mixture of different poetic techniques. 4th graders particularly love the concept of poetic license, where rules of punctuation, capitalization, and spacing on the page all take a back seat to convey the imagery and emotion of the poem in any way the poet chooses. We are starting this unit writing poems inspired by the great poets featured in our book, Love That Dog, using their poetic techniques as a starting point, but with the students continuing with their own thoughts and ideas. It’s helpful to start with some structure before we venture forth with our own ideas and poetic techniques.
In Social Studies we are learning to read an atlas as we identify all the locations necessary to complete our World Maps. Inevitably, the question arises, “Is there anywhere else on earth to explore?”, always an interesting conversation. The skill of using an atlas index and the coordinate points they list is fun practice that dovetails nicely with our work on different graphs in Math class.
(Note: please send in slippers or slip-on inside shoes for the classroom, it’s just a cozy alternative to the heavier boots October’s weather sometimes calls for.)
Finally, thank you for all you are doing to partner with me to make this move to Middle School at BCD one filled with just the right mixture of creativity, discovery, exploration both collaboratively and independently, and an atmosphere that supports critical thinking and learning.
Hopefully, the sun will shine a bit more in October, but it certainly has been in our classroom in Peterson 4.
First round of letters ‘en route’ to our penpals in France!
Our grade 4 and 5 French students have just sent their first letters to our penpals in France!
I have organized this Penpal exchange with the Montessori School of Uzès, a bilingual school in a picturesque village in the South of France.
Throughout the coming year, we will build on our correspondence with Madame Dubreuil’s class; we will write our letters in French, building our vocabulary and sentence structure, and including a couple of short sentences or questions in English at the end of each one; the French students will do the inverse!
It promises to be an enriching and fun project for our students to embark on. They will see their French skills be put ‘into action’ and see their growth in the language throughout the year, all the while, learning about the life of students their age in France. It will provide a glance into the culture of adolescents across the ocean.
The Montessori School in Uzès is as enthusiastic as I am about this partnership. Mme. Dubreuil (headmaster and elementary school teacher) writes;
“‘I’m so enthousiaste!! this is going to be a wonderful experience for our elementary children, open their eyes on another culture, get to know children from another country. Thank you so much for contacting us and going on with this adventure!”
Here is a link to their school website; http://www.montessori-uzes.com/
Please follow the link below to the album of photos from French class, where you will see the students at work on their letters!
I think (hope) I have mastered the skill of using Google Photos in this blog!
I wanted you to see how thoughtful and respectful the whole class was while listening to their classmates present their dioramas. They talked not just about how they made their dioramas, but why they chose that scene to illustrate as well as some of their favorite characters.
We will be sharing them at Middle School meeting next Tuesday with the 5th and 6th graders as well.