Later Elementary News: May 2013

It’s spring, and in our voyage through this year, spring brings us to the long journey of writing.  In language arts, each class has gathered research for individual student biography projects.  Students are now busy turning this information into polished biographies and planning how to “be” their figure for our wax museum showcase on May 17 (be on the lookout for more information!).  This writing process, as well as the one students are going through writing their literary analysis of Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, has really pushed students to identify ways to strengthen their writing.

For literature, students are also working on science fiction book projects at home.  There will be some amazing work at this month’s curriculum celebration!  In class, everyone is preparing to read another science fiction book with a smaller literature circle.

In science student are continuing the journey through the Human Body!  We’ve been learning about the digestive system, nervous system, respiratory system and its close relationship with the circulatory system.  We’ve had some experiments as well as some non-fiction reading, but the best part has been the awesome guest speakers who have been willing to give up a whole morning to speak to each class about their area of expertise!  The experiments we will be running connect science to mathematics through use of graphing, averaging, measuring and finding proportions.  We’re also connecting language arts through non-fiction reading about different aspects of the human body, and special topics related to the system we are studying.  Through it all, we talk about our body at the cellular level – seeing it as a group of systems that work together to create a larger system, and relating that to our other science studies this year!

The Math III focus has really been a journey of “why.”  Why can you work this operation and why does it work?  We’ve just completed a thorough, albeit long journey through fractions and algebra through inequalities and one step problems.  We are moving onto a quick study of ordered pairs and how to use them to graph a simple equation.  We’ll move into a study of measurement and geometry to round out the year.

Social Studies classes have been working in three large groups (spanning the base classes,) to continue their understanding of the three cultures which influenced the growth of the early Americas.  Students have been creating large maps of the different continents and making connections in respect to the fundamental building blocks of culture: geography, resources, and belief systems.  They have planned various ways of showcasing those connections, as well as some of their more in-depth research into those cultures, for the Curriculum Celebration in mid-May. When all is finished, it will be a project of truly global proportions.

We can’t wait to see everyone on May 18!


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