In science we are going to start talking about living and nonliving. We will use the Harcourt materials (worksheets, labs and books) to help learn about what living things need! Not only will we talk about animals and humans but what do plants need as well and how that differs. We will do some lab experiments that will be fun and hands on!
After some basic research and learning what plants need, we will do a fun experiment with lima beans, the good old lima beans! We will have different bags of beans and give them what they need or not what they need and do some journaling. Then when we have completed that, they each will plant their own plant! And journal the progress they see each day and be able to take it home at the end!!
A very fun way to engage them, would be to talk about things you see growing now (especially the buds, plants) and why they are growing. What do you notice they need? What happened when it got cold? These are great real world discussions you can have!
We have been working on geometry for over a week and will finish our lessons this Friday. We have talked about plane shapes (flat shapes-classifying them by their flat sides and vertices (corners). Today we started talking about solid shapes: cubes, rectangular prisms, spheres, cones and cubes; and came up with some fun chants and motions on how to remember them! We will finish working with geometry till Friday, then assess on Monday. Monday I will also pre-assess for Topic 16 (fractions/parts). This is our last topic of the year!! Can you believe ti?!
You might have already heard the rumblings from your kiddos but we are studying animals! Each child has chosen their animal already so today we started researching those animals. They are going to use sticky note research, as we have done before, but this time more individually guided. They will use books, PebbleGo (what a FANTASTIC tool for them to use in this!!) and other ways to gain various information about their animals. This process of taking notes will lead into rewriting our facts into our own words. Then taking those words and writing up a final draft. From the final draft, if they so chose and have time, they will be able to use an Ipad or computer to type of and use pictures to create either a keynote, word doc or other type of technology. If they work hard and stay with the schedule they should all have an opportunity to get there! Be aware, they will be very "kid" types of projects. I'm going to teach some basic skills and see what they come up with from there! That was it's more authentic instead of me doing 26 research projects on keynote. :)
In social studies we are going to work on Economics. What a broad and large topic to cover! In first grade we will look at our needs vs. our wants. We will talk about how resources can be limited or unlimited based on resources to make them or money. Some key vocabulary and definitions will be consumers, producers, resources and money. There is a cool packet that will work us through it with examples, discussions and then time for them to show what they know. Then to take this a step further, they will be coming up with their own services/creating goods to sell to their classmates! More details on that later! Today was a great discussion on needs vs. wants, especially at their age when they "NEED" everything :) They were so smart too with their needs: air, water, food, shelter, clothing, their heart :), trees :), family and right on target with their wants! It should be a fun unit!
We are on Topic 14 in math. Today we discussed why people take information, what kinds of information people take and what they do with it. We talked about how graphs are an easier way to look at information or "data". I showed them our tooth graph on the back wall and we used that to jump start us. The topic does a great job of starting out easy and then moving to more difficult graphs and questions. We will work our way through this with some fun activities thrown in, where they will ask their fellow classmates about their favorite thing, food or sport or whatever and graph the results! It's a fun topic with lots of multi-step problems and questions which gets them thinking and paying attention to their work. We will learn picture graphs, tally graphs and bar graphs as well as how to read and interpret that information.
We are going to join reading and writing to study, learn, take notes and do much more; about Walruses. We kicked off the unit reading a short, early reader level text about Walruses. We watched a short National Geographic Kids video that showed us what they look like in action, a baby and how they use their tusks to get up on the ice. From our reading, we learned that Walruses are very communicative animals and are noisy! They grunt, yell and whistle. So I showed them a funny clip of just the sounds that Walruses make, we got a kick out of that. We filled in a graph of what Walruses are, can and have. They did a great job giving information and facts they learned from the texts. Plus it doesn't hurt that Walruses have mustaches :) We will continue to work on this and diagram and label the parts of a walrus, as well as take sticky notes like our previous learning. Then guided (this whole unit will be guided), we will use our sticky note facts to write sentences with pictures of the animal. We have some fun graphing to do at the end too. This should take us a few weeks, so get ready to learn some facts about this unique arctic animal!
We will spend at least two weeks (I'll check back in to see how we are doing to determine if we will study it longer) studying "OA" and "OW" (the long O sound). We brainstormed our list today and they thought of some great words! We talked a lot about the sound of OW and how it can also say OW. Plus some words they threw out were "oe" so we talked about that as well! Very good language discussion!