Welcome to Ms. Kwon! Ms. Kwon is a student teacher from Brock University finishing up her final placement before graduation in May. She will be with us for the next 5 weeks. She was in our class two days this week, observing the students and getting acquainted with classroom procedures, projects underway, etc. Beginning next week, Ms. Kwon will be planning and delivering lessons with my supervision.
We stayed with geometry this week but began a task that integrated a number of Math (and even Social Studies curriculum). Using their understanding of shapes, and after a short lesson on cardinal directions, we began mapping out major blocks of the city using a quadrant grid. We spent a couple days on a common city block (around our school) and then students broke off, each tackling one major block from Hamilton’s Mountain. Using Google maps, students set up a quadrant and used a variety of math skills to represent the area on grid paper. We discussed a variety of ideas on how to get proper proportion in their drawing – e.g., fractions, parallelism, properties of shapes, using benchmark points. Above all, the task had students visualizing spatial relationships and developing strategies for how to break down and visualize space relationships. We will continue in our short next week and will wind these drawings up mid week. Again, I am not sure where we will be heading after this. I will need to consult with Ms. Kwon about where we have been and have some planning discussions as to where she might want to take the students next.
Our ads are almost finished and ready to be published! We had a big push on these this week. Some groups finished and and some groups need perhaps a half period or so to complete. These will be coming online on student blogs in the coming week. Our creative writing project will begin to take centre stage in the coming weeks as we look into elements of stories to prepare for the writing of these. We will be building in some directed guided and shared reading activities to support the development of these writing projects.
Students have all now submitted proposals for their Social Studies projects and they have constructed a wide range of “I wonder” questions that will guide their research inquiries. Ms. Kwon will be developing and delivering her first lessons on Wednesday relating to the asking of questions, classifying questions and appropriately applying these questions to get relevant information to support these projects. The finding and organization of information will be the focal point over the coming couple weeks. So too will be some talk about how Google works and how it actually goes about finding information. I had intended to get to that this week but, alas, time flies!
We held off on Science this week as I was awaiting the arrival of our student teacher who will be developing the units of study into the construction of Igor and our grade 4 “find a geological expert” project. Stay tuned!