Week 33 Review, Week 34 Preview (May 14-18)

If you would like to see whathappened in our class this past week, from a student perspective, please see Mr. Hughey’s Class Weekly Update, Episode 8.

I would like to start this post by thanking Ms. Kwon for six fabulous weeks! She is graduating and moving forward with her teaching career. We wish you all the best Ms. Kwon. You have done a wonderful job advancing the learning of our students.

In both Social Studies and Science, projects are well under way. The last couple of weeks, we have focused on gathering and organizing research information, using a variety of tools. We are moving into the creation of our projects proper. As you may recall, in Social Studies, students identified projects that they would like to do. In the later stages of this week, students began planning out what these projects will look like. We will begin construction/creation of these projects in the upcoming week. The same is true in Science. Grade 5s have been creating drawings of various human organ systems, identifying important organs in these systems and what functions they perform. Grade 5s will start competing in groups next week to design a working digestive and respiratory system for our human model “Igor.” Grade 4s have moved from looking at properties and classifications of rocks and minerals into examining how humans use these in a variety of practical applications/industries. Next week, they will begin identifying and contacting experts in the field with the aim of trying to get them into our class somehow to talk (either in person or remotely). Of course, they will need to prepare questions and discussions with which they hope to approach these professionals.

Our creative writing took something of a back seat this past week as we focused on our Science and Social Studies projects (we only spent a couple periods writing). Students are into the editing phase for this writing where we are focusing on the use of descriptive language and varying sentence types using conjunctions. Hopefully, we will wrap this up next week and move into some peer editing of work for our final push towards completing these stories.

In Math, we have been looking at time measurement and how to estimate and calculate elapsed time. The early part of the week had students wrapping up some “bump it up work” relating to subtraction strategies (for assessment purposes) from the previous week. By the later part of the week, students moved into an assessment of their elapsed time measurements. We wrapped these up this week also. In the upcoming week, we will be turning our eye to “Igor” and begin calculating the size of his various organs, based around some proportional reasoning activities. As “Igor” is 1.25 the size of the average human being, we will be looking at some fraction, decimal, and percentage work to estimate and calculate correct sizes for him.

Lastly, in Music, we began exploring some cultural applications of music. For this, we looked at African drum rhythms and the various social functions different rhythms served (e.g., a certain rhythmic pattern might indicate an animal intruder into the village). We will continue with these cultural explorations next week.

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