• October 20, 2022

    Posted by Lisa Shipley on 10/20/2022
    We had a great day in MOSAICS.  I'm exhausted, so that means we had a lot going on!
    In the Marvelous Middle Ages, students are still building their Medieval Fief in 3-D.  Houses are taking shape and roads and rivers are starting to form.
    In Math Stretch, we started exploring exponents and radicals to prepare for a math competition we will do in the spring.  Details to follow.
    In House Design, we learned about floor plans and are starting to design blueprints for our houses.
    In HOT Time and Creative Thinking, we had a fishing tournament.  The fish definitely won with only three being captured by the student-designed fishing poles.  Be sure to check out the pictures of the event on Facebook!
    Have a great week!
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  • September 8, 2022

    Posted by Lisa Shipley on 9/8/2022
    We kicked off our Marvelous Middle Ages unit today with questions about when the Middle Ages were and why they were called the Middle Ages.  We took a tour through the fall of the Roman Empire and learned about how the emperors made a series of mistakes that caused the empire to fail.  We talked about how if you were one of the victorious armies that defeated a territory, you needed to have a better plan for how to govern and protect your land.  We found out that the system of feudalism was the answer to this problem. 
    SPOILER ALERT!!  At the end of the year we will culminate our Medieval Studies with a banquet and play.  Students will need a costume that nods to the Middle Ages.  They will all play the part of nobles from various kingdoms, so think lords, ladies, kings, queens, and knights.  With Halloween coming up, this might be an ideal time to be on the hunt for costume pieces.  Please don't spend a lot of money.  You can do wonders with a simple piece of cloth cut into a simple tunic and decorated with a hot glue gun and some ribbon.  I had one king wear a Christmas tree skirt as a cape and it was fabulous.  I just wanted to give you a heads up so you can get those creative juices going.
    We also kicked off our House Design unit.  We did a deep dive into area and perimeter by figuring out how to calculate for irregular shapes, circles, etc.
    In Math Stretch, we learned some strategies for making good guesses.
    In HOT Time, we continued to work on our marble labyrinths.  The kids are really enjoying this STEM challenge and many wanted to forgo recess to continue building.  As much as I admire the commitment, we took some time to play and sharpen the saw.
    In Creative Thinking we started drawing things that have a circle as a base.  We will continue this next week as we think about our creative fluency, flexibility, originality, and elaboration.
    Have a great week!
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  • September 1, 2022

    Posted by Lisa Shipley on 9/1/2022
    It was awesome to have everyone back today and to welcome our two new students. The kids were super excited to be here and I was super excited to get their brains activated for learning this year.
    I will be sending updates to keep you informed about all the great things happening in class.  Please don't hesitate to reach out if you have any questions, concerns, comments or compliments.  Your feedback helps me be a better teacher for your child.
    This year, we will study the Marvelous Middle Ages as our Major Study.  A Major Study is a topic we stick with all year.  Students also chose their Minor Study which is a topic we stick with for half the year.  The kids chose House Design, which will take us through the process of designing a house to meet the needs of a family. We will still have HOT (Higher Order Thinking) Time this year, Creative Thinking, and Math STRETCH.
    Today was all about building our community so that this classroom is a sanctuary of learning where we can take risks with our thinking, make mistakes, celebrate each other, and be free to learn and grow in our own way.
    We started our morning with a monster theme.  Students created monster glyphs where each element of the monster represented details about themselves.  These were really fun.  Next, students paired up and became two headed monsters.  They had to work cooperatively through a series of tasks using only one arm each.
    Next, we had a Spelling Bee with a MOSAICS twist.  Students had to learn the NOSAICS alphabet, then devise a nonverbal method for communicating those letters to a partner.  They had to then spell the words nonverbally and their partner had to decode the message and write the words correctly.
    We also played a game called Blobs and Lines to discover things we have in common.  We got our binders set up and ready for learning, went over our new schedule, then began designing a marble labyrinth.  What a great day!
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