September 27, 2019

This week in pictures…

Dear Families, 

I’m looking forward to meeting you all for Parent-Student Teacher Learning Conversations! Just a friendly reminder to please bring your child to this conversation.

Explorations This Week

  • This week has been filled with demonstrations to explore how the earth’s surface changes over time from erosion. While creating models and conducting demonstrations, students have continued to develop the importance of writing a clear procedure. Students are encouraged to manipulate demonstrations at home! ‘Land’ can be made from 1  ½ cup cornmeal, ½ cup salt and ½ cup water to make 2 cups of ‘land.’ Of course just going out and getting some dirt with some small rocks is also fantastic!
  • We have been monitoring our reading by pausing to evaluate using a 4 point scale. If evaluating ourselves is less than a 3, students are encouraged to reread to build comprehension.
  • Students have set goals in class that will be shared during our learning conversations. These goals will be targeted for 6 weeks and then a new goal will be set. 
  • We have begun a new math unit with the central idea:Numbers are connected to each other through a variety of relationships. During this unit we will be exploring :
    • The value of a number is determined by the place of its digits.
    • Using rounding is an appropriate estimation strategy for solving problems and estimating.
    • We can find patterns in numbers and their relationship that help us solve problems.
    • Understanding the value of numbers the relationship of those numbers helps us problem solve flexibly.

Something to Try at Home

  • I have just begun reading this fantastic book (available in our UNIS library!) called UnSelfie:Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World.  The book gives practical suggestions for children of all ages. One of the ways to build empathy is by tuning into how someone might be feeling and then mindfully listening. In class we are focusing on mindfully listening to each other by looking at the colors of the speaker’s eyes or the bridge his or her nose.  Perhaps this might be a way for your family to more deeply engage with each other. 

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out should you have additional questions. 

Warmly, 

Ms. Maggie

mmagowan2@unishanoi.org

This week in pictures…

September 20, 2019

 

Dear Families, 

Have a peaceful weekend ahead!

4A Important Information

  • Monday September 30th: Parent-Student-Teacher learning conversations. Please bring your child to this conversation

Explorations This Week

  • Tuning into our writing unit: Explanation and Procedural writing. Students have begun this unit by finding out purpose behind a procedure and its’ organization. Next week we will be building our vocabulary around conjunctions and causal language. At home you can support by discussing how or why something occurs along with the reasoning behind each step of the process.
  • Students continue to find out about ‘How the World Works.’  From building descriptive vocabulary about three rock types , the student created ‘Rock Museum’ continues to grow. Deeper understanding was developed through word study–identifying that the base of a word (ie. ‘geo’ in geology) holds the meaning and can develop a deeper understanding. Next week we’ll be diving more deeply into Earth’s slow and fast changes.
  • A Peace Table idea was introduced into our classroom and will be a conflict-resolution tool. Here is the link to the guiding document as students may have to prepare for a ‘peace talk’ outside of the school day.
  • We began reading with Newsela. This is a fantastic resource that can be used outside of school as well! Each student has an account and will have assigned articles that connect with units throughout the year. 

Something to Try at Home

  • Math games are a phenomenal way to develop mathematical automaticity (which components are accuracy, flexibility and efficiency). A deck of cards, found at your local minimart, is an easy to find tool for such games. Today we learned ‘Oh No!99!’  Just a friendly reminder that in our mathematical community we value ‘think time’ which encourages a relaxed environment while playing games that build automaticity. 

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out should you have additional questions. 

Warmly, 

Ms. Maggie

mmagowan2@unishanoi.org

September 6, 2019

Dear Families, 

 

It was lovely to meet and see some of you last night. If you were unable to attend, please see the presentation in this post. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Following up a question about unassigned home learning, I have included an additional slide from our math coach. On the slide you’ll find a link to a Padlet with resources and recommendations. Another idea could be to have a ‘Family Game Night.” Board and card games can provide fantastic opportunities to develop relationships, math skills and literacy!

4A Important Information

    • Students have elected Calum Curtis and Thao Bui to represent our class in Student Council this year!
    • Thursday September 12: Moon Festival. Students should wear an Ao Dai on this day. These can be purchased downtown and/or specially made by a tailor. 
    • Friday September 13: No School. Teacher professional development day.

Explorations This Week

  • Mathematical mistakes are valuable and can lead us to deeper understandings.
  • Initial insights about our Unit of Inquiry(UOI) and the central idea “Earth’s surface changes over time.” Please see the video connecting ‘our world’ to this inquiry.
  • Thinking about our UOI central idea and questions we might have–with National Geographic videos as provocations. Students then sorted questions based upon commonalities.
  • Using a ‘word family’ to understand the meaning and structure of words.
  • Metacognitive work around goal setting in writing.

Something to Try at Home

  • Brightly is a fantastic site that has practical ideas for developing a child who loves to read. (There are great recommendations for adults too!) Encouraging literacy in a different way are Podcasts. This article has some fantastic options across varying interests. They might prompt some powerful discussions and inquiries. Enjoy!

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out should you have additional questions. 

Warmly, 

Ms. Maggie

Back to School Night Presentation.