Here are some Friday evening thoughts as we head into the long weekend!
Women In Science & Engineering: We had a great time with Alex from W.I.S.E. and her program on the Science of Music! She talked to us about sound waves and about the connection between sound and the States of Matter (ask your kids about the domino experiment-videos are below!). She also introduced us to gramophones…which we googled and was invented in 1877! Pretty amazing!
*The “Solid” domino fall was so quick that I missed it!
A World of Water: On Thursday afternoon we learned a lot about water, Lake Winnipeg, algae blooms and ways to fix our problems from Jay. He shared information and had us up and moving with some hands on learning!
Lake Winnipeg Foundation: Today (Friday) we heard from Ainslie who works at the Lake Winnipeg Foundation. She was very pleased with how much we know about algae blooms and thought we asked some great questions. Ainslie also talked to us about Zebra Mussels and how we need to be careful not to transport Zebra Mussels into our lakes. We are doing some writing about some of the environmental problems we’ve learned about and are trying to come up with creative solutions…then think of what kinds of problems our solutions have!
Upcoming Field Trip: On June 12, we are headed to Gimli for a field trip! During our time in Gimli we will be having different stations for the kids to go through. Our goal is to have the students take some water samples, do some sketching, make nature art with twigs/rocks we see on the ground, have some free play and do a walk around the community. We’ve been learning so much about Lake Winnipeg we would like to go and visit! This field trip will NOT be for swimming! The only time we will be going near the water is to possibly to take water samples where students will be supervised at all times. We are also asking that students bring a “litterless” lunch to follow our environmental mindset! Permission slips will be sent home soon 🙂
30×30: Our 30 for 30 challenge is still going strong! We just completed Day 19! Day 30 lands on Tuesday, June 6 (I believe). Maybe we should be spending the day outside to celebrate?! On that note…the last day of the at home 30×30 challenge is on Monday. I hope you have enjoyed your time outside and continue to spend as much time as possible in the great outdoors! This also means that my own challenge (and the kids who have also made a bonus challenge) also ends on Monday. I am having a grande latte on Tuesday morning! Don’t worry…I’ll still be using my reusable cup!
Mental Math: We have continued to review Mental Math strategies. This week we covered lots of ground!
Using Arrays: Since we have just finished up multiplication arrays are pretty fresh in our minds. An arrangement of objects or pictures in columns and rows is called an array.
Skip Counting to Find a Product: We all know how to skip count…we’ve been doing it for years! Now it’s time to use skip counting to solve multiplication problems. For example: if we want to know what 5×5 and we don’t know this fact by instant recall we can count by 5s five times (5,10,15,20,25). Therefore 5×5=25!
Building on a Known Double: We are pretty comfortable with our doubles facts (and if we cannot recall these facts up to 20+20 then this is something to practice), now we need to relate doubles to halves! For example: if we know 10+10=20 then 20-10=10!
Using Doubles +/-1: Now we can use what we know about doubles and apply that to near doubles. Near doubles occur when the two addends only have a difference of one. For example: 8+9 (the difference between 8 and 9 is 1 :)) Now you have a choice…you can think of this question as a) 8+8+1 (16+1=17) (Doubles +1) OR b) 9+9-1 (18-1=17) (Doubles -1).
Using Doubles +/-2: This is very similar to the Doubles +/-1 strategy EXCEPT…you guessed it!!! The difference between the addends is two! For example: 15+17 (the difference between 15 and 17 is 2 :)) Now you have a choice…you can think of this question as a) 15+15+2 (30+2=32) (Doubles +2) OR b) 17=17-2 (34-2=32) (Doubles -2).
Using Addition to Subtract: This is when knowing about Fact Families comes in handy! Fact Families are 3 numbers that are related, just like the people in a family are related!! The 3 facts make a set of 4 number sentences 🙂 When you see 11-7=? you can switch that to an addition fact instead. Now this question can be changed to 7+?=11. It might be easier or quicker for you to solve this question by adding instead of subtracting.
In the first question the 11 is the whole, and the 7 and 4 are the parts
When we reviewed this strategy we also talked about the ‘unknown’ in a question. There is always an unknown, but the place of the unknown can change. We are used to having the unknown at the end of a question (the sum for addition, difference for subtraction, product for multiplication and quotient for division). However the unknown can be any part of the question. In the above example we changed the ‘unknown’ from being the difference (a part) in a subtraction question to a missing addend (a part) in an addition question.
*Once again…we are practising all these grade appropriate Mental Math strategies and students need to know then exist and how to use them and explain them BUT will have their ‘favourite’ strategies and develop their own strategies as well.
Division: This first week of division has gone fairly well! The students are understanding the concept of division as objects being shared into equal groups. They are also finding the relationship between multiplication and division and using the commutative property and fact families to demonstrate this relationship! If your child is needing more practice try giving them objects (chocolate chips, rocks, paperclips, etc.) and asking them to share equally into X groups then ask how many are in each set. For example: Give them 12 chocolate chips and ask them to share them into 4 groups. One at a time they will put one chocolate chip into each set. 1,2,3,4 then add a second chocolate chip into the first set, then second set, etc. until there are no more chocolate chips. At then end there should be 4 sets of chocolate chips and 3 chocolate chips in each set. *Remember to give them problems that do not have a remainder since we are not at that point yet!
Buzz Math: Today we tried out a new program called Buzz Math! This is an online program similar to Dream Box, but not affiliated with the School Division. Each student has a user name (first name and first two letters of their last name) and they have a password (which they know!). We got logged in and used Buzz Math for about 45 minutes today and it was a hit. You are welcome to use it at home too. Just log on the same way as we did at school. See me if you have questions about logging on. I am learning with the group, so we will see where this takes us!
Ask Me…This weekend’s Ask Me question is to do an extra 30 minutes of outdoor fun and let me know what you were up to! I am heading to the lake so I am looking forward to this too! The forecast doesn’t look great, so it also might also be a good time to get some reading in! All students have next week’s tracking sheet in their folder 🙂 I’ve noticed that many students are not reading regularly and not bringing their home reading folders in regularly either. I know everyone is busy but reading is very important and a great daily habit to get into. I’m hoping for 25 completed reading folders and Ask Me questions on Tuesday morning!!!!
I found a list of reasons of why kids need books…take a peek if you have time 🙂
Creativity: Earlier in the week I showed the class a video from youtube about the loss of creativity at school and at work. I had seen the short film on Twitter and it made me sad. Then it made me think. Then it reaffirmed what we are trying to create in our class. I thought I’d post the link on here in case any of the kids were talking about it and you wanted to see 🙂
Have a really great long weekend. I look forward to hearing everyone’s stories during our sharing time on Tuesday morning.
Until next time,