daw.com - October 9

Even though it was a short four day week, we got a lot accomplished and are working our way to finishing off several major projects.  All the students have now completed all six memoirs and are currently editing and revising with both myself and also a fellow team mate.  I expect this to take at least two more days to totally complete. There was a lesson on commenting about someones writing and what constitutes appropriate criticism and what would be inappropriate. So far it has really gone well. 
We have also completed our first draft of our presentation and after it is revised and edited, students will complete the entire presentation by Wednesday next week.  The five choices they had were a book launch, poster/infographic, drama/puppet play, news report or brochure.  They will have next long weekend (four days) to practice this and then present it to the class on Monday and Tuesday after Parent Teacher Conferences. 
We have also officially finished our first novel study of the year - Pedro's Journal. Our next book will be Sign of the Beaver.  These are good ways to teach some of the deeper reading concepts that I expect students will develop while in grade 5 to use again and again as they improve their reading ability.  Remember, reading ability has nothing to do with decoding - this they can do very well
already.  Instead, it is how deep they can comprehend the story they are reading.  We look at plot, themes, authors tools, inferencing, evaluation and comparison/contrast as ways to really dig deep into a book.

This coming week you will have access to two official documents from the school - Report Cards (Student as a Learner) and MAP Assessment Scores.  Then on Thursday and Friday I hope you have made an appointment to see me as part of the Parent Teacher conferences.  It would really be great if both parents could attend, but I am aware this is not always possible.  I will not be able to go into depth regarding the MAP scores as I am not that well versed in the interpretation of the scores other than for teaching in the class situation.  If you want more depth to understanding your students MAP scores, please contact the office of learning and make an appointment with them.

In the coming weeks I want to take my students into the kitchen to do some cooking.  While I do not have the dates and times yet, I am gathering parent names who could help me with this.  I need two parents per time I want to go in.  Let me know if you could help out and when I have confirmed dates, I will let you know.    I want to thank-you in advance for this.  In case you are wondering, it works in very well with the measurement section of our Prove It!  unit and also our fractions unit in math.
Next week is spirit week.  It is a time when students can show their school spirit.  I explained to students today that it is not mandatory but since it is their school, they will get out of it what they put into it.  Monday is house color shirts, Tuesday is "When I Grow Up" day and Wednesday is Recycled Fashion Day.  If your students ask for some help with these, please offer to help.  I certainly encourage everyone to participate.

Homework for next week will continue to be working on the Exploration Projects.

That is all for this week.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact me and I will gladly set up a time to meet with you.
Harold Daw