May 31, 2015

Oh my! It's Week 37 already!

Please excuse typo in the photo's actually week 37! 
 The boys and girls will have their Unit 10 Math test on Wednesday. Students will find that the pages they completed in their workbook will assist them in preparing for the test. 

Students should be able to solve the following types of patterning problems: 

  • numerical patterns with 1 and 2 patterning rules (e.g. add 2, then add 3) 
  • growing patterns with objects 
  • numerical problems using tables (see workbook for samples) 
  • patterns on a grid (students should also be able to state their observations) 

May 28, 2015

We did it!

Congratulations to all the boys and girls! They finished writing their EQAO booklets today, and I couldn't be more proud! 

Everyone worked so hard over the last three days, they deserve a super-charged Fun Friday tomorrow! I have a very great lesson planned and an easy-breezy poetry writing activity lined up for the kids. I might even have a treat or two up my sleeve for this hard workin' bunch! 

As is the tradition in Room 208,  we're going to celebrate all of our hard work with a big party next week!    

May 27, 2015

Day Two!

We are two thirds of the way through our EQAO journey! We can see the light at the end of the tunnel! 

In our pre-EQAO discussions, we talked about how on the second day, everyone feels more confident, more relaxed. We also talked about how it's that third and final day where we need to be careful.  

Just like a 3-1 lead in the third period, with seconds to go seems like you have a win on your hands, you still want to be careful.  

We want to be confident, but not too confident right? We want to make sure we're still in the game and haven't let our minds wander off the ice.  

My students have worked so hard this year preparing for EQAO. It's hard to find the words to express just how proud of them I am. I hope that the writing skills, problem solving skills and critical thinking skills they've learned this year will not only help them on their EQAO work, but for years and years to come.  

May 23, 2015

We're ready to go!

The boys and girls worked really hard last week to get ready for this coming Tuesday. To fine tune those writing skills, they worked on responding to questions from a story I wrote called "Penny Returns". They had to provide evidence from the text for most of the questions and their writing was off the charts! 
Page 1 of  "Penny Returns" 

Three of the six questions students responded to. 

Students also learned about mode and solved this problem: 

We reviewed the different types of writing we have practiced this year along with all the different ways we use quarters/fourths in Grade Three. 

I also taught my students the "Parts of Speech" song. Not to worry if you were away last week, we'll practice it again on Monday. But in the meantime, you can familiarize yourself with the lyrics. 

And on top of all this, we still managed to have a ball at Jigga Jump on Friday (I think they're calling it "Jiggy-Jump" now) AND we have just about wrapped up Unit 10 in Math!  

Like an athlete preparing for the big event, my students have really worked hard in the last 34 weeks. It seems like just yesterday when I was sitting them down on the carpet to tell them about this "thing" that was coming in May and now here we are! 

We have one more day to review and then we're off with our sharp pencils and minds packed with knowledge and great skills!  Good luck 208, we're all so proud of you!  

May 21, 2015

EQAO starts Tuesday!

The boys and girls begin EQAO on Tuesday May 26th. Please avoid booking appointments during the school day and withdrawing your child from school early during that week, as we will be using Monday for our final day of review.  

If a child is in the midst of a booklet and is withdrawn, they cannot continue their work in that section upon their return. Any unanswered questions from that section would result in a score of zero.  

In order to create an ideal working environment for my students, your support in helping to avoid disruption to my classroom in any capacity is most appreciated. 

May 20, 2015

What's a "Whoa!" problem?

We're learning all about "Whoa!" problems as part of our problem solving preparation for EQAO.  I believe the skills the boys and girls are learning will not only assist them in completing their booklets successfully, but for years to come. 

A "Whoa!" problem is one that makes you say, "Whoa!" after you read it. It usually has many steps and at first, you might not even know where to start. 

I made a video for my students to watch today. It's a wee bit long and at times, the camera is more shakey than I'd like it to be, but it gets the job done in helping students understand how these problems are broken down into small, manageable steps.  

Also emphasized in the video is the most important step of all: rechecking your work! 

After watching the video, we also discussed the importance of asking yourself, "Does my answer make sense?" It's one thing to have done the addition/subtraction/scale correctly, but if the answer itself doesn't make sense, you'll need to go back and recheck your strategies and/or choice of operation. 

We're going to watch the video again in class this week and then solve our own Whoa! problem by breaking it down into small chunks, rechecking our work and then asking, "Does this make sense?"


May 18, 2015

Week 34

Here's what's up for Week 34!  
Hard to believe that the boys and girls start writing their EQAO booklets next Tuesday (May 26th). 

May 15, 2015

One talented bunch!

I try not to let it happen too often, but now and then, for some reason or another, my pile of marking gets really, really tall. I personally find that marking students work is easier if you do it in small chunks (e.g. one assignment at a time), but now and then, I put on a big ol' pot of coffee and just go! 

One evening this week, I was doing just that and my smile just kept getting bigger and bigger as I marked a number of different assignments. 

My students are exceptionally talented writers. Their writing style, thorough responses, the personality that shines through and their knowledge of conventions (for example, how to use a comma correctly) is some of the best I've seen. 

It's been such an exciting journey to watch my students' skills progress over the last 33 weeks; I hope they continue to shine as writers in Grade Four and beyond! 

May 14, 2015

Practice Page #30

Practice Page #30 looks at finding the area of a missing segment of a larger space. 

May 12, 2015

Practice Page #29

To help prepare the boys and girls for the language of the EQAO Math booklets, I created this table for them to complete tonight. 
EQAO tends to refer to obtuse and acute angles as "greater than a right angle" and "less than a right angle".  

The photo of tonight's page is actually a corrected version of the one the students are bringing home tonight.  

You'll notice on your child's copy that first triangle says there are no right angles, but it does indeed appear to have a right angle.  The kids are welcome to change the "0" to a "1".  

May 11, 2015

Week 33 has arrived!

Education week kept us hopping last week! We had parents visiting, the walk to Mass on Wednesday and a great RAD assembly on Friday. The busy week meant we weren't quite able to get to all I had planned for the boys and girls. We'll do a little bit of catch-up throughout the week and that *could* mean we use the recording of our News Report as our breaks throughout the week and devote Fun Friday(the afternoon) to getting our other work done. 

We'll sort of "play it by ear", as they say.  It's hard to believe that it's already week 33.  This means there are just 7 weeks left. Seven weeks! Doesn't it seem like yesterday that it was just the SEVENTH week of school?! 

I hope all the moms in Room 208 had a great Mother's Day! It was really sweet on Friday afternoon when students wished me a Happy Mother's Day as they headed out for the weekend. I reminded them that I'm not actually a mom! But I was quickly corrected because I'm their "Mom at school" (something I actually say all the time!).  I think my smile was brighter than that beautiful Friday afternoon sun! 

May 07, 2015

Save the date!

The dates have been set and the kids in Room 208 are well on their way to success! We've worked so hard to prepare for EQAO since September and day-after-day, I am so proud of the work my students produce.  

Over the next few weeks, we have review work to do along with new material to cover before the big day arrives. Consistent attendance and arrival to school on time will be essential in order to minimize disruption to the students' learning environment. 

In Math, we'll be writing our Unit 9 test and then moving on to Unit 10, where students will learn about patterns in numbers and geometry.  In writing, we'll focus on story writing using the said/replied/said method of dialogue. In reading, we're going to continue to review features of non-fiction texts and then look at the features of a poem. 

It's a fair bit to cover, but I'm very confident we'll get it all checked off our list before the big week.  

I'm asking parents and students to keep up with the blog as there will be lots of helpful information to support student success posted here.  Home review and discussion is essential for academic success all year long, but it is especially critical over the next few weeks. 

May 03, 2015

Week 32!

Here's what's on deck for Week 32! 
Yikes! 32 already?! 

May 01, 2015

We all need somebody to lean on.

Children can write some pretty powerful things, and my class this year happens to be a very talented crew. Every week I have watched their writing skills grow and it is such a pleasure to read their work.  

This is my favourite piece from the week. It brought tears to my eyes because it's so innocent with that adorable and juicy little kid printing, and yet so wise with that simple message of the love we all deserve. 




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