Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Our week in learning 1/16

This week in grammar, students will take a short quiz over Indirect Objects on Wednesday.
They will begin the week in language arts researching their explorer using computers. Students will 
need at least one book source next week as they begin putting together their resources to form their 
essay. On Friday, students will create a sentence outline for their three body paragraphs, and should
 have their research largely completed by next Monday.

Students will read through chapter 10 of The Secret Garden and continue adding to their character 
charts and journal entries. Journal entries are assigned every chapter or every other chapter, and are 
expected to be a full paragraph in length (5-9 sentences). These will be collected for a complete grade 
at the end of the book, and should be neat, showing good effort, with complete sentences. 

In science this week, students will continue taking notes on plant structure and adaptations. They will 
specifically focus on vascular and nonvascular plants. Students will be placed into groups and research
 a type of vascular or nonvascular plant to present to the rest of the class. All research and group work 
will be completed in class, and will be presented next week.

This week in history, students will continue to learn about the age of exploration. We will cover the 

questionable virtue of Christopher Columbus, the Spanish Conquistadors, how the connection 
between slavery and encomiendas, and Magellan’s voyage around the world. Please note that we 
will be covering slavery and the middle passage later in the unit. I encourage discussion at home on
 this sensitive topic.

In math this week, we will take a short quiz on our ratio unit, then move on to decimals. Students will
 learn about comparing, rounding, estimating, adding, subtracting and multiplying decimals. 
Graph paper is very helpful to line up decimals and keep their work organized. We will be using some in class, but it might be useful to have some at home to use with homework. There will be no math groups this week because we are starting a new unit, however we will start math groups next week, 1/24. 

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Bard Competition

Archway Arete Students and Families,

Throughout Western civilization, bards have been keepers of tradition, reciting the poetry of their people and passing on oral history. At every grade level, our students practice memorization and recitation of poems in the classroom. This year, we will again be joining our fellow Great Hearts schools in holding a Bard Competition for our 3rd through 5th grade students, whom we will challenge to memorize and recite poetry. On February 7 and February 8, over the course of two rounds and two poems, we will winnow the field to find our school’s most skillful bard. That student will be named School Bard for the year and will represent Archway Arete at the Great Hearts Archway Bard Competition in the spring.
If your student is interested in competing, you may fill out the forms that will be going home with your student shortly. The forms are due back on January 29th. Whether your student participates or not, we invite all of our Archway families to join us for these public recitations, which promise to be engaging reminders of this oral tradition.
If you have any questions about the Bard Competition, please contact Mrs. Bowers at kbowers@archwayarete.org.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Our week in learning 1/08

Welcome back! I hope everyone's winter vacation was relaxing and refreshing.

In math this week, we will begin with a review of semester one, then move on to a very 
brief unit on ratio. There will be no math groups this week.

This week in history, students will start to learn about the age of exploration. We will 
cover the importance of the Spice Islands, ways explorers were able to navigate, and the 
Portuguese explorers. Please note that we will be covering slavery and the middle passage 
later in the unit. I encourage discussion at home on this sensitive topic.

This week in grammar, students will review their knowledge of classifying and diagramming 
skills, and add a new skill to their toolbox: identifying and diagramming indirect objects! They will 
have a homework packet sent home on Monday from which they should select two whole problems 
to complete each night, turning it in each day to show completion, and due Thursday for a full grade.

Additionally, the beginning of the third quarter also marks the beginning of our next project! Our fifth graders 
will embark on their first research paper at the end of this week! Students will randomly select an explorer to 
research and write about. We will be researching on computers over the next few weeks, but students will also 
be required to use at least one book as a source, and they will need to bring that research to class daily 
throughout the duration of this project. They should have their assignments by this weekend. Please look 
out for a project packet and signature page coming home this weekend.

In science this week, students will begin their quarter-long unit on plants. We will begin by 
reviewing parts of the cell that students are familiar with, and taking notes on organelles unique
to plant cells. Students will make flashcards for homework this week and will be allowed to use 
their flashcards on their plant cell quiz on Thursday.

In literature, we will begin reading The Secret Garden. Please make sure your child brings his or 
her copy of the book to school by Tuesday. 

Monday, December 18, 2017

Our week in learning 12/18

This quarter has been a whirlwind, and the semester is nearly through! Your child has memorized poems, written descriptive, narrative, and persuasive essays, conquered fractions and geometry, and taken charge of note-taking and presentations in history. I can't wait to continue our learning in January.

In math this week, students will take their final two tests of the year. These tests are cumulative, covering units 1-5. On Monday, students will work in groups while taking a multiple choice test, and on Tuesday, students will work individually to complete the final test.

This week in science, students will conclude their lab with Ms. Chaudhury and review the parts of the cell in preparation for our plant cells unit that will begin next quarter.

On Tuesday, students' poetry packets are due. We have worked on these in class, and I have been impressed with their ability to identify rhyme schemes, rhythm, and poetic devices, as well as creating their own! Also on Tuesday, students will recite the poem "The Snowstorm" and take their final roots test over roots 26-50.

On Wednesday, we will clean out our desks and the room and celebrate the end of the quarter with a Where the Red Fern Grows party. Please note that we will be watching the movie Where the Red Fern Grows. If your child is uncomfortable with any of the content, he or she is welcome to temporarily step out of the room (supervised).

Please send your child to school on Wednesday with a bag that is large enough to hold the entire contents of their desk, preferably a reusable grocery bag. We will completely empty desks and leave backpacks, notebooks, and textbooks in the classroom over winter break. These must be hung up in the back of the room by the end of the day, with desks empty and clean. Cleaning crews will only sanitize the tops of desks over break, not the insides.

On we go to semester two!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Our week in learning 12/11

 The last full week of the semester is here! Students are busy preparing to present their history 
units, state brochures, and "The Snowstorm" recitations. This week, we are wrapping up our 
science unit on mitosis, and have finished reading Where the Red Fern Grows and presenting
 the 100-point literature projects. Students will begin bringing home graded work to stay as they 
start cleaning out their desks for the end of the semester.

This week in science, students will review for and take their mitosis quiz, which will take place 
on Tuesday. Students will be expected to know the order of the stages of mitosis and what happens 
during each stage, as well as how mitosis differs from binary fission. On Thursday and Friday,
 students will conduct a bacteria-growing lab in which they will practice their scientific investigation 

In grammar this week, students will work on their persuasive essay final drafts and will participate
 in a writing workshop on Wednesday, going through each step of writing an essay and conferencing 
with a teacher after each step. They will use the AZMerit rubric as their guide. On Thursday and 
Friday, students will identify each other's arguments and persuasive techniques as they present 
their essays to the class. Next week students will take their cumulative roots quiz.

This week in History, students will be presenting their Feudal Japan chapters as a groups on Monday 
and Tuesday.

Students have finished the 50 states unit and will demonstrate their knowledge by creating 
a brochure for a randomly chosen state. States will be chosen and information given on Monday. 
Their final brochure is due for presentation on Wednesday, 12/13. We will present on their states 
until Winter break. We will present on a volunteer basis, so students who will be absent the last 
week of school must present on Thursday or Friday.

This week in Math, students find the area and perimeter of odd-shaped figures, explore the 
area of a triangle (½ x base x height), parallelograms, and the surface area of rectangular prism, 
cube, and cuboids. Their last test of the quarter will be on Monday, December 18th. There are  
no math groups this week.  

Monday, December 4, 2017

Our week in learning 12/4

The antepenultimate week of school this semester has arrived! This busy time of year brings many projects. I will continue to post important due dates on the right-hand side of the blog for your reference.

This week in language arts,
students will take their mid-year grammar test on Tuesday.
Students will begin their next writing project this week on Persuasive Writing. They’ll write an essay as a turkey to a farmer entitled “Wait, wait! Don’t Shoot!” As pre-writing and rough drafts come home, please help your child edit for spelling and grammar errors.

This week in science, students will consider the benefits and harm that eukaryotic protists can potentially bring to mankind, incorporating these viewpoints into a class discussion. Students may use this web site as a resource for the discussion worksheet: https://www.ck12.org/biology/protists-and-disease/lesson/Protists-and-Human-Disease-BIO/

Additionally, students will learn about how prokaryotic organisms choose to live together in a colony. Finally, students will be introduced to the stages of mitosis. They will take a short quiz over mitosis next week.

In literature this week, students will finish Where the Red Fern Grows. The 100-point project and packet are due on Thursday. Students will present their projects to the class on Thursday and Friday.

In history, students will study Feudal Japan, working in groups to present the unit to their classmates.

In math, students will continue the geometry unit by finding the area of perimeter of a rectangle and using the formula 1/2 base x height to calculate the area of a triangle. Math groups will take place on Wednesday.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Our week in learning 11/27

Welcome back! I hope Thanksgiving break was joyous and refreshing.

This week in History, students will continue our unit on “Golden Age to Glorious Revolution”. We will discuss King Charles II and King James II, and the monarch’s that brought on the revolution-William and Mary. Students will complete the final draft of their Charles I articles due on Thursday. Study guides for the Glorious Revolution test will go home on Monday, 11/27, and are due on Friday, 12/1. The Glorious Revolution test will take place on Monday, 12/4.

Students have finished the 50 states unit and will demonstrate their knowledge by creating a brochure for a randomly chosen state. States will be chosen and information given on Monday. Their final brochure is due for presentation on Wednesday, 12/13. We will present on their states until Winter break.

This week in Math, students will review multiplying and dividing fractions, and solving word problems using division and multiplication of fractions. Students will test over Unit 4 on Thursday, 11/30. On Friday, students will begin learning about area, perimeter, and surface area.

This week in science, students will begin studying animal cells. They will learn the functions and locations of organelles in the cell. There will be a short quiz on Friday.

In grammar, students will be introduced to independent clauses and will be able to identify the differences between dependent and independent clauses. They will also be introduced to elements of a persuasive essay. In literature, students will read the next two chapters of Where the Red Fern Grows and continue to work on their 100-point projects. They should have completed at least 60 points' worth of projects by the end of this week.