We start with a low. This week was a four-day week due to a Superintendent’s Conference Day. This is a low because we have had so many snow days and delays this winter that I cherish EACH and EVERY five-day week. We have a five-day week ahead of us and the forecast looks good, so it is likely that we will have five full days of school this week. I plan to utilize each and every minute of the time spent with the kids.
- The final poems were AWESOME. The kids have such a wonderful way with words, and they utilized everything that they learned during the poetry unit. Their poems included metaphors, similes, repetition, personification, onomatopoeia, and vivid sensory details. The coolest part is that the students wanted to share their final poems aloud to the class, so each student will have a chance to share this week. I am really excited that they were so invested in their poems. I was also very impressed.
- We had a great review lesson on story plot, theme, mood, and making inferences. Whenever we read a story, we are locating the elements of story plot, identifying the theme, reading between the lines, and discussing the mood, but each review lesson that we engaged in this week was awesome. The kids are turning into active readers, and more importantly, they are turning into students that enjoy reading (my goal from the very first day of school). This week, we are going to read another short story (I love short stories because I can design a lesson that can be accomplished in one or two class periods around the story).
- The second Kate Messner literature circle meeting was fantastic. The group that is reading Capture the Flag had to be reminded a number of times to quiet down (I didn’t want to, but all seven groups were meeting in the same room, so I had to control the volume). The group created a sheet to try to find out who stole the flag. The paper looked like the map that you would find in the game of Clue. They had a list of suspects. They had a list of motives. They listed ways that the suspects could have done the crime. They were out of their mind with excitement.:) It was so exciting to watch (and listen to). This week, we will have our third meeting on Wednesday. I can’t wait to hear all of the discussions.
- We ended the week with a conference day that focused on some interesting topics, but lacked the depth that I was hoping for. During the morning sessions, I found myself thinking about all of the schoolwork (grading and lesson planning) that I could be doing if I wasn’t sitting in the conference session. In the afternoon, I was thinking the same exact thing, but I was also thinking of all of the things that I could be organizing in my classroom. Unfortunately, I truly felt like it was a lost day (the funniest part, if there was a funny part, is that before the day started, I predicted exactly what would happen – unfortunately, it all came true).
- Since ending the Matter unit in science, there has been no flow in the class. We are focused on health, and tomorrow, I show the “Growing Up” video to the boys. Last week, I was supposed to have the guidance counselor visit the classroom to talk about Internet safety, but she was sick with the flu. I believe that we are rescheduled for this Wednesday, but I am not definite, which bothers me because I love to have a plan (for the week, for the month). We will continue to work on the research of women scientists, but with the video and the Internet safety lesson, I feel like it is breaking up the flow of our research. I am hoping that the kids can stay focused on the research project, because when we started it, I was imagining it being a highlight. I am not losing hope for the highlight.
The students have had a three-day weekend, so I am hopeful that they are well rested and ready for a great week of learning. We have so many things to look forward to in science and ELA – the literature circle meeting on Wednesday and the presentations of the women scientists on Friday.