DonorsChoose Arrives

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DonorsChoose Project Arrives We want to say thanks to wonderful giving of all those that supported our school’s MakerFaire Project on DonorsChoose! A special surprise made it to our school today. The kit of Littlebits will be an awesome addition to the MakerFaire we are planning in December for the entire school. In the meantime, students will get a sneak peak at inventive thinking using the Steam Kit in our rooms. We will post soon some of the ideas we begin testing.



Global Read Aloud Starting Soon…

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On October 3, Upper Montessori Students will begin taking part in a unique reading experience. The Global Read Aloud is project to connect students around the world through the pages of a book. This year students in our classes will read the book, “Pax” by Sarah Pennypacker. 

We will read the book in class together and connect with different classrooms using Twitter and video chats. Students usually love having their own copy to read along in class. We are trying to put together a way to order the book through school. Don’t buy a copy yet. We will have more information soon.

Who Stole Mr. Bear?

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Crime Scene Science Inquiry This week students are excited to take part in an interactive Mystery! We will be working as scientists to solve the mystery of “Who Stole Mr. Bear?”

We have created a realistic crime scene and Deputy Santa Cruz is even helping us gather our clues. We will use our skills of observation and inference as we test different artifacts in an effort to find out which of our suspects most likely caused the trouble.Photo by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim Swick

Times Tables Progress

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Times Table Progress Please help me congratulate our first Times Table Masters! Ali, Nadira and Jackson hit “All Green” during our check up assessment in class today.

I am also please to share that we have a large group showing great progress that is almost there! I bet our next check in shows many more masters. Keep up the great work. Our goal planning has been awesome and several students were amazed to see the progress we have been charting.

Photo by Tim Swick

Giant US History Timelines

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Giant US History Timelines We have been working on US History timelines since the start of the year, but we really started making big progress today. We have begun assembly of team projects visualizing the events of history that fourth and fifth grade students will cover this year.

I was ecstatic to see the groups dive in and make great use of each other. This team “Synergy” was evident in the way the students talked out problems and split up tasks to make things go faster. The “Buzz” of work taking place in the room was special.Photo by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim Swick

Developing our Big Rocks

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Developing Big Rocks During the next two weeks we will make big steps towards becoming independent planners of our work time. To assist students, we are learning to “Begin with the End in Mind” by mapping out our goals. We call these our “Big Rocks” and they represent the tasks we wish to focus on each week.

The “Big Rocks” will lead students to shelf lessons, activities and research topics that will be part of work plans and learning that goes home on Friday in the WOW folder.

Check out the awesome display Mrs. Hatcher developed to help students visualize this Leader in Me Habit for Success.Photo by Tim Swick

From Me Bags to Memoirs

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From Me Bags to Memoirs Today the class started working on gathering ideas for a memoir writing project as their initial writing unit for the year. We have read a few good examples and began to take a chance at starting our own.

The Me Bags students brought in from home are serving to give the students a physical object to connect to thinking and writing. Today we began to write, share, discuss and write some more about one single item in our bag. We are purposely only looking at one item today, so we can see how a single thought can be developed.

The Me Bags will be used all week, and eventually we will take a look at each item as we gather detail and depth in our ideas prior to drafting.Photo by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim SwickPhoto by Tim Swick

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