Sunday, April 6, 2014
The students chose one fact about the ocean animal that they researched and made a computer slide about it using Pixie 2. The students had to add an ocean background, use the search feature to find clipart of their animal, add a speech bubble, and type in the fact in first person. They then had to resize the animal clipart and speech bubble to match. We played the slides as a movie during Open House and hung each slide as a print out on a bulletin board.
We used various book and internet sources to research facts about the Beluga Whale. The facts were added to a Thinking Map. The students then used the Thinking Map to write a class research paper about their findings. They used Interactive Writing so that every student had a chance to contribute. They helped each other with the wording, spelling, and punctuation of the research paper.
We read The Copycat Fish by Marcus Pfister and then the students retold the story in order as a class using a Flow Map. The students then individually retold the story on a foldable focusing on the beginning, middle, and end. They also colored a Rainbow Fish to go along with their work.
In small groups, the students visited to the library to research a specific ocean animal with our Instructional Media Specialist, Mrs. Christy. The took notes over their research and then used their notes in class to help them write a research paper. They put their final drafts inside a piece of blue paper folded in a stage fold. They also made a scuba diver face to look like themselves to go with scuba diver bodies that our PTA volunteers made for us. The scuba divers held the students' writing.
We read Fred and Pete at the Beach by Cynthia Nugent to practicing retelling stories in order. As a class, the students retold the events on a Flow Map using Interactive Writing. With Interactive Writing, each student gets a chance to write while the rest of the class helps them with word order, spelling, and punctuation.
The students used paper fish manipulatives to solve addition and subtraction word problems. Each student could pick their own numbers to use. They then solved the problems. After solving their own problems, they worked with their table groups to check them.
We spent two weeks on our ocean theme. To start our theme, we read Dory Story by Jerry Pallotta. As we read, we talked about food chains and animals interdependence on one another. After reading, the students wrote the order of the food chain on a Flow Map. They then illustrated their favorite part of the story.
Sunday, April 14, 2013
In March we visited The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History to view the film The Living Sea at their OMNI Theater. The film summarized and showcased many of the ocean animals we researched in Reading, the bodies of water and landforms we studied in Social Studies, and the pull of the moon we studied in Science.
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
After learning about the two types of whales, baleen and toothed, the students focused more specifically on researching Beluga Whales. Ms. Willemin, our student teacher, facilitated the students in researching what Belugas look like, what they eat, where they live, and other interesting facts. As they learned new facts, they recorded it to a Circle Map. They then used the Circle Map to write a shared writing research paper. In shared writing, every child gets an opportunity to write and the students help one another with spelling and sentence structure.
Ms. Willemin, our student teacher, taught the students about the various ocean zones. To help the students further understand the different depths of the ocean, they created a four tiered foldable to show the different ocean zones. They colored each part a darker shade of blue to show that the farther away from the sun, the darker it gets. They then read about the different zones and the animals that live in each zone.
The students learned about the Kelp Forest during our ocean unit. They learned about the parts of the ocean plant and made comparisons to the parts of land plants. They also learned about how animals and humans depend upon the Kelp plant. The students created Tree Maps and diagrams to show their learning.
In Science the students created "Oceans in a Bottle" to model how the ocean gets darker the deeper it gets. The students first poured in sand, followed by oil, and then water. Last they added blue food coloring. After making their bottles, they completed an "Ocean in a Bottle Lab Report." Fellow teachers, you can download the lab report from my TpT store.
As a part of our weekly character education lessons, which we call Mindful Mondays at our school, we read Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister. As we read the book, we discussed how it is important to share but that does not always mean giving away everything you have nor does it mean others always have to give you things. We also discussed that we should care for one another. The students then colored a Rainbow Fish of their own.