Friday was the climax of Anti-bullying Week and our class investigated the issue with a couple of presentations. In the morning we had a previous Burford student return to share his bullying experiences through foster care and group homes. The students asked some deep questions and discussed with Nick how bullies can be handled and bullying reduced.
In the afternoon we watched a play and discussed the issue of Cyberbullying.
As part of our science program we team up with Miss Degraaf’s class and have a friendly Egg drop competition. Students are put into groups of 3-4, given a list of materials, including a paper bag, straws, string, tape, tissue paper, cotton balls, toothpicks and an egg. The purpose of the task is to create an insulated container so that when the egg is dropped from a second story window it’ll survive the fall. Students set out by drawing a design of what they think will work then build it within a 40 minute time block. It was a very enjoyable activity for all involved and we celebrated with an almost 100% success rate; way to go engineers!
This week we finished reading “Out of My Mind” by Sharon Draper as part of The Global Read Aloud. We read this book simultaneously along with 150 000 other students from around the world. We were able to share what we were learning through the book and enjoyed reading what other students were understanding as well. Skyping other grade 6 classes through North America was another highlight of our experience. On Thursday, we participated in a “Google Hangout” with the author of the book and this is a short excerpt of our question being asked (sorry the sound quality is not very good).
This week we learned from a guest speaker from the YMCA. Christine, shared with us some of the truths and myths about gambling. Unfortunately many junior/intermediate aged students experiment with some aspects of online gambling without knowing the pitfalls, addictions and costs of getting involved. We came up with a definition for “gambling”, discussed some general wisdom that needs to be used and what needs to be avoided.
Personal Learning Day on November 12, 2013
We are planning for our November Personal Learning Day on Tuesday, November 12. In order to prepare for the day, a Personal Learning Day Plan needs to be completed, signed by a parent and handed in by Monday, November 11. A Personal Learning Day is an opportunity for students to explore and learn about something that captures their attention and curiosity. It could result in a project done on an interesting animal, city or person. It could be designing a building in Google Sketch-up or learning a new Highland Dance move. It could mean writing a play, enacting a scene from a TV show, designing a display on anti-bullying or putting a poster together on Glogster.
Students will be spending from 8:30 – 1:10, with the exception of French, working on their Learning Goal. They will need to clearly state what their goal for the day is (what they want to learn about.) They will also need to list their Success Criteria (what their finished product will look like.) This should consist of a checklist of observable criteria that they can look at and check off, and then know that they are finished.
As part of the planning process, students are also required to make a list of resources they feel that they need in order to complete their goal. This may include bringing resources from home, going to the school library, using the internet, or gathering materials such as paper, props, etc. Students must come that day prepared to work for the entire day on their subject of choice. Therefore, planning is a very important part of making this day a success.
The last period of the day will be spent celebrating our successes through a 2-4 minute presentation to the rest of the class. Students will then be required to hand in a self-evaluation the following day. This will allow students a chance to reflect on the day and evaluate what they accomplished.
We are very excited about this opportunity and are looking forward to learning lots during this day.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at email@example.com or call me at the school.
Our Reading Buddy program has begun and with it are a great variety of learning opportunities that we will take advantage of. As the name suggests, we will be reading with our buddies but Ms. Degraaf and I will be organizing many activities in subjects such as Math, Science, Art and Social Studies that we will be integrating into our Buddy program. This buddy system not only helps the grade 3′s but gives the grade 6′s an opportunity to “teach” certain concepts and trying to teach a concept is one of the best ways of making sure we’ve learned it. This is a program that most students in both classes look forward to.
After coming so close in September we have risen to the top of the Canadian National Sumdog Math Contest for October. With the help of Mr. Zondag’s class we finished first out of 67 schools from all across Canada that competed during the October Math contest. This was a full grade 6 effort as every grade 6 student practised their math facts and problem solving to contribute to our victory. As a result, our school has won a one year free subscription to all the services on the Sumdog site. This usually costs $6/student so our victory is valued at more than $2500. Hopefully all students in our school will be able to take advantage of this offer and experience how much learning can take place in English and Math through gamification.