Saturday, January 31, 2015

Biography Book Report 2015

Yesterday, the 5th graders presented their biography book reports, and we held a Character Breakfast.  At the beginning of the month, I required the students to choose a biography on either a president, president's wife, or figure from the American Revolution in order to correlate with our reading unit, "Making a New Nation."  The students read their books on their own throughout the month and then came to school dressed as their character on the last day of the month.  Each child had to share about the life and accomplishments of their character as if they actually were that person. 

For those who are interested, you may click the following for links to: the instruction sheet, the grade sheet, and a Fact Sheet sample.

This year, we had the following famous people at our breakfast:
Molly Pitcher
Jackie Kennedy Onassis
Eleanor Roosevelt
Betsy Ross
John Adams
Martha Washington
I'm not exactly sure what Martha is doing, but you can always count on Mrs. Washington to be expressive and dramatic.  I mean, just look at her reaction when Ben Franklin walked in the room!  
Anyway, back to the introductions:
Rosalyn Carter
Abraham Lincoln
Abigail Adams
Mary Todd Lincoln
George W. Bush, Laura Bush, and George H.W. Bush
As you can see, we had the pleasure of having a few couples sharing with us, as well as multiple members of the Bush family. 
John and Abigail Adams
Abe and Mary Lincoln
We also welcomed Benjamin Franklin, but he was so busy socializing that I was unable to get a photo of him alone:
Benjamin Franklin and John Adams
Discussing the events leading up to the American Revolution:
 Uh-oh...Adams just called Franklin a "Loyalist."
 Things started to get a little intense!
 I had to step in and break up this argument.  ;)
 Now, Lincoln is about to get an ear-full!
 George H.W. Bush thinks it's all quite humorous:
 Once things calmed down, the guys were able to take a civilized photo:
 It was so much fun to be in the presence of such famous people!  Once word got out about their appearance, they were surrounded by Mom Paparazzi:
We enjoyed learning about each person while we ate donuts and fruit and drank milk, orange juice, and water.  The parents/paparazzi provided breakfast for us, and we were so grateful. 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

100th Day of School

Today we celebrated our 100th day of school.  As you know, this is typically a celebration for younger grades, but 5th grade actually celebrated this year because of our Every Day Counts: Calendar Math program.  We started using this program last year in order to complement our Math In Focus: Singapore Math program.  EDC (Every Day Counts) is one of the first things we do each day, and it only takes around 10 minutes to discuss a variety of concepts including measurement, geometry, patterns, money, time, place value, graphing, probability, etc. (the concepts change each month).  HERE is a brief clip of me leading one of our discussions at the beginning of the year (I intentionally did not call students by name).

Since the first day of school, we have been counting each day in decimal form, using hundredths.  We write each day/number in decimal form, fraction form, and a percentage so the students can see the connections between decimals, fractions, and percents.  Because we are counting in decimals, our 100th day marked "1 Whole" for the 5th graders:
We celebrated by walking next door to Circle K and getting Polar Pops:
This was a special treat because the students never get sodas, and we've never walked off campus to get these treats.  It was a surprise mini "field trip" that everyone enjoyed!

Happy 100th/"1 Whole" day of school!

P.S.  Just for some silly fun, here's a video showing 100 people, ages 1 to 100 (in chronological order), playing the drums: