Curriculum Matters: January 31, 2016

Junior Level
Melanie and Becky’s Class
In History we are focusing on the Proterozoic Eon and learned that changes occurred, and that these changes set the stage for life on Earth to begin.
 The Lions are working with the Pin Maps to learn countries, capitols and landforms of assigned continents.  The Bears and Lions have been working to identify the plants and animals of biomes around the world.
 In recent weeks we have looked at how Cartographers map our world and created longitude and latitude.
Lions and Tigers are doing experiments and simultaneously writing their observations in written format.  They list materials used, procedures, observations and conclusions independently.
The Bears have had lessons on the three states of matter, and continue to enjoy presentations which lead them through the process and procedures of experiments.
Lots and lots of writing going on…
Scott and Deb’s Class
We have been studying the various ways people have invented to keep track of time. Calendars, timelines, using clocks for recording human history, BC-AD timeline, and the long black line which will segue into the clock of eons and the geologic time line of the earth.
We had an interesting discussion about whether or not time really exists. The past is gone, the future is yet to happen, and only the present moment is real.
We are entering the micro realms of the Five Kingdoms: Bacteria-Prokaryotes and Protists. Children are using the microscope to see bacteria and protists.
To finish our study of North America we will 
 be having a Skype session with an “expert
from The Buffalo Bill Center of the West on amazing animal adaptions! So exciting!!
Dawn and Katri’s Class

Happy New Year!  January draws to a close after a month of weather extremes – but where’s the snow?!  As we wait for a “real” sledding day, our classroom has been a bustling, active place of learning and discovery.

With all of our Time of Day books completed, story writing is now on fire!  Illustrations for 3, 4 and 5 part stories are complete.  Children are developing their creative stories with great gusto.  Non-fiction research writing is also happening at all levels – from meerkats to Tasmanian Tigers to Jupiter!

We are having a blast reading together: Loving “Charlotte’s Web” as our read aloud, meeting weekly in literature groups to enjoy conversations about books : practicing reading with fluency and feeling, comprehension strategies and inferring information. And exploring our library books at our daily silent reading time.

We are also looking at time from a variety of perspectives: The beginning of our solar system which brings us to the formation of the Earth.  We are using the Clock of Eons as a way to consider the history of our earth over the last 4.5 billion years compared to a 12 hour day.
We will be looking at each Eon in depth over the next few months and considering what our place is in all of this history. Calendars and clocks – the history of timepieces, the history of our current calendar and the origin of the names of the months and days. We will be looking at family timelines, personal timelines and graphing classroom birthdays.  All of the children are practicing telling time on an analog clock in smaller and smaller increments.