MMC News and Homework Guide
Looking Back and Looking Ahead
What another great week of school! I tend to get so excited when I write to you about what we are doing in class that I forget about the virtue of brevity. In an attempt to provide you with a newsletter shorter than War and Peace each week, I will try to be more concise than last week’s endless publication. I know you are busy and have many things to do.
We began our new spelling curriculum in language arts this past week. It was a tremendous success with students knowing their spelling words, definitions for those words, utilization of those words, and recognition of new words with the same root. The students did remarkably well as a group working with words that fit Greek and Latin root patterns. I couldn’t be any happier. As I continue to assess the students the first quarter, we will branch off and form different spelling groups as needed.
We started a whole group literature study this week to practice how small group book studies will run in our classroom. The students are reading the book, Rules. If you are not familiar with this book, I highly recommend it as an adult read. I fell in love with it the first time I read it and thought, “I have to share this book with my students.” The students are reading this as I am reading a portion of the book, Wonder, aloud each day. This is another powerful book that I would recommend to adults as well. The students are creating mind maps are we read, as well as, other activities. Mind maps are a great way for children to become more active listeners and to create a product while they share a story.
We also completed some reading activities on our new computer program called, “Study Island”. The students love it and have already asked me for the password to practice at home. The link is:
The username is: mmc2014
The password is: 03131967
In science, we began preparations for our “Invention Convention” on October 3rd at 12:10-1:00. We would love for you to join us. It is a very exciting event where we have a real convention with product booths, student-made advertising pamphlets, speeches, an opening ceremony, and many surprises. The entire school gets invited and the students get to showcase their hard work.
This week we are examining an educational video series hosted by Wallace and Gromit titled, “World of Invention”. It will help students with their projects by hearing real inventors discuss what inspired them to make the amazing creations that have changed the world. It also teaches the students about the engineering process and the amount of thought and work that goes into inventing new products.
We will also practice inquiry techniques with an experiment on testing levels of “Vitamin C” in citrus fruits. The students make a solution using corn starch and Iodine to conduct their tests.
In social studies, we became archeologists and decoded the ten cultural universals that all societies exhibit. The students formed teams and examined a mural from a tribe called “The Specibians”. They gathered information about artifacts to make assumptions regarding the society.
This week, we will travel through time using an activity titled, “A Changing Cityscape” to examine how one small American town has evolved through the decades. We will apply the 10 universals to this town as we analyze the reasons for change.
In math, we have reviewed prime versus composite numbers. We also entered our earning slips into our bank account ledgers. The students love this system of earning money. We enjoyed our first class auction last Friday. It was a huge success! This week, we will begin reviewing place value and begin to write number sentences that increase in difficulty rather quickly.
Homework for the Week:
You will notice that there are underlined links to find copies of your work online or to find a handy website. Although it is impossible to link to these places using your paper, you may visit our class webpage and retrieve electronic copies of our homework pages or link to the helpful sites.
Spelling- Practice the words on the attached list. For the first few weeks, everyone is using the same list. As the quarter progresses, we will divide into groups as needed. The second week’s words contain the root, “man/manu” meaning hand. In addition to learning the spelling of the words, also study the meaning of the words. We will have a spelling test on Friday, as well as, a vocabulary test. The spelling test will be taken on the computer using www.spellingcity.com . You may practice your words using games on the website.
When you get to the page, click on the search bar and type “Randy Morgan” with a space between my first and last name. It will take you to my page with your spelling words.
As we progress through the year, you will have more at home activities to do with your spelling/vocabulary words. However, this week I prefer that you continue to get familiar with the website. (Later, we will add vocabulary functions to the page.) You may also use traditional methods to study such as making notecards, having a sibling or parent call out your words and definitions, making puzzle cards, or any other method.
Here is a quick link to Mr. Morgan’s spelling page. However, practice the steps above in case you ever lose the quick link.
Reading- Read the attached BIOGRAPHY article and answer the questions. Return finished on Friday.
Language- This week, we will continue to learn about more complex adjectives. Many people confuse the words less and fewer. Here's how you can tell which word to use:
1. If you can count the objects, use the word fewer.
2. If the objects are not countable, use the word less.
Complete the attached activity by Friday.
Math- This week we are looking at place value and building a variety of number sentences. Math homework this week consist of two activities:
Science- The students will use the data they collected for last week’s homework. This data was gathered from the five adults they asked, “What is the chore you dislike the most?” and “What part of the chore do you dislike the most?” Students will think of an invention that will make that chore easier. It can be a simple invention. Some examples from the past are: A broom stick with a tennis ball on the end to erase scuff marks or clips for socks to stay together in the washer and dryer. Students will begin construction with parent guidance and have three weeks to complete the project. The invention is not due until October 3rd. This will be our “Invention Convention”. Save the date for October 3rd at 12:10. The invention can be life-size or a scale model. I love the family getting involved in some of our projects, so please feel free to assist your child with this project. Just encourage him/her to come up with the problem solving aspects of the project by asking him/her questions. Example: “How could we get this piece to fit into this piece?”
Social Studies: The Census Bureau has defined the Northeast region as comprising nine states: the New England states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont; and the Mid-Atlantic states of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. This definition has been essentially unchanged since 1880. We will begin our study of the regions of the United States of America beginning with this region. Complete the map activities using the student atlas provided to you for five of the nine states. You may also use electronic resources for your research.
Reading Bingo Sheet- The bingo sheet sent home last week is due on our first “Fun Friday”...October 3rd. You only have to complete one row. It can be diagonal, horizontal, or vertical. You will receive a prize for a completed form as long as it has your parent/guardian’s signature on it. If you lost the form, you may click on the link on the MMC website. Get started this week if you haven’t already. Enjoy a great book of your choice!!
If you have any questions about your homework, please email me:
With Highest Respect,