The month of September was a busy one for the seventy-two students at Sandwich Central School. All grade levels completed the NWEA MAP assessment in reading and mathematics. These online assessments were delivered using student Chromebooks which streamlined the process and minimized interruptions. Students also started using their Chromebooks in grades two through six to access online learning material from sites such as Learning A-Z, Dreambox, Manga High, Middlebury Interactive and/or Google Classroom. Having technology that is up to date and well taken care of makes a huge difference in the student experience.
Outside of the traditional classroom, students in Upper Multiage and Grade Six continued the decade long tradition of visiting the Cold River with the Green Mountain Conservation Group. While at the river, students collected data using a variety of measurement tools and sensors such as pH, temperature and flowrate. They also used kick nets to collect macroinvertebrates and then sorted them by sensitivity. Mr. Chapman has been organizing this real life research with the help of GMCG for over ten years. They use the data to measure the health of the river and how it contributes to the Ossipee Watershed. This year, Mrs. Hoag and Mr. Chapman made a change to their program. Instead of preparing the students for their work in the river themselves, they charged the sixth graders with that responsibility. The change in leadership was a positive experience, and is a great example of higher level skill application.
Reading, Writing: The children have enjoyed working on their project for the Sandwich Fair. They selected and created one of their favorite characters from our Literature Circles author study of Mo Willems and four of his books. They added a speech bubble to their character. We have added a few new words to our Word Wall. These words are great for your child to practice at home too: see, no, go, and, the.
ELA: Students in Primary and Middle multiage have been enjoying a variety of language arts activities with their classmates and teachers. Through fiction and non-fiction literature they have been learning about visualization, author's purpose, and have also been involved with some grammar and phonemic activities. During each class session, students spent time both reading and writing. Discussing what they have read is also a major focus.
ELA: Students in Primary and Middle multiage have been enjoying a variety of language arts activities with their classmates and teachers. Through fiction and non-fiction literature they have been learning about visualization, author's purpose, phonics, and have also been involved with some grammar activities. During each class session, students spent time both reading and writing. Discussing what they have read is also a major focus. In Middle Multiage this week the children were also introduced to Nature Journals and we continue our read aloud of Roald Dahl’s The B.F.G.
Science: Middle multiage students continue to work with forces and motion in science class. They were introduced to making scientific predictions and learned about scientific trials through one of our recent scientific investigations. Students measured the distance that a paperclip was attracted to one round magnet and then to three round magnets.
The weeks continue to fly by in Upper Multiage! We have started to create our portfolios, and are gearing up for our Parent/Student/Teacher conferences. If you haven’t signed up for a conference yet, please contact me ASAP, time slots have quickly filled up. After your child shares his/her portfolio, we will be discussing some goals for your child. My hope is to focus our goal setting conversation around our district’s personal competencies (which are new this year) and academic subjects. We will also be discussing how your child will show evidence of his/her nightly reading routine, and other home learning opportunities.
Reading: All our reading groups are under way, and each group is enjoying their own book.
Language Arts: Last week the Grade Six students finished reading Lloyd Alexander’s book Time Cat. We really enjoyed this fascinating book, as it provided us with a glimpse into many of the ancient cultures we will study this year while simultaneously teaching a number of valuable life lessons. The unit culminated with students completing a Time Cat related project of their choice. Students chose a variety of ways to show what they learned from this novel, including poems, artwork, and writing alternative endings for the book. If you have a moment, check out the display they put together in the hallway.
This week we began reading Egyptian myths. We read one myth, Ra and his Children, together as a class, and used the short story to review components of plot, conflict, and point of view.