March Newsletter 3-5

Grade 3 - Unit five focuses on working with word problems.  We work quite a bit on reading and re-reading the word problems to look for keywords that indicate what operation may be needed.  We also work extensively on double checking our work to make sure the answer we arrive at answers the question in the problem.  The lessons offer students several ways to show their thinking to help make sense of the problems as they work through them.

Grade 4 - Students are working on fractions.  We are learning how to add and subtraction fractions and mixed numbers with like denominators.  In addition to this, we will also learn how to multiply fractions.

Grade 5-We are focusing on two areas in math this month: writing equations and solving word problems.  Working on multiplication and division facts at home, that aren’t yet secure would be huge help this unit.

We continue to work on nonfiction skills during our reading minilessons.  Students will learn about text structure (compare/contrast, problem/solution, chronological order, and cause/effect).  We will share mentor texts with them to model how authors use these strategies to make their writing easier to understand.

In addition to the whole group lessons, students will continue to participate in small group book clubs designed to fit their reading needs.

Some new book club groups will be introduced the week after Spring Break.  While some groups wrap up, there may be time for extra independent reading during the week prior to Spring Break.

Students are continuing to work on their informational writing.  They have their drafts done.  We are working on adding text features to our writing.  Students are enjoying adding in glossaries, headings, pictures, captions, and maps.  We are excited to publish our writing.

Science/Social Studies (Project Based Learning)
This month students worked on a fun Project Lead the Way unit (Energy Collisions).  In this unit, students were introduced to many fun apps that taught up about potential and kinetic energy.  We also got to use the VEX kits to assemble a simple vehicle.  First, we modeled the simple vehicle going down a ramp with an egg on it.  The egg fell off and broke.  Next, their task was to develop a vehicle restraint system to protect the egg from breaking.  It was great to see all the different ways students went about solving the problem.  They were great engineers!




3-5Nicole Ebert