Fremantle Excursion

What a wonderful day Room 38 had on Friday, when on our Excursion to Samson House and a walking tour of Fremantle. The sun was shining and the children were awesome… we all had a great day out!

The Room 38 students were amazing, both at Samson House and when walking around Fremantle. I was so impressed with their listening and questioning, especially when at Samson House. In every room and around every corner, the children were spotting artefacts we had already looked at in class and asking and answering questions based on their prior learning and their observations on the day.

I could not have been more proud of every member of Room 38. Thank you for a super day and well done 🙂

A special thank you also goes to our parent helpers on the day, without whom we would not have been able to go. Dianne, Dorcas, Lisa and Nicola, you are Room 38 superstars also 🙂

Here are just a few of the happy photos taken on the day…

 

Outdoor Learning

In Room 38, we like to take our learning outside as often as possible. Learning outdoors gives the children increased opportunities for movement and fresh air, outdoor learning can take on different forms and can open up new doors to problem solving and collaboration and the ‘change of scenery’ and space offered by outdoor learning can bring about an increase in productivity and enjoyment for the students.

Therefore, when we were informed that last Thursday was Outdoor Classroom Day we didn’t need too much encouragement! We have been working on a Healthy Lifestyle eBook as part of our Health Curriculum and loved taking our learning outdoors, to add some finishing touches to some fantastic eBooks.

An Exciting Delivery!

There was an interesting package waiting for the children when they came into the classroom this morning! At once the students wanted to know what was inside…

Before we opened the parcel, we asked questions about what we thought it could be and why it had been sent to us. This was a great opportunity to talk about what makes a quality question. We discussed the difference between closed and open questions and why open questions give us the most information.

We then opened the parcel and realised we had been sent a rare and unusual Rainbow Dragon Egg!

The children then completed a great P4C, (Philosophy For Children) lesson, where they worked together in groups to ask questions regarding the Rainbow Dragon and its egg. The children were asked to think of quality questions, (ones that were open, would give them the most information and would help them if they were writing an information text on the Rainbow Dragon).

The next stage of the lesson required huge amounts of teamwork, problem solving, cooperation, compromise and reasoning. They had to decide on one question from their collection of questions, the one that they thought was the best question. The whole group needed to agree and they needed to be able to explain to the class their choice. I gave the groups 7 minutes to come to their decision and was highly impressed when all groups had chosen their Key Question with two minutes to spare. The explaining and reasoning on display was of a very high quality indeed 🙂

The 5 Key Questions that were chosen were:

When is it going to hatch? How long will it live? Is there only 1 in the world? What will it eat? and Does it have a family?

The final stage of the lesson involved the class voting for their Number One question out of the 5 group questions. This was done by ‘Blind Vote’.

I personally thought all 5 questions were quality questions and deserved the final vote. The class voted for their Key Question to be: How long will it live?

There then followed a very good discussion linked to this question, where we talked about why we thought this was an important question. It also lead onto a number of different questions also being asked. A favourite question was: What if the dragon hatches, what mischief could it get up to? The children really let their imagination run wild with this one!

The Learning Intention for the lesson was “I can ask quality questions that drive my learning”  and the children certainly achieved the Success Criteria. They displayed a knowledge of the difference between open and closed questions and they used one question to lead onto others.

The children were also practising the Aubin Grove Learner Quality of… “I am a thinker”.

The most positive part of today’s lesson was the enthusiasm and imagination the students displayed when asking their questions and having their discussions in the groups. We have certainly had a positive start to our new writing focus of Information Texts. 🙂

Fractions

In Year 2 children are taught to read, write, make and use fractions. The Australian Curriculum states that in Year 2 children should “Recognise and interpret common uses of halves, quarters and eighths of shapes and collections”.

This week we have begun to explore what a fraction is and the names we give to fractions of whole shapes and of collections. The children are learning what a Numerator and a Denominator is, also what each part of a written fraction stands for.

Today we had lots of fun making and naming fractions, using a variety of apparatus in the classroom.

 

Term 2 English

The reading and writing focus for Term 2 was Persuasive Texts. The children worked very hard to learn about and apply the features of persuasive texts in their writing. I was very impressed with how well the children understood and used features such as high modality, emotive language and rhetorical questions in their writing, as well as writing some very entertaining and persuasive pieces.

The final project for this unit of work was to design their own superhero and write a persuasive text to explain why their superhero is the best. Please come and have a look at their imaginative creations and wonderful persuasive texts hanging in Room 38 this week.

                       

Volume and Visualising in Maths

When working out the volume of 3D shapes built out of cubes, Room 38 used this great online resource. The usecubes website helped us to visualise the whole model. Therefore we were able to built the exact model ourselves and know how many cubes we would need.

We needed to visualise the cubes we couldn’t actually see around the back or underneath and not forget to include these in our final total.

Students worked in pairs to build models out of cubes for their partners to calculate, without counting up every cube.

This website was a great tool for supporting us in our understanding of volume and how to count the cubes we couldn’t see. It is also a fun website to allow children to create their own models using the virtual cubes.

Follow the link if you would like to have a go at home:

https://usecubes.com/

  

Maths Dictionary for Kids

This term in Mathematics, Room 38 have used the online Maths Dictionary for Kids to support us with our learning around different mathematical terms. Earlier in the term, we were focusing on measurement of length. This week we are using it to help us learn about shape.

Whatever the area of maths, it is covered on this helpful website. The children enjoy researching about new vocabulary, finding out what a shape is called, and watching the visual demonstrations, to further develop their understanding around the topic.

Please follow the link to use the Maths Dictionary at home, to help answer any of those maths questions that may arise. Or to simply encourage your child’s inquisitiveness around the subject of maths.

http://www.amathsdictionaryforkids.com/

Put a smile on your mind

Room 38 enjoyed practising mindfulness meditation today.

Mindfulness helps you to focus on the present and to acknowledge and observe your thoughts and feelings. It is a good way to help you calm down if you are agitated or excited as well as being a wonderful way to destress and alleviate frustration.

Many parents have used mindfulness meditation as part of the bedtime routine, to encourage a relaxed bedtime and a peaceful night’s sleep for their children. In class we use it to help children calm down after a recess or lunch break. It is also a good skill for the students to develop, one which they can call upon any time they feel anxious or frustrated.

If you wish to try this at home,  follow the link to the Smiling Mind website, where you can register to follow a number of different meditation programs according to age and need. There is also an app available to download for the iPad.

https://smilingmind.com.au/

Happy Meditating 🙂

I am a communicator

As part of the whole school focus on Visible Learning and following on from Room 38’s learning in Term 1 about having a Growth Mindset and what qualities make a good learner, we have been looking closely at the Learner Quality “I am a Communicator”.

  • Good learners are able to talk confidently about their learning. They can articulate what progress they have made, where they are at with their learning and where they need to go next.
  • They seek, give and act upon feedback. In class we seek feedback from our critical friends as well as the teacher. Feedback is most useful when it is linked to the learning intention and success criteria, and it is specific.
  • Good learners collaborate with others. For example they support each other when they feel they are in “The Pit”. They acknowledge the importance of being able to teach a peer a new concept in consolidating their own learning.

In Room 38 we discussed what kind of conversations we would be having with each other if we were displaying this Learner Quality. We then worked together in small groups to write and perform short scenes to demonstrate what these conversations may look like in our classroom.

 

Please help your child to practise communicating their learning by asking them questions such as:

  • What were you learning about today?
  • Do you feel you made progress today?
  • How did you know you were being successful?
  • Did you find anything difficult today and what did you try to get out of “The Pit”?
  • What are your learning goals at the moment?

Problem Solving in Maths

The children will often use the Topmarks website to support them in their Maths learning.

Here Yuvraj, Hannah and Jordan are working together to make sure that every line adds up to a given total. As they complete each level they are practising their problem solving skills, such as: working systematically and reasoning/explaining their thinking to others.

Follow the link to play this and other quality maths learning games at home.

http://www.primarygames.co.uk/pg2/powerlines/powerlines1.html