Independent Reading

This week, we launched independent reading in our classroom.

We spend part of our daily Reader’s Workshop sessions doing independent reading, to practise strategies and work on our individual goals.

During independent reading, we aim to:

  • begin reading quickly and efficiently
  • read with stamina for the duration of the session
  • choose a good place to read and stay in that place
  • read silently.

 

After independent reading, we catch up with our “Reading Buddy” to discuss our books. This is a great opportunity to share our reflections, ask each other questions and learn about other books and authors from our peers.

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What are you currently reading during independent reading?

Who is your favourite author?

What reading strategy would you like to focus on this term?

Do you have an all-time favourite book?

The 2017 School Year Begins!

Today is the first day of the 2017 school year at Barwon Heads Primary School in Victoria, Australia.

After nearly six weeks of summer holidays, Miss Jordan is excited to begin the school year with her new students in her new grade 3/4C.

We have a lot to look forward to this year including our 1:1 iPad program, Bike Ed, our camps and many, many fun learning experiences!

All of the students in 3/4C will learn a lot in 2017 and enjoy being part of a wonderful classroom community. This blog will be a big part of our program and it is a great way for students, parents and families to reflect and share in our learning experiences.

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Miss Jordan is looking forward to finding out what the 3/4C students got up to during the holidays. Miss Jordan had a great break. She spent time with friends and family, and enjoyed having the chance to relax!

Some of Miss Jordan’s highlights included hosting family Christmas at her new house, celebrating her niece’s first birthday, going to the Australian Open tennis, organising her new house and going to the movies several times.

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Miss Jordan spent time at school during the holidays getting organised and preparing the classroom for the 3/4C students. Next week, some classroom photos will be posted so stay tuned!

Leave a comment and tell us about your holidays.

What are you looking forward to in 2017?

 

Our School Year Comes To An End. Merry Christmas!

To celebrate the end of a fantastic year, today we had a special picnic at the beach.

We walked to the local beach park at 11.30am and enjoyed some games and activities in the park and on the sand. The students enjoyed making sand castles and playing cricket on the sand. The playground was also very popular.

Students brought their lunch and enjoyed eating and socialising in the picturesque environment. Barwon Heads is a beautiful part of the country and we are very lucky to have the beach so close to our school!

Here are some photos of the students enjoying their special outing.

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Tomorrow is the very last day of the school year. We have had a fantastic year and Miss Jordan is very proud of all of the 3/4C students.

This is a photo from the very start of the school year…

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And this photo was taken just last week…

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The slideshow below features a photo of each of the students from the very start of the year and the very end of the year. It is interesting to observe how each student has changed!

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Miss Jordan looks forward to welcoming her new grade three and four students in 2017. Hopefully the 2016 students continue to keep in touch and comment on our blog!

The 3/4C students, along with Miss Jordan, wish everyone a very Merry Christmas a wonderful holiday break!

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What did you enjoy about the picnic?

What has been your school highlight this year?

What are you most proud of?

What are you looking forward to doing on the holidays?

Letters to Miss Jordan’s 2017 Students

Today, all students participated in a two hour transition session with their new class and teacher for 2017.

Next year, Miss Jordan is teaching grade three and four again. The current 3/4C students wrote letters to Miss Jordan’s class of 2017, sharing some of their highlights from the year. The letters are below for Miss Jordan’s new students to read!

Enlarge the slideshow above to view the letters clearly.

Miss Jordan would love to receive some blog comments from her new students!

What were your school highlights in 2016?

What are you looking forward to in 2017?

Do you have a learning goal for next year?

Interesting Idioms!

We have been learning about idioms in literacy this week.

Idioms are phrases that have a different meaning to the actual words in the phrase. For example, if something is described as “a piece of cake”, it is an idiom. It means that something is really easy, it doesn’t actually have anything at all to do with cake.

In class, we discussed the literal and the inferred meaning of lots of idioms.

  • The literal meaning is when you imagine the words in the idiom as being the real meaning.
  • The inferred meaning is what the phrase actually means when used in conversation.

Example: To “spill the beans”.

You might imagine someone tipping over a bowl of beans BUT this idiom really means that you have revealed some secret information.

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For this learning task, each student chose an idiom they liked. They had to draw the literal and the inferred meaning for their idiom. Check out our work and see if you can identify the idioms!

Learning about idioms is important because authors often use idioms in books, so we need to understand them in order to understand what we read. Since learning about idioms, we also realised that we use idioms all the time in our conversations!

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Did you guess any of our idioms?

Do you have a favourite idiom?

What idioms do you often hear people say?

Power Sentences

This week, we have focussed on writing “power sentences”.

A power sentence contains descriptive information to help the reader make a picture in their mind. Adding interesting nouns, adjectives, verbs and adverbs really brings a sentence to life. In class, we had some great discussions about how to add impact to a sentence.

We started with this simple sentence: The boy went up the stairs.

We all agreed that this sentence doesn’t have any impact and provides very little information. By adding some interesting words to create different emotions and feelings, the entire meaning of the sentence changes.

Here are the “power sentences” we came up with!

power-sentences

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Here are some other simple sentences. Try to rewrite them by adding interesting vocabulary and submit your “power sentences” in your comment!

I knocked on the door.

Bob swam in the pool.

The girl ate her apple.

The dog ran away.

Sam hit the cricket ball.

Positive Education – Self Belief

Our character strength focus for this week is SELF BELIEF.

Self belief is about having an inner confidence that allows people to understand their purpose and realise that their beliefs shape their actions.  Self-esteem is similar to self belief. This is how we value ourselves; it is how we perceive our value to the world and how valuable we think we are to others.

The clip below, titled The Lego Story, demonstrates self belief. As you watch, consider how the the characters display self belief. Enjoy!

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How is self belief demonstrated in The Lego Story?

When have you demonstrated self belief in your own life?

Camp Wilkin Adventures!

We have just had a fantastic three days at our

grade-4-camp

On Monday 31st October, we boarded the bus, full of excitement about what was ahead. We soon arrived at Camp Wilkin in Anglesea on the Great Ocean Road.

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Anglesea is a coastal town, with a population of about 3500. It is a very popular tourist destination, particularly in summer as there are beaches and other outdoor recreational activities to be enjoyed.

Here is the route we took from Barwon Heads to Anglesea.

BHPS to Camp Wilkin

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Everyone enjoyed staying in the camp cabins and meal times in the dining hall were lots of fun. There were many on-site activities at camp which provided fun and memorable experiences for all students.

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We had eight fun and challenging rotations to complete:

  • Rock climbing wall
  • Initiatives
  • Leap of Faith
  • Bike riding
  • Archery
  • Flying Fox
  • Low Ropes Course
  • Orienteering.

The Leap of Faith is a very popular activity at Camp Wilkin and is a highlight for most students! The Leap of Faith involves climbing up a 7.6 metre pole while harnessed, arriving at a small platform and jumping to reach a red buoy. It certainly gets the adrenaline pumping!


Some of our other activities included:

  • Night walk
  • Disco
  • Building sand castles at the beach
  • Basketball, volleyball and soccer games
  • Free time on the playground, trampoline and chess board
  • Playing in the games room
  • Observing the many kangaroos that frequent Camp Wilkin at all times of the day!

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Here is a video containing a selection of photos from Camp Wilkin. Enjoy!

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We had a wonderful time on camp and enjoyed all of the new experiences!

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A very BIG thank you to our terrific helpers, Mr Haslam, Miss Campbell, Miss King, Sheridan and Mel!

What did you enjoy most about our Anglesea camp?

What was your favourite rotation activity?

Did you succeed in overcoming any challenges while on camp?

Have you ever been on a school camp before?

If you could go on a school camp somewhere, where would you like to go?

 

Author Study

This week in Reader’s Workshop, we are doing an author study.

We have collected lots of picture books written by a variety of authors.

We are reading the picture books to study each author’s style, themes and key ideas.

The authors we are focussing on include:

  • Margaret Wild
  • Mem Fox
  • Anthony Browne
  • Jackie French
  • Nick Bland
  • Alison Lester
  • Jeannie Baker
  • Julia Donaldson
  • Graham Base
  • Pamela Allen
  • Colin Thompson
  • John Burmingham

Students have set up a Google Sheet on their iPads to record their observations about each picture book they read.

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What observations have you made during the author study so far?

Who is your favourite picture book author?

Do you have an all time favourite picture book?

All About Mass!

Yesterday we started a measurement unit in maths.

Our first lesson focused on mass. Mass is defined as the quantity of matter in an object. Mass is measured in grams and kilograms.

Our learning focus was:

  • I am learning how to estimate and record using grams and kilograms.

Our success criteria was:

  • I can make estimates about the mass of an object using grams and kilograms.
  • I can make conversions between grams and kilograms.

Students were presented with a variety of supermarket items. They had to estimate the mass of each item and record their estimations. We also had lots of weights in the classroom so students could make informed estimations.

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Today, we discovered the actual mass of each supermarket item. We compared our estimations and reflected on how close or distant our estimations were.

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How did you go with this estimating task?

What was challenging about this task?

How can you practise your estimating skills?

When do we estimate in real life?