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Friday, January 22, 2010

Classroom Summary January 19-22

Happy Friday! This week in class we worked hard on learning a new writing skill: topic sentences. We practiced writing them together and understanding how topic sentences look different from detail sentences. Next week we will work on practicing topic sentences independently. We learned a chant with hand signals to help us remember where you find a topic sentence: "A topic sentence (motion: tipping a top hat) is the first sentence (motion the number one) in a paragraph (motion hands together and moving apart to make wide armspan)." Ask us to show you!

We also continued to read about and learn some facts about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We know that he was a very important leader in American history. We thank Martin Luther King today as someone who helped people understand that unfair laws in America had to be changed. What made him even more special was that he was able to make that happen in a peaceful and nonviolent way. We salute Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the third Monday of every January.

In math this week we finished learning about number strings and began revisiting addition story problems. We reviewed different ways to "show your thinking": showing a numberline with detailed counting strategies, drawing pictures, using tally marks and of course our new skill, using number strings! We also counted the items in the estimating jar and used some of our guesses to practice using the greater than (>), less than ( < ) and equal to (=) symbols. We had a winner this week who guessed the EXACT number! Taylor guessed 99 hershey kisses and she was correct! Danny will be bringing in the estimating jar for us next week.

In science we continued to learn about the properties of water. We talked about the three states of matter using water as an example. We know that water as a liquid is how we usually see it when it comes out of our faucets at home. When it is in its gas form, it is called water vapor. You can't really see it, but it's most visible when you see steam rising from boiling water. As a solid, water takes the form of ice or snow or hail. We made posters for the first grade that help explain the three states of matter using water as an example. We will share them with the first grade classrooms next week!

In social studies we began learning about India. We read a nonfiction book called India that told us facts about where India is located and some of the important cities and cultural activities that are located there. We will continue to learn more over the next few weeks. We noticed some similarites between Brazil and India. Both Brazil and India produce coffee and sugar. We wondered if there are other countries that grow those same products. Miss Varrell tried to show some videos of India but she couldn't get her computer speakers to work. She'll try again next week!

FYI: Field trip permission slips went home this past Tuesday. Please understand that if you have not filled out a CORI form at the central office (located at the high school), you cannot attend field trips as a chaperone. If you need more information about CORI forms you can contact the Burlington Schools main number at 781-270-1800. Our first field trip will be to the Museum of Science on Friday, February 5. Chaperones will be notified next week via email.

Have a great weekend!

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