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Friday, February 5, 2010

Classroom Summary for February 1-5

The Museum of Science rocks! We had a lot of fun today and thanks to our chaperones (Mrs. Lane, Mr. Nicoloro and Mr. Patel) we were safe and secure walking around the museum exploring whatever we felt like seeing. At 10:45 we all met at the Mugar Omni Theater to see the IMAX presentation of Antarctica which was SPECTACULAR! Miss Varrell was very excited that no one was ill and very proud that the behavior of students from Room 211 was Pine Glen Perfect. Here are some photos below of things that we saw. Most of the pictures include Keith, Dilan, Rachel and Matt since they were in Miss Varrell's group during the field trip.

Here we explored some fossils of dinosaurs...

(technical difficulties with videos-check back later)

Not only did we end the week in an exciting way, we also had an exciting start to the week! We did a science experiment with water that demonstrated several science facts:

~water freezes at 0 degrees Celsius and becomes a solid
~water is a liquid at any temperature between 0 and 99 degrees Celsius
~water becomes a vapor at 100 degrees Celsius
~SALT water freezes at a colder temperature than 0 degrees Celsius (below zero)
~SALT water boils at a hotter temperature than 100 degrees Celsius (above 100)

After doing this experiment, we came to the conclusion that the reason why swimming in the ocean is so much cooler than swimming in a lake or pond is because the ocean holds a colder temperature longer because it's salty and big (it makes up 2/3 of the earth's surface), and those two things combined make it very difficult for the sun to heat up the ocean fast enough for us to be comfortable swimming in it until at July or August. And then, when it IS warmed up, it helps to keep all the towns that are NEXT to the ocean warmer in the fall than towns that live far away from the ocean. Wow. It's amazing what you can learn from a chunk of snow, salt, a beaker, heat, a thermometer and a clamp!

Since the rest of this week wasn't nearly as exciting as the beginning and end, we'll just say that the rest of the week went as planned. Miss Varrell began making her reading assessments with children and we continued to work on practicing different strategies for solving story problems in math. This week the concentration was on missing addend (algebraic!) equations. Here is a sample of what one might have looked like:

#1 Sally collected 16 rocks at the beach. Franco collected some more. Now they have 27 rocks in their collection. How many did Franco collect?

Visualized equation: 16 + ? = 27

Here is another:

#2 Sally and Franco had 27 rocks that they collected at the beach. Sally threw some back into the ocean. Franco counted what was left and got 16. How many did Sally throw into the ocean?

Visualized equation: 27 - ? = 16

We looked at using TTEA (Turn the Equation Around) as another strategy to solve the problem. In problem #1 if we used TTEA the equation might look like 27 - 16 = ? and in problem #2 the equation might look like 27 - 16 = ? or 16 + ? = 27

FYI: Thank you again to Mrs. Lane, Mr. Nicoloro and Mr. Patel for keeping us safe on our field trip and also to the Papasodoro family for volunteering to take Jake over the upcoming February break. Just as a reminder, book orders are due next Friday which will also be our Valentine/100th Day Party (very small and low key). Thank you to all the parents who generously have agreed to donate all the goodies and supplies for our party and a big thank you to our room parents for organizing it all! Yay!

Have a great weekend and look for more water experiment photos next week. Unfortunately, the photos are on Miss Varrell's computer at school where she does NOT reside at the weekends! :)

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