Saturday, November 28, 2009

Friday Fun - 27/11/09

You can imagine my relief to have come to the end of writing reports this week. I'm not sure why I find it such a challenge. I guess because I want to get each comment "right". I have enjoyed teaching all of my students and value each one of them as individuals, and it can be difficult to communicate that in a report. There are set protocols for how these should look, and I find myself spending about half an hour per child, per report.

I'm very aware that the year is drawing to an end, and am trying to make the most of all the last moments.

Fun This Week

Through all the assessment and report writing, I discovered that some of my students have 'forgotten' some of the spelling patterns they 'knew' earlier in the year. I started to think more about this, and wondered whether it might be that they have just been guessing the correct spelling patterns each time, coming up with the right one sometimes, but not other times. I felt the need for more explicit instruction about base words, and how to correctly add prefixes and suffixes.
As a result, this week I provided a base word and together we made adaptations using a range of prefixes and suffixes. We considered how the base word changed as these additions were made. I'm going to continue this for the rest of the term in an attempt to help students make these connections in their spelling. I am hoping that students will begin to think more about the base words as they write, using this information to assist with spelling rather than relying on 'sounding out' alone.

On Thursday we had a Cricket Clinic at the school. Students participated in some games and drills to practise cricket skills such as striking a ball, throwing and catching. They had a lot of fun and enjoyed the 'prizes' we were given to share out.

Kindergarten Buddies
On Friday I invited students from Kindergarten to come and join my class as their teacher was providing orientation to Preschoolers who will be Kindergarten students next year.
I set up a range of activities and put students in buddy groups. They rotated through the activities, spending about 10 minutes at each. The Year 4 students did a marvelous job of being caring tutors and the Kindies had a ball meeting one of the big kids and trying out some new activities with support.
Activities included:
Writing in Microsoft Word and adding Clipart

Adding to a theme poster - jungle, theme park or underwater world

Maths games

Looking at fibres through a microscope

Reading together

This week we made star advent calendars to count down the days until Christmas. The star was a geometrical pattern and we made colourful links - one for each of the days until Christmas. Children take off one link each day as they count down to Christmas.

For more fun from the past two weeks, remember to check out Space Spectacular #4.

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