IIIIIINNNTERJECTION! IS A WORD THAT! SHOWS EMOTION! AND STRROOOONG FEEELIIIING!
This song about interjections (words like "woah!" "yikes!" "ouch!" etc.) is just one of the many songs that we are learning to help us remember the parts of speech. (This song happens to be a class favorite, as I often stand on a chair and yell to add effect. ) Parts of speech can be tricky, as there are so many of them, and they each have different functions and irregularities. Because of this, we will be studying them all year long.
Jingles are one handy way to memorize the parts of speech. However, it is not always easy to decide what function a word is using in a particular sentence. For example, the word "fish" can be a noun or a verb, depending on the context. To make labeling parts of speech a little easier, we use a questioning method. The idea is that if you start by finding the nouns in a sentence, the other parts of speech can be found by asking certain questions in a certain order. Consider the following example:
The fidgety fish quickly replied.
Identify people, places, and things: fish = noun
What kind of fish? fidgety = adjective
Which fish? the = adjective
What did the fish do? replied = verg
How did he reply? quickly = adverb
If your child ever comes home with a grammar assignment or an upcoming grammar test to study for, please help them ask the right questions in the right order. The picture below is your guide.
As you know, each week we put the "spotlight" on a different student. This is a chance for us to celebrate the individuals in our class and to learn more about them. This week, the spotlight was on Aviya. Each day she brought something from home to share about. On Wednesday, she brought someone! We were lucky enough to have Aviya's father, Mr. Tony, come share his musical talent with us. Watch the short video clips below to see what we learned!
Learning more about each other's families enriches our classroom community. Please contact me if you have a talent, tradition, or career to share!
Our unit on civics and government continues to progress, and we are now studying presidential elections. This week we learned who The Constitution states is qualified to run for president, and what unwritten qualities people look for in a president. Studying real campaign posters helped us determine that the people want a president who is trustworthy, energetic, focused, and kind. The students have also been reading a novel about a character who is campaigning for office (Bad Kitty for President, The Kid Who Ran for President, or NEATE to the Rescue).
We've also learned about the two main political parties, and the basic beliefs of each. Democratic posters taught us the symbol of the donkey, the party color of blue, and the main beliefs of social responsibility, equality, and a powerful government. Republican posters taught us the symbol of the elephant, the party color red, and the core beliefs of personal responsibility, limited government, and lower taxes. With their new understanding of candidates, campaigns, and parties, the students created their own campaign posters for a real or fictional candidate.
All of this background knowledge was put to the test today during our mock election! The campaign posters were hung in 2 categories, Democrat and Republican. We held a primary election to choose our 2 presidential candidates.
After the 2 presidential candidates were chosen, it was time for the general election. But FIRST, we had to learn about electoral colleges. The students cast their vote, and were then assigned a state to represent. This meant that their ballot would be worth the amount of electoral votes that their state gets. This added an element of suspense and surprise as I added up the votes.
As each ballot came in, I represented the votes in various ways, using tallies, tens and ones, or whole numbers. The students were then tasked to find the total for each candidate.
Even with the random voting and assignment of states, the election came down to just TWO VOTES! I'm sure you can imagine the excitement as democratic candidate Emma Cohen was announced the winner. Republican candidate Nate James gave a graceful concession speech, and President Cohen accepted the presidency equally as gracefully, promising to make our country proud.
Our focus in math this week is using a ruler to measure objects to the half- and quarter-inch. Today, we made connections to halves and quarters in a dollar and on the clock. There are four quarters and two halves in a dollar, on the clock, and in an inch! Our challenge this week will be to not only learn to measure using a ruler, but also to build a conceptual understanding of the relationships of halves and quarters to one another and to the whole. When you're at home or out and about, seizing any opportunity to describe a set as a half and a quarter can help solidify this understanding. Today's challenge was to find any object in the room that measures to a half- or quarter-inch. Apparently my face is 7.5 inches long!
Today I'll be writing about a new activity that has been added to our Independent Study area. To read a previous post explaining more about Independent Study, go here.
Every couple of weeks, I receive a classroom set of Scholastic News Magazine. These magazines contain interesting current-event articles with vibrant pictures that are perfect for 3rd graders. At the end of each magazine are comprehension questions about the articles. Unfortunately, the content of the magazine does not always fit with our topic of study, and I would have difficulty finding the time to fit in something extra. Instead, I have added them to the independent study area.
What's amazing is how eager these kids have been to dive into Scholastic Magazine when they finish their work early! Even students who claim not to enjoy reading wasted no time reading, making meaning, and discussing the articles. Without any prompting from me, they even love to complete the comprehension questions at the end! I am so inspired by their desire to learn.
Ahhh jingles. Those lovely little tunes that go round and round in your head and stay with you looong after you need them. Some jingles we never needed in the first place. I can recite the address and hours of the Shane Co. (located at 96th street and Hague Rd, just east of I-65...I could go on.) -- a place where I have never visited. If you are ever in a carpet emergency, you want me by your side! The Empire Today phone number is forever seared into my brain.
Teachers have been taking this brain-devouring aspect of jingles and using it to their advantage for decades -- perhaps even centuries. Today, we began memorizing the Shurley Method Parts of Speech Jingles. I learned these short songs and chants when I was in elementary school, and their power has withstood the test of time. These jingles define each part of speech, give examples, and remind us what questions to ask to find each part of speech. You can listen to them here:
After singing and chanting a few rounds of the noun, verb, adjective, and adverb chants, we played a sentence creation game. A group of 4 came to the front, each standing in front of either a adj, noun, verb, and adverb card (in that order). One at a time, the students gave a word, and a complete sentence was made. One of the most popular sentences from this activity was "Weird frogs vomit loudly." Adjective, Noun, Verb, Adverb. Get it? Now imagine Alexis demonstrating this sentence by hopping and saying "Rib-blleeeeggghhhh." They had fun. After one sentence was made, the group of 4 would rotate and make another sentence until each person had a chance to "be" each part of speech.
What a lovely time we had at Holliday park yesterday! We began with an exciting scavenger hunt. Grades 1-3 were split into 6 teams, each led by a teacher. The teams were given a set of clues, each relating to Sukkot. They had to figure out the clue, then take a picture of something in the park representing the answer. For example, "A sukkah must have at least _____ walls and no roof. Find a structure that could be used as a Sukkah." Some members in my group thought 2 1/2 was the right amount of walls, some thought 3. I am no help in these matters, but we figured a 3-walled structure would be easier to find.
Here they are in their 3-walled structure!
After the scavenger hunt, we took a long hike down to the river. The weather had the perfect autumn chill, and there was plenty to see on the way.
After some free time on the playground, we headed back to school.
One of these days we will take a *good* class picture...
Little people, big minds.