Monday, September 30, 2013

Marty McGuire--Global Read Aloud--Day 1!

We were so excited to get started reading Marty McGuire by Kate Messner today! 

Last week we had done some predicting about the book with our buddy classes and couldn't wait to finally dive into this book.

Today we listened online to chapter 1 and were introduced to some of the characters.  We met, Marty, Veronica Grace, Annie and Mrs. Aloi.  We also spent some time talking about what we learned about the characters from the first chapter.  Here are our thoughts...
Many of our classmates have already decided that they don't like Veronica Grace very much because she is so bossy.  If you are also reading this story, we'd love to hear what you think about the characters too!
Happy reading!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Celebrating Alberta Culture Days

Our school was a host site for Alberta Culture Days and we had an incredible day learning about the arts and culture.

We started our day going through the Wonderopolis that looked at "Who invented the hula hoop?".  That was to get us prepared for our first presentation by Teddy Anderson, who is a First Nations hoop dancer.  Not only did he amaze us with his hoop dancing but his message of kindness, love, unity and that we are all part of one family was very powerful for all of us. 
(The lighting in our gym isn't great for taking pictures, so they aren't great, but you'll at least get a bit of an idea of what we saw in this performance.)

 He was able to use 30 hoops at once!

One of our classmates got to help Teddy!

Our next presentation involved a Mexican woman sharing her culture with us.  She showed us pictures of Mexico and things that are important to Mexican culture.  We saw pictures of Mexican beaches, food, fiestas (celebrations) and families. 
She also told us about some of the games that the children in Mexico play.  Did you know that they play rock, paper, scissors there too?  Here are some some pictures of us playing it--except we had to say the words in Spanish!  Rock is "piedra", paper is "papel" and scissors is "tijeras".

We also tried the game we know as "telephone". 
In the afternoon, artists from our community came into our school to show their art.  Many of them were working on different pieces and we got to watch them and ask questions.  It was so interesting to see all of the different kinds of art--including cartooning, blacksmith, origami, drawing, painting, and photography.


After such an awesome day, we took some time to talk about our favourite parts.  Click here to see the padlet wall we created to share our thoughts.

We were wondering...

Have you seen Teddy Anderson perform?
How do you celebrate arts and culture?

Friday, September 20, 2013

Kicking Off Daily 5 with Read to Self

A big part of our reading work is done through Daily 5.  From the very first day, our class has been doing "Read to Self".  Reading to ourselves is very important because it helps us to become better readers.  We always talk about what Read to Self should sound, look and feel like.  We made an "I-chart" to help us remember our important job.

During Read to Self we...
~ get started right away
~ choose a good place to sit (away from distractions)
~ take our book boxes that have "good fit books"
~ stay in one spot
~ read quietly
~ read the whole time

On the first day of school, we did Read to Self for 3 minutes.  Was that ever a short time!  Since then, we have been working on increasing our stamina.  Every day this week, we tried to see how long we could go before someone broke our stamina.  This chart shows how we have done over the past 2 weeks--isn't our growth impressive?

When we do Read to Self, we can choose where to sit.  Some people choose some pretty interesting places and positions.  Here you can see some of our classmates while they are doing Read to Self.

We were wondering...

Have you heard about Daily 5 and Read to Self before?
How long is your reading stamina?

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Building our Classroom Community

It's been a busy couple of weeks as our class works toward building our learning community.  We've done lots of "getting to know you" activities and working with partners.

In one of our activities, the students were put into groups of 4 or 5, given two pieces of tin foil and 20 pipe cleaners and told to "work together to create something".  Everyone had fun sharing ideas (and frustrations!) and working together to create a masterpiece.  In these pictures you can see what each group's final creation looked like.  Aren't they impressive?!?

We also learned a little bit about voting, elections and candidates when we got to choose our class mascot.  First, our teacher read us "Vote for Duck" by Doreen Cronin.

Then the candidates for our class mascot were introduced.  There was a walrus, polar bear, wolf, raven and caribou to choose from.  After listening to their speeches, it was time to go to the polling station.  We even had official Elections Canada materials to use.  Here you can see one of our classmates finishing his voting duty.


And we were so excited when our teacher counted up the votes...Sam the wolf won!  We also chose a class name and we will now be known as the "Party Wolves".  We now end every day with three cheers for the Party Wolves and a big howl!  

We were wondering...

What do you think of our tin foil and pipecleaner creations?
What animal would you have chosen as a mascot?  Why?

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The New "Braybrook Bunch"

It was wonderful to meet the newest "Braybrook Bunch" today!  As you can tell, they can be serious and cute...
...or a bunch of monkeys!

We had a wonderful day of getting to know each other, sharing stories and starting to learn the routines of grade 3.  One of the activities we did, had each child contribute to a poster that had a question or fill-in-the-blank sentence.  There were definitely some interesting responses!

I also shared the "What Inspires You?" Wonderopolis post with the students.  I encouraged them to be curious and ask questions.  We've started a Wonder Wall in our classroom where students can post things that they are wondering about.

After a busy first day, I asked each student what their favorite part of the day.  Click here to see what they had to say.

And now onto day 2!

We were wondering...

What was the best thing you remember about grade three?
What inspires you?
What do you "wonder" about?