Well, we finally made it to the last week of school!
Here is our final reporter entry for the 2005-2006 school year.

Reading- A few weeks ago in reading we had detectives come to our school. They taught us about their job to relate to our mystery unit. They taught us about cases they solved and some they are still working on. they took a piece of paper and passed it around the room so that everyone's hand touched it. Next one of the detectives put charcoal on the paper while the other talked to us about clues. Then the detective showed us the paper and we could see our fingerprints from the charcoal!

Writing- We were trying to keep this a secret, but since it's past Fathers Day now, we can tell! In writing, we've been working on the ABCs of Fatherhood. We made it into a wall hanging. Hope you enjoyed it, dads!

Math- The "What I Know Math Show" is very cool! People get into groups of 2 or 3 and pick a subject in math. Then each group makes a poster about that subject and a song to go with it. Then they come up into the front of the room and present their poster and song. It took us two days to finish the What I Know Math Show.

Science- In science, we made a Wisconsin Fast Plant growth book about the life cycle of a plant. It starts as a seed and then grows a stem and cotyledon from the seed. Then it grows true leaves, they get bigger and bigger. Then it grows flowers and seed pods when pollinated. The seed pods open and the plant dies, but the seeds start the process all over again.

Social Studies-   The ABCs of Montgomery was a fun thing the class did as a project. The class would find words that started with ABC and the rest of the letters in the alphabet, that had to do with the history of Montgomery. Then they would illustrate and color in our ABCs of Montgomery History books.

A few weeks ago, we had a Native American Feast! It was in the cafeteria with loads of food. There was corn bread, salmon, beef jerky, tomatoes, grapes, pumpkin pie, cherries, vegetables, and more! We had a story teller tell us a few stories about native american legends. It was a cool feast.

Other- We had Fun Day on Monday! First we started in the gym and played games with the parachute like making a cloud. Then we went on the blacktop and played Water Brigade and other games like jump rope and hula hoop contests. Then we went on the grass and played Jail Break and Tug of Peace. Then we had popsicles!

Reading- This week in Reading we had Mystery Centers. One center was the newspaper reporter. You have to write a newspaper report of the mystery that occurred in the book you read. Another center is creative writing. You have to write another ending to the story that you just read. A fun center is the computer center. You will go to Http://kids.mysterynet.com. Then you can solve “Kids Solve It”, “Mysteries By Kids”, and “Kids Chiller.” Another center is called Making Books. You make an ABC book about important events and other things. The center you have to do is art center where you make a book wheel. You first make a picture about the book and write some events about the book such as red herring, conclusion, clues, sleuths, etc... The last center is the reading center. You can read another mystery of your choice and you have to tell a summary of the book, list characters, and their roles, the mystery elements, and how they are shown in the story.

Writing- In writing we had a Poetry Café! For the Poetry Café, we served parents food. We gave them menus and when they were ready to order, we got their food and had to make change. Then we shared our poetry and told them about the poetry.

Math- For math we learned probability terms. We made other words for Sure, Unsure, and Not Going To Happen. We made a list of things that are sure are going to happen, not sure of things that are going to happen, and things that are definitely not going to happen.

Science- This week in science, we made bee sticks to pollinate our Wisconsin Fast Plants. Here is how we made them. 1.  We check off each item on the supply list to be sure we have everything. 2.  Turn the bee over and find the place where the legs are attached. 3.  Put a drop of glue on the end of a toothpick. 4.  Glue to the underside of the bee (where the legs attach). 5.  Let the glue dry. 6.  Push the bee stick into an upside down cup to store. 7.  Clean up. Now every morning when we observe and water we pollinate our plants by rubbing a bee on our plant and then someone else’s.

Social Studies-   This week in Social Studies, we made different crafts: Indian pouches, placemats, dream catchers, tapestries, and bracelets. To make the bracelets, we strung beads into a pattern and tied it. To make the placemats, we took a small piece of paper, a big piece of paper, glued small on top of big, and decorated. Then we laminated it and punched holes onto the sides. We strung yarn through the holes. Here is how we made our tapestries: You get a large piece of brown paper, oil pastels, and an assigned tribe. You illustrate the tribe onto the paper. Here is how you make the dream catchers:  You cut a piece of string 3 yards and 1 yard. You wrap the 3 yard piece around an embroidery loop while stringing beads. Then you cut the one yard into three pieces and tie them to the bottom of the hoop. Then you string beads onto those pieces and put a feather through the beads. Those were the Native American crafts.

Other- This week we threw a secret bridal shower/birthday for our teacher, Ms. Kunz. This morning Ms. Kunz was lured into the cafeteria by our vice principal asking her if we (the kids) could help set up for the assembly. (We really did have one!) The kids were the first ones to the cafeteria and when Ms. Kunz entered, we all said, “Happy Birthday!”. Then we sang “Going to the Chapel”. After that, we ate and gave Ms. Kunz her gifts.


Reading- In reading, we continued our study on mystery books. We finally met with our reading groups. We discussed the projects that we started (character chart, events web map, predictions) and talked about our opinions. Now only 1 more group has to meet. The rest of the groups are continuing their projects (which include listing characters and their roles, writing down important events in order, and making predictions about the next chapters/few pages).

Writing- In writing, we wrote a short writing prompt. We got a paper with a picture on it, and we put our name on the top. Then, we got a blank paper. On that, we wrote a short story about the picture, after we had done some prewriting. The picture showed a boy frowning at his dinner: alphabet soup. The story told how good we were at writing. Since the story was fairly short, we completed it in one day.

Also, in writing, we learned more types of poetry: dada, quatrains, limericks, and cinquains. To write dada, you need 10 verbs, 8 nouns, and some pronouns. Jumble them up, and pick them out one by one to get your poem.      In quatrains, there are special patterns: ABAB, ABCB, ABBA, and so on. All As rhyme with each other, and same with Bs and Cs.      To write a limerick, rhyme the first, second, and fifth line and give those lines 3 feet (a foot is 2 unstressed syllables and 1 stressed syllable after that). The third and fourth lines both rhyme and have 2 feet.      There are 2 ways to write cinquains, but this is the method that we learned: 1st line = title. 2nd line = 2 adjectives about title. 3rd line = 3 verbs that object in title would do. 4th line = 4 feelings that object in title would feel. 5th line = synonym for title.

Math- In math, we learned about volume. Capacity is a synonym for volume. Volume is the amount of “stuff” it takes to fill up an object. We explored volume by building rectangular prisms and putting cubic cm. into them. We also guessed which objects had more volume than others, and later, found the real answers. 

We also learned about weight in math, which tells how heavy something is. We made a list of U.S Customary and Metric measures of weight. Next, we studied different types of scales and listed what they could weigh. For example, you would weigh a whale on a platform scale. Finally, we guessed which objects weighed more than others, and then, discovered the truth.

Reading- This week in reading we had a week called Literacy Week! Literacy Week is a week that kids focus on reading and writing. The first thing we did was we wrote a diary of something that cannot move by itself. For example, a shell. The next day we read a chapter of a certain book and then had to illustrate a picture for that book. On the third day we did mad libs poetry. We had to fill in the blanks with an adjective, noun, adverb, and verb. We also played literacy games such as Apples to Apples and Outburst, and met a famous author named Brian Lies, who you will read about soon by Jason! (added to by Ms. Kunz)

Writing- This week in writing we learned a type of poetry called a haiku. A haiku is a form of a Japanese writing. The first line has 5 syllables, the second has 7 syllables, and the third line has 5 syllables. It is a very beautiful type of poetry. If a man liked a woman, he would write a haiku to her. If she liked him back, he would write a tanka back (another type of Japanese poetry).

Math- This week in math we had an exemplar. The problem was asking you if you had 45 M&Ms and 12 cookies, how could you divide up the M&Ms. Each cookie has no more than 5 M&Ms, but no less than 3. We had to find 5 combinations. At times, the problem was difficult. Everybody is getting better at exemplars. (A reminder, an exemplar is a word problem that children not only need to solve, but also have to explain the steps they took to solve it- Ms. Kunz)

Science- This week in science we took our plants and transplanted them. We took our plants and made it so that there was only one plant per quad. To do that, we first dug up our plants and pout one back in. We did this for two reasons. One, so that they could get more water, and also so that they had more space to grow. With the extras, we first asked if anyone needed one. They might need one of ours if theirs weren't growing as well as ours. Then we took the extra plants left over and made them into "control experiments." Table one will not give their plant any light. Table two won't water theirs. Table 3 will over water theirs! Table 4 has three plants growing in one quad, and two plants in another quad to see what would happen if the plants share the space.

Other- This week we had a picnic with Rock Brook at school with us! We had this picnic because it was our last time working with them. The first thing we did was to go outside and play for a while. Then, we came in, had lunch together and ate a humungous cake (see our projects page for a picture of it!) Later, we went back outside and played games together.

Another thing we did was to go to the library to see Brian Lies. Brian comes from Montgomery and now lives in Massachusetts. Brian is an author/illustrator. He writes Hamlet, Finklehopper Frog, and draws for Spider Magazine and more! He showed us how an illustrating process can be hard. Also, his most recent book, Bats on the Beach, came out on April 12, 2006!


Reading- This week in reading our class read a few vocabulary words that had to do with mysteries. Then we read a book called Mystery in the Moonlight. It's about a girl who thought her neighbor was a vampire but he turned out to have a skin disease. He couldn't go out in the sun because of it, so the girl thought he was a vampire since he only came out at night. After we read the book, we made mind portraits. Mind portraits are fun to make. You first get two sheets of paper that have a head on it. You decorate them to look like the characters in the book, and then and write what the characters are thinking. Our class had fun! The purpose of this is to understand every perspective and get all of the details when reading a mystery. (added to by Ms. Kunz)

Writing- For writing, we wrote a sensory poem and metaphors. A sensory poem is a poem that you first need a topic (usually a feeling). For example, a topic could be happy. Then you would write, "Being happy sounds like...feels like...tastes like...smells like...and looks like..." A metaphor is a poem. You first think of a word like "red". Then you write something that has to do with red. For example, "red is a hot blazing sun shining on top of us." These poems are fun to write!

Math-  For math, our class learned about lattice. Lattice is a way of multiplying numbers. For example, if you do 10 x 5, you draw a square with a line going up and down. Put ten on the top and five on the right. You separate each rectangle diagonally, and complete the multiplication problems. Then you add the numbers diagonally to get the answer.

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Science- In the week of April 17th, 2006, I think the most exciting thing we did was planting our Wisconsin Fast Plants in our classroom. Four parent helpers came in. One for each table. Each person got to plant 8 seeds. In each planter quad, there were four spaces. Each space had small holes in the bottom where we put a wick, that will soak up the water from the watering station, where the plants sit. Then we filled each section halfway with potting mix and added three fertilizer pellets to each section. Next we filled each section to the top with the soil, put the seeds in, and watered them.

Social Studies- In social studies, we made false face masks. We also learned about how Iroquois men and women became members of the false face society. First, he or she had to have a dream about a magical spirit. Then, the person went to a tree, talked to it, built a fire, and got a strip of bark from the tree. Next, they would go to a secluded bark shelter and carved the mask. The job of the false face society was to cure illnesses. I learned about the false face society.

Other- This week we had an arborist come in and talk to us about trees and the importance of trees to our Earth. We each got our own tree to take home and plant! Then, in honor of Earth Day and also Arbor Day, we got to write our own songs about saving the Earth as well as our trees! You can read them in the Classroom Writings page! (by Ms. Kunz)

Reading-In reading, we did Biography Day a few weeks ago, and we were dressed up as a person that we read about and made a pose. The pose was for the Wax Museum. The Wax Museum was when about five different classes went into the cafeteria and we all did a pose for about fifteen minutes and parents walked in and took pictures and video taped us. But before we did that, we got to meet new people that lived in the 1800s-the present time, and we also got to meet our biography pen pal that we had been writing to. My biography pen pal was Helen Keller. Helen Keller had 2 half brothers and one sister. Helen Keller was blind and could not see. Biography Day was fun!  

Writing-Moving on to writing, in writing we did poetry and learned how to make alliterations, similes, and metaphors too. An alliteration is a poem where the sentence starts with all the same letters except for like, a, the, of, to, and little words like that. An alliteration is basically a tongue twister. A simile is when the sentence is comparing two things and is using the words “like or as”. For example, “the rain is like…” A metaphor is the same, but uses just the word “is”. n example of a metaphor is “the rain is…” That is the different types of poems we did this week.  

Math-Last but very fun, we did jellybean math! Jellybean math is when we did five different centers with fun jellybeans. One of the centers was graphing jellybeans by their color, another center was probability, and another center was money with jellybeans and each jellybean was worth a different amount of money. (It was a game where you chose five jellybeans, added up their totals, and whoever had the highest amount won the jellybeans!) There were two more centers to go. They were measurement and patterns, and finally the last center was jellybean fractions. (We also got to estimate how many jellybeans were in a container in the morning. We found out after jellybean math that Selina was the closest and she won a whole bag of jellybeans!) Now all these centers were very fun and cool but the best thing was after lunch, Ms. Kunz gave us jellybeans! Everyone got 26 jellybeans to eat! It is now writing time and I am still nibbling on them! (added to by Ms. Kunz)

Science-This week in science, we examined dry and soaked beans. During the process, we identified the words embryo, cotyledon, and seed coat. We noticed that the soaked bean was bigger than the dry bean. Next my class and I took what was called the “seed coat” off the bean. After the seed coat was off, our teacher showed us the embryo and the cotyledon. Our teacher told us that the cotyledon fed the embryo and later turned into a leaf.  

Social Studies-Social studies rocked! We made longhouses just like the Iroquois Indians. Instead of leaves, we used long strips of green paper and instead of tree bark, my class and I used a brown paper and a shoebox. First we cut off the ends of our shoebox. After that, we covered the other sides of the shoebox with brown paper. We took green paper and wove it into the brown paper. That made the top of the long house and we glued it onto the long sides of the shoebox to make a woven roof.  

Other-The coolest event of the week was when Billy B. came to our school to teach us about recycling. Billy B. also taught us if you put Carbon Dioxide on a dead leaf, the leaf will smell like sugar. He also told us to only buy number 2 bottles of shampoo because that’s the only bottle you can recycle. Bill B. is educational and fun at the same time. You would love to see him.  

Reading- This week in reading we were doing our last job for our reading group literature centers. We are also finishing up our books and timelines.

Writing-  This week in writing we did biography letter #2 to our biography pen pals. It was fun. This time we wrote about what life was like during your person's life. This is an example of something that someone wrote: Music during my biographical person's life was Beethoven. We learned a lot about when our pen pals were living.

Math- This week in math we had review centers. It was fun because we got to do four centers. They were math basketball, multiplication baseball, beat the calculator, and computer games. They were fun games. We got a chance to practice for our checking progress.

Science-  We started learning how to make a telegraph. First we took two wires, one circuit board, a rivet, a little piece of metal, a D-cell, and a switch. With those tools, you can make a telegraph. If you want to send a message to a telegraph, you should have telegraph wires and connect them to another telegraph. It sounds like a ding. We only used the STREAM code. S= 1, T= 2, R=3, E=4, A=5, M=6 in our clicking. (A telegraph uses magnetism and electricity. We created an electromagnet using a metal rivet wrapped in wire. The wire causes magnetism to occur in the metal rivet, and allows it to become a temporary magnet when it's hooked up to a circuit. Putting it against a steel rod allows it to attract to the rod when the circuit is connected, and that's what makes the clicking sound. The kids hooked up two telegraphs to each other this week using thick telegraph lines, which allowed them to send messages to each other across the room. Added by Ms. Kunz)

We also played a game in science called Magnetism and Electricity Jeopardy. There were 5 columns and the 5 categories were Electricity, Circuits, Magnetism, Surprise Questions, and Electromagnets. The most money you could win was 600 for a question. We added everything up at the end to get the scores. It was fun!

Other- We voted on the name of our School Mascot (our Bluebird). The top 5 names are Buddy, Blazer, Feather, Sapphire, and Blueberry. We're going to vote in April at night on those top 5. Thank you Holly for coming up with our class name of Blueberry! It seems the rest of the school liked that name as well, because it ended up in the top 5 names of the entire school! (Added by Ms. Kunz)

Reading- This week 4 reading groups did literature circles. They talked about their biography book and then did their literature circle jobs.

Writing- We also wrote our biography letters. We wrote (to our assigned pen pal in another classroom, not by their real name, but by their biography name) what our biography person was famous for. We also wrote accomplishments that our biography person accomplished. Then we asked questions about our pen pals for them to answer back to us. Then we went through the writing process and we will send the letters on Monday.

Math- We did Multiplication Bingo! It was when you got a partner and got cards that were the numbers 1-6 and 10. Then we wrote down the numbers 1, 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, 15, 16, 18, 20, 24, 25, 30, 36, 50, and 100 in boxes on a bingo sheet. We got two cards and they were factors. Whatever they multiplied, we would record them on the bingo sheet. If you get four in a row, you win!

We also learned square numbers. Square numbers are when 2 factors are multiplied by themselves equal. The square number of 4 is 2. The square number of 16 is 4.

Social Studies- This week we made a Presidents Tree to celebrate Presidents Day! We received a list of all presidents, along with their pictures. We were told to create a leaf for each president. The leaves had to be placed on different branches of the tree in order of when the presidents took their terms.

We also had this great assembly from a man named Kevin 2 Step! He's a native American who came to discuss the Lenape Indians with us. He brought lots of artifacts and told us lots of stories, including why bears have short tails! We sang songs and did Indian chants! We learned a lot about the way native Americans used their environments to survive.

Science-  This week we learned how to make an electromagnet! An electromagnet is a steel rivet that's wrapped up in wire, and connected to a circuit. The electricity runs through the wires causing the steel rivet to become a temporary magnet, and then it can pick up metal objects, such as washers! We learned that the tighter you wrap the wires, the stronger the pull of magnetism. If you turn the switch off, to break the circuit, the electromagnet no longer works. It's a combination of electricity and magnetism.


Reading- This week in reading we've been working on our Literature Circles. There are 4 circles right now on different biographies- Dr. Seuss, Anne Sullivan, Benedict Arnold, and Ben Franklin. The kids have been creating timelines of the important events in their assigned person's life. Next week we'll begin writing our first letter to our biography pen pals!

Writing- This week in writing we finished our book of third grade memories! Next week we will draw our illustrations!

Math- This week in math we took our Checking Progress and learned the steps to writing a good exemplar. I gave the kids sentence starters to keep their explanations organized and in order.

Social Studies- This week in social studies we studied important people in black history. We read about several important people who changed the world and then chose one person who stood out to us as being the most important. We created a postage stamp in honor of that person, and explained why we thought that person deserved to have a stamp made in their honor.

Science-  This week in science we learned that series circuits are not good for strings of Christmas tree lights because if one bulb burns out, they all burn out! Parallel circuits are much better because if one bulb burns out, the rest of them stay on. The reason for this is because parallel circuits have many smaller circuits all connected together. That way, if one bulb burns out, it only affects that one circuit, and the rest of the circuits remain closed and working. We created series and parallel circuits with 6 bulbs!

Other- This week we had our Valentines Day party! Our party was dedicated to helping the people of SHIP (Samaritan Homeless Interim Program). Every child donated $10 for lunch supplies and made 4 sandwiches! When we got to school, we had stations around the room, that each helped SHIP in some way. The first station was to bag up lunches. We put sandwiches, drinks, apples, desserts, and a cup of soup in each bag. We also got to decorate the bags with stickers. The second station was to make the homeless cards to cheer them up! We stapled those cards onto the lunches. The third station was wrapping utensils and tying  them with a red ribbon. We put those inside of the lunches as well. We also got to create placemats for them to eat on! Our last station was a snack station. The room moms set up doughnuts, bagels, cookies, cupcakes, fruit, and drinks for us eat while we took a break! We also had brought canned donations to send over to SHIP. They were very grateful for our efforts, and it was a wonderful way to spend Valentines Day!

We also did many activities in class for Valentines Day! We played "Find Your Love", a coordinate graphing game similar to battleship. You had to guess the coordinates of where your partner had hidden their hearts! Also, we did a compliment activity. Every child had a piece of paper on their desk. The students went around and wrote one compliment for each of their classmates, for a total of 25 compliments! What a great feeling that gave the kids! The kids also made candy heart letters for their parents. They used the sayings on the hearts to write a loving letter. They glued the hearts on in the place where they would have written the words. So if one heart said "love", the students would glue the heart on instead of writing the word love. Finally, we decorated our Valentine bags and passed out our valentines!

This week Rock Brook came to visit again! We did another valentine activity with them! We got to graph candy hearts. Not the easy way you're thinking though- not by color- by saying! Did you know how many sayings there are in one box? There could be over 20 different ones! It was challenging to graph all of those sayings.


Reading- This week in reading we started choosing the people our biography reports were based on. Mine is Orville Wright. We had to choose 3 just in case one of our choices were already taken. My 3 were Orville Wright, Albert Einstein, and Beethoven. We also had to borrow 3 books on them. We had to read it and take notes. We haven't yet done the rest of the report so I don't know the rest of the assignment.

Writing- This week in writing we are continuing to publish our book of 3rd grade memories. We hope you'll purchase it!

Math- This Tuesday we got a cut out paper kite. We decorated both sides symmetrically. I drew an 8 point design and some Pokemon stuff. Then we cut it out. It was very fun.

On Thursday we did 3D shapes. We made a square pyramid, and triangular and pentagonal prisms. Here's how we made them. We folded on the dotted line and pushed the tab in front or behind the faces. When the tabs are in place, tape it together. That's how we made our shapes.

Social Studies- One day in Social Studies we learned about the Sioux jobs. The Sioux women had the hardest jobs. The Sioux women and the Sioux men both owned horses. The Sioux lived on the prairies. The Sioux hunted buffalo for food. We also learned about what the Sioux wore for clothing. We labeled what the Sioux wore and colored in a picture. Each person in our group was assigned to label a man, a boy, a woman, and a girl. We glued all four pictures onto a poster and decorated it. They looked beautiful when they were done.

Science-  This week in science we learned about series and parallel circuits. (Series circuits are where all of the parts are in one circle of electricity. Parallel circuits are where the circuit is divided into two or more circles of electricity so that the electricity can still be fully received by the electricity source. When it's a series circuit, the D-cell electricity is divided up among it's sources.) We did a class project to see how many lights a D-cell would light up at once using a parallel circuit. We learned that when you do a group project you have to work together. It was a little challenging to light as many light bulbs as we could with one D-cell. (added to by Ms. Kunz)

Reading- In reading we did centers on a book called Beautiful Joe by Quinn Curie. One of the centers was the mail center. In this center, we wrote a letter to Operation Outreach thanking them for giving us free books. then, you would write how your life has changed from reading this book. Then you could ask questions and tell them if you liked the book or not. Another center is the comparison center. You compare and contrast the life from the 1800s in the story, to life now. You write how life has changed or stayed the same. Then, you would use a Venn diagram to show your comparisons. Then you would draw a picture of the 1800s and 2006. Then, there was a character center. You pick three characters from the book and list details about them. Next, you draw a picture of a character you chose. There is also the writing center. From Skippy's (another dog in the story), point of view, write a short story about his feelings and thoughts of the way he was trained and taken care of. Next there is the feeling center where you pick five events from the story and write how Joe felt, and you felt. The last center is the research center. You have to research different life spans of five animals and a human. Then you create a graph showing the life spans of the animals you picked.

Writing- In writing we are starting to write a book. It's a book about our class memories. After we go through the writing process, we will send it to a publisher. He will publish the book into a hard cover. Then we can buy the book if we want to have it like a book of memories from third grade.

Math- In math we learned about different angles. The three angles we learned were acute, obtuse, and right angles. We used Anglegs (plastic snap together pieces) to make triangles, quadrangles, and polygons. We learned about different kinds of triangles. An equilateral triangle has equal sides. An isosceles triangle has two sides that are the same. The scalene triangle has no sides the same. WE learned that tri means three, quad means four, and poly means many. Gon means angles. So polygon means many angles. We used the Anglegs to make all the different shapes this week.

Social Studies- In Social Studies we learned how we got our very own unique names. My name is Lexus and my mom called me Lexus because my mom had a favorite movie that had a mermaid who's name was Lexie and she wanted it to be a little different, so she called me Lexus. Then we had to make up our own Indian name that had something to do with your personality, so I picked Shining Sun because I am brave and I feel like I can do almost anything. Everyone picked a very cool and funny name.

Science-  In science this week we found out what conductors and insulators are. An insulator is something that will not allow electricity to go through it and a conductor is the opposite. We also learned about mystery board circuits. With the mystery board circuits we had a D-cell, a light bulb, a switch, and three wires. We connected them all together but left two wire ends out. With the two ends, we took a mystery board that had brass fasteners on it and tried to figure out where the wires were inside. (When we touched the two wires to two brass fasteners that were connected with a wire, our light bulb lit up because it completed our circuit.) With insulators and conductors, we had to go around the room and find things that were insulators and conductors (using a circuit board). (We found these things the same way as we did the mystery boards. We touched the ends of the wires to different objects. If our light bulb lit up, we knew it was a conductor because the electricity was running through it and was completing the circuit.)

Other- The best part of this week was when we had our Grandparents Tea. For our Grandparents Tea, we got to bring a grandparent or two to school and our grandparents told a little about themselves and what the big differences were from life back then and life now. Some grandparents told what they did for fun, what was their favorite thing to do, and what they liked about being a little girl or boy. They also said that there were a lot of wars going on back then and it was sad. They also told us their life experiences. After the grandparents were done talking, we asked them questions and then we ate cookies and drank iced tea.

Also, this week we had a lesson from Ms. Milia, our guidance counselor, about fairness. We all got a part in our own little play about fairness and how to be fair and to include people everywhere. We even got to watch a little skit from Cinderella to see how she was treated by her step-family.

Reading- This week in reading we read a book called Beautiful Joe. It is about a man named Jenkins who killed a puppy's mother. Then Jenkins abused the puppy, but the puppy lived. The puppy's name was Beautiful Joe. A boy saw Beautiful Joe and brought him home and his family and him took care of Joe and named him Beautiful Joe. They named him Beautiful Joe because they did not want to hurt his feelings. One night one of his owners went to a sleepover. When Joe was asleep, he heard a noise. Then he saw Jenkins! The housekeeper came down and called the police. Jenkins got put in jail. Jenkins wife died and his children were taken care of by foster parents. Soon they found out that Jenkins had broken into Beautiful Joe's house because he wanted to steal their jewelry, silver, and gold. Then he wanted to set their house on fire! But they were safe.

This is a very serious story, with a sad beginning and a happy ending. It's written from the dog's perspective and really gives the children insight on different ways of thinking. (added by Ms. Kunz)

Writing- This week in writing, we finished our "I have a dream/Hero" writings.

Math- In math we learned about line segments, rays, and lines. If you wanted to write a line segment AB, you would put a line over it. If you wanted to write line AB, you would put a line with two arrows on the end. If you wanted to write ray AB, you would put a line with one arrow on the end.

A line goes on forever and ever, like a number line. A ray is something that has a starting point, but no ending point, such as a ray of light from the sun or flashlight. A line segment has two endpoints. (added by Ms. Kunz)

Another thing we did in math is we learned about parallel and intersecting lines. Parallel lines are lines that never meet. Intersecting lines are lines that meet.

We took string this week and built shapes such as a hexagon, square, and rectangle with different people holding each angle. Then we looked at the shape and found the parallel and intersecting lines. (added by Ms. Kunz)

Social Studies- In Social studies, we made paper teepees! First we took 4 skewers. Then we tired the top together with a rubber band. After spreading the bottom part into the 4 corners of a square, we were done with the base and the poles. Then we got a piece of paper. We decorated it with pictographs, and some symbols that the Sioux used. For example, an upside-down U indicates an important spot to pray. There are many others, too. After we were done decorating, we folded the paper into a cone shape and taped the sides together. Next, we taped the middle of the skewers to the inside of the cone-shaped paper. Our teepees turned out to be really good. 

We also had a field trip to the New Jersey Museum of Agriculture! We learned about the life of the Lenape Indians, like what they ate, what games they played, what their houses were like, and many other things. My favorite part was when we played games that the Lenape used to play. We even got our faces painted.

Science-  In Science, we learned what circuit boards are. They are the boards that we use to make circuits. There is a little spot called D-cell holder to put in a D-cell, which is a battery. Across from that is a motor holder, where we put the motor in. There also is a place where we put a switch. We use this to keep the circuit running or stopping. Now we only need one thing. Can you guess it? Wires! After we put them in the right spots, we are ready to run! We also learned about schematic diagrams. That’s how scientists draw circuits.

Other- Do you know about Chinese New Year? In school, we had a presentation about it by George, Adelaide, Emily M., Brittany, and Catherine. They showed us a poster titled “Gong Xi Fa Cai” (meaning wish you good fortune) with the Chinese Zodiac, legends about it, and a picture of the Chinese flag. That wasn’t all. George also showed us how to play Chinese Chess. Finally, we ate fortune cookies, spring rolls, and chocolate coins inside a red bag.              


Reading- In reading this week, we read a biography about Patricia Polacco called Firetalking. then we wrote a fact on a flame. When we put all the flames together, it looked like a "fact fire"!

In reading, we also did Literature Centers. One center is the art center. In that center, you trace your hand, then tell how someone "touched" your life. There are 6 centers that I know about. Another center is the book comparison and connection chart. That is where we pick 3 books, then we write how it relates to Patricia Polacco's life, a summary, and what lesson we learned. We had to do this center. The third center was the Appelemando's Dreams center. In that center, you paint your dream and write about what you painted on a note card. The fourth center is the mail center where you write to Patricia Polacco. If it is neat, makes sense, and has good spelling it will be mailed to her personally. The Some Birthday center is where you decorate a birthday card, then write a page about your favorite birthdays. It is written inside of the card. The last and final center is the research center. There is a research sheet and you go to www.patriciapolacco.com and you research the answers to the questions.

Writing- In writing, we did a hero (or heroine) writing. It is a five paragraph report. First we put someone who is our hero that we know. For example, someone would do their godfather. The next paragraph is what you could do to make this person proud of you. For example, getting the same job as they did. The third paragraph is someone you admire (you can't know this person) and why. For example, your hero/heroine that you don't know could be Abe Lincoln. The fourth paragraph is a way to make them proud of you. You have to go through the writing process for this. We are doing this to honor Martin Luther King Jr.

Math- In math we did sudoku puzzles. I will give you an example of one now. A sudoku puzzle is where you have nine boxes and you put numbers 1-9 in the boxes, while putting numbers 1-9 in each row and column. At the same time, you can't repeat any numbers in a column, row, or box. They are hard unless you are used to it.

4 3 2 1
1 2 3 4
2 4 1 3
3 1 4 2

Social Studies- In Social Studies, we made pictographs about the Sioux Indians and how they used to tell stories using picture symbols. We made our own and then switched with other people and tried to see what their stories were telling us by their symbols.

Science- This week in science we learned how to find magnets in a box without looking into the box. We used things that were iron or steel to find them. I knew where the magnets were by moving the paper clip, the different nails, and the compass to show if we were close to the magnet. If we were, you could feel the force of attraction through the box.

Other- This week we had Rock Brook come into our classroom and we taught them how iron or steel will stick to a magnet. We had 2 magnets and a list to decide what would and would not stick to a magnet. We also had a bag of stuff that was on a checklist and the Rock Brook kids first had to guess if the object would or would not stick to a magnet, and then they actually got to try it out to see if they were right! It was really fun!


Reading- This week in reading we started Literature Circles. Each group read a book by Patricia Polacco. After we read the book, we did our job such as Discussion Director, Connector, Vocabulary Wizard, Passage Picker, and Collage Maker. After everyone in teh group is done with their job, we have a group meeting. During the group meeting, we go through the jobs and a summary of the story. After we do the meeting, we do Literature Centers. Ms. Kunz gives us lots of projects and we get to choose one. If a project has a star, we must do it. For the project we must do, we make a chart and on it we write book and picture, how the story relates to Patricia Polacco's life, what happened in the story, and lesson learned in the story. Then we get to read two other books and fill out the comparison chart for all three books.

Writing-  In writing, we did "I have a dream" based on Martin Luther King Jr. First we colored in a crayon shaped picture and wrote, "I have a dream that..." and wrote our dream. Once we did that, we cut out our pictures and glued it to the top of the crayon. We did this on a crayon picture because we read a poem about a box of crayons that didn't get along. The poem was called "A Box of Crayons". (You can see this crayon project by clicking here.) When we were done with the crayon, we had to write a paragraph about our dream. In the dream, we needed to include why we wanted the dream to happen, and how we would help it happen.

Math- In math, we learned how to read decimals to the thousandths. We started by reading fractions and turning them into decimals. After we finished that, we started making centimeters into decimals and then millimeters into decimals. Now we are marking millimeters into decimals on a meter stick.

Social Studies- Since Martin Luther King Jr. Day is coming up, we watched a movie about him. It was about 4 kids named Maria, Kyle, Randy, and Miles. They go on a field trip to Martin's home. They go to hi bedroom and....TIME TRAVEL!!!!!!! They go back in time and learned how Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. changed the world. At the end, they all learned something about him.

Science- In science, we did an experiment called "Breaking the Force of Magnetism". We had a plastic scale, 2 cups, a magnet on a post, and another magnet with some washers. We put each of the cups on one side of a scale. There was a hole on one side of the scale under the cup, so we stuck the magnet on a post into it. Next, we put the other magnet into the cup on top of the magnet on the pot, so the magnets were sticking together through the cup. Finally, we put washers in the other empty cup. We kept adding washers until the magnets broke apart. After, we counted how many washers broke apart the force of magnetism. Next, we added spacers (little plastic chips) in between the magnets to see how breaking the force would change. Then, we graphed our results.

Other- We watched an assembly called Billie B. and the Rainforest Chorus. We learned about the rainforest, the animals that live there, and much more. He taught us songs and the dance moves to go with them. It was really fun. Some plants and trees grow there for support. This assembly was cool!

Reading- In reading we are writing stories that make domino affects, because we read a book by Patricia Polacco that had a domino affect, called In Enzo's Splendid Gardens. For example, I wrote a story called The Diamond. It all starts when a boy says, "look!" pointing at a diamond on the ground. Then the dad picks up the diamond ripping his pants. Mom laughs hard, she falls down, forcing a necklace with a locket to fall off her neck. Then the locket falls off the necklace and a girl slips on the locket. Finally, the problem is solved when a baby catches the locket and saves the day! I think this project was for us to be creative.

Writing-  In writing we started a project called "Invent a Holiday". Each person made up his or her own holiday. For example: Zachary invented "Cookie Cookie Beep Beep Day". On Cookie Cookie Beep Beep Day, people in Cookie Cookie-ville and Beep Beep City paint their cars to look like different types of cookies and install a horn that beeps, "Cookie Cookie". He says that we have this holiday because people like cookies and cars. One point of this project was to be creative.

Math- In math we read a lot of numbers that have place value up to the millions! For example, some numbers that we had to read were: 3,948,901  7, 246, 525  and 8,713,622. I think that the point of this activity was to learn how to read very high numbers. We also played a game called "I am the Greatest" where you had to pick cards from a pile and then place them in certain place value spots such as the millions, hundred thousands, ten thousands, thousands, hundreds, tens, and ones. You had to decide how to place the cards one at a time, not knowing which card you'll pull next, which will give you the greatest number! (added to by Ms. Kunz)

Social Studies- In social studies, we learned about the Sioux Indians. Sioux Indians are a tribe. They live in the Great Plains and they hunted for buffalo to make clothing, moccasins, and food. They lived in teepes. We learned that almost everything is made from buffalo.

Science- In science this week we learned about magnets, the force of attraction, and repulsion. We experimented and attached things. We learned that attraction meant when the magnets of north and south come together. Repulsion meant that either north and north come together or south and south come together, but repulsion means that if you try to put two magnets together, they would not stick.

We also learned about temporary magnets and induced magnetism. Temporary magnets are when the force of the magnet runs through the second object made of iron or steel that makes the third object attract to the second object. We learned that if the magnet holds on to things made of iron or steel, they act like temporary magnets. Induced magnetism is when the permanent magnet sticks to an iron or steel object that makes the object a temporary magnet. Then the force of the permanent magnet's force goes to the first object and then the second object. We learned that induced magnetism means that it forms a chain.

Writing-  In writing we are working on a special holiday project for the parents! You'll have to wait until we're done to find out!

Social Studies- This week was really busy! In Social Studies we did Holiday Rotations. This was where each teacher in our hallway taught us about different holidays that happen in December. The holidays that they taught were about Christmas, Hanukkah, New Years, and Kwanza. For the New Years lesson we had to write a new years resolution for 2006. My resolution was to get better at tennis. In the Christmas lesson, we learned about Christmas around the world and sang Christmas carols. In the Hanukkah lesson, we got to play dreidle, and in the Kwanza lesson, we listened to an ABC book about Kwanza and then colored in a kanorah. I learned that out of these different holiday lessons, that people are different from each other and they do different things around the holidays.

After we studied Christmas around the world, we got assigned to a country to tell about how they celebrate Christmas- 10 countries in all!! For example, I got assigned to Italy, then I would learn about what they do on Christmas from watching a video, and then draw a poster and write captions with facts about their Christmas. What I learned is that some people celebrate Christmas in their own way.

Math- In math, we did math review centers. One of them was Beat the Calculator! It's when you flip two cards and you try to do the multiplication faster than the person holding the calculator. Another game was Division Arrays. You roll a die and flip a card. Then, make an array out of the division number sentence that it makes. Multiplication Baseball was another center. The pitcher rolls the dice and you multiply them together to get the answer. You play with runs and outs. For the last center, we went on the computer and picked games to play that were about multiplication and division. That was the best center.

Science- We're anxiously awaiting the start of our new science unit in 2006- Magnetism and Electricity!

Other- Today we had our class winter party! First, we made a craft. Next, we ate. Everybody loved that part! There were brownies, yogurt, hot chocolate (with marshmallows!!!), bagels, cinnamon buns, muffins, and a lot more! Then, for a game, we wrapped a box with candy canes in it. Sounds easy, but you have to do it with one  hand behind your back! You also have to put a bow on and tie string around it. Then, sign a card with one hand! It's a hard task and you had to work together to complete it.

We also had Hanukkah and Christmas presentations. Calista and Reba told us how Christmas started. It was interesting. Next, Derek and Jason did a presentation on Hanukkah. They told us about the history and traditions. Derek's mom made us latkes. They were good! Jason brought in driedles for us to play. It was fun! Jason also brought some gelt in for us. Yum!

We also went on another field trip to see a winter concert at the high school! I thought the concert was great. The men's choir sang and the instruments played different songs. Some examples of the instruments are the flute, trombone, drums, symbols, and many more instruments. What I learned is that it takes a long time to learn to play an instrument.

Ms. Kunz is planning a special "Snow Day" for us on Friday. We get to wear our PJs to school, and we're going to do snow activities all day such as writing snow similes, learning about the different types of snowflakes like dendrites and stars, making glitter snowflakes, watching Frosty the Snowman, and making edible snowmen from marshmallows! We're even having a Mystery Reader come and read us a book about Snowflake Bentley! Mr. Gold (Ms. Kunz's fiancé) is going to be spending the day with us too! What a great way to end 2005! (written by Ms. Kunz)

The Rock Brook School also came this week! We did a short Christmas and Hanukkah lesson involving listening to stories and answering questions, as well as finding rhyming words in the stories. Then, we had a holiday party together! You can never have too many holiday parties, as our class has proven this week! (written by Ms. Kunz)

Reading- In reading we did our last Literature Circle job which was Discussion Director. The discussion director asks 4 types of questions. Here are examples: A RIGHT THERE question is when you open a book and you take a sentence and make questions out of the sentence. The answer is right there in the story. The second question is THINK AND SEARCH. A think and search question is when you read a few paragraphs and you think about what is going to happen next. You have to search through the book in more than one place to find the answer. The third question is an AUTHOR AND YOU question. This type of question is when you ask people their thoughts and opinions on the story. The fourth question is ON MY OWN. This question is where you make connections to the real world and you don't have to read the story to answer these questions. The lesson I learned is that these type of questions can help you throughout the year. (Altered a bit by Ms. Kunz for accuracy)

Writing-  In writing we are working on a special holiday project for the parents! You'll have to wait until we're done to find out!

Math-  In math we played a game called Multiplication Baseball. Here's how the game works. One of the people will be the pitcher. The other person is the batter. To play the game, you'll need 2 pennies, a die, and a game board. The pitcher rolls and say he gets a 2 and a 7. Now you have to solve the problem 2x7. If you roll and the answer is lower than 5, it's an out. If it's higher than 5, you get to go to first base. The higher the answer, the more bases you get to run. The lesson is that this teaches you multiplication.

Social Studies- In Social Studies, we made Kachina Dolls. Kachinas are spirits that bring rain, hope, and comfort to the Hopi Indians. We each got our own Kachinas and we got to read about them to find out what they looked like and what their purposes were. Then we colored them in based on what we read. My Kachina is Mastof. Mastof's purpose is to make the Hopis grow. (altered a bit by Ms. Kunz)

Science- We're anxiously awaiting the start of our new science unit in 2006- Magnetism and Electricity!

Other- We had a field trip this week. We went to the College of New Jersey to see Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great by Judy Blume. Sheila goes to Terry Town for the summer. She meets a new friend named Mouse. Mouse calls herself the best Yo-Yo Champion of Terry Town! Sheila claims herself to be good at yo-yoing, but she is bad. We learned a lesson about being honest from this play.

We also have a chart from Scholastic that has 100 squares on it. If the whole class reads 4 books each, we can reach the goal of reading 100 books. After we reach 100, we can give 100 books to charities around the world, including Hurricane Katrina victims.


Reading- This week in literature circles, we're researching the books of Patricia Polacco. The first book we read was called Thank You Mr. Faulker. After that, we wrote on this page in this packet. On the page we would write about good character that happened in the story that the characters showed. Then on the other side, we would write about bad character that the character showed. Next we got a partner and read this new book called Some Birthday. When we read the book, we would make connections to things that happened in our lives, to movies or books.

Writing-  Also, this week we are writing to our teachers from the past. What we're writing about to our teachers is all the things they helped us with and how it changed our lives in school.

Math-  This week in math we did math centers. In math centers we had four stations to go to. The first one was a measuring quiz. In the measuring quiz we would get a sheet of paper and start our quiz. The quiz was pretty short. Next, we got a partner and did a measuring quiz that they made up by drawing lines and we would measure them. The next center is the Cheez-It shapes. At this center there would be Cheez-Its of course and you would need a partner. In the game, one of us would make the shape, the other one would just figure out what the area and perimeter was. Then we would switch places. The one who did the area and perimeter would now make the shape. The other one would do the area and perimeter. Then after the timer rang, once again we go to the next center. The next center was computers. At teh center Ms. Kunz would like us to do this measuring game called Measure It. People didn't have to do it, but Ms. Kunz would like us to. We could do any measuring game under chapter three games. After that, we went to our final center when the bell rang. The last center was diameter and circumference. What we do is we get a partner and go around the room to find round objects. We measure their diameter. Then we times the diameter by 3 to get the circumference.

Social Studies-  In Social Studies we made Hopi clothing dolls. Before we made them we read over the details for what the Hopi women and Hopi men wore and then we highlighted the important clothing that the Hopi men and Hopi women wore. Some of the examples we had were earrings, bracelets, necklaces, and rings. After that we used paper shapes of Hopi men and women and drew all of the clothing that they wore. After that we carefully cut the Hopi men and women out and got a piece of brown paper to glue them on. Then we labeled their clothing.

Science- This week in science we wrote our birthstone reports. For the report we chose a month and what birthstone it was. A birthstone is a type of gem that is a certain month but not all gems are birthstones. Whatever birthstone you choose, you write things about it like what color it is, it's characteristics, it's location, it's harness, it's history, and some other facts. We cut out pictures of our birthstone and will make a poster when our reports are finished.

Other- One of the funnest things of all was when we had our Thanksgiving play and feast last week! The Thanksgiving play is about these kids in Ms. Kunz's class who are all excited for some days off school so they can play. Then these robots come in and they are called T.H.A.N.K.S. M.E. (Thanksgiving Historical Analysis Not Known to Students Millennium Edition) The robots tell the kids and how them that Thanksgiving is not just about having a day off school, it is about being thankful for what you have.

The last thing is we wrote pen pal letters to our friends in Hawaii and they wrote back to us! We got chocolates from Hawaii where they live and we gave them a New Jersey Quilt that we made in school with all sorts of facts on it about New Jersey.

Writing-  For Thanksgiving, we wrote letters to people who helped us in our school. These are the steps we went through: brainstorm, rough draft, revise and edit, partner edit, teacher conference, and publish. We had a list of people in the school and we picked who we wanted. George had the custodian. He wrote thank you for letting me get my math homework. We took pictures with the people we wrote to!

Math-  In math we did an activity involving square yards and square feet. We cut out pieces of newspaper into square feet and square yards. Then we took the square feet and tiled the square yard with the square feet. Nine square feet were in the square yard.

The diameter is up to down or side to side on a circle. The circumference means all around. We were all put in groups of 3 and handed a circular object. We measured the diameter and circumference. Then we got with a partner. We measured the diameter by taking the number from the circumference and dividing it by three. You multiply the diameter by 3 to get the circumference.

Social Studies-  In Social Studies we had GIS day. We were lucky to have computers that day. Someone came into computers with us. He told us about GIS. Then we went on the computer and found our home. GIS stands for Geographic Information System. GIS makes maps of the world. In old days, GIS took a pictures with a special camera on an airplane. Now they use satellites.

Science- In science this week we played a review game. Ms. Kunz passed out note cards with questions and answers on them. We had 10 minutes to find our matching pair. For example, if you have the question, "What is a sedimentary rock?" you need to find the person in the class who has the answer to that question. Same thing with the answers.

Other- This week we had another visit from Rock Brook. We did centers. We talked about Thanksgiving. First we read books to a Rock Brook student and the student would answer questions. Then we played Go Fish. After that we practiced adding money.

This week we also had Mix It Up at Lunch Day. There were 7 groups- red, orange, yellow, pink, green, blue, and purple. We were supposed to sit at the table with the balloons that is the color of your group. My color was purple. The purpose of it was to meet new people.


Reading-  We learned the Thanksgiving play this week. The class all has a character and they read their line when they were supposed to. The play was supposed to teach you what Thanksgiving is about. It was about a class that didn't know what Thanksgiving was about. Then a robot came and taught them what Thanksgiving was.

Writing-  We worked more on our sensory writings. We made a Halloween story using all five senses. We wrote about a monster and described how it felt, tasted, sounded, looked, and smelled. I learned lots of descriptive words.

Math-  This week we were doing Pumpkin Math. We got a pumpkin and weighed it. We also felt it and described how it felt. We described how it looked too. The funnest thing was when we counted the seeds. Our pumpkin had 822 seeds! Also, in math this week we measured to the 1/4 inch. We measured a line and saw what the measurement was and wrote it down. I like to measure.

Social Studies-  In Social Studies, we started a New Jersey brochure. A New Jersey brochure is when we get a piece of paper folded into thirds. then we wrote trivia, geography, a cover, history, and symbols about NJ. For example, in trivia I put that saltwater taffies were first sold and made in NJ. I learned a lot more facts about NJ than I knew a few days ago.

Science- We didn't do science this week because of half days!

Other- In Morning Meeting, Nayomi did a Diwali presentation. That was where Nayomi talked about a holiday in India. For example, in India they eat special cookies, that Nayomi passed out to us to try. One type of cookie was shaped like a flower and the other cookie was shaped like a diamond. I learned one of the holidays that Indian people celebrate is Diwali.

For Halloween, we had a Halloween party! The Halloween party is where we got dressed up in our Halloween costumes, ate, made up spooky stories, and had fun! In one of our Halloween centers, we all got a card for making up spooky stories. I would have to read the card, which was the beginning of a story, and then I would make up the other parts of the story. We got to turn out the lights and hold a flashlight under our face while we told our stories! I learned that you can make up a whole story with just one sentence. Also, during our party we ate Frankenstein's Fingernails, eyeballs, and mummy wrapped worms! We made ghost windsocks and played Halloween Bingo! We also heard a scary story about Hal O. Ween, and we got to feel his body parts which were things like olives for eyes, and string for hair!

Reading-  This week we started reading groups! In reading groups we learned a couple of words like disoriented and marina. We also explained the definitions of them. We read a book and then re-read it to find details about how the character felt during the story.

Writing- In writing we wrote descriptive things about a pumpkin and this activity was called Pumpkin Writing! Pumpkin Writing is where you write descriptive things about a pumpkin. You can write that it's orange, or it's 1 1/2 tall, anything like that! Then we played a game that involved trying to find other people's pumpkins using their descriptions. We also wrote profiles about our pumpkins. A profile is where you tell if your pumpkin is a boy or a girl, how old it is, and what it's interests are. Then we sang a sing-a-long with Halloween songs!

Math-  In math, we did addition with three or more addends. This means that you add with 3 or more numbers like 3+3+60+1342= 1408. We learned how to do addends in word problems too. You can say: Joe had 6 toys. His sister gave him 4 dolls, 2 trucks, 5 blocks, and 2 erasers. How many things does he have now? That's using three or more addends.

Social Studies-  this week once we finished our NJ quilts, we got started on our NJ brochures. The brochure had to include a cover, a page about random facts, a page about neighboring states, location, weather, the capital and how it got its name, and the symbols. We got all of our information from a NJ packet. The writing had to be in our own words and the drawings had to be creative.

Science- This week we did the 2nd part of the calcite test. What we did is we looked at what had happened to the calcite and the vinegar and compared. We didn't have much time to do it but we figured out which had calcite (limestone and marble). The calcite looked like a whitish powder and had lines at the end. The limestone also had white powder with lines. The marble didn't have any lines at all but it had powder so that meant it had calcite. When the vinegar was done evaporating, it didn't have any white powder but it had a lot of lines. The basalt was easy to find out which is which- it had no white dust at all and a bunch of lines. The sandstone we didn't all agree on but it had some lines and no powder.

Other- On Monday, a class came from the Rock Brook School. We read them a a book and then interviewed them on it. After that we made a graph about what books people read. We also asked them questions about the information on the graph. It was like working with 4 year olds, because they learn differently than us.

Reading-  In reading we wrote book recommendations. Every month we have to write one. First we have to write about what book we've been reading about, then we have to write the genre, then we have to write what happened in the story. Then we give it to Ms. Kunz and she types it on the computer. Then when people don't know what to read, they can look at our advise and they might know what to read!

Another thing we did in reading was readers theatre. People would act out Alice, the Rabbit, the artist, the Fortune Teller, the Owl, and the Witch Read No More. The story is about Alice. Alice doesn't like to read because she doesn't understand the story. Then when she went to the library with her friend the rabbit, they learn some reading strategies such as predicting, visualizing, and asking questions. Then Alice woke up and said, "What a weird dream!" It was a fun thing to do.

Writing- This week in writing we learned how to write letters in cursive. We learned how to write in cursive the letters a, c, and d. It's really fun writing in cursive! When we first learned cursive, we had to go under the u and over the o to practice under/over.

Another thing we did in writing was brainstorming for our sensory writing. We are going to to write a story called the Haunted House. First in the first column, you write what the thing is that you're describing, such as a spider. Then, I would describe the spider like this: black in the looks column, smelly in the smells column, hairy in the feels column, horrible in the tastes column, and screaming children in the sounds column. (Ms. Kunz said that we had to have three adjectives per column, and describe three things you'd find inside of a haunted house. Next week we will put these into a story.)

Math-  This week in math we played a game called 2 Fisted Penny Game. First we get 10 quarters, 10 dimes, 10 nickels, and 10 pennies. You spread them out on the floor and then you grab a handful of coins. Then you count the coins. Your partner takes some coins out of your hand, but you can't peek. Then you count the money you have left in your hand and you have to guess how much your partner took from you. This is a very fun game.

Social Studies-  In Social Studies this week we made NJ Quilts. We had a group of 4. We each made 4 squares for the quilt. The quilt has facts about NJ like the NJ Governor, the flower, bird, and dinosaur. It also has the tree, neighboring states, and other fun facts.

We also did balloon globes. We all got a blue balloon and the continents- Asia, Europe, Africa, Antarctica, and Australia. We cut out the continents and glued them on the balloon according to the Eastern and Western Hemisphere maps we got.

Science- This week we learned how to do a calcite test. A calcite test is when you put a rock in vinegar or hydrochloric acid and if it bubbles, it has calcite. Not all rocks have calcite but they bubble in acid, so we put four rocks in vinegar and two bubbled. An average person would say that both have calcite but we let it sit for two days and we think some of the minerals in the rock got into the vinegar. We put the vinegar on trays and we're going to let it evaporate over the weekend. We're hoping whatever is left that looks like calcite is calcite.

Another thing we did in science was a scratch test. What we did was we scratched four different rocks with a paper clip, penny, and finger nail to see which was the softest and hardest. Ms. Kunz would give us a clue about the minerals, and we needed to find out which mineral it was. Mineral #1 was Calcite, Mineral #2 was Quartz, Minerals #3 was Gypsum, and Minerals #4 was Fluorite. Quartz is the hardest mineral on Earth.

Other- This week we learned about fire safety. A fireman came to our classroom to explain how you should prevent a fire from happening or if there was a fire, how to stay safe. He took us outside and showed us the fire truck. He explained what the different tools were for and the different hoses were for. One of the tools he showed us was a tool to break into a house or car that was actually invented by a robber!

Another thing we did this week was have a Mystery Reader. What is a Mystery Reader? A Mystery Reader is a person who is a secret and they come in and read to us. We get two clues and 5 guesses each time. This time it was Mrs. Weitze!

Dear everyone everywhere,
We are Elbert and Calista, the class reporters this week.

Reading-  In reading, we made a list of reading interests in our life book. We were allowed to include genres, series, subjects, and authors that we really liked. For example, I liked Harry Potter series so I would write Harry Potter on the list. I also liked to read fantasy books so I would also write “fantasy” on the list. This project was for when we were about to ask Ms. Kunz the question “What should I read?”.

Writing- In writing, we learned how to have a teacher conference about our writing and make final draft. After we finished peer editing, when we were ready to conference, we would take a clothespin with the smallest # possible written on it. Then we would wait for Ms. Kunz to call out our clothespin #. When she did, we would show her our writing and she would correct some major or minor mistakes. Next we would take 2 blank paper and 3 lined paper. We would write our story on the lined paper and make a cover and back with the blank paper. Well …… there you go! A finished work piece.

Math-  In math, we learned about function machines. They are also called “What’s my rule?” problems. Function machines have a written rule, an “in” section, and an “out” section. We solve the problem by using the “in” number to find out the “out” number or using the “out” number to find out the “in” number. For example, say the “in” number was 5, and the rule was +4. So you would take the number 5 and add 4 to it. Which equals 9, so you would write 9 in the “out” section – but here’s a catch. If the number is in the “out” section, you would do the opposite of the rule to that “out” number. Ha!

    We also learned about extended math facts. You start with basic math facts. Then you have to make them bigger to help you solve harder problems. For example, suppose you know 6+7=13 (which I’m sure you all know). Then you can extend to 60+70=130 or 600+700=1300, or 6000+7000=13000, and so on and so on and so on! You see how complicated this has gotten? Not at all! Basically you are drawing zeros to each of the numbers in the question. Period. You can also use 6+7=13 to solve questions like 66+7, in which you add 6+7 and then add 60. Same with 96+7, in which you add 6+7 and then add 90. Boy, can extended math facts come in handy!

Now lets turn to Calista and let her tell us more about this week.

Social Studies- In Social Studies, we made a map of the classroom. We used clay to make it. For example, the TV was green with red antennas. The desks were yellow squares and the desk chairs were green rectangles. We learned that a map key is important for a map because you need to know what each symbol stands for.

Also, in Social Studies, we made maps to show the voyage of Christopher Columbus. We glued pictures of each continent onto a blue piece of construction paper and used parts of egg cartons to make the three ships. I learned how Christopher Columbus explored the ocean.

Science- We didn't do science this week!

Other- In the week of October 10th, Ms. Kunz's class learned how to take a Buddy Spelling Test. We gave our spelling packets to our partners and they read the words to us one by one. In the test, we have challenge words too. For example, my challenge words were geologist, don't, enough, thought, and usually. I learned how to take a Buddy Spelling Test.


Dear Readers.
Hi! I'm one of the reporters for the week in Ms. Kunz's Class. Parents of the kids in Ms. Kunz's Class and others: I know that it has been a short week of school, but we have done a lot. I hope you enjoy what I have put together.

Reading-  This week in reading we learned how to use sticky notes to jot down ideas, likes, dislikes, questions, and connections from our reading. Sticky notes are useful for the journal responses.

Writing- This week in writing we learned about editing and partner editing. First Ms. Kunz gave us our editing checklist. We also at that time partner edited. The partner editing checklist is very useful for editing a buddy's writing.

Math-  This week in math we learned two things. The first thing we learned is how to do an exemplar. How you do an exemplar is that you have a word problem and you have to read it and figure an answer out. You also have to explain how you got your answer. Second, we learned how to do fact triangles. It's the same thing as flash cards. A fact triangle is a triangle with an answer at the top and two numbers at the bottom. The numbers together make a fact family, with four different facts.

Social Studies- We played a game called Symbol Bingo. First we had to fill in the Bingo board with map symbols. Next we would try to memorize all the symbols so that we wouldn't have to peek at the answers. Then we'd play the game and the winners got a ticket. We learned how to identify symbols. Also this week we made sketches of our classroom. Next week we are going to make it into a clay map. There's a map key on everything. We learned how to map out the classroom.

Science- In science we did two things. In the evaporation dishes, and all the water has dissolved. There's many types of salt crystals left over now. We learned about salt crystals to identify them. Also we made observations about four different minerals. Then we wrote them down and had a quiz. The quiz was that someone would read their observations of one mineral, and everyone would guess which mineral they were describing. We learned how to describe in detail.

Other- We started spelling groups this week! We learned how to sort words with spelling or lettering patterns (as in i_e equals a word like bike or knife but there's many more than that as well). Also this week we had a book club lunch. We learned how to talk about our reading. Ms. Kunz always brings in a treat for everybody that comes. We eat in the classroom and at the end, she reads some poetry to us.


Reading-  In reading, we started doing journal responses. Journal responses are letters to teachers about a book you read. Every other week, you hand in your journal to the teacher. The journal should include a summary, likes, dislikes, and connections.

Writing- We wrote about two teachers from the book, Ms. Nelson is Missing. We compared both of the teachers. After that we wrote reasons to convince Ms. Nelson to come back because Ms. Nelson was frustrated with her students and Ms. Swamp was teaching the class. That is persuasive writing.

Math- This week in math we made a schedule about activities in your day. Then we found out how long the activity was. Some kids in the class did a sunrise/sunset graph. The graph told what time the sun rose and set. You graph the elapsed time the sun rose and set. We also did frames and arrows. Frames and arrows are boxes, circles, and triangles that have numbers inside. You also have to find the rule or pattern of the numbers.

Social Studies- In Social Studies we made flip books. The idea was to put stuff like where you live, what township I live in, and what planet I'm on. We learned that the world gets bigger and bigger. Then Ms. Kunz said to find articles about current events. The current events project is to find an article about what's happening in the world and highlight the important facts. Then you use it to answer questions on the current events.

Science- This week in class we learned about these rocks called mock rocks. We discovered that in the mock rock, there was many ingredients. We picked it apart to find them. Then we poured water in the sand (one of the ingredients that we found) and mixed them in a vial. Ms. Kunz said to pour the mixture into the evaporation dish. We will find out what ingredients are left when the water evaporates into the air.

Other- In morning meeting, we did a spider web greeting out of white string. We rolled the string to each other as we said good morning to make a web. It was about listening to each other and cooperation because without cooperation we couldn't untangle it. Teamwork is the most important thing. Teamwork is when we do our best and put our minds to it.

Reading- This week in reading we learned what the difference between fiction and non-fiction are, and the different types of genres. The types of fiction genres are historical fiction, realistic fiction, science fiction, and fantasy. The non-fiction genres are Informational, Biography, and Auto-Biography. the other thing we did was we read The Homework Lesson. This story taught a lesson about homework. It was telling you that if you have an assignment, do it right away, otherwise you won't get it done.

Writing- This week in writing we did Ms. Nelson and Ms. Swamp descriptive writings. We wrote four paragraphs. 2 paragraphs were about Ms. Nelson and 2 were about Ms. Swamp. The first paragraph was about Ms. Nelson's personality and the 2nd was about her appearance. Paragraph 3 and 4 were about Ms. Swamp's personality and appearance. An example is: Ms. Swamp has an evil, snappy, raspy voice. Ms. Nelson wears blue eye shadow and always wears pink.

Math- In math we played Around The World and you had to answer a math question in five seconds or else you would have to sit down. The math question I had to answer was 15-12. I thought it was very easy. We also learned how to use Name Collection Boxes. A Name Collection Box is a box with a little number in the top left side. You have to name as many names for that number as you can think of, and write them in the box. Also, we had to find the difference between two numbers. I liked it a lot.

Social Studies- This week in Social Studies we looked at some conflict pictures. Then we discussed what was happening in each picture and we talked about how it could be a win/win, win/lose, or lose/lose situation. We also learned about feelings. We made a poster and filled it with positive and negative feelings. After that, Ms. Kunz read some feelings and we acted them out. For example, when Ms. Kunz said surprised, the class acted as if they got a present. This taught us about body language. Ms. Kunz also taught us about I Messages. We got a piece of paper and there were sentences like: If your friend returned your bike with a flat tire, you have to complete the I Message. We also made Character Education flip books. For example, there were words like caring, fairness, plus responsibility. You have to draw a pictures that tells about the word.

Science- Science begins next week!

Other- Some miscellaneous things we did this week were during morning meeting. The way morning meeting goes, is Ms. Kunz picks a greeting. For example, she could say High Five. That means you clap the person's hand next to you and say "Good morning (name)." Another meeting could be the adjective greeting. That means you shake the person's hand next to you and say "Good morning. My name is (and you think of an adjective that starts with the first letter of your name)." For example, if your name is Emily, you could say "Good morning. My name is excellent Emily." One game we played in morning meeting was Caught Red Handed. How you play is we take three objects and pass them behind your back. The person in the middle tries to guess where they are. You get three chances to guess.

Reading- For reading we did JR, C, and E which stand for Just Right, Challenging, and Easy. We used it for knowing which book is good for us. Then we got a chance to read and see which books are good for us. We also read a book and wrote comments about it. For example:  I liked the pictures. It was fun!

Writing- In writing we did Bio Poems. A Bio Poem is a poem about what you like, what you're afraid of, what you like doing, and other things about you. We also read an "Important Book" that told important things about you. Example:  The important thing about (name) is that (what you love) and then other things you like. At the end, you repeat the thing you love again like this:  But the important thing about (name) is that I love (what you love).

Math- In math we did a Math About Me poster about what you have. Example:  I cut out a picture of a bed and wrote how many beds I have. We used magazines and cut out pictures. Then we wrote how many we had. We also got Student Reference Books that we use for math. They give you information if you need help.

Social Studies- The class has been doing fairy tales from the villain's perspective. The class first wrote the ordinary fairy tale on a piece of paper, then they rough drafted it. Then they started pictures for the story. After that, they published the story.

Science- We haven't started science yet! Coming soon!

Other- Our class went over rules like no running in the hallway, and be honest. Morning Meeting is when everyone goes to the USA carpet and we start the day with a morning greeting or a game. Also we do yoga if Ms. Kunz wants to. We also created goals for ourselves this year.