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The Children's School at Stephens College

Because big dreams start early.

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Elementary

Spelling Workshop

Spelling is a tool for writing.  The purpose of learning to spell is so that writing may become easier, more fluent, more expressive, and more easily read and understood by others.

Our spelling workshop is underway. Students work in small groups on Monday mornings for spelling. They begin with a focus lesson to learn spelling strategies. They get their new spelling words for the week (these were sent home today). After they finish with all of their work, they can make a choice to use our learning opportunities. This week they can work with the word families; -ake and -ight, use the iPads, play hangman, and find definitions to new vocabulary. Please continue to practice their spelling words each night.

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Time for Science

Our students have learned the scientific method through many activities and science experiments.  They have learned to ask questions and analyze why things happen.20140313-141230.jpg

Today, the 2nd through 5th graders,  continued to work on their science fair (which will be Friday, March 21st at 2:30 p.m.)

Right now they are putting their information on a poster to present.  They will include the name of their experiment, the materials, their hypothesis, the procedure and then will add the conclusion after they conduct the experiment.

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The younger students have finished their experiments with bubbles and concluded that no matter what shape bubbles are blown out of, they will always be round.  Today they were introduced to their new science topic….

Sound

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They brainstormed what sound was, explored musical instruments and other things that can make sound, and examined the inside of the piano. They learned that all sound is vibration.

Below are pictures of students in action:

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50 States

In connection with our Westward Expansion study, student have been learning the 50 states.  They have been working with maps as their family travels west and have enjoyed the song below:

The 50 States That Rhyme- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUFeVKeKRQc

Feel free to try it out with your family!

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West We Go

We started this week by gathering with our Westward Expansion Families. Each student was placed in a group and were given a family name: Johnson Family, Jackson Family, Jones Family, Weaver Family, Smith Family!

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Together they created roles for each student.  Some were brothers and sisters, we had uncles and aunts, and mom and dads.  After they were finished, they found a reason for traveling West and researched the trails.  Each family decided on a trail they would take.  They also made a list of what they were going to pack.  The best way to do this was to sit around a fire (they all made pretend campfires) and have family discussions.

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By the end of the week they had a design of their covered wagon and began to create a small model of their Prairie Schooner!  Next week they will finish their wagons and begin their journey!

Did you know?

“In 1840s the Oregon Territory was made up of the land that is now the states of Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and parts of Montana and Wyoming. 

Back then nobody knew if the Oregon Territory was going to be part of America or if it was going to be part of England.  Both countries had built forts in the territory.  At the forts, trappers and Native Americans sold animal furs and skins, such as beaver, marten, and muskrat, and bought tools and supplies.

America and England agreed that Oregon would belong to the country that could get more of its people living on the new land.  So to make Oregon part of America, many Americans had to go there to live.  Oregon finally became a state in 1859.”

If You Traveled West in a Covered Wagon  written by Ellen Levine

Special Guest

20140110-104555.jpgOn Friday, in the elementary classroom, we had a special visitor!  It was Mrs. Johnson and her little ones-Freddy and Eleanor.  Mrs. Johnson was a teacher here a few years ago.  Many of the students remember her and were excited to visit with her.  Others loved listening to her story and getting to know her children.

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If you are interested in being a mystery reader, please email the teachers.  It can be a friend, Grandparent, Aunt, Uncle, Cousin, or anyone special to your family!

An Adventurous Friday in Elementary

Katrina Walker (from the Science department at Stephens College) and Lindsey Clifton, have been awarded a  $500 grant from the American Chemical Society.  Katrina will be an ACS Science Coach for the Children’s School in direct partnership with the teachers.  This was a competitive award and we are thrilled to have the children involved.  Today was our first day in the lab.

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The experiment today was tied to our nutrition unit.  The students had to  guess which soda had the most sugar.

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They each have a science journal to record their information.

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The tables were set up with lab goggles, a beaker, a cup, and sugar.

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Then students were given a sheet with step by step directions.  First they weighed an empty beaker and then again with water in it. They were to stir in 4 teaspoons of sugar  and weigh it a third time.

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After they had weighed their sugar water, they poured one cup of soda (we had all different types-they were not diet).  They weighed these cups and compared them to the 4 teaspoons.

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Our scientists were inquisitive, asked great questions, and had fun.  We will be returning in the afternoon of November 22nd…to dissect owl pellets!!

Monday at the Library

Monday afternoons, after lunch, we walk to the library on campus.  Our trips are a highlight of the day.  Students enjoy reading new books, re-reading favorite books, reading with friends, and looking for books that interest them!  Today we took a few pictures to give you a glimpse of this time in our day:20131007-132349.jpg

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Happy Monday.  Please remind your child to bring their books back next Monday so they can bring home new books!

Character Development

The entire class has begun a genre study of Fantasy! We have been reading many books, charting the characteristics of Fantasy, and starting to write some Fantasy pieces. Today, students were provided with a variety of art supplies. They used their imagination to create their own character!

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These characters will be used in the student’s writing! The students spent a long time developing these creations. Some groups even charted character traits:

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Our hope is these creations will inspire students to write their own Fantasy story!

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K-1 Showcase

K- 1 Showcase is where the Kindergarteners and First Graders bring in their beloved things to share with the class.

The first Showcase of the year! They brought in very cool things. We got to make color wheels, bracelets, play hula hoop, touch a hermit crab, see a bird house, eat chocolate candy, see a poster with doll drawings, see pictures of a piano, listen to a song about the fifty states, listen to a record player, and learn about a students’ favorite book.

Photos taken by Savannah and Natalie
Post written by Eric and Natalie

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