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From February through April, our class had the privilege of hosting a teacher-candidate from Lakehead University's Faculty of Education.

Miss Whipp, who is in the first year of the two-year teacher's college program, spent five Wednesdays observing in our classroom, and then five full weeks observing, co-planning and co-teaching. Miss Whipp started off her five week block teaching one subject. By Week 5 she was teaching almost full-time, in consultation with Mrs. Black.

Here are some pictures of Miss Whipp's time with us:

MATH

 

LITERACY

 

GYM & DAILY PHYSICAL ACTIVITY (DPA)

 

HEALTH

 

SOCIAL STUDIES

 

DRAMA

 

FAREWELL PARTY FOR MISS WHIPP!

This afternoon we threw a farewell party for Miss Whipp.  A good time was had by all!

We want to thank Miss Whipp for inspiring us to learn, with her creative and fun lessons.  We loved having her in our class and we are going to miss her!!

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

 

During recent Social Studies and Literacy periods, our class participated in an island survivor simulation. The exercise was designed to introduce the concept of government, stretch students’ ability to work collaboratively in assigned groups and provide opportunities for students to engage in role play and oral discussions.

This is the basic outline of the project (Click on any photo to enlarge it.)

 

STEP ONE:

within their small groups, students began brainstorming a list of all the things they might be able to do with the items that were salvaged from the plane.

 

STEP TWO:

Groups began work on survival plans and land use maps of their islands. Then they were told they had been rescued and needed to prepare a presentation for the press.

 

STEP THREE:

Groups presented their survival plans at a press conference. When students were not part of a particular presentation, they became members of the press gallery. Ten members of the press rated each group's chance of survival, based on the plans they shared. Mrs. Black assessed the drama aspect of the project, based on how well each student acted his/her roles and listened during other groups' presentations.

This gentleman took his role very seriously, making his hair appear as if he'd been out in the wilderness for months!  🙂

 

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

These are the scores the press gallery gave each group's overall survival plan, based on their performance at the press conference:

  • Nunavut:  65%
  • British Columbia:  56%
  • Ontario:  53%
  • Newfoundland:  36%

The press gallery was also asked to rate the odds of each group surviving a winter in the wilderness, based on the survival plans they presented. These are the class' estimates:

  • Nunavut:  64% chance of survival
  • Ontario:  55% chance of survival
  • British Columbia:  48% chance of survival
  • Newfoundland:  26% chance of survival

Congratulations to the survivors who crash landed near Graham Island, Norwegian Bay, Nunavut! You are the winners of Island Survivor 2017!!

Island Survivor was a thoroughly enjoyable experience for most students in the class; a frustrating one for a few. While groups were meeting to brainstorm ideas and achieve consensus about their survival plans, Mrs. Black circulated. She stepped in and facilitated whenever personality clashes or inexperience with consensus-building created an impasse. She hopes the one-on-one and small group coaching that transpired during this activity will provide students with some new tools and strategies they can employ next time they are collaborating with others on a project.

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free to e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

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In  November and December, our class had the privilege of hosting a teacher-candidate from Lakehead University's Faculty of Education.

Mrs. Tingey began her five weeks in our class with observation.  Then, she gradually assumed responsibility for teaching some of our lessons. By Week 5 she was teaching full-time, in consultation with Mrs. Black.

Here are some images of Mrs. Tingey's time with us:

MATH

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LANGUAGE

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SCIENCE

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GYM and DPA

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MUSIC

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VISUAL ARTS

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We want to thank Mrs. Tingey for the energy and enthusiasm she brings to her teaching. Her excitement about education is contagious and we are really going to miss her!

All the best to Mrs. Tingey in her future career as an educator!

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

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Canada's only chimpanzee sanctuary is located near Montreal, Quebec. The Fauna Foundation is currently home to fourteen middle-aged to elderly chimpanzees. About half of the chimps were rescued from a medical research lab. in New York State. Several others spent decades on display in Canadian zoos. Two, who are fluent in American Sign Language, were part of a cross-species language study at a university in Washington State.

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http://www.faunafoundation.org/chimps/chimps-resident/

This year, the sanctuary invited the public to help brighten the lives of the chimpanzees by decorating Christmas stockings to adorn "the chimp house."

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http://www.faunafoundation.org/2016/11/rock-the-sock-contest/

Our Grade 5 class jumped at the opportunity to help!  Almost every student in our class willingly gave up a recess period to begin work on the stockings.  When we started the project, there were twelve chimpanzees in residence at the sanctuary. Students worked individually or in pairs to decorate a beautiful stocking for each one of them.

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Mrs. Black researched the types of "enrichment items" the sanctuary's chimpanzees enjoy and then purchased some Christmas colouring books and DVD's, crayons, small stuffed animals, Santa hats, hair brushes, sunglasses, beads and paper streamers to send to the sanctuary, as stocking stuffers.

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After our first package had been shipped, the sanctuary announced that it had taken in the last two zoo chimpanzees in Canada, two very elderly females named Blackie and Dolly, who had lived at a Quebec Zoo for over 40 years.  Two students in our class created stockings for Blackie and Dolly, and we sent a second package to the sanctuary.

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The chimpanzee's caregivers were delighted with our contribution!

On December 16th, the sanctuary posted this picture on their Facebook page, depicting Loulis', Jethro's and Chance's stockings stuffed with goodies:

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On December 18th, the sanctuary posted a short video of Dolly helping herself to items from Jethro's stocking:

http://www.facebook.com/faunafoundation/videos/1179755042073159/

This is a screenshot from that video:

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On December 23rd, the Fauna Foundation announced the winner of their "Rock the Sock" contest. EXCITEMENT!  Our entire class won the contest!!!
(click on the image below to enlarge it)

We sent the sanctuary back a big "Thank You" for chosing our stockings!

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UPDATE:  Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Today, the class received a wonderful thank you package from The Fauna Foundation!

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.caor to add a comment to this page.

This week we enjoyed several special events.

On Monday, Mrs. Black's friends Hank Debruin and his wife Tanya visited our class. Hank is a Haliburton-based sled dog racer who has completed the 1,000 mile Iditarod and the 1,000 mile Yukon Quest, with his team of Siberian Huskies. Hank and Tanya thanked students for their support during the 2016 Yukon Quest, showed us a video of their northern dogsledding adventures, answered questions, signed autographs, and let the kids see one of their racing sleds!

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Over the past few weeks, students had asked for another visual arts project so, as her farewell gift to the class, Mrs. Black purchased an an acrylic painting board for each student, and other paint supplies.

On Tuesday, Mrs. Black's high school aged daughter, Emily, volunteered in our class. She brought some of her acrylic art samples and assisted students with their work. It was a beautiful day, so we painted in the front yard of the school.

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On Wednesday, Kindergarten through Grade 7 lined the halls and applauded the Grade 8 graduates, attended the school's year-end assembly, went outside for a second acrylic painting session, and had a class party.

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Here are a few of the students' masterpieces!

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At the end of the day, everyone on staff went outside to farewell the students. It is a Rama Central tradition for the buses to circle around past the line of staff four or five times, before heading out.  When viewing these images, picture students waving and yelling loudly, bus drivers honking their horns repeatedly, and the staff waving and calling out to students to have a great summer!

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Thank you for a great year students and parents/guardians!  Have a safe and restful summer...

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.caor to add a comment to this page.

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This year, we had the privilege of hosting a teacher-candidate from Lakehead University in a May-June placement.  Miss Brew was a fun and engaging student teacher. She will be fondly remembered for her creative approach, which included a hands-on, centres-based science unit, a video introduction to persuasive letter writing, a poetry cafe, and the "get it together" classroom management system she developed to motivate students to stay on task.

Here are some pictures of Miss Brew in action, over the past five weeks:

LANGUAGE

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MATH

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SCIENCE

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PHYSICAL EDUCATION

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DANCE

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MISS BREW'S "GET IT TOGETHER" BOARD

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MISS BREW'S GRADUATION PARTY!

Miss Brew completed her placement and her Bachelor of Education degree today! She also completed a Bachelor of Arts degree this year. We threw a graduation party for her:

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Mrs. Black's gift to Miss Brew:  "Me to WE" merchandise that provides assistance to children in developing nations:

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Congratulations, Miss Brew!  We can't wait to follow your future adventures as an educator!

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.caor to add a comment to this page.

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In March and April, we had the pleasure of hosting Lakehead University Faculty of Education teacher-candidate Amanda Medeiros in our class. "Miss M." observed Mrs. Black during her first week with us, and then started taught the class in weeks 2-5, starting with Math and DPA and adding one or two subjects each week.

Here are some pictures of Miss M. in action!

MATH

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DAILY PHYSICAL ACTIVITY & GYM (Volleyball)

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DRAMA

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HEALTH

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SOCIAL STUDIES

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LITERACY

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MISS M'S "GRADUATION PARTY"!

As of today (Tuesday, April 26th), Miss M. has fulfilled all of the requirements for her B.A. and B.Ed. degrees!  We threw her a party, to celebrate!!

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IMG_3695IMG_3684We loved having Miss M. in our class, and wish her all the best in her future as an educator!  🙂

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

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Norval Morriseau was a First Nations artist from Ontario, who passed away in 2007. Nicknamed "The Picasso of the North," he created works that depicted the legends and stories of his people. Mr. Norval's work is characterized by black outlines, bright colours, and pictures within pictures. Students in our class studied a number of Norval Morriseau's paintings, and then created original pieces of art that emulated his style.

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IMG_1536IMG_1534 IMG_1533 IMG_1532 IMG_1531The finished products are beautiful!

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

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In mid-October, students in Grades 2-6 participated in a cartooning workshop, with illustrator Jermaine Smith from Freeze Kid's Comic Books.

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Mr. Smith guided students through the process of drawing several cartoon characters.

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Afterwards, students in our class used what they learned to create eight-panel comic strips.

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IMG_0876Some students shared their work with the class, using our classroom document camera.

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Here are some of the finished comic strips:

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The next step in our project was to turn some of our comic strips into plays. Students organized themselves into groups of three to six, chose one of the comic strips created by a member of their group, and used it as the script planner. They then worked collaboratively to write a play, create props, rehearse, and present to our class, as a drama activity.

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The Banana Robbery:

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Halloween Terror:

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Clayton's Potions:

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Voldekatypotter:

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Supergirls:

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Ninja Boy VS. the Vampire:

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Students really enjoyed working their way through this integrated unit, which generated marks for them in visual arts, writing, the learning skill "collaboration," and drama.

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Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free to e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.

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Our most recent visual arts project was intended to help students create depth in a piece of art, and replicate the gradations of colour that appear when objects are lit from above.

Step One:  Mrs. Black brought three pumpkins to class, arranged them so one was in front of the other two, photographed this grouping, converted the photograph from colour to grayscale, and projected the image on the SmartBoard.

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Step Two:  We discussed how the positioning of the pumpkins created a sense of depth in the photo. The smallest pumpkin appeared to be in front of the others because it was lower in the photograph, and covered portions of the other two. We also observed the way light from above created gradations of gray on the pumpkins' surfaces. This was much easier to see in a grayscale rendering than in the original coloured photograph of the pumpkins, or by looking at the pumpkins themselves.

Step Three:  Students tried their hands at creating three-dimensional renderings of the pumpkins, in pencil. They used shading to replicated the lighting effects they observed in the photograph... lightest gray on top, medium gray in the middle, dark gray on the bottom portion of the pumpkins and in the shadows they cast on the table.

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Step Four:  Using pencil, students transferred an outline of the pumpkins to black paper, and then traced over it with white glue. This created surfaces onto which soft chalk pastels would not adhere during the final step of the art project.

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Step Five:  After the glue had been left to dry overnight, students watched a video demonstrating how to blend soft chalk pastels:

Afterwards, students began to colour the pumpkins they had outlined in glue. For reference, a coloured version of Mrs. Black's pumpkin photograph was projected on the screen.

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The results were simply stunning!

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These pieces of art will be heading to the next Ramona Fall Fair!

Thank you for visiting our class BLOG.  If you have any questions or comments, feel free e-mail me (Margaret Black):  mblack@scdsb.on.ca or to add a comment to this page.