January 24, 2020


Hello Aurora families,

January is flying by and we are chipping away at the Ottawa trip details. Today, we applied for rooms on June 4 (Thursday) leaving on June 5 (Friday) NOTE: THIS IS A CHANGE FROM OUR PREVIOUS PLAN. It turns out the rooms cost twice as much on May 14 as they do after May 22nd. June 4 was the first date that worked out. Please let us know if you can come with us. We hope to get the price for each person down to about $125 (US funds.)   This would be for adults too and cover room, breakfast on Friday, three museums and a comfortable coach bus. If too many of us want to go, we will ask parents to carpool, but we can fit about 12 parents on the bus. Thank you to those who have reached out. We are working diligently on this so that you can plan the rest of your school year out with doctor appointments, etc.
UPDATE: We have confirmation that we can have this date.

In math this week we continued our work on fractions! We revisited the idea of modeling multiplying of fractions (part to part) and also multiplying using mixed numbers (part to whole). We will continue this idea into our new learning happening next week, working on dividing fractions. We will spend the next couple of weeks looking at how to model our thinking with dividing fractions and how to decide if it is a division problem in word problems.

2-4-2's are DUE TODAY! Students who did not finish their 2-4-2 will need to show Ms. Roberge what they have done Monday morning.

MobyMax times have differed slightly this week. Due to the shortened week, 20 mins is required this week and 30 minutes are required next week (totaling 50 minutes). A reminder that ALL FACT FLUENCY needs to be at 100% by NEXT FRIDAY. That is one week away! Keep working hard Aurorians!

In science we explored the idea around inertia. Students worked through rotations that were hands on around the idea that an object in motion stays in motion and an object at rest stays at rest unless acted upon by a force. Through video notes and group activities, students seem to be getting this BIG IDEA down. Check out these rockstars working on the "FLOP!" station.


In LA and Social studies, we have been reading from text sets on our chosen topics of: Titanic, climate change, diseases or space.  We have learned to write note the central idea, important main ideas and write a summary. On Monday, we will give a shot at writing a full "all about" report on the topic as a journal write.

Next week, we will investigate teen activists and apply some more report writing skill and technique. In two weeks, approximately 5th, students will decide their topics for our National History Day projects. Then we will synthesise all of our reading and writing skills. All of the topics we have investigates so far make excellent topics as does colonization which we studied with India and will look at together in social studies.  The theme for NHD this year is "Breaking Barriers in History." All students will create a website. Here is my model from 2014, Encounter, Exploration and Exchange in History. Ms. Lamb

Work due next week:
(2.4.2 due today)
Friday - math menu- MATH PAGES - and math reflection - there will be time in class for all of this
Word study due Thursday
Finished three articles and summaries due Monday (for LA)

Friday, January 17, 2020

Hello Team,

We are in the process of securing out dates for our trip to Ottawa. We are trying for May 14-15. I have contacted the University of Ottawa and are working on getting a price. Next is the bus.  Once we know the amounts, we will send a formal notice and request for a deposit (as they need deposits.)  Please start getting your paperwork in order. Every adult needs a passport or enhanced license. Every child needs a passport or original birth certificate with raised seal.  More to come next week on this.

We do have homework on Team Aurora. Check here to see upcoming due dates. We go over this very regularly, yet sometimes students don't have their work done. We hold homework club in our room almost every day until 3:25.  Work includes journal entries (usually one or two per week), word study due on Thursdays (change from Mondays), Mobymax minutes (30 per week), math menu and 2-4-2. We do have a lot of time in class to do this work, so not everyone needs to take it home. EVERYONE reads at home daily - 20 pages.

In LA, we are moving into reading groups for non-fiction next week. The topics include: climate change, the Titanic, diseases, space travel. We will read, talk, writing summaries and pull together central ideas that connect or texts.

This will prepare us for our own research for National History Day which will start in early February. The theme this year is Breaking Barriers in History

This week in math we continued to explore adding and subtracting fractions. We checked in with our math understanding by taking a mid year Moby Max assessment which sees what math students can do independently and what math is challenging for them. *This is not the only assessment used in seeing where a student is at.* 

We took a check-in for adding and subtracting fractions which most seemed to be understanding. Those who still struggle with some concepts will have small groups and other opportunities to ask questions and grow their understanding. 

We also took a preassessment for multiplying and dividing fractions. We will need to revisit reading word problems, modeling our thinking, and showing our work on all assignments! This helps to see where misconceptions are. 

In science we focused on force, specifically gravity. We participated in an activity, watched a few videos and kept on being researchers by taking notes. The idea is that students will have strong science notebooks to be able to complete an inquiry task as an assessment in the coming weeks. 

Today, we had a full school presentation for Martin Luther King Day. We learned and heard from a guest speaker. Later in class we discussed groups that have been oppressed and needed to changes laws.  We also spent some time in gratitude for what we have and appreciate in the world.

Work due this week:
Word study - Thursday
Reading - daily 20 pages
journal - summaries

Friday January 10, 2020


Welcome back!
We are look forward to everyone having some #2020vision as we move toward the second half of 6th grade. 

So many things have been happening the past week and a half. We luckily had a slow start back to school with a few pre-assessments in math and LA. We had a celebration for our hard work in our integrated India projects, by sampling some yummy snacks from our very well known Chennai, India and had some Chai tea. The students' response was very positive! Thanks to Ms. Lamb for finding some culturally/ethnically appropriate food for students to savor. 

A new calendar has been given to ALL students with all of the January assignments on them. We took time on our first day back to do this. It is also posted on boards in Ms. Lamb and Ms. Roberge's room. 

Students then began their week full of new learning, review and hard work. In math, we began our new Let's Be Rational unit which focuses on all operations (additio, subtraction, multiplication, division) of fractions. This unit can feel uncomfortable to some, as these are big concepts. Please check in with your child to see how they are feeling about this new unit, and encourage them to come check in with Ms. Roberge if they have any questions or concerns. 

Students received their new math menu that is due 1/17/2020. This whole week has been about book work and reviewing ways we add and subtract fractions. Next week, we begin exploring the use of models to explain our thinking and ways these relate to number sentences (or equations). Moby Max is still a homework task. Students must complete 30 minutes each week of Moby for homework, totaling an hour by the time their menu is due. I do check this weekly and give kids a heads up to let them know they need to catch up. If your child has issues with internet or computer access at home, please have them set up times to stay after school, use their study hall wisely, or find other means to make sure this is complete. FACT FLUENCY NEEDS TO BE COMPLETE BY 1/31/2020!

We have been loving the new changes we have done in social studies and science by having smaller groups. 
We just started our new "Force and Mobility" unit, which focuses on the Isaac Newton's Law of Motion. These first few weeks will be heavy on information, which students will then use for an inquiry task toward the end of the month. So far we learned about what the three laws are and have begun to think of and research examples of these laws in action in our lives. Check in with your child about this. It's pretty rad! 

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Happy Winter Everyone! Days will get longer now.

We had so much fun yesterday! We had rotations amongst four classrooms for Aurora and Odyssey. Kids chose card/board games, snowflake making and coding OR spent the entire 4 stations (2 hours) creating a musical production of GEOLOGY ROCKS! It was pretty awesome and fun.

On Thursday, we used a rubric to assess our book club posters. Some kids realized thing were missing and upgraded them. Ms. Lamb will assess them over vacation using the same rubric. (One is missing - must have been working on it while I was taking photos.)

Our mini-research projects on India should be complete and will be presented and graded on Thursday, January 2nd. Kids are certainly allowed to continue working on them over vacation.

We wrapped up some science and math last week with two assessments.

In 2020, we will move from our India studies to a more general non-fiction reading unit. That will be followed by a study of teen activism and non-fiction writing. That will bring us straight into NATIONAL HISTORY DAY! The theme this year is Breaking Barriers in History, Some of us are already thinking about our topics. The dream is 3 weeks, 3 weeks, 3 weeks....nonfiction reading, nonfiction writing with teen activists, National History Day. This year, our NHD project will be digital - websites or documentaries.  Everyone will create one making this a digital/history/reading/writing project.


Have a safe and restful holiday.
CL and KR

Friday, December 13, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Happy Friday the 13th!

Luckily, nothing terrible happened here. We hope you are having good luck.

We did decide to eliminate group snack - so, I guess there was a bit of bad luck. We are having a hard time cleaning up snack wrappers.  Please plan to send your student with extra snack for the afternoon or extra money to purchase snacks from the cafeteria at lunch.

Our book club posters are looking beautiful. Pictures will come next week. We began our mini-research projects. Kids are reading non-fiction articles on a chosen topic from India like elephants, wedding traditions, the Taj Mahal and many more.

Next week, we will wrap up our mini-projects, do a few finishing touches on our book club posters and learn a little about map reading. Then we will be done for the year...ha ha.. the 2019 year.

After a day or so of working with students in small groups on their study guide, Ms. Roberge felt as though the majority of the group could use an extra day of studying to prepare for the final assessment. The assessment date is moved to Tuesday 12/17/19. Students took home their study guides today to study over the weekend for this assessment. Some still need to complete this and Ms. Roberge will check it on Monday.

MobyMax expectations are not being met. Over half of our team was unable to complete the hour within the past two weeks. If they need time to complete this, please check in with us regarding afterschool plans. Ms. Roberge has been talking about the importance  of completing this and how to manage time to be able to participate in other activities too. Ms. Roberge have extended this deadline from today to Tomorrow 12/14 by midnight.

We have officially finished Geology! Students will receive their study guides for the assessment on Monday and take the assessment on Wednesday. They will bring home their study guides on Tuesday evening to study from them. The labs went well, although it was quite comical when students tried the jello.

Great job to Aurorians for following the lab expectations and taking the lab seriously, even with how fun it was.

Next Friday, we will have special day of rotations with Odyssey and a holiday concert from our band and chorus members. We will then send all off for happy holidays.

Work due next week:
Word study - we will revisit this week and not have a new one
Mini-research project due Thursday
Math study guide due Monday (assessment is Tuesday)
Geology Study Guide due Wednesday (assessment is also Wednesday)
That's it!

KR and CL

Friday, December 6

This week flew by, even though it was very busy.

In LA, we continue with our book club, research, LA/SS unit on India.  We read our book club books and met in clubs for some very interesting conversation on Wednesday. We will meet one more time, next Wednesday to finish our conversation and begin our group project.

We also learned some note-taking techniques. One is sketch noting, which includes sketching and words. We also learned about underlining and turning notes into pictures (especially maps.) We applied these techniques to an article that we read together and a video we watched together. We will continue with this next week, especially when we start our mini-research projects.

We have just two weeks before our Christmas holiday break.  We will finish our book clubs and projects (See an example here.) We will complete a mini-research project with a partner or small group and create a slide show to present next week.

In math this week we focused primarily on percents and their relationships to fractions and decimals. We are only touching upon decimals as they will be covered in an upcoming unit in the next few months. We studied percent bars and benchmark percents and fractions to help us find numbers. We particularly focused on the importance of percents in the sports world, but will continue to find ways we see percentages in other ways too. This work is continued through our 2-4-2 that was assigned on Monday. Our menu is FULL of opportunities for students to practice different types of math thinking.
We will continue exploring percents next week in preparation for our Bits and Pieces assessment next Friday 12/13. Students will be receiving their study guides for this assessment on Wednesday, at which time they will be labeling what they know confidently in green, what they can do with some help in yellow and what they are very confused about in red. They will be bringing this study guide on THURSDAY 12/12 to study that night for homework. This is a great opportunity to look over what your child has done in math for the past month or so.

Please continue your Moby Max! If your child received a comment regarding needing to finish fact fluency, please have them use their hour of Moby Max time to be completing this. If they have accomplished this, please have them do the lessons that have been assigned to them. Thank you for your support on this!

In science this week we had quite some time in the science lab. This week was the first week we started with split groups and we received some positive feedback from students stating they like the small group labs much better. Yippie! The first lab we did was weatherization of a mountain. We are focusing on how the properties and movements of water shape Earth's surface and affect its systems. We first watched how rain can affect the changing of Earth's surface on mountains, causing erosion, creating bodies of water, and shaping the mountains to look different. We were able to connect these ideas to our recent study of rocks and the creation of sedimentary rocks through this weatherization process. The second lab, that we did today, was our glacier lab. Students did an inquiry task where they created a hypothesis to determine what would happen when glaciers slide down mountainsides. Students were very focused and super into this hands-on lab experience. There were some amazing journal entries and sketches of before and after. We will take these inquiries and ideas and begin to explore them further through videos and the exploration of our very own Lake Champlain starting on Monday. We are planning to have the science assessment on Thursday 12/12. If we are able to get through what we need to, we will continue with this plan. If not, Ms. Roberge will be moving the assessment to Monday, 12/16.

The calendar has been updated with assignments and due dates. Students also received their planners on Tuesday and filled them out for December.

Due next Friday:
Word study
Seesaw entry for your book
article 2
Study Guide for math
Study Guide for science

2-4-2's are due WEDNESDAY 12/18

Friday, November 22, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Greetings Aurora Families,

We had a very busy week on Team Aurora.  As you are aware, we have a "standards-based" report card system at BRMS. This translates to relying heavily on post-assessments for report card grades. This translates to post-assessment in all graded areas: reading, writing, science, social studies, math. All these assessments at the end of a trimester filled with snow, sleet, and rain can get a little stressful.

This also means that the personal development scores that you see first on the report card are very important. This is where we comment on the work in class that supports the assessments and general citizenship of each student. Please note scores and comments on personal development.

We made it through, and we had a well deserved 6th-grade wing celebration on Friday. We enjoyed some WRAD time (Write/Read and Draw), an impressive talent show and a multi-plex theatre for the afternoon. We followed that all up with the 5-6 BRAG party after school.

Report cards will be mailed out on Monday, December 1.

Here is what is coming up after Thanksgiving break.

We begin a reading/writing/social studies integrated study of India. We have book clubs starting Monday. Map studies and history of India and British Colonialism will round out the unit. We will practice our map skills and prepare for our geography assessment and a preview of Western Hemisphere colonialism.

Science will continue with the end of our geology unit. There is one final bend that will tie everything together that we’ve learned thus far. It is our greatest hope that students look at how they organize their science notebook, so that it will be a useful resource for assessments to come. We have now learned twice how crucial it is to take good, strong notes.

In math we will continue our ratio work and move into number lines and fractions. The end part of this unit is important as we move forward to our upcoming unit which is focused on operations with fractions. In between these units, we will revisit mean, median, mode.

We began a new schedule and new homerooms on Monday. Check out the schedule changes by clicking on the schedule to the right. We will have science and social studies for two days each week and either science or social studies on Friday.

Upcoming work to be handed out:
New math menu

Due next week:
Read 40 pages per day in your book club book (20 at school, 20 at home)
Participate in book club meetings
Prepare sticky notes for conversations
Prepare a journal entry to share on Friday
India Map worksheet
Word study due Friday
Moby Max homework- 30 minutes each week (please complete fact fluency by 1/31/20)

January 24, 2020

HAPPY FRIYAY! Hello Aurora families, January is flying by and we are chipping away at the Ottawa trip details. Today, we applied for roo...