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)

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Hi Team,
This week has been VERY busy (and a little hectic.) We started with bad weather on Monday, canceling afternoon activities and all day Tuesday. This cramped us up for finishing our many many many post-assessments for report cards as the marking period for trimester 1 ended on Friday, the 15th.

We had science projectpalooza on Wednesday Thursday and Friday. Stop by and see the amazingness hanging in the hall.  We do have one last bit of science to finish on Monday and Tuesday.

We also worked for almost four days (or at least some of us did) on our reading post-assessment, which was very hard. We did it though and it is all assessed and in the report card.  Just a reminder that our LA reading and writing scoring on report cards is all assessment based. We do a preassessment before any teaching of the unit, we produce at least one process piece (in reading we had several, in writing, just one), and a post-assessment.  It is not like traditional grades when we were kids. Look at comments and personal development scores for more information on how the student is working in class.

There was also a math assessment on Lowest Common Multiples and Greatest Common Factors.

Next Monday and Tuesday we will need to finish up assessments. It was too hard to cram them all into last week. On Monday, we will have our last science lab on glacial striations and our final science assessment on Tuesday. On Monday, we will write a story in class to show that we can sit down with an idea for a small moment story (true or fiction), make a story arc plan, write a story with a beginning that hints at the problem, tell the story bit by bit (in paragraphs), use dialogue, inner thinking, action, and descriptions, slow down important parts and create an ending which brings out something learned or realized. These can be finished on Tuesday - but the whole thing will be completed at school, in class. Students know about this and are to come to class with an idea.

Word study will resume next week and will be fit into our new schedule. Check it out on the schedule link at the side of this blog.

We also start with new homeroom configurations on Monday.  Do not worry if you are missing your best friend. You will see them at movement break, meeting times, lunch and recess and any time we meet as a whole group.

Due this week:
Science assessment on glacial striations
Science project if you were out on Friday - this must be done on Monday
Writing post-assessment due Tuesday at end of class
Word study due Friday
(there may be a math anti-rust or math menu - see if this blog gets updated)
Moby Max fact fluency 30 minutes outside of class
READ YOUR NOVEL 40 pages per day (some of us have been forgetting to do this)

We will try to celebrate on Friday because this is A LOT.
YFT (your friendly teachers),
C&K (Ms. L and Ms. R if you are a student)


Good snowy afternoon Aurorians!

Wow! What a week. We are definitely feeling the energy of excitement from everyone and want to reiterate that although it is exciting outside, we still have lots to accomplish inside our classroom. ESPECIALLY as the trimester ends next Friday 11/15/2019.

Regarding the trimester ending, reports cards will be sent out over the upcoming break. We have met with many of you during conferences or through emails. If something arises while we input grades, we will be sure to notify you. Overall, we are pleased with the work that Aurorians have been turning in.


We have updated the Google Calendar for upcoming assignments and students received their November paper copy in class today.

In math this week, we continued to work on ratios, unit rates, and today we began to understand numbers on the number line that go below 0. Students took a pre-assessment to see what they understood about fractions from last year and had some time to work toward their completion of Moby Max.
Speaking of Moby Max, students were sent home today with a letter and some data to show you where your child is, in regards to fact fluency for multiplication and division. Please read over this letter. Many students have begun to complete this task in the past 48 hours since the reports were printed, and I have checked off some with completion dates and my signature. My hope is that Aurorians will be fluent in both multiplication and division come January 31st.

To help achieve this goal and to continue gaining math practice, homework for math will be increasing starting 11/18/2019 (trimester 2). Students will now have to complete 30 minutes of math each week, totaling one hour for each math menu (every two weeks). This is completely attainable and will be monitored. If you have any concerns regarding computer accessibility, please reach out to Ms. Roberge and we can find time to make sure this is complete.

In science, we began to explore Bend 2 even further. We began the week with convection currents and even went up into the science lab to build our own and see how it works. Students did an amazing job in the lab! We as geologists studied the rock cycle through really cool songs and collecting rocks from our nearby Mills River Park. Students took educated guesses through research of rocks and field guides to determine whether the rocks they chose were sedimentary, igneous, or metamorphic. We will continue to work on this topic until Tuesday, where students will receive their Bend 2 assessment guidelines. This bend will be assessed through project building and students must have their materials list to me by Tuesday in order for me to get the necessary materials for them to begin doing their project Wednesday (11/13). They will have 3 days to complete this assessment, making it due on 11/15/19, in time for the upcoming report card.

In ELA, (Reading and Writing) we are deep into assessment time. We "completed" the reading assessment today, although some of us will need Monday as well (and some of us were away on a chorus trip.) This assessment will be graded on Monday night for report cards.

Next week, on Wednesday and Thursday, we will complete our writing post-assessment, which is to complete an entire personal narrative in one (or slightly more than one) sitting.

This is A LOT of assessing, so we will be taking the week off from word study next week.

The second trimester begins on November 18th and we will have new homeroom configurations.

We love our snacks on team Aurora. Thank you to those of you who have donated boxes of Cheez Its, or other favorites (Goldfish, gummy snacks, pretzels, popcorn). We continue to appreciate donations of snacks or cash for these delights.

We are putting report cards in the mail on Monday, December 2nd, the Monday after Thanksgiving break.

ALSO, remember to dress for the weather. We go outside daily unless it rains or is below zero degrees Fahrenheit. 

YFT, K and C

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Hello Aurora Families,
We hope this post finds you safe, dry and with electricity. What a truly scary Halloween.

In LA, we were supposed to finish our final draft of our true story and post on Friday.  We will do that on Monday.

Here is an example of what a sixth-grade expectation looks like: Look Up and See the show.  Students may want or need to work on this at home. Feel free to share your story with me if it is a google doc and ask me for comments.

Next week, students may have the option of writing a short fiction story or a chapter of their Nanowrimo novel. During the week of the 11th to the 15th, we complete our post-assessment, which is to write an on-demand story in class. This is what will be on the report card - the pre-assessment on demand, the process grade (what you are writing now and next week) and that post-assessment.

We are also finishing up our Deep Study of Character reading unit, by finish our Global Read Aloud book this week,  The Bridge Home. Students are completing work on to share with our friends in Virginia. That work can be done at home also. This unit also has a post-assessment that we will complete the week of the 11th to the 15th. This assessment will be revising our responses to Karate (the pre-assessment.) We will first work together on a story called The Fight.

Our next reading includes not only keeping up with your own reading of 40 pages per day, but joining a book club for a week from a group of books chosen because they are set in or around India.

The next units will be reading nonfiction and research-based information writing. During this unit, we will study teen activists and complete our National History Day project on Breaking Barriers in History This year students will learn to make a website for their presentations.

In math students were able to revisit their most recent Prime Time assessments and make adjustments to their thinking. These final grades will be put into the upcoming report card. Fear not if you notice some 2's! We will be doing intervention groups to help with building understanding of these big ideas. Stay tuned with more information regarding that.

We continue this week with learning ratios and connecting them with fractions. Starting Monday, we will be doing comparison statements of candy student's collected on Halloween. On a side note, students have been doing a great job turning in their required assignments for math. Nice job Aurorians! We will continue to practice time management throughout the school year.

In science, students took their first assessment on Thursday (of three total). We used study guides for big ideas and students had the opportunity to use their science notebook (we are learning how valuable good notes can be). Once Ms. Roberge reviews these assessments, students will have an opportunity to revisit their thinking if they so choose. We begin with the second part of our Geology unit this week, looking at the cycling of Earth's materials. We will dive deeper into convection currents and begin to answer some "burning" questions students have regarding this new learning. So punny! We will introduce our fun activity "Geology Rocks!". The students will think this is a hoot. More information to come on this fun twist to learning science in the following blog.

Our marking period ends on November 15th. That means new homeroom configurations! It is always great to have a new mixture of kids to work with.

Work now due Monday is:
Word study
Seesaw assignment on character chart
Final draft of true story
Math Menu

Work due next week includes:
The true story if not done or needs more revising OR another true story OR fiction story
Word study (new one)
Seesaw assignment of your character traits
Seesaw assignment on theme

See you kids on Monday. Remember, no candy in the classroom. Thanks.

Sunday October 27, 2019

Team Aurora has a new blog post!

Hi team,
We had a very busy week. We have finished our student led conferences (mostly). If you were not able to make it in and would like an at home student led conference, let us know. As long as you promise to return it, you may check out the evidence binders and we can send a few notes along with the binder.

Friday was a big "due day." Students should have handed in word study, 2-4-2 and reading journal for The Bridge Home with signpost examples.

We have included due dates on the google calendar link on this blog. Check it out.

This coming week will have two big events to consider. On Wednesday, all of our thespians involved with Shakespeare's Got Talent will be busy on Wednesday night and everyone who plans to trick or treat will be busy on Thursday night.

Math Menu is due on Thursday
Word study is due on Friday
Reading at home daily 20-40 PAGES, you are still expected to finish a book a week

Plan ahead.

Keep in mind that our grading period is winding down. In LA, we will have two major assessments that will be on report cards. These will take place on or about November 11-15.

Don't forget to set your clocks back on Sunday November 3rd. Enjoy your extra hour as we return to Eastern Standard Time.

Your friendly teachers,
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 ...