Just a reminder that tomorrow night is our Parent Blogging Information Session. It will begin at 6pm in the Multimedia Centre. Come along and find out why we blog, and how to use the tool effectively.
On Friday and Saturday we celebrated our 5th Birthday Frenzy at school.
Berwick Fields has now been open for more than five years and to mark the occasion we had a day of special celebrations on Friday. We started with the whole school ‘Together we Achieve’ games in the morning, working with students from across the school in our house teams. Then in the middle of the day, we had a special birthday assembly. Our new leaders for 2011 were presented with their badges at this assembly.
There were also many other special performances and presentations at the assembly, which you can see from the photos below. In the afternoon, we celebrated with a fun afternoon out on the oval.
What did you enjoy most about our fifth birthday celebrations?
This fortnight in maths we are learning about time. It is not an easy skill to learn, and does require lots of practise both at home and at school. Students should now be reading analogue and digital time up to the minute and recording it in words. We have also been looking at time elapsed (the duration between two events) and converting units (ie, minutes to seconds). Some students who have a solid grasp of these concepts have been extended by looking at 24 hour time and world time zones.
Two games to help us with reading and recording the time are ‘Stop the Clock’ and ‘Bang on Time’.
Stop the Clock
In ‘Stop the Clock’, you need to match the digital times with the time on analogue clock. When you have matched up all the times, hit the clock to stop it. Can you beat your time? There are FIVE levels to the game; hours and half hours, quarter hours, five minute intervals and one minute intervals. The last level has you match 24 hour times. The version of the game embedded below is the ‘one minute intervals’ game. Try the game that best challenges you!
Bang on Time
Another game is ‘Bang on Time‘. This practises the trickier skill of being able to say the time relative to the preceding or coming hour (for example, twenty to ten).
You can set the clock’s hands to the speed you want in this game, so why not start off slow for practise. Your goal is the match the written time (ie, twenty minutes to ten) with the time shown on the analogue clock. The closer you are to the correct answer, the more points you get.
Let me know how you go! Remember, the only way you will be able to get better at telling the time is by practising it constantly.
Here is our homework for Weeks 8 and 9 of Term 1, a special camp edition. You will notice many of the tasks have to do with your experiences on camp. The homework is the same format as last fortnights; you need to complete two tasks from each of the rows – tasks that will extend your learning. Don’t forget that reading is also a part of your homework that needs to be completed, and should be recorded in your diary.
Your homework is due back on Friday, 1st April. Our organisation tip for this week is to use your diary and pre plan when you will do each task during the fortnight, so you don’t have to rush at the last minute. When you finish your homework, why not score yourself on our marking rubric – it should be the same score I give you!
56C have been very good at completing our homework so far this year, which is fantastic to see. Don’t forget that if you don’t submit your homework on the due date, or have not completed all the required tasks, you will need to do these during our homework makeup session of Friday afternoons. This includes our weekly reading. If you are having trouble with any of the tasks or are finding them difficult to complete in the time frame, just come and ask for help before the due date and we can work out what to do. This is an important skill to learn as we prepare for secondary school, where there will be increased expectations and workload.
It has been a busy two weeks – but I hope that your children came home just as excited about camp as they were on the trip. They had an amazing time and really demonstrated how mature and responsible they can be, all while having fun!
It is amazing the difference that those extra two days make from the 3/4 experience. It gives you time to get into a real routine, forget about sleeping somewhere foreign and really mix with those around you. It was very weird to wake up on my own on Saturday morning, rather than having 144 children to tell me all about their day.
It was great to see everyone come back in buzzing about camp on Tuesday too, obviously rested on the long weekend. What most struck me though on Tuesday morning was the way different students were interacting with each other, thanks to the new bonds and friendships formed on camp. To me, that alone makes the camp experience all worth while. I feel I know all of the students a lot better, and I think they know each other better too. Especially those outside of our classroom, which is important as we all interact with each other this year across the 5/6 team. It also was a chance to see students in a different light. I can remember teaching many of our grade sixes back when they were in grade three, and boy have they changed! And that is an extremely positive thing.
Luckily the weather held out for us and we got to experience all the great activites Cave Hill Creek had to offer. It was great to be in the outdoors, away from the city. The setting is absolutely beautiful as you can see from the pictures below and the activities really lended themselves to using this environment. Students took risks and gave all the activities a go including canoeing, abseiling, bouldering wall, bike riding and the bush walk. Their confidence spurred us teachers on to try them all too… including the abseiling. I don’t know how the kids can be so laid back about climbing down the 10m wall backwards!
Keep an eye on our blog over the next week or two as we will be publishing a range of tasks we have completed about camp. You will find a video above that I have created; but over the week you will start to see the students’ creations. We have been learning about podcasting this week to enable us to do this. When we post our work, we would love you to comment on what is written, or ask some questions to find out more information. The students get very excited when they see that their parents, brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles have read and commented on what they have published.
WOW – with camp the weeks just seem to have flown by. It’s been three weeks since we posted a timetable and while we have been flat out, that time seems to have just flown by. Apart from camp, some of the things we have been learning include:
- Continuing to learn about persuasive writing techniques and language, including writing our crime unit persuasive arguments in Week 5
- Learning in maths about reading and drawing maps and coordinates, which links with our current homework tasks
- Revising number facts and operations in Maths, through games, Numero, Math Attack and Footy Maths
- Revising recount writing this week, using our experiences from camp, and focusing on our writing OFIs (opportunities for improvement).
- Learning about podcasting and vodcasting, and recording our first podcast of our writing to post to the blog (photos below)
- Learning about audience for our writing and the impact it plays
- Studying our chosen novel in our book club sessions
- Cooking a delicious three course meal in kitchen this week (photos below)
Last week, not all the groups had their regular conferences. We started these on Wednesday but then I began conferencing individually with students about their writing and this turned out to be such a valuable time with each student that we made this the focus of our week instead. While we went through each student’s writing we looked at their strengths and weaknesses and talked about what they can do to improve their writing. As we were focused on our writing during the week and lost Monday, we forgot to stop and write in our Reflective Journals for the week. We will try and get these home early in the week.
This week in class we will be starting our new three week inquiry based on the topic of ‘Identity’. At the end of last year, students brainstormed a range of questions that they would like to know about the topic of identity and as teachers, we grouped these under seven broad headings. These were:
- What does my future hold?
- How smart am I?
- What’s my history?
- Why do I feel like this?
- My Amazing Body
- How am I different?
- How do others see me?
We discussed these questions as a whole level on Thursday and students nominated a question that they would like to base their inquiry on for the coming three weeks. They will be working with a group of students and teacher from across 5/6 to explore their topic during inquiry sessions. I will be exploring the ‘What’s my history?’ question with a bunch of students.
In English this week we will be working on Literacy rotations with 56D including learning SRA and spelling activities to help with our reading comprehension. Working with 56D for these sessions will allow us to have two teachers and two integration aides working with our 45 students – that’s a pretty great ratio to have of adults to students, and should allow us to read personally with groups of students on a weekly basis.
Our maths focus for this week in applied maths is time. Some students are learning at the moment to read and record time on both analogue and digital clocks, while others are learning about 24 hour time, world time zones and reading timetables. Over the week I will post a range of online games and activities to help with learning about time. Our Number focus will be on the four operations, including using BODMAS to solve problems.
On top of all this work this week we will continue with our other regular activities which you can read here. Friday and Saturday are big days for our school as we are celebrating Berwick Fields’ 5th Birthday. You can read more about our frenzy celebrations here.
This note will be going home tomorrow (Monday 21st).
Next Tuesday, 29th March we would like to offer for parents a parent blogging ‘how-to’ session. At our information night last year many parents expressed that they would like to learn more about how to keep up to date with what we are doing online. We are only too happy to help and would love to provide this opportunity for you.
At this session, we will talk about why we see this online environment as an important classroom tool, and will show you how to access the blog as well as locate and search for information. We would also like to show you how to interact with our classroom from home by posting comments and questions on student work, activities and tasks.
No experience is required for this session, just an eagerness to learn. We will be meeting at 6pm in the Multimedia Lab at school. If you would like to attend, can you please RSVP on the attached slip so we know how many to prepare for.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us. If you would love to attend but can’t make the date, please let us know so we can see what we can organise.
Dale Mills and Jackie Young
This week is a big week for Berwick Fields – it’s our 5th birthday! On Friday at 11:30 we will be holding a special assembly with special performances and presentations, as well as the team captains, specialist leaders and Junior School Councillors being presented with their badges. We would love to see you there!
On Saturday is our 5th Birthday Frenzy. It will be on from 10am – 3pm and there will be heaps of fantastic stalls and rides to enjoy. Some things you will find include:
Giant Slides • Car Boot Sale • Fairy Floss • Running Bungee
Horse-o-plane • Show Bags • Coffee • Tattoos
Playdough • Amusements • Lollies • Chair-o-Plane
Sausage Sizzle • Dancing Performances • Toys
Teacher Dunking • Pizza • Market Stalls• Cards
Face Painting • Art and Craft • Ice Creams Popcorn
Scrapbooking • Jumping castles • Flavoured Sherbert plus market stalls!
You can preorder an unlimited rides pass for the Frenzy and save – click here to download the order form.
We also need some support to help on the day. Grade 5/6s are in charge of running the hamburger and hot potato stalls. If you are able to spare 30 minutes to an hour we would really appreciate the support. You can click here to read more about how to help out on the day.
**Our Clean Up Day has been rescheduled from before camp to this Friday.**
This Friday, March 18th the grade 5/6s will be participating in Clean Up Australia Day. This year grade 5/6 will be helping out by cleaning at Sweeney Reserve. Every student has walking permission for the day (as per the student enrolment form) and will be using gloves and tongs. Could you please ensure your child has their hat for the day and sunscreen if required. Thank you for your support!
Participating in Clean Up Australia Day is a great chance for us to give to our community and another way Berwick Fields demonstrates care for our environment.