September 13

Who were these strange people in our class while I was away?

Hey, did you all have to come to school at night?

You were not working that slow were you!

You are all in you’re pyjamas. Did you all sleep in extra long?

What’s the story?

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Of course, it was the onesy fund raiser, silly me, I forgot. I think you all look like you need a hot cup of cocoa. Don’t you look cute. Looks like our class donated well, thanks team.

Wait a minute you were back out of dress code again. I think this is becoming a habit, was it dress up term?

Book Week 2016

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Which characters can you recognise?

How wonderful you all look in your Book Week Parade Costumes. I thought you all did well designing your characters. I was sorry to miss it, so I am glad Ms Belle took these pictures. Almost didn’t recognise some of you.

What fun you must have had.

What did you get up to?

How did you feel as your new character?

What do you like about dressing up?

Which character did you choose and why?

Who will you plan to come as next year?

July 28

Holiday adventures

 

animated_welcome_catWe are back to start another exciting and very busy term three.

Once we had organised our new learning teams we shared our holiday activities. Ellen gave us a challenge, could we write about our holidays without actually telling us where we went? Sort of like giving clues and hints!

 

We had a go and as we have been working on descriptive language we tried to use some exciting adjectives in our writing. See if you can work out where we went and what we did.

How did you go? Some found it challenging to not write the destination. Sadly some art didn’t make the deadline so we have to imagine what their work might have looked like.

Which clues did you find tricky?

What hints gave the information you needed?

What other adventures did you get up to on our break?

June 9

We are Super Readers in Room 14. Watch us zoom!

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This year we have been working really hard on developing and improving our reading strategies so that we become stronger and more confident readers of literature.

We all know the 10 most important steps to become an excellent reader.

1 Read, 2 Read, 3 Read, Read, Read

Read, Read, Read, Read, 10 Read

In fact we all know the old poem really well

Read, read, read.

The more you read, 

The more you know,

The more you know ,

The more you grow.

So read, read, read.

Traditional Poem

This poem makes a lot of sense because as you read, you learn more vocab so then you can read more interesting books, which means you learn even more vocab, and then you can read more interesting books, which means you can…and so on. Of course on the way there are other things to focus on too.

Reading isn’t just saying words. Readers need to comprehend the text to understand what they are reading. They need to read accurately. Reading should be smooth and Fluent. Readers should also grow their word knowledge.

We worked out what we thought good readers do and we strive to achieve these strategies

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Good readers have an inner conversation.

When I’m reading my brain is switched on and ticking over

We know that a good reader uses lots of strategies before they read.

They activate their prior knowledge things they may already know about or have experienced.

Make predictions about what might be going on in the book.

Ask questions

While they are reading, good readers are switched on, they are..

Check the text is making sense, and they understand what’s going on.

They keep making predictions and check if they’re right or not.

Work out tricky / challenging words.

Make connections with ideas and experiences in the text.

After reading

Check how they went. Revaluate their predictions.

Can summarise the text.

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We have our own super hero and we are flying through our goals. Some of us want to move into higher Reading Recovery box levels and some of us want to fly through our percentage goals in Accelerated reading.

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Some of us are even tripling their percentage score. Wow, what reading dynamos we have here. Either way, we know it will take lots of hard work and effort to become good at anything, especially Reading.

Now where is a good place for you to settle down and read?

Fluency progress

We have been checking how our fluency is going. After our spelling partner tests on Friday mornings we do a fluency test. We have been reading to our team mates for one minute and then counting how many words we have read. We negotiate to take turns to be a reader or a listener. Then we record our scores on a chart. 

We have noticed our scores are changing and we discussed reasons for this. Some have noticed the scores rising each week. These people thought they were practicing lots and that helped. Some noticed the scores were rising and then they were falling, only to begin rising again. Our thoughts were that once we moved levels the vocabulary may become more challenging and as they got used to it they read faster. Clearly fluency improves with practise.

Visualising 

Authors use the most amazing words to write their fabulous stories and when they do we create pictures in our minds eye. This is called visualising and it is a useful strategy to use when you are reading as it helps you to understand what is going on.

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I was reading children’s classic, The BFG by Roald Dahl, a wonderful author who uses the English language in such a creative way that he even invents his own language! We have had such fun listening to the exciting adventures of poor Sophie and The BFG as they have to deal with those rotsome filthy giants. We even get to find out what goes on in the royal household.

During an art lesson we had a go at our visualising what we thought these characters would look like, after we had finished the last chapter.

Look at our portraits of swishwiffling whoppsy characters from the BFG

Now we are all very excited because we know that a new motion picture will be released very soon. It will be interesting to see what the creators of that film thought the characters look like. Wonder if we thought the same?

Our preservice teacher Senija helped with our narrative writing skills. She wanted us to write about a dream. In an art lesson we created dream jars to go with our published narrative.

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P.S. As of the last Friday of term two we congratulate the readers  for their hard efforts.  Check out the movement of their Super Heroes IMG_0599

So many got to beyond, way to go, you are awesome.

Something to comment on.

How do you think you are going with your reading?

How do you know your reading is improving?

Which strategy are you focusing on ? Why?

Which books or authors do you particularly like to read?

Who reads in your household? What do they read?

May 31

The Power of Yet

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We are so fortunate to have a talented Musician as our performing arts specialist teacher. Diana Busolin shares her music and performing arts skills with us each Tuesday. Last term Diana taught the children a wonderful song which was written by a DECD music teacher.

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Changing your mindset and realising all things are possible has been a real focus for us here at Grange. Diana had been sharing with the children how elastic the brain can be, so the song  “The Power of Yet” by Kristie Fudge was perfect. It has a real strong message …  don’t give up trying and have a go!

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Brains are indeed muscles and they need to work. When we take a risk and have a go, we stretch our neural pathways. Sometimes we start new ones and other times we make older ones stronger. Things have to be hard, if it wasn’t we wouldn’t be exercising would we. What would be the point of doing easy stuff all the time?

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Well they took the message literally and had a go. They needed to work collaboratively together to learn the song and finally perform it. Imagine all the new pathways guys.

They were so proud of their efforts I was invited to come and see them. I was impressed.  I had my flip camera with me to capture their skills. Take a look. Tell us what you think.

Watch it here   The Power of Yet

What did you enjoy about that performance?

Was there a challenging part? How did you manage to sort it out?

Which part do you prefer to play?

What is your favourite part of Music?

Do you play a musical instrument? What do you play?

November 24

Kidpix Animation

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Earlier this year we learnt a lot about our nearest cosmic neighbours in our science investigation on space and beyond. For an integrated science/art/ICT and collaborative learning project, students were asked to tell a space story through animation. They used the creative drawing tools in Kidpix to create their action. Working in pairs they began by using a storyboard to plan and negotiate their ideas.

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Once they knew the basic outline of their story they experimented with the tools in Kidpix to create their artwork. Crashes and explosions seemed to be quite popular, with rockets and space travel included in many themes. I did ask for some science, but fantasy was okay too. As we soon discovered, this work would require many hours of painstaking and precise movements while carefully shifting pieces to get the desired effect.

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It also needed a great deal of collaboration and negotiation to agree to get the animation just right.  We learnt that it would take a lot of slides to get just few seconds of action. Once we believed we had enough slides, the task of downloading each one, changing transitions and time took quite a while. There was an amazing amount of problem solving along the way.

 

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Importing our animation into iMovie meant we could learn to add Titles, transitions and sound effects. Even though this project took a longer time than we originally planned, it was worth it. Apologies to the producers but I had to save their mp4 movies as smaller files so they would play here and in doing so some of their animation has been clipped. If parents want a bigger better copy send in a USB and I’ll copy it for you.

Got your popcorn ready?

Something to think about.

What did you think about making your own animation?

What problems did you have to solve along the way?

What would you change if you could do this again?

Which movie captures your attention?