Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Tomorrow, I won't be in class due to a field trip with the BHS Mavericks Club to We Day.
Thankfully, my teaching partner, Mr. Lancee has agreed to continue our current learning
with all Grade 6s. He will be supported by our wonderful ELL teacher Mrs. Paschalis.

The focus for tomorrow will be Science:
Students were told to bring their current leaves project into school.
We have booked the computers and distributed research literature in form of
Science books, posters and presentations around the classroom.
This work period will allow them to further progress in the project.
Please remind your child to bring his project to class, so that he/she can add
more information.

Further we will continue our story writing unit. The current focus is on adding descriptive vocabulary, organizing events in a logical order and enhancing the resolution and conclusion of a story.



Sincerely,

Pascal Mueller
Grade 6 Teacher
Beddington Heights School
T 403 777 6610

Monday, 30 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

As you are probably well aware of by now,
our Grade 6 students in Room 14 & 15 have two ongoing homework projects.
When asking my students in class today, who has started working on said projects,
only a few (about 1/3) raised their hands.

HOMEWORK PROJECTS

1) Science: Trees and Forests
> Detailed information about this project can be found on the blog (entry October 16th)
> Due date: November 16th, 2017

2) Book Report
> Students have chosen a book on which they will work on from now until mid-December during our
DEAR block (drop everything and read).
I have handed out duo-tangs today to record their information while reading in class and at home.

Please contact me, if you have any questions regarding the two projects.

On Wednesday, students are expected to bring their Science project to class and share how much work has been done until now. We will provide them with computers to further research their chosen topics in class on that day.






Friday, 27 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Thank you for all those parents and students participating actively in our school community.
Due to your ongoing support events like the Halloween Dance on Thursday, as well as our Pillars of Care Assembly make Beddington Heights School a great place for learning.

In the subject areas:

Math:
Students are working on Mathletics and have personalized accounts with assigned tasks.
In class we will work on the program approximately once per week. Some of the work
should be done at home as homework. I have assigned 7-9 specific tasks (involving the four basic operations - addition - subtraction - multiplication and division) to students in Room 15.
These tasks need to be completed by the end of November.

Science:
In Science we reviewed the process of photosynthesis in class and learnt that humans and other animals are called heterotrophs whereas plants are considered autotrophs (= they produce their own food).

LA:
In our writing unit we began to research synonyms for overused and unspecific words, such as
'said, old, new, went, bad, sad.' Students will create a tombstone for each word and find suitable synonyms to take over their place in future writing activities. This will tie into our descriptive writing activities and help generate more interesting vocabulary for our stories.


REMINDERS:
> Photo order forms were sent home today
> Monday Oct. 30 & Tuesday 31: swimming at Thornhill Pool / bring swim gear to school
> Tuesday Oct. 31 is Black and Orange day at BHS
> Wednesday: Selected Gr. 6 students will participate in the We-Day field trip (bus leaves at 7:55am)








Thursday, 26 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Today, I would like to remind you of a few important due dates:


REMINDERS:

The final 'Trees and Forests' project will be due on November 16th.
Students are expected to complete most of the project on their own time at home.
Information about the task was handed out to students two weeks ago and can be
checked on my blog (previous entries from 2 weeks past).
I will allocate some class time for research and have done so this week(4x30 min).
Concepts such as interactions of forest ecosystems, wildfires, forestry and human
impact on forests around the world (with a focus on Alberta in class) are topics I will
address during Science in the next 2 weeks.
Students are required to further inquire and research 3 of these topics in more detail and showcase theirunderstanding by creating a chosen type of media and representing the information.
THIS IS HOMEWORK!

Halloween Dance hosted by our Parent Council tonight from 6-8 in the school gym.

Spelling Quiz is next Monday (due to swimming)



Tuesday, 24 October 2017


Dear Parents & Guardians,

Today I would like to introduce some very useful links for our final Trees and Forests assignment.
All instruction of the project can be found on my blog (entry: Monday, October 16th).
The assignment is due on November 16th (roughly 3.5 weeks from now).


This week's Spelling List is comprised of vocabulary we are currently using in LA.
All these terms are parts of the plot of a story or a story conflict:

1. Antagonist
2. Protagonist
3. Technology *
4. Society *
5. Internal *
6. External *
7. Narrative *
8. Perspective
9.  Resolution
10. Rising Action *
11. Climax *
12.  Exposition
13. Static *
14. Dynamic *
15. Setting*



Links for Science Research:

Online Resources Trees & Forests


Most Common Trees in Canada

Tree Facts:


Classifying Trees:

List with pictures of all common trees in Alberta (scroll to page. 22 ff.)


Pictures of Tree Parts (Leaves, Bark, Fruits)

Ecosystem Forest:






More Advanced Websites:

Tree Facts


Forests in Canada – Resources

Forestry:

Ecosystem Forest:
Photosynthesis Explained:

Monday, 23 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians

Swimming went well with everyone in Grade 6 acting in a safe and responsible manner.
Please dry the towels and swim suits / trunks used today or send fresh ones for tomorrow.


REMINDERS:

I sent home test results from last Friday's Division Quiz and the Tree Cookie assignment in Science.
Please sign the "How Did I Do In The Assignment" note, review it with your child and return it to class. Below you will find a key to how the tests were marked.

















In the subject areas:

Math:
We continued our exploration and review of all 4 basic operations including some decimals and fractions by using the online program Mathletics to assess their current level.
All your children have a free account valid for this school year and can go online anytime to practice and extend their understanding. I handed out login information to all students in room 15 last week.

Link to Mathletics:

https://community.mathletics.com/signin/#/student

In LA, we are continuing to analyze the elements of good personal stories and are establishing the expectations that are required in regards to the Provincial Achievement Test (PAT).
This week our focus will be on building a story's events leading up to the climax (conflict).






Friday, 20 October 2017


Dear Parents & Guardians,

It is Friday again and we are heading into a very busy week with swimming lessons starting on Monday. Thank you for returning all the forms in a timely manner.

Notes to go home:
Halloween Dance Information (October 26th 6-8pm)

Homework:
Decide on a book (novel) for your book report in LA and READ, READ, READ!!!
Start categorizing the leaves you collected according to shapes / arrangement and type of tree.
Also, decide on how to represent your final assignment in Trees and Forests.

This coming Friday is our second Pillars of Care Assembly. This time I would like the students to nominate candidates for the 4 areas of the Pillars of Care.

REMINDER:
Bring a towel, bathing suit /swim trunks on Monday.
Swimming will take place in the afternoon at Thornhill Pool.


Thursday, 19 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

REMINDERS:
1) Swimming Forms:
We are still missing a number of swimming forms and the $27.
So far 15/22 students have returned forms to school.
2) Please return We-Day Forms for Grade 6 students attending our Mavericks Club
3) Division Quiz tomorrow

Today in Science we continued our inquiry into leaves and their form and function in class.
The focus is currently on photosynthesis and the transpiration and water cycle of trees and plants.
Now that the students are familiar with the various shapes, arrangements and types of
leaves, I encourage to start working on their final assignment.
Below you will find a useful pdf explaining differences in common plants in our province that can
guide the work of your children.
Some parts of the Leaf-Assignment need to be completed at home => homework.

http://www.insideeducation.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/TreeShrub.pdf



Sincerely,

Pascal Mueller
Grade 6 Teacher
Beddington Heights School
T 403 777 6610

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Dear Parents & Guardians,

First and foremost => Urgent REMINDERS:

1) SWIM FORMS due by Friday (sign all pages and enter swim level/experience)
2) Attach cheque or cash $27 for bussing & swimming lessons

In the subject areas:

Math - Division Quiz on Friday - practice long division & basic division & multiplication facts
These basic facts should be mastered by the end of Grade 4. In the Grade 6 PATs students will need
to solve operations without the use of calculators, multiplication charts and other supports.


LA/ Literacy
During our Dear-Time (Drop Everything And Read) students will work on a book report in the next
two months. This means, that by Monday, students should have chosen a book they want to use for this
task. In total, students will have to create a 16 page report describing:
Characters
Setting
Conflicts
Events
Resolution

They will further have to summarize the book, write a recommendation, look up definitions of unfamiliar vocabulary
and track their reading and book report progress.

The book report will be marked and used to determine the final grade in the LA report card stem:
Reads to explore, construct and extend understanding

I will keep you updated in this matter.

Sincerely,

Pascal Mueller
Grade 6 Teacher
Beddington Heights School
T 403 777 6610

Monday, 16 October 2017

Information on Final Science Project on Trees and Forests



INFORMATION ON OUR FINAL SCIENCE PROJECT 

DUE DATE - (Nov 16th)


Leaf Assignment

1. Tree Identification
Collect and press leaves from 6 deciduous trees or shrubs, which grow around Calgary.  Mount the leaves and label them according to the type of tree or shrub they are from.

2. Type of Leaves
Find and press two examples of simple leaves, two examples of compound leaves, and two examples of needle leaves.  Using the Claim and Evidence model, mount the leaves under the appropriate headings and label according to the type of leaf and the tree if needed.
Example:
Question: What makes a simple leaf simple?
Claim:  This is a simple leaf.
Evidence/Justification:  This is a simple leaf because it has …

3. Leaf Shapes
Find an example of each of the following shapes.  Mount pressed leaves and label according to the shape and tree.  Use the Question, Claim, Evidence model to your understanding.
Linear or Oblong
Deltoid
Oval or Ovate
Lobed
Orbicular or Cordate
4 sided needle

4. Leaf Arrangement
Find an example of each of the following leaf arrangements.  Mount pressed leaves and label according to arrangement and tree.  Use the Question, Claim, Evidence model to show your understanding
Deciduous
-opposite
-alternate
Coniferous
-scale-like needles
-bundles of 2 or bundles of 5

5. Leaf Margins
Find an example of each of the following leaf margins.  Mount pressed leaves and label according to margin of leaf and tree.  Use the Question, Claim, Evidence model to show your understanding.  (Ex: This is a fine-toothed leaf.  I know this because fine-toothed leaves have…)

6. Bark Rubbings
Find examples of 4 different kinds of bark. Make rubbings of each one.  Cut out a sample of the rubbing.  Label the type of tree from which you obtained your rubbing, and describe the rubbing in detail using the following terms: horizontal or vertical; scaly, rough, smooth; color; wavy.

7. Big Ideas and Understandings
This section is an area where you can choose to present some big ideas and understandings in different ways. You can write, draw, illustrate, or collect photographs and pose questions about the topics you have chosen. Pick at least three key concepts! The following list is not exhaustive, but may give you some ideas. Give an explanation of
the topic, explain why it is a critical part of a forest ecosystem or what role it plays, or what consequences human interactions have had.
·      The importance of Photosynthesis, the Nutrient or Water cycle
·      The various functions of the parts of the tree, and how the environment affects them.
·      Forest Fires and their role in an ecosystem.
·      The affect different factors in an environment might have on tree growth.
·      Forestry logging practices.

Effort, Organization and Presentation:
Remember that additional information and detail will help to improve your assignment! When you meet the standard of excellence you go above and beyond the expectations and demonstrate an analysis of the information you have collected and show some critical thinking.



Leaf Project Rubric


Categories
Excellent (4)
Proficient (3)
Adequate (2)
Keep Going (1)
Describes, explains, and classifies characteristic of trees, bark, and leaves in order to identify tree species.
Student includes factual information which demonstrates a comprehensive understanding of the big ideas taught
Student includes factual information which demonstrates a thorough understanding of the big ideas taught
Student includes factual information which demonstrates a beginning understanding of the big ideas taught
Student is
developing skills
which help them
to have a better
understanding of
big ideas
Organizes information to communicate effectively
Student was able to plan and layout information in a way that enhances the meaning and flow of the project
Student was able to plan and layout information in a relevant way so that the meaning and flow was uninterrupted
Student was able to plan and layout information in an adequate way that enhances so that the meaning and flow was uninterrupted
Student continues to work on presenting information in a  way that allows the meaning and flow to be uninterrupted
Supports Understandings
Student was clearly able to identify key characteristics and provide insightful evidence for their understandings
Student was able to identify key characteristics and provide thoughtful evidence for their understandings
Student was able to identify key characteristics and provide appropriate evidence for their understandings
Student is starting to identify key characteristics and provide evidence for their understandings
Explains Processes and Issues Connected to or Impacting Forest Ecosystems
Student was able to provide additional information that provided a perceptive understanding of processes or issues that impact forests

Student was able to provide additional information that provided a relevant understanding of processes or issues that impact forests
Student was able to provide additional information that provided a reasonable understanding of processes or issues that impact forests
Student is beginning to provide additional information that shows a reasonable understanding of processes or issues that impact forests


Use of class time:                               /4                                Total:                                     /32
Organization / Neatness:                 /4
Creativity:                                          /4
Self – Evaluation:                              /4

Student was able to complete project:  With Independence/With Some Support/With Assistance/ With Constant Guidance

Comments:


Name: ____________________________________             Date:_______________________________

Leaf Project Self-Assessment

Always (4)
Often (3)
Sometimes (2)
Rarely (1)
I have shown all the elements required in the project (e.g. titles, page #, sections, claims, evidence etc.).




I have produced high quality work for each section.





I have used my class time wisely.






I spent a lot of my time at home working on this project.





I asked for help when I was unsure at any point in the project.








Something I enjoyed about this project was….









Some problems I ran into during this project was…
Something I want the teacher to notice in my project is…










Something I would do differently in a project next time would be…



Below is a Recording Sheet for students to organize their information:
(This booklet was handed out to students last week prior to the field trip).

Students are encouraged to demonstrate their understanding by choosing another form to represent their ideas (i.e. slide show, poster, scrapbook, photo album).
Filling out this booklet completly equates to a basic effort of understanding on the rubrics.


















Dear Parents and Guardians, It was a pleasure meeting with so many of you last Thursday and Friday for our conferences. This week is ano...