Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Wonderful Field Trip

We had a wonderful walking field trip of Damascus yesterday...Many thanks to Mrs. Witmer and Mrs. Brown for organizing the was VERY educational and ran extremely smoothly! Also, thank you to the many parents who accompanied us on the tour...your support was invaluable!

On the trip, we toured many places of business in Damascus, including, the Damascus Community Bank, the post office, Up County Realty, Nationwide Insurance and a few others, as well. The students got a first look at the behind the scenes functioning of these businesses and they began to understand how different businesses affect each other and impact the community and the economy in general. For example, at the real estate office, the poor housing market was discussed and it was shared how this also affects builders, parts distributors, etc...the whole "trickle-down" affect. Students also saw how organizational skills are important tools to acquire as they are needed to be successful in business.

Today, I am in a training session with the other third, fourth and fifth grade teachers. We are spending time observing, discussing and planning shared inquiry instruction that is used to help students think in a more divergent way. These skills are addressed in the Junior Great Books program but can be used with other literature as well.

The students are working with Mrs. Kriz, using the plans I left. During math, the students practiced measuring using inches. They also practiced converting units of measurement using inches, feet and yards.

During reading they read and discussed another issue of Time for Kids, focusing on the text features and HOW they aid comprehension. You might remember that we did a similar activity on Monday with a follow up in their reading response log...overall, the responses were not "strong" responses...I put feedback in every student's log and gave them an opportunity to use this feedback to improve their responses and turn it in a for a new grade. PLEASE talk to your child about this...I want them to use feedback to improve...that to me is good learning! :-)

Following PE, lunch and recess, the class will spend a good amount of time creating thank you cards for the businesses they visited yesterday. Some will even create a thank you card for,Washington Wizard, Gilbert Arenas as he has donated $1,000 of his personal money to our school.

Then the students will go to the media center for a book exchange.

As always, I appreciate all feedback from you (or the children!).

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