Monday, November 26, 2012

Co-op Update: Monday Nov. 26, 2012

 It was a dreary day today and most of my gang came in sleepy. Luckily it didn't take too long to get them energized!

We started with some cuddles!

 Then I split them into two groups and had one group act out a scenario on responsibility and the other group did compassion. This was an entertaining start to the day!

We have been working on a geometry lapbook. So far we've studied polygons (up to 10 sides), intersecting, parallel, and perpendicular lines. Today (while the two older ones worked) I gave them a lesson on angles. We went over what an angle is and how it is measured. I showed them a protractor and used it only to demonstrate a straight angle and the number of degrees in a circle. Everyone was familiar with the term right angle and that it measures 90 degrees. I had them show me a right angle with their bodies (in many different forms). I then introduced them to the cute little acute angle and the obtuse angle. We demonstrated these with our arms. They seemed to get this really quickly. To demonstrate their knowledge they had to draw a cartoon showing a character sitting in chairs with; an acute angle, an obtuse angle, and a right angle. They had NO problem with this and most were quick to recognize that the obtuse chair would be the most comfortable chair to have!

They then used the coloured sticks and added examples of the three types of angles to their lapbook. They used an index card to measure and confirm the right angle.

After snack and some much needed outdoor time, we did a lesson on symmetry as an introduction to our geometrical art project. I gave each child the outline of an octagon. They had to create a geometrical design that had at least one line of symmetry. Some found this harder than others. One challenge that a few had, was using the ruler properly, and lining it up with the corners to get a straight line. Once they had their lines drawn, they had to colour it. They had to apply their colour in a symmetrical pattern as well. While they were working, they were not allowed to share their designs. As you can see (and as they saw), they were all quite different. They could try this with other polygons at home.

Lunch time and outdoor play!

After lunch while the older two did their activities (and kept an ear open to ours) we continued in our lapbooks and focused on quadrilaterals. We covered; squares, rectangles, rhombus, trapezoid, parallelogram and kite shape. As I introduced a new one, they constructed it out of pipe cleaners. We talked about similarities and compared; line lengths, angle sizes, and parallel sides. They all could identify the 3 types of angles in the various quadrilaterals.

Today we started a lapbook on our novel BFG. As I read two chapters they drew a cover which had to have their version of a BFG. They were fantastic!

As I read, I recorded some of the giant's words. This is a great book for word and language analysis. I think I've already mentioned that there are wonderful opportunities for inferencing and use of context. The kids made a word booklet (to go in the lapbook) and we listed off some of the giant's words. I re-read each word in its sentence and the kids had to come up with a synonym for the giant's word. They had lots of fun with this!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Co-op update: Monday Nov. 19, 2012

Another great day today folks! While we waited for a few kids to arrive we reviewed our week as far as bucket filling and dipping goes. It was difficult to get past the regular/usual/continuous sibling "stuff." I think our older kids understand the consequences of bucket dipping perhaps a little more than the younger ones.  I told them about the third rule; which is putting a lid on our buckets! We realize that bucket dipping is going to occur, but if we can find strategies (our lids) to help us from being affected by bucket dippers than we can help keep our buckets full. Examples of this would include; ignoring, humour, walking away, conversation, etc... We had some good conversation around this topic. We are done with the buckets. They may want to hold on to them so that they can reflect at a later date on the things that filled their buckets.

We started the morning with language centres. I had five centres and the kids rotated through in groups of twos. The centres included:

1) Listening to The Boy Who Cried Wolf which can be found here.
2) Word Families - writing down as many words as they can think of in six different word families. I helped a fair bit with this.
3) Boggle 
4) Synonyms - finding pairs of synonyms 
5) Contractions - making contractions and decoding contractions (this is one area where they could all use a bit more practice!)

Snack time and then outside with facilitation by me! Played a game of Ship to Shore. This tires them out nicely!

Due to lack of table space and chair availability for this size of group, I had to do the art in two sessions. While the girls read, I worked with the boys and then we switched.

Today we worked on creating patterned paper. I found this idea and just loved it! It's essentially a mixed media project and could be completed in different variations. The end result could be used for wrapping paper, scrapbooking, etc... I'm going to make the papers into covers for their Canadiana books.

For step one, they created their backgrounds using watercolour paints. They had to think about colour, line types (since I would only allow organic lines), and how to avoid a muddy mess. They really got into this and the compliments were flying!

After lunch the older two students had time to work on their studies while the remaining 8 were divided into 4 groups of two. They rotated through 5 math stations. These were the stations:

1) tangrams - making the square and making pictures with all the pieces
2) time - using the time given on an index card, they had to find the time on the clock and they partner had to assess it (switch)
3) adding WAR game with Uno cards - to encourage speed when adding
4) dice multiplying game
5) word problems on math site

After math, we returned to our art (since it was dry) and they added doodling with markers and white highlights with white-out pens.

I think they turned out great! What do you think?





Mine (for demo)





 And Mickey's is missing....oops!

We finished off the day with BFG. We're really enjoying this book. I'm hoping to start a lapbook on BFG next week. There's lots we can do with this book.

30-40 minutes of free time outside!