Design Studio 5


Volume 5: September 13, 2014

We hope that you all are enjoying your long weekend. We were able to participate in several great professional development sessions during the break. We received our training on Rosetta Stone, so we will soon begin our Spanish personalization. Look below for more details. We also were able to hear George Couros and Will Richardson. They had great insights into new trends in education and, I am happy to report, we are right on the cutting edge with EPiC. As we move towards transformational education, we were encouraged by their words of encouragement to think outside the box and continue to rethink education. One quote struck me in light of what we have been doing the past few weeks: "Never limit a child to your belief in their potential. They often have the ability to do far more than we could ever think possible." We are excited to watch these little critters grow and learn right in front of us.

Mrs. Caywood and Mrs. Hunerdosse

Content Learning In Studio 5

Reading/Writing: We will finish up our personal narratives this week and students will be practicing their researching skills during our Social Studies PBL. It is sometimes difficult for students to learn how to research effectively using print and digital resources. So much of "researching" has been teacher directed up to this point and students come to 5th grade and expect to open up a website and find the answer to their question in the first paragraph. In 5th grade students are learning how to combine information from multiple texts and to determine what is important for their research from each text. These are not easy skills, but certainly essential for their success academically in the years to come.

Spelling: Students have been introduced the spelling program we are going to use for personalization. They have a sheet in their binder with what level they will start with based upon their Spelling Connections pretest. They can use a laptop or desktop to complete these and they record their results by emailing them directly to me or by printing them off and turning them in. They also have to record what lessons they are working on in their binder GUMS section. The three weblinks are : or or Students will access the link based upon their pretest score and which lessons best fit their needs as a speller. If they can't remember where to start, have them see me and I will print off their sheet again. They should get a prompt to email or print the results after every activity. These can be send directly to me PLEASE HAVE YOUR CHILD BE DOING SOME OF THIS WORK AT HOME!

Math: We completed the pre-assessments for DreamBox and iReady this week. DreamBox is an iPad app that will allow students to access from anywhere. Lessons with gold coins at the bottom indicate weaknesses or prerequisite skills that were deficient during the pre-assessment. This program uses digital tools similar to what the new Smarter Balanced Assessment will utilize. iReady assessments are now all completed as well. These require laptops, so students will be working on this program in shifts throughout the week and should also supplement at home. We will plan on having our first chapter test for math on Friday over place value, exponents, number forms (expanded, standard, word), and multiplication mainly. We will review in class this week.

Social Studies: We broke into groups this week to begin phase 1 of our history PBL unit. This week we will continue to research one Native American tribe and then create visual displays that will eventually be hung at the MidContinent Library during October when it is Native American Awareness month. Our history standard says that we will help students understand these cultures both prior to and after the explorers came to this region. The first step in doing that is to help students understand things like dress, government, where they lived and why, what they held to be important in their beliefs, etc. We already heard some great discussions about where they were located and why you think that is important.

Science: We will continue to work on the scientific method this week with a special visit from LHS students. We are going to be doing an experiment that will have the kids POPPING with excitement all day on Tuesday. It should be a lot of fun and our students will get to walk through the scientific method one more time before beginning their own science experiments in class. They should have their experiment chosen by this Friday after looking at many resources we will provide them throughout this week.

iPads and Downloading

Please remember to set up protocols at home for your child downloading apps onto their device. We would appreciate it if you could remind your child that, if you have given them permission to download material at home other than what was on the lists we sent out, that you remind them that they are not to access those while at school. This week, we will begin sending emails to parents if it becomes an issue. We are so grateful for this tool we have been provided to help your students grow as learners and we have to help them remember that it is available to them as a learning resource, not as a personal device. This will help us ensure that students are choosing to access learning apps instead of a wide variety of merely entertainment apps.