Novak's News

Room 12 - John Lyman School - February 19, 2016

Math Homework Starts Next Week

Last week our class discussed starting Math homework this month. The class voted on a plan to review and take home assignments on Tuesdays. Math homework will be due on Thursdays, beginning February 25. Although students will have two afternoons/nights to complete the homework, the work should typically take 15-20 minutes. (Students may bring back their finished work on either Wednesday or Thursday.) Directions for each homework assignment will be reviewed in class before being sent home. Work will connect to skills and units we are working on at school, as well as addition and subtraction fact practice.

Reading homework will continue to be due on Fridays. I apologize for the mix-up with last week's homework log - they were in a folder I had prepared prior to my absence and with the weather cancellations, I didn't find them until it was too late.

Beginning Our Study of Brazil

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On February 4th, we enjoyed a performance by Ginga Brasiliera, which was a great introduction to our study of Brazil. We learned some basic facts about Brazil, along with some examples of Brazilian culture. The performers shared several different types of dances and instruments. One of the performers, Ephraim Silva, demonstrated capoeira, a mixture of dance and martial arts practiced in Brazil. Thank you to JLPA for bringing these performers to John Lyman!


As we shared a book about Brazil based on the alphabet yesterday, students recognized facts that we learned during the performance. We also talked about different themes in the book, such as geography, water, arts, and plants/food. Students began to share some questions and topics they would like to learn more about as we continue our study of Brazil. We are looking forward to learning more about the rain forest plants and animals and viewing some photographs taken by my uncle when he traveled there. Please let me know if you have any experiences or connections to help us in our study of Brazil.


We have also started a new chapter book called The Penguin Lessons. This book is actually a memoir I read while recuperating from my surgery, which I hoped would be a good match for our class. (This book is not really a children's book, so there are a couple parts I will not be reading aloud.) The author focuses on his adventures after rescuing a penguin in South America, set primarily in neighboring Argentina. The class was very engaged as we began the first chapter called "I Pick Up A Penguin!"

Ocean Song Posted to Class Website: "Sharks And Whales And Dolphins"

You may recall that we worked with Mr. Meurs, our Music teacher, in the fall during a H.O.T. Block. Students researched three ocean animals and wrote lyrics to share what they learned. Next they composed a tune for the chorus and a melody for the verses. The recording was shared as part of this year's first WJLS broadcast in December. I can't embed the file into this newsletter so I will try to send it out separately - this newsletter website only allows certain types of sound/video files to be attached. We think you will want to join in on the catchy chorus after listening!