This week the focus of our bee study was on the bee caste system. Students learned that in a hive there are 3 types of bees; workers, drones, and one queen bee. They were fascinated by the fact that the all female worker bees have many different jobs while the all male drones are rather lazy. Another fact that interested the class, was that our observation hive consists of about 30,000 bees and of those bees only about 100 are drones. Ask your child about royal jelly and how a queen bee is raised!
Our current writing unit is made up of three different sections, which Lucy Calkins refers to as “bends”. This week we began the second bend of our realistic fiction unit. During this bend, students learn the stepped out process that all good authors use when writing stories. First you rehearse your story, then you draft, next you revise and finally you edit. This week student spent most of their writing time drafting and revising, all the while conferencing with the teacher.
In Grades 4 and 5, a common close-of-day activity is for students to choose the name of another student from a hat and give that person a thoughtful compliment, or something that he or she appreciates about that person. It reinforces speaking and listening skills, builds community, and allows those older students to leave school with a compliment in their hearts. This has become a favorite part of each week for both students and teachers!