Thursday, March 17, 2016

PA and TD for the Week of 3-21

Kindergarten and 1st Grade Talent Development will be spending four days with the picture book Walter Was Worried. We will be using the book to talk about feelings and what causes us to feel like we do in different situations.  When are we puzzled, anxious, delighted, shocked, or hopeful and why do we feel this way?  The picture book has amazing illustrations that create faces out of the letters in each feeling word.  The kids are going to create their own face drawing using a feeling word that begins with the same letter as their first name.  

Second Grade TD will be exploring the Greek city-state of Sparta this week.  The main focus will be on the differences between life in Ancient Athens to what life was like in Sparta.  Boys going off to the army at the age of seven???

Third Grade PA will finish the slide show project comparing life in Ancient Egypt to modern day life on Monday, the due date for the project.  Some of the kids will need to work on this over the weekend to complete the project on time.  Then, we will be watching parts of a Discovery Channel documentary film on life in Ancient Egypt.  Reading about what life was like and seeing reenactments discussed by scholars will, I hope, truly bring this period of history to life.  We will also create our name cartouche, a project that we didn't have time for a few weeks ago.

Fourth Grade PA will be learning about theories comparing right brained people to left brained people.  What do the terms mean, what are the characteristics for both, and where do we all fit?  The class will be doing a lot of reading on the subject and taking an online test to see what side they are on. 

Fifth Grade PA will be creating a bibliography for their Capstone research using the APA style that is used in the middle schools.  The class will also begin outlining their "Summary of Research", the next part of the Capstone project.  In the summary, students will be asked to write about the following: 

Clearly Identifies the Problem: Your summary clearly identifies the problem in a clear and complete fashion.

Research is Evident: Your summary is consistently supported with evidence from your research to support your thinking.

Credible Solution: Your summary shows evidence of your thoughtful reflection on the topic to develop a solution that is possible.

 Impact System: Your summary illustrates how your idea will impact a global system in a positive way. 

Details about the next two steps, the implementation timeline and the visual that will be a companion to their TED talk will be given after break.

Middle School PA Qualification letters will be sent home on April 22.  It is important for all parents to know that not all 5th grade students will be moving forward in PA.  An informal survey of all the PA teachers in District 204 showed that about 60% of the kids continue.  With this in mind, please talk with your son or daughter to let them know that it is not the end of the world if they do not move forward in PA.  Every student who does not qualify will have an opportunity to retest for 7th grade PA next year at Hill.  It is also important for you to know that participation in PA at Hill is in no way connected with eligibility for honors or AP classes in high school.  For those students not moving on, I will have time to talk with parents about the data after the letters go home. 

My Wish for my Students