First Grade Talent Development will be reading a new picture book titled Also an Octopus, a great story about what elements make up a story. We will be using the book as inspiration to create our own picture books.
Second Grade Talent Development is not reading Frindle, because as it turns out, I read this with many of the kids when they were in first grade TD, oops! Instead we are reading the 1938 Newbery Honor winner Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater. My main objective for this book is comprehension and using evidence from the text to support answers to complex questions.
3PA is reading a short science fiction novel by Jill Patton Walsh titled The Green Book. It is a story about a group of families who have to leave Earth on a four year journey to a new planet called Shine. We will be focused on how characters respond to change as we read. In their homerooms next week, the kids will be reading an informational text about how schools look different around the globe titled Off to Class, Incredible and Unusual Schools Around the World. We will use our novel and this book as part of a collaborative project to design a school and a curriculum for a new school on Shine in the weeks to come.
4PA is going deeper into The Secret Garden. We will be discussing the motif of secrets in the book, uncovering the many metaphors, and the role that magic plays in the tale. The kids will be creating seven word summaries of chapters 1-15, and then we will be picking the most precise one for each chapter after discussing each one that the kids wrote. The 4PA group will also have our first Socratic seminar using questions they will create.
5PA will dive into our fourth Ray Bradbury story this week. "The Scythe" is about a farmer and his family during the Great Depression who discover something very strange about a field of wheat on their new land. We will be discussing inner conflict, and then the kids will begin to examine the connections between all four Bradbury tales we have read thus far. Teams of kids will be developing open questions for a Ray Bradbury Socratic seminar. We will also begin a "Passion Examiner" that will focus the first steps in our Capstone project.