Monday, April 25, 2016

Ocean Sorting Activity

Learning Intention:
I am learning to understand what makes a healthy ocean and what makes an unhealthy ocean.

Success Criteria:
* Place all of the cards up so each group member can see them
* Take turns discussing why one card may belong in a particular group
* Give a reason for why you placed the card in a group
* If you are not sure where a card goes, explain why you are unsure
* For cards in the unsure pile, list ways you can research to find out whether it is part of a healthy or unhealthy ocean

When the students were finished their sorts, the class came together to share how they placed each card. There were some misconceptions of what made a healthy or unhealthy ocean, and these were addressed as part of the students' surface learning.

They are now ready to delve deeper into their inquiries and are preparing for their summative assessment this week!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

It's Better When I'm Dancing: Flash Mob by ES students

Dancing brings us together! For the past two months students in Grade Two have been learning about hip hop and jazz dance during their last unit of inquiry. As a summative task students choreographed hip hop and jazz dance movements in small groups to the song "Better When I'm Dancing" by Megan Trainor. They also learned group choreography. All students in Grades One through Four along with the Gr. 5-6 Dance Activity performed together at the SPA Luncheon. Thanks to Mr. Lewis for capturing this special moment! Enjoy the video.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

A Little Song From Slovenia

Have you heard the song "Marko Skace" from your daughter? I learned this song from Doug Goodkin during his workshop at Seisen International School. The song comes from Slovenia. We have been enjoying this song in many ways. We are learning about the "Building Blocks of Music." We looked at the time signature and the different sections in music. All of the students can play the entire song, and can play it in various sections. They know how to write the song on the music staff using symbols to explain the repetition. They can sing it using do-re-mi-so-la. They even know how to dance it! One of the most interesting things we did with this song was improvising our own melodies (more videos on that next time). Through improvisation, students can try out their own ideas. For some this is difficult. They would prefer to know exactly what to do. As risktakers, we encourage our students to try new things and create their own ideas.
Ane is working on writing the notation for Marko Skace on the music staff.                                                                             She has added a time signature, bar lines, and repeat signs. 

We set up our instruments in C pentatonic.  That means that we remove F and B, so that C, D, E, G, and A remain.            It sounds beautiful!

Do you know the name of this instrument?  It has thick metal barres.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Sakura Book Voting Party

Congratulations to all the girls who have read from our selection of English and Japanese picture books, English chapter books and graphic novels. Thanks also to those who entered a piece of art in the Sakura Art Competition.
This week is VOTING week. Students from all over Japan, including SIS, are voting for their favourite book in each of the Sakura book categories and also for student art work.
Many girls showed commitment,  perseverance and integrity during the months we held the event. Congratulations to all those who achieved or surpassed their reading goal. Several girls read over 30 books.
For those who did not reach their goal there will be another opportunity in the new school year when we will have a new set of great books, selected by the school librarians of Japan.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Thank you to Ellen and Risako's mom for sharing their talent and culture with 2A!

It was very enjoyable listening to the music and story about Chinese New Year on Thursday. Mrs. Okano and Mrs. Imai's visit was an opportunity for the girls to be open-minded about Chinese culture. A positive experience like this can inspire students to learn more about other cultures and their own values, traditions, music, and stories. 
Thank you, moms, for this opportunity.

It was a treat to listen to Risako's mother perform traditional Chinese and Japanese songs on the biwa (Chinese lute). Mrs. Imai is a professional "biwa-ist"-- she started playing when she was three or four years old.

Mrs. Okano taught 2A students about Chinese culture and shared a story about Chinese New Year.
Do you know why Chinese people put the color red on display during their New Year?

ACTION SHOT-- Jiwoo and Risa keeping their jianzi in the air. 2a girls got to keep their jianzi. Keep practicing, 2A! Tell us your new record. 

2A's Jiwoo, Olivia, Reina, and Ellen trying to kick their jianzi into the hula-hoop.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Using Google Slides to Present Our Opinions

2B students have created Google Slides presentations that address our Central Idea. We all have different opinions about how we can keep our seas and oceans healthy and how to sustain marine life. Let us know if you would like them to present for your class. You just may be persuaded to take action in saving our seas and oceans! Please have a look at Yun Hee's Opinion Writing:

Friday, April 8, 2016

School of Fish

Today 2A students observed different kinds of fish and squid today as part of our unit of inquiry.

Learning Intention: I am learning to identify and classify marine plants and animals.

Success Criteria:
Draw marine animals with detail.
Use an identification key to name different marine animals.
Label the different parts of ocean animals.
Compare marine animals according to what they look like (observable features)

Initial reactions... 
Do you know what kind of squid Yuka is holding?

Picking up a squid for the first time-- can you identify the species?
Students labelled the parts of fish using an identification key.

Compared and contrasted two different squid on a Venn Diagram

Yuzuki and Reina examining the dorsal fin being careful not to get poked

Shin learning to treat a marine animal with respect
Comparing squid (mini and big size)
Observing the beak of a squid

These are some of the species of marine animals we explored.

2A students asked lots and lots of questions during this activity. Your daughter could extend her learning by identifying these fish using an identification key or a trip to the local supermarket. Then she can start researching on the internet or using non-fiction books to answer her questions and find out more.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Persuasive Writing

On Friday, April 8 2B learned to write an opinion piece that would persuade readers to save our seas and oceans.

They are inquiring into people's efforts to conserve seas and oceans and opinion writing is a great way to share what they have learned!

Learning Intention: I am learning how to write an opinion piece.

Success Criteria: Follow your Opinion Writing Checklist.

This format helped guide students' ideas into their persuasive / opinion writing.
Ideas are pouring out into their writer's notebooks...

The students helped each other strengthen their opinions by giving reasons and explanations for them.

Five 2B Girls - Five Different Opinion Pieces!

2B students referred to Ms. Ciara's example of an
opinion piece, following the 'OREO' format.

2B were proud to share the first draft of their opinion pieces!
They will continue to edit and revise their work next week with 
their Opinion Writing Checklists.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

What is an Inquiry Table?

Students have brought in all sorts of things for our inquiry table. We have seashells, stories about sea life, a Russian text book about underwater creatures, cute stuffed toys and more! 

An Inquiry Table is used to inspire students to learn more about a Unit of Inquiry. Students are free to touch what is on the table and ask each other questions about the many items. The girls feel a connection to the table because each one of them had a role in creating it.

Students have started to take action with our Central Idea: Maintaining clean and healthy oceans can help sustain sea life. These pieces of action are featured on our Inquiry Table.

Some examples of action within our unit:
Lucy brought in her own research on manatees, turtles and crustaceans. 
Yuna brought in a mini aquarium and sea monkey eggs with directions on how to create the best environment for them to hatch in.
Olivia created her own educational booklet about coral reefs.

...more action to come!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Grade 2 Dives into Measurement

Students have started learning about measurement this week. On Tuesday, we incorporated fish into our morning math lesson as it connects to our current UOI.

Learning Intention:
We are learning to measure different lengths of fish in inches.

Success Criteria:
* Pick a fish to measure from the Fish Poster
* Find a ruler with inches
* Measure the length of the fish and draw it on a piece of paper
* If the fish is longer than 30 inches, use string to measure its length

Yumi, Ane, Kaho, Yun Hee and Mary have measured their fish accurately in inches.
Introductory Math Message. Students responded on their white boards.

Some fish were so long that students used string instead of paper.

2B's 'Measurement Masters' 

Moma, Yurina, Alyssa, Yun Hee and Kaho share their finished product.