Friday, January 12, 2018

Celebrating Where We Are in Place and Time

We have been inquiring into celebrations. Our central idea is:

Celebrations provide an insight into personal and cultural identity.

The first day of our new unit second graders were surprised by a "Second Graders Day" celebration. 

Afterwards, we reflected on what we celebrate and how, and some of the reasons why we celebrate. 

Celebrations Research in the Classroom

 Throughout our inquiry we have been making choices from a "Celebrations Bingo" card. Choices included items such as designing a decoration or outfit used during a celebration, using a Venn diagram to compare a celebration that you researched with one that you celebrate, writing an invitation for a celebration of your choice, or designing a menu for a celebration that you have researched. 

Inquiring into Holi

As a class, we chose a celebration that we wanted to find out more about: Holi. We began by asking questions and then thinking about where we could find answers. We looked in books and online sources. Then, we synthesized our information and wrote paragraphs about what we had researched: food, symbols, activities, where and when, and why it is celebrated. Next, we shared our research and then asked more questions. An invited guest helped us to find out more about Holi. Finally, we took action and shared our research with Kindergarteners at TIS. Ms. Sayyora came and helped us to reflect upon the process that we had completed, and to identify stages in the research cycle that we had experienced, such as : Tuning In, Finding Out, Sorting Out, Going Further, Making Conclusions and Taking Action.

Learning About Different Celebrations From Our Community

We've learnt about a wide variety of celebrations first-hand from members of our community, such as parents and teachers. Through these presentations we found out about Navruz, Eid-al-Fitr, Easter, Canada Day, Chinese New Year, Fourth of July, Christmas, Diwali, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Weddings, First Birthdays and Asian New Year. As we learnt about these celebrations, we collected data on a graph in our classroom. We were so lucky to have had so many visitors help us find out about celebrations from around the world.

Celebrations Research

After we came back from the winter break, we all chose one celebration that we wanted to research independently. We have been using the research skills that we have practiced throughout the unit to do so. The main ones are: 

  • Asking questions
  • Using pictures to find out more
  • Paraphrasing (using our own words when taking notes)

3D Shapes and Symmetry

We have explored the features of 3D shapes: edges, vertices and faces by making models from paper and clay. Then, we explored symmetry using pattern blocks, and looked for symmetry in our classroom.

Addition and Subtraction Fact Families

Fact families have helped us to explore how how addition and subtraction are related. We made fact family number sentences and have used them to help us find the missing value in a number sentences.

Nonfiction Text Features

In our guided reading groups we have been studying how the features of non- fiction texts help us to find information. We have learnt about using an index, table of contents, glossaries, pictures, and headings. While doing so, we created our own book about text features using the app Book Creator. 

Important Dates!

  • Celebrations Research Exhibition: Friday, January 19th at 9:30 am in 2T classroom.