Dear Parents,

Spelling included units on contractions, -ed/-ing endings, and a review unit. We were able to go over new spelling rules for how to change spelling. We read stories in reading this month revolving around our oceans. Students worked on understanding fact vs. opinion and set up compare and contrast Venn diagrams. In phonics, students practiced correct pronunciation of words, sounding out words phonetically, and speed reading. Level 5A’s grammar lessons have been all about verbs this month. Verbs are a difficult but very crucial element to the English language so we have been really focusing on the rules.

Our class spent time in science this month going over how we could better care for our shared home﹣Earth. Students learned more about reducing, reusing, and recycling. Our class paid close attention and observed how much waste we produce together as ten people during our ten hours together over the course of a week. Students participated in a hands on experiment where we created parts of the water cycle﹣condensation and precipitation. We also moved into the seasons, their characteristics, and why they change. Students made demonstrative models of the Earth’s axis as it moves around the sun according to the seasons.

In writing class, we started a new prompt. Since Chinese New Year had just occurred, we discussed some traditions for western New Year as well as Chinese New Year. Our prompt title was “New Year, New Goals.” Students wrote about what goals are and their importance, why the new year is a popular time to set new goals, and some of their very own goals for themselves!

Social Studies brought us information regarding exploration. We read about the first people from Europe to colonize America. Students thought it was amusing that Christopher Columbus was attempting to sail from Spain to the country of India, but actually ended up in what we now know as the USA. We went over why the first settlers from England made their journey and how difficult life was for them. Finally, we discussed how the high taxation during their rule of the colonies lead to the Boston Tea Party.

For research this month, we went over hurricanes and tsunamis. We compared them to one another, as well as something the students are all very familiar with: typhoons. Students made warning posters for hurricanes and tsunamis that depicted what they looked like and included information like safety precautions, dangers, and causes.

It was nice getting to know students this month as we continued on our learning adventure. I am looking forward to another month of learning with Level 5A in April!

Best, Teacher Jessica