As February comes to an end, we can begin to say goodbye to winter and get ready for spring.  With having such a mild winter who knows what’s in store for this spring of new beginnings. Here at Alexander Academy we completed the first month of our new beginning of the second semester.

     The start of our second semester was a refresher course in classroom management.  We reviewed our classroom rules and made posters to create a sense of ownership of following these rules.  Next, we started a new classroom behavior recognition system.  We are all stars and each time we shine in class by following the rules, participating well, or providing great answers, we get to move one step closer to being out of this world.  If we reach out of this world our star gets to stick on the ceiling!  Part of classroom management is about respect the building and room we learn in.  As an example, we performed a cool foaming experiment to understand a little about chemical reactions and then we all helped in cleaning up the mess.

     Our first new theme we learned about was our five senses.  We discussed what our five senses are and which body parts are used with those sensations.  It was surprising to realize that we feel with our feet and that our eyes work independently even though we are seeing one image. We learned that our body informs us what we are sensing by electricity moving fast from our skin, through the spinal cord, to our brain.  That’s awesome!  For our role play, we worked in teams to help our teammates through obstacle courses.  Our teammate was either blindfolded for one course or we weren’t allowed to talk on the other.

     In the next theme, we talked about our feelings and emotions.  This was a good topic to follow our five senses theme although it was a tough theme to grasp the difference between feelings and emotions. They are so close in definition and how we perceive them within our bodies.  For our role play we got to play charades.  In the game, we acted out a feeling or emotion without making any noises and the rest of our team had to guess what it was.  This was fun! We also listened to different styles of music to see if they made us feel any certain way.  Some music made us want to dance like we were excited.  Other songs made us feel sleepy.  And yet others made us angry and stomp around.  To close out our session we listened to music that helped us relax and made us focus on our breathing.  This made us calm.  Our journal entries about how we react to feelings and emotions is show cased this month.

     Our last theme we covered in the new beginning of the second semester was buildings and construction.  Lucky for us, there was some construction happening right next door.  We got to see some equipment operating and see the foundation of the start of a new building.  Even though that was cool we learned about some amazing buildings across the world.  There are so many awesome old structures but we only learned about seven of them.  The oldest building still standing is actual a group of buildings called the Pyramids of Giza.  They were built around 2,500BC.  They were used to house the mummified bodies of pharaohs.  Our role play took us on an international trip to visit three of our favorite wonders.  We shared with the class what we would bring on our trip and why we chose to visit those places.

     Our phonics are getting better and better!  The silent e is making more appearances in words but that doesn’t confuse when reading out loud.  We learned a big 4 letter phonics skill, -tion, the /shun/ sound.  We learned that there are other ways to spell that same sound; such as, -sion and -cion.  Now, we recognize that word ending all over the classroom.  Especially, daily when we hand in our communication books and on Fridays when we have a comprehension review.

The sight words are keeping us on our toes.  There are some words that we have heard often in conversation but can have a hard time explaining them out of context.  The word of was tricky because it sounds and is spelled like off but does not mean the same thing.  We have also learned a few words that are contractions like don’t.  That little floating comma can be a tricky word to pronounce. Apostrophe, phew!