The Grade 4 students were challenged to write a persuasive essay just before we left school in the second week of March. The idea of trying to persuade someone had many of the students thinking of how they could persuade their parents to get them an apple watch or a dog. Other students thought about trying to persuade Dr. Mitzmacher into having more breaks during the school day, having quieter classrooms, and the need for school without uniforms. The children had fun filling out their graphic organizers and imagining ways to be persuasive.
Fast forward to weeks and it is funny because some of the things the children were hoping for happened with the closure of the school. The students could take some breaks during the day, they didn’t have to wear their full uniform just the uniform top, and the classrooms became a little quieter with everyone at their own house.
Some students were successful at persuading their parents and one student is now the proud owner of an apple watch that happened to arrive on her birthday. We hope to share our persuasive essays on our blogs one day with hopes of Dr. Mitzmacher reading them. Who knows we might just give him some good ideas.
A quick note to our Families:
Our First Week of Distance Learning
The first few days of distance learning had us getting used to so many new things. We had to navigate schedules, Google Meets, and links for work to be printed.
We were patient, we were excited, we were also a little nervous to be in a virtual school, and see our classmates on a computer screen. We started brainstorming topics for speeches, working on multiplication, and making Flipgrid videos for our new friends in Taiwan. We were excited to see the videos of students from all over Taiwan and learn a little bit more about them. It is funny because when we saw the videos, we found out that we had many things in common with these students so far away.
SPIRIT WEEK IN GRADE 4
Spirit Week was full of Ruach, costumes, and laughter. It was also our last four days in school together, and boy what a week it was.
Our classes enjoyed Crazy Hair Day, Purim, Dress like a Teacher/Student Day, and finally a Book or Movie Character Day.
Our favourite day had to be Dress like a Teacher/Student Day. Morah Yardena and I dressed like students and a few students dressed like each of us. It was uncanny to see how the students know us and could even act like us as well. One of the students dressed up like Dr. Mitzmacher our Head of School. He had the chance to visit the office and even sit in Dr. Mitzmacher’s chair.
Morah Yardena and I decided to take all the teachers to the staffroom so our new Dr. Mitzmacher could conduct a staff meeting.
We had so much fun during the week that we will always remember the last physical week in school with fondness
In anticipation of Innovation Day: the students were given the challenge of designing a Rube Goldberg machine. The students needed to include a pulley in their design and have the machine perform a specific task at the end of its chain reaction, like popping a balloon or ringing a bell. The students worked in pairs and used technological problem-solving skills to design, build, and test their machines.
Patience and perseverance proved to be the skills crucial for this challenge. There was excitement in the class as each Rube Goldberg machine finally worked. A few of the machines did not work and that was part of the learning process as well. It was amazing to see the children go and help their friends’ problem solve and make adjustments to the machines.
Innovation Day was a huge success. The students had a chance to explain their design thinking skills and problem-solving skills that led to their final Rube Goldberg machine. The parents loved seeing the machines in action.
Maker pedagogies promote important principles including inquiry, play, imagination, innovation, critical thinking, problem-solving, collaboration, and personalized learning.