Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Power Water!

We enjoyed some home-made Power Water today! 

Power Water Recipe

-Water (your brain is 85% water)
-Mint (helps you relax)
-Lemon (for hydration)
-Cucumber (lowers blood pressure)
-Lime (fights fatigue)

The PACE Warm-Up

Being in the right state of mind is important when learning something new or tackling a challenging task.  Some teachers and students have experienced success when using the following exercises.  Perhaps they would work for you, too.

Monday, April 29, 2013

No Morning Math Tutorial During CRCT

Tuesday and Thursday morning math tutorials will not take place during the next two weeks because of  the CRCT.  We will resume tutorials upon completion of the state tests.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Week of April 29, 2013

Welcome to the last week of April!  As you know, CRCT starts this week.  Similar to your homework, choice sheets, and classroom tests, the CRCT is just another way to show what you know.   The best way you can prepare at this point is to relax and have confidence in yourself!  Here is the CRCT schedule:

Tuesday                 April 30          Reading
Wednesday           May 1            ELA
Thursday                May 2            Math
Monday                 May 6            Science
Tuesday                 May 7            Social Studies

In addition to this testing, we will also have some time to work on your science choice sheet.  The choice sheet is due Friday.  On Friday you will also have a test on the environmentalism lessons we've had.  Please do not stress over this test.  I understand you have a lot of testing this week, so I will allow you to use your notes on the test.

We will also have some time to work on our musical script.  Once finalized, we will start working on the cast list.  If you have any entries for the poster contest, please give them to Ms. Tiia Monday.

Mr. Charles has just announced that this Friday is another dress down day!  It will cost $1.00, and the money raised will benefit the Relay for Life charity.  

Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Very Busy Friday....

Please keep the following in mind for tomorrow (Friday, April 25):

1.  Progress reports are being sent home today.  Please review, sign, and return them tomorrow.  If you have any questions or comments, please write them on the cover sheet and Ms. Carol or myself will get back to you ASAP.
2.  Friday is a free out-of-uniform day.
3.  "Lunch with Me" will start at 12:15.  Please come to the classroom to pick up your child and enjoy lunch in the cafeteria. 
4.  There will be a science vocabulary quiz.  The Compass Learning assignements are also due by the end of the day Friday.  Finally, don't forget to complete the assigned page in your review booklet.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Musical Script

Please review the following script we have created.  Take note of any changes you think should be made, and we will meet on Friday to make a final copy.  Nice job, everyone!

Setting:  Reptile exhibit in a science museum.  The animals will be frozen in place and will “come alive” as the guard walks around the museum.

Guard:  WOW, its sure is lonely having to work night shift at the science museum.  I sure wish I had someone to keep me company. 

(Skinks “come alive” and approach the guard)

Skink 1:  Tell us about it!  We’ve been stuck in these exhibits for decades!
Skink 2:  We have an exciting story to tell and no one to listen!

Guard:  Tell me your story, the story of how reptiles came to be.

Skink 1: Long ago, when amphibians ruled the waters, they became tired of only being able live below the surface. 
Skink 2: Ain’t nobody got time fo dat!!
Skink 1:  SHhh…I’m telling a story.  The amphibians slowly changed and adapted to be able to survive on land. 

Guard: What types of changes did they go through?

(Turtle and tortoise come forward to center of stage)

Turtle: Hello, we were one of the first reptile inhabitants of the Earth.
Tortoise: After we came out of the water we grew scales.
Turtle: We also developed a special type of coating for our eggs called shells.
Tortoise: Now we can move wherever we want across the land.

(Turtle and Tortoise go back to frozen position, lizards come forward)

Reptile Guard: Well then what happened?

Lizard 1: There were still a lot of amphibians left, even though so much of them became reptiles.
Lizard 2: The reptiles had so much fun, but they were still a bit small. Then they started to grow in size.

(lizards return, alligator and crocodile come forward)

Alligator: There was no one to stop the reptiles from growing so big.
Crocodile: They became the lords and masters of the world.
Alligator : They took over the lands and the seas.
Crocodile : they even took over the air.

(Alligator and crocodile  go back, Iguanas come forward)

Reptile Guard: How big did they grow?

Iguana 1: They grew up to 70 feet long.
Iguana 2: They tried to eat me but I fought them off with my ka – rah – tee skills.
(Iguana 2 does stupid karate move. Iguana 1 laughs and rolls its eyes)

(Iguanas go back and Group E comes forward (also the first dinosaur group))

Dino 1: We have huge heads.
Dino 2: Yeah! They were as big as a man’s body!
Dino 1: There always has been something different about us.
Dino 2: Yeah, of course. (Sarcastically said (points at Dino 1 and does crazy sign))
Dino 1: I have a brain in my head but also one in the base of its tail.
Dino 2: They always say “Two brains are better than one”.
(Dino 1 rolls eyes)
Dino 1: You’re too small to even make a snack!
Dino 2: Hey, be nice.
Dino 1: But you’re better than nothing…I think I’ll eat you anyway. 

(Dinos exit, snakes appear)

Snake 1: Can you imagine how much the Earth had sssnaken?!
Snake 2: thessssse huge creaturesssss were ssso loud as they sssssstomped around eating.
Snake 1: They had everything they wanted.
Snake 2: yeah, itssss as if they had an all you can eat buffet.

(Snakes go back, Salamanders come forward)

Salamander 1: Well, I guess everyone’s a comedian!
Salamander 2: oh hush up. Let’s get back to the story.
Salamander 1: oh all right! The little animals had no chance against these so called dinosaurs!
Salamander 2: Then the fled to where it was cold so the dinos could not get them.
Salamander 1: Whoa! That’s one harsh game of hide n seek!

(Salamanders go back and Komodo dragon comes forward)

Komodo dragon: After a while the animals that fled developed something to keep them from the cold. They developed hair and fur to keep their bodies warm in the winter. These were the first birds and the mammals.  And that’s the story of how amphibians changed to reptiles. 

Guard:  Wow, thanks for the lesson!  I had no idea reptiles evolved from amphibians!  That’s a pretty rockin story!

Crocodile:  Crocodile rockin?!?!

Everyone:  Yeah!!!!

(All come to middle and sing crocodile rock)

Check out MathSnacks.org

Are you looking for a fun way to review some topics we've covered this year in math?  Check out www.mathsnacks.org!  It's full of great animations and games!

Monday, April 22, 2013

CRCT Information

Please see the letter below from Ms. Meri, our test coordinator.  Check out the CRCT Prep. page for study guides and practice tests!

Lunch With Me

All 6th grade parents are invited to have "Lunch With Me".  This Friday, join your child during lunch at 11:30 am.  You can eat in the cafeteria where there will be special prizes awarded and goodies given out throughout the meal!  Please return the RSVP found in your mailbox by Wednesday to attend. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Tuesday (April 23) Math Tutorial Cancelled

Math Tutorial on Tuesday, April 23 is cancelled.  We WILL have tutorial on Thursday, April 25.

The Week of April 22, 2013

Happy weekend to you!  The upcoming week at Ellis is shaping up to be a great one!

In math, we will continue reviewing topics we've covered this year in math.  You will get a chance to practice problems you may have forgotten how to do through a series of small group lessons and followup activities.  Please make sure to complete all followup assignments by this Friday.  Each night this week you will also be assigned a page to do in your review booklet.

In science, we will begin our last unit of the year.  Now that we've investigated from the center of the Earth to the farthest reaches of outer space, we are going to look at how we fit into the environment near (and far) from us.  Monday is Earth Day, so this is a perfect time to have this lesson!  With a focus on land, water, and air, you will have two weeks to complete a choice sheet based upon environmentalism.

The "Tragedy of Bunnies" game can help you understand the ramifications of overuse of the world's resources.

You will have a vocabulary test Friday on the following words:

aerosol- A substance enclosed under pressure and able to be released as a fine spray, typically by means of a propellant gas.

erosion- The process of gradual destruction by wind, water, or other natural agents.

conservation- Preservation, protection, or restoration of the natural environment, natural ecosystems, vegetation, and wildlife.

exhaust fumes- gases ejected from an engine as waste products.

fertilizers- A chemical or natural substance added to soil to increase its fertility

renewable resources- any natural resource (as wood or solar energy) that can be replenished naturally with the passage of time.

oil-slick- A film or layer of oil floating on an expanse of water, esp. one that has leaked or been discharged from a ship

pesticide- A substance used for destroying insects or other organisms harmful to cultivated plants or to animals.

alternative energy- energy derived from sources that do not use up natural resources or harm the environment.

non-renewable resources- any natural resource from the Earth that exists in limited supply and cannot be replaced if it is used up; also, any natural resource that cannot be replenished by natural means at the same rates that it is consumed.

In addition to your vocabulary test, you will have a chapter test next Friday (May 3).  This is also the same day that your choice sheet is due.   You can use this study guide to help you prepare. 

My homeroom will also take some time this week to write the script for our portion of the upcoming musical.  Our goal is to have a finished script by Friday, so get thinking about reptiles!

Parents, be sure to get your tickets for the Silver Jubilee Gala!  You can stop by the media center to purchase them, or get them online and pick them up at the gala.  

Finally, don't forget that this Friday is a free dress-down day!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend,
Mr. Trent

P.S. I almost forgot to mention the Lyrid meteor shower!  www.earthsky.org has a wonderful article about it HERE.  Hopefully, we will get to see some meteors tonight!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

You're Invited: Charles Ellis Montessori Academy Silver Jubilee Gala!

Click HERE to purchase tickets online (they will be available for pickup at will-call the night of the gala).

The Week of April 15, 2013

Welcome to the wonderful week of April 14th!  I hope you had a nice weekend, and are ready to knock another week at Ellis out of the park!

In math, we will start our review lessons that you signed up for last week.  I'm so glad you've took choosing your lessons so seriously.  As I was going through looking at what you signed up for, I agreed with most of what you stated as your needs.  I'm looking forward to sitting and reviewing with you throughout the week.  You followup from the lessons will be in the form of assignments on Compass Learning.  When you log on, you will find three assignments that match the lessons you signed up for.  Please complete these followup assignments by Friday.  Also keep in mind that these Compass Learning assignments will be taken as a grade, and will be added to PowerSchool.  It is very important that you are taking your time on these assignments. 

In science, you will be finishing up your solar system research and essay.  Remember to follow the rubric to receive as many points as you possibly can.  I've already read some of your essays, and I'm very impressed so far with the work.  You will not have a test in science this week because your essay will be counted as a test grade.

The book fair continues through Tuesday of this week.  When visiting the media center, please take a token, write a pass, and sign out.  Sign back in upon your return.  Also remember put your token back into the box so others can visit the media center, too.

Finally, we will begin work on this year's musical this week!  The theme of the musical is "The Black Strip: The Story of Life".  It will tell the story of life on earth from single-celled organisms to today's humans!  We will be in charge of the "reptiles" portion of the story.  This week's task is to create a 5-8 minute skit telling the story of reptiles.  We will also need to choose a song to sing.  This is one of my favorite yearly traditions, and I'm so excited to get started!

See you Monday,
Mr. Trent

Friday, April 12, 2013

Report Cards

Report cards are being sent home today.  Please review them with your family.  Since we've already discussed the grades at parent-teacher converences, you do NOT need to sign and return them.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A Solar System in Our Hallway!

Today, we used toilet tissue to create a model of the solar system.  Using our model we were able to see the drastic differences in the distances between the planets.  I've included the procedures below if you would like to try it again at home.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Interactive Solar System

Need some help finding a reputable resource for your solar system research?  Look no farther than the following interactive solar system website from National Geographic!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Week of April 8, 2013

Welcome back!  I hope you enjoyed every drop of your Spring Break!  I'm sure you are refreshed, recharged, and ready to get back to work at Ellis.

In math, we will be reviewing all the different types of numbers we've explored this year.  Here is a list of everything we will talk about:

You will have some classwork and homework throughout the week that will prepare you for a quiz on Thursday.  You will also need to complete your Compass Learning choice for Friday.

In science, we will continue our exploration of outer space.  Over the next two weeks, you will complete a research paper based upon the objects in our solar system.  Be sure to follow this rubric to get full credit for your work.  You will NOT have a test on this information.  Your essay will serve as your grade.  It will be due Friday, April 19.

Here is a Prezi and PowerPoint I will share to inspire your research.

In addition to this, please study the following words for a vocabulary test this Friday (April 12).

There are a number of other items to keep in mind this week:

1.  Parent/Teacher conferences will be taking place.  Please let me know ASAP if you forget your scheduled time or if you need to reschedule.
2.  The Book Fair will be happening in the media center!  Please see Ms. Rebecca if you have any questions.
3.  This Friday will be a dress down day for $1.00.  All money raised will help support the programs at Oatland Island.

I'm looking forward to see you tomorrow and hearing all about your time off!

Mr. Trent

Monday, April 1, 2013

Hello From Budapest, Hungary!

Happy Spring Break! I hope you are enjoying your time off! I'm having a wonderful time here in Budapest! I wanted to share with you a picture of one of the famous thermal baths found in this area of the world (first picture). The pools in Szechenyi baths are fed by underground springs filled with water heated by magma in the earths' mantle. Yesterday, it was close to freezing outside, but I was nice and warm swimming in these waters! Ask Mr. Charles if you can come here on a science field trip!

I'll post more pictures of my journey in the near future. Enjoy the rest of your break!

Mr. Trent