Beginning Instrumental Music 6: The sixth grade Beginning Instrumental Music class will continue working on developing good tone on their instruments, playing with good posture and proper technique. We have set some rehearsal norms such as keeping instruments up for four counts past the end of the song, starting and stopping together, and being intentional in playing together. We are preparing for the upcoming performance on November 14, and will continue to work towards our overarching goal of playing as an ensemble.
Advanced Instrumental Music 6: The sixth grade Advanced Instrumental Music class will continue working on developing good tone on their instruments, playing with good posture and proper technique. We have set some rehearsal norms such as keeping instruments up for four counts past the end of the song, starting and stopping together, and being intentional in playing together. This class has moved away from using the methods book for now, and is working together in sheet music as we prepare for the upcoming performance on November 14. We will continue to work towards our overarching goal of playing as an ensemble.
Acting 6: The sixth grade acting students have started working with more sustained storytelling. The prompts for these longer forms comes from young reader picture books. Many of these books are familiar to the students, and it always makes me smile when I watch them excitedly grab books that they are familiar with from their kindergarten days and begin to prepare them for a stage performance. We will go through this process a couple of times over the next month expanding the students understanding of stage picture and visual storytelling.
Vocal Music 6: Students just completed in-class performances and introductions to the basics of reading music. November will be full of learning three different pieces and performance skills for a chapel, Grandparents and Special Friends Day, and St. Nick’s Chapel performances.
Art 6: Students are working on their own phonetic and pictographic alphabets after learning about Egyptian Hieroglyphs. Once finished, they will create a comic strip of a short story they wrote translating the story into their own written language.
PE 6: Pickleball is a hit. We are currently in the middle of our pickleball unit and the kids seem to really enjoy it. Their skills are improving quickly, which have led to some great rallies and competitive games. Speedminton and our Physical Fitness Unit will be the next two units that we cover. Speedminton is a game similar to badminton but without a net. It might be a shock to the kids, but they will have some homework and a written test during the Physical Fitness Unit.
Health and Wellness 6: We are currently wrapping up our work on inclusivity, conflict resolution, building strong friendships and carrying on a good conversation. We will then begin a mini-unit on stress that will include identifying stressors and practicing strategies for dealing with stress effectively. As always, Cindy McEnroe will join the group to lead mindfulness activities.
Science 6: In November, we will be exploring Fanno Creek, as the basis for our unit on watersheds and water quality. Students will practice science inquiry skills as they set up an experiment using stream tables, to explore factors that influence water flow. They will also design and conduct an experiment to use macroinvertebrates to monitor the water quality in the creek.
French 6: This month, we will be practicing how to invite someone and accept or refuse invitations, and to give an excuse. We will discuss teens in France and texting. In continuing to address the question, “What is a francophone world,” students will read about Sub Saharan Africa and the Caribbean, and francophone influences there. Students have begun learning a song set in Cameroon (by Yannick Noah). We are wrapping up the final lesson in Unit 1 and their first unit test will be after conferences. They will show what they have learned with vocabulary, culture, and introductory grammar concepts. We switched two projects, so students memorized and performed dialogues in October, and in November they will do The Great Cognate Search. Through this project, they will approach the questions: “Do English and French share a lot of the same words? Why is that?”
Chinese 6: Students are really excited learning how to type in Chinese and have been texting me multiple messages in Chinese. They are absolutely amazing how fast they can type in Chinese and how much Chinese they have learned since we started. Everybody did extremely well in the unit test and are quite enthused about learning. In November we will learn how to talk about our nationalities, families and schools. Students will also learn to take and collect pictures on iPad, insert photos into their presentations, and start making their e-portfolios in Chinese. You can help by making sure they read and complete the daily homework assignment on Google Classroom.
Spanish 6: November has us diving into significant grammar. We will be introducing and working on the verbs Ser and Estar. This is a very tricky area because they both mean “To Be” but are used in specific situations. Going with this we will be using many adjectives. Also, we will learn how to form questions and answer them in complete sentences. This will lead us to interviewing each other. Later in the month we might get to working on our family tree. Supporting all of this we will be singing a couple more goofy songs; “¿Cómo es ella?” and “Hoy es domingo.”
Technology 6: This month we continue the technology rotation for the second half of the sixth grade, meeting Tuesdays and Wednesdays with all 6th graders cycling through this class in October/November. We are asking the question, “How can technology help me to achieve my learning goals?” We explore iOS12 updates, and learn about the newest apps on our iPads including Ed Club, the OES touch typing app, Swift for programming, Clips for multimedia storytelling, and Digital Passport by Common Sense Media. Students will also reflect on their technology goals for the year and create a digital portfolio.
Pre-Algebra Prep 6: With unit one just about behind us, students will be organizing their notebooks and then we’ll begin our fraction and decimal review of all operations and will combine these concepts with order of operations and real world applications. We will be doing a two day more open ended problem later in the month. There will continue to be problem solving and extra credit opportunities in the back of the classroom and the first optional problem of the week was posted on Google Classroom. There will be a new one each weekend.
Pre-Algebra 6: Following their review of operations with fractions and decimals, the pre-algebra students will delve into algebraic expressions. They get to apply their order of operations skills to simplify expressions. Introduction of math properties will assist them in why and how certain operations work.
Humanities 6: Peak was a big hit with the 6th grade. We are tying up Point of View writings as well as a mini inquiry project on topics related to the book. On November 8, we’ll be visiting the Cambodian Buddhist Society of Oregon for the first of our visits to sacred spaces of worship in the Portland area. Ms. Holmberg’s F/G class is doing a great job coordinating the trip. Ask your student about what they learned on November 8th! Our next area of focus will be India, its history, culture, and geography. Homeless Bird, by Gloria Whelan, is the accompanying novel for the unit.
Library Skills 6: We are continuing to look at the basic components of research, starting with looking at the library databases: what are they, what do they contain, how are they different from Internet research? Each student is becoming an “expert” in a particular database and walking their classmates through the ins and outs of that particular example. Finally, we are also learning about citations: why we cite and when do we cite.