June 3, 2014 – Reading Comprehension, Telling Time, Art

LITERACY – Reading Comprehension


Today we are “showing our stuff” with our ability to draw conclusions about the texts we read. Following our viewing if the ballet documentary “First Position”, I’m excited to notice whether students will draw a connection between the documentary and today’s text about famous Hamilton ballet dancer, Frank Augustyn.

Highlighting evidence from the text for their answers



Beginning to answer the question by using words and phrases from the question.


Making sure to use evidence from the text to support his answer


Students on devices can refer to the Anchor Chart with Success Criteria for open response questions on our class blog.




We looked for patterns on the “clock”








We can say the pattern in a different way. Started zero and increase by five each time: five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60

Another way of saying it is to take the inside number and multiply by five and you will get the outside number 1×5 is 52×5 is 10 3×5 is 15 and so on….

We notice that minutes (green) are grouped into groups of five
We noticed that hours are grouped into two groups of 12:
– 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 a.m.
– 12:00 p.m. to 11:59 p.m.
The second group/circle of 12 hours is layered on top of the first set of 12 hours


A riot of colour awaits you t this year’s auction!


May 13, 2014 – (re-post) Math (volume)

MATH  (Measurement/Volume continued….)

We can divide an irregular collection of cubes into separate rectangular prisms. Them we can use the formula for volume of a rectangular prism to find the volume of each rectangular prism. Them we can add up the separate volumes to find the total overall volume


We pushed the envelope to share a different solution that some students tried:
– imagine how the irregular arrangement of cubes arrangement of cubes could become a rectangular prism if more cubes were added
– calculate the volume of this imaginary prism
– count the number of cubes that are missing
– subtract the number of missing cubes from the volume of the imaginary rectangular prism and voila! You know the volume if the cubes that ARE there (tricky and unnecessary but a definite level 4 solution)



We also played volleyball in gym with Mr. G, had French, and worked on our drama skits connected to one of the chosen Harris Burdick Mystery posters. Some groups presented – and were assessed on their ability to stay in character and tell the story before and or after the “picture” was taken.


Feb. 13th/14th, 2014 – Geometry & Proportional Reasoning

As part of the HWDSB Grades 2 & 5 Math Strategy ( #hwdsbmathstrategy ), there is a focus around developing proportional reasoning. An explanation of proportional reasoning from the Ministry of Education’s Literacy & Numeracy Secretariat can be found here . I found additional information and examples of integrating proportional reasoning into various math strands at www.proportionalreasoning.com (The website of mathematics education researcher, Dr. Shelley Dole, from the University of Queensland, Australia). Proportional reasoning skills are important to many mathematical situations. Proportional reasoning can be described as a “comparison using terms such as: double, half, three-times greater”. These are multiplicative comparisons….rather than additive comparisions. Students were very engaged in these lessons, and will see through the rest of math this year that proportional reasoning has many, many real life applications!

I connected last week with our Instructional Coach, Mr. Ingrassia, after working on ways to use Proportional Reasoning as a lens for our current unit on Geometry. Students learned in Grade 4 to find a location on a map using a type of co-ordinates on a grid that includes a combination of numbers (x-axis) and letters (y-axis), e.g. “F5” (below). The location or object described is in the space between lines.map grid

In Grade 5, we learn to use “cardinal directions” (north, south, east, west) as well as defining locations where lines intersect with co-ordinate “points”, e.g. (“G2”) — instead of the spaces between the lines.

coordinates at intersecting point

In Grade 5 we also review from Grade 4 and extend our understanding of:

  • translations (where a 2-D shape “slides” from one location to another on a grid)
  • congruence (where two or more 2-D shapes are identical in size and shape)
  • similarity (where two or more 2-D shapes are identical in shape but  not size)

I devised an activity where students could also discuss Proportional Reasoning in groups of 3, related to all of the above. Mr. Ingrassia was very helpful in putting student ideas together and extending our thinking with his own examples. Students were very busy and talkative in their small groups on both days! See our activities below:

Feb. 3, 2014 – Math (data, intervals)

We began math today in the textbook — a sample of fictitious student test data that ranged from a score of 54 to a score of 95. There were 25 pieces of data (i.e. 25 student scores in the set of data, ranging from 54 to 95).


We wondered why intervals ending in 60, 70, 80 were preferable to intervals ending in 59, 69, 79?

Is it because ending with multiples of 10 (e.g. 60, 70, 80) just seems more tidy and finished? What do you think?


We made observations about the graph in the example, which was made using the intervals 51-60, 61-70, 71-80, 81-90, 91-100.


Next, we used our observations to create Anchor Charts, one reference chart for the steps needed to create intervals out of a large set of numbers and one reference chart for the steps needed to create bar graphs using interval data.