International School of Paris
'Where the world goes to school'
Grade 3 Newsletter November/December 2012
Dear Grade 3 Parents, Welcome back! We hope you had a relaxing break. This newsletter will give you information for the busy months of November and December. We will be going on a trip to Cité nationale de l’histoire de l’immigration, as part of our Migration unit, on Wednesday, November 21. Please e-mail Fiona [email protected]
if you would like to come along and help.
Unit of Inquiry
Last month, we made a successful start to our new unit of inquiry on Migration. The students have started to think about the migration stories that they may have experienced themselves or stories of friends and family members, inquiring into the different reasons people might move to a new country. We have already had a wonderful parent presentation. We invite you to visit our classrooms to share any experiences you have with migration. This month, we will be using a variety of literature to explore a range of historical case studies to highlight the emotional aspects of migration. The students will also investigate the effects of moving from one country to another. To help the students develop empathy for characters in stories and from history, we will be making use of a range of drama techniques to help them think and act in different roles. In December, we will start our next unit of inquiry which focuses on helpful organisations around the world that try to make a difference. This difference might involve any number of things, such as human rights, the environment, the quality of life, education, etc. If you work for an organisation that has a strong mission statement to make a difference in people’s lives or for our world, please do contact us.
In preparation for their memoir, students will study examples of biographical and memoir writing and will focus on how they tell a story from a personal perspective. Using what they have observed, students will craft a reflective piece of writing about a significant life experience. They will learn the writing process - pre writing, drafting, revising, editing and independently publishing. The children have begun to practice how to reveal their emotions and feelings in writing. They will then beencouraged to think about the reader by using descriptive language to help them to imagine the relationships between the characters, envision the action, and imagine the setting - where and when the memoir is unfolding. They will use the reflective process to bring meaning to the memories in their writing. They will form a conclusion- which explores the significance of the experience. Children will be encouraged to use a range of strategies to self monitor and self correct, e.g. meaning, context, re-reading and reading on. In the Helpful Organisations unit of inquiry, children will learn the art of persuasive writing.
During the months of November and December, the students will continue to build on theirstrategies for addition and will move on to see how subtraction relates to addition. They will then explore new strategies for subtraction, and will also learn how multiplication and division are related to one another and are used to process information to solve problems. During this time, students will work on developing strategies for memorizing addition, subtraction, multiplication and division number facts and will begin to develop mental and written strategies for multiplication and division. Students will use these strategies to evaluate how reasonable their answers are. Students will also work on using fast recall of multiplication and division number facts in real-life situations. They will go on to select appropriate methods for solving problems, such as choosing between using a written strategy or using a mental estimation.
In relation to our unit of inquiry on Migration, Students will learn that data can be collected, organized, displayed and analysed in different ways to show meaning. They will use data that they have collected and display and interpret it using simple graphs. Students will explore the concept of scale and represent different quantities in graphs. They will also learn how to use and locate North, South, East and West on a compass and will locate features on a grid using coordinates.
During the students‟ 45-minute skills-based lessons they will learn how to use Britannica, the children’s online encyclopaedia. They will then apply the skills they have acquired to their unit lessons to search for information about why people migrate. Also during these skills-based lessons, they will learn how to use the program ‘2 Calculate’ and apply their skills during mathematics lessons to create and present data in a variety of graphs.
Françoise: In October, the students enjoyed the activities that allowed them to understand how to introduce themselves and introduce others. They also learned how to count to over one hundred forwards and backwards. In November, the students are going to learn how to ask questions and respond to simple ones. They are going to connect to their unit on migration and continue to talk about it. Christine: In October, the children have enjoyed working on their unit “Body System”. They have learned about habits in France, discussed meals and learned vocabulary. The students enjoyed our breakfast together showing their choices. In November, we will focus on grammar rules and conjugation. They will learn some verbs “avoir, être” and they will be able to use them orally and when writing. Agnes: During November, this beginner group will work on expressing their feelings; so they will be introduced to the vocabulary through their unit on migration. They will be put in the situation with audiovisuals showing some situations that they may have experienced themselves. We will also work on the vocabulary linked to the house and transport. Some examples: j‟ai déménagé du Canada pour la France j‟habite à Paris dans un petit (ou grand) appartement Je suis content, je regrette mes amis … They will also read and write some simple sentences. The focus is still primarily on oral expression, but we are gradually improving the ability to read. Sara: Last month, the students particularly enjoyed creating games to practice their spelling. They are excited to use them and share them with other groups. In November and December, we will continue toexplore and practice verb patterns, present and past tenses. In relation to the unit on Migration,we will read some texts to understand who and why some people come to live in France and how the people concerned feel about migrating. They will learn how to write about their personal experiences as well and practice using the dictionary.
At the stadium, Grade 3 will continue to work on developing the idea of an invasion game. We will be shortly moving from playing basketball to playing handball. We are going to build on our knowledge of zones and further focus on teamwork and tactical development. At the swimming pool, we have continued to build water awareness and safety skills, whilst also concentrating on further developing the skills for front crawl, breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly kick.
Students are thoroughly enjoying the process of making and appreciating each other‟s work as well as the artists presented in class. It has been inspiring to see engaged and creative Grade 3 students exploring the shapes and proportions of the human body. They started by looking at Leonardo da Vinci's drawings depicting the inside and outside of the body during the Renaissance. They explored different techniques (pencil shading, oil chalk and ink) as well as different ways to reproduce an image (calc paper and overhead projector). Next, they looked at contemporary art work by Jan Favre and discussed the differences and similarities in the way each artist incorporated the human body into their art. They saw Leonardo's drawings as scientific work while they found more fantasy in Jan Favre's work. This was a great inspiration for students
who decided to make surrealistic creatures. They created funny characters with brains that became bodies to which they attached wings. For "Human Migration," students engaged in learning about mask-making around the world. They analyzed the masks and discussed the uniqueness of each culture as well as the commonalities that connect them. They painted the masks with colorful designs and patters. With the arrival of the Mexican celebration, "The Day of the Dead," we had the opportunity to talk about what happens to our body when we die and each student was able to share their belief with the rest of the class. To find out more about this Mexican celebration, students looked at the art work of Jose Guadalupe Posadas whose prints of skeletons dancing and laughing communicates the spirit of this day. This was also an occasion to expose them to the use of scratching paper. It allowed them to pay more attention to the detail of the line and helped them develop their drawing skills. They will continue theirinquiry on proportions and drawing. They will create a still-life model with objects, posters, fruits, etc. to draw from observation. They will learn how to use a view finder to create a composition.
During the month of October, Grade 3 continued to develop their sense of rhythm and beat using basic note values to perform a rhythm while keeping a steady beat. They also continued developing their note reading skills, practicing and becoming more fluent at reading and performing the rhythm cards in common time. The students demonstrated a good understanding of written note values by composing their ownrhythm cards in common time and performing it with their group whilst keeping a steady beat. They continue to develop their vocal skills by practicing good breathing and posture while learning songs in class. Their listening skills are also becoming heightened through musical sharing activities and through exposure to music of different styles and genres in class. During the month of November, the students will begin to focus on basic solfège notation using theKodaly method to develop their aural and staff notation reading skills. They will use songs from different genres and countries to reinforce this learning.
Grade 3 children have become more confident in locating books in the library and using the online catalogue. They are more familiar with where certain materials are arranged and have continued to develop the skills necessary to locate books of their choice. As part of their unit of inquiry on Migration, the children have listened to stories written by Alan Say. He is an author illustrator that has created many picture books that deal with migration. We will continue to explore books dealing with this subject over the next month. You may like to have access to online books for your child. A good e-resource available to ISP families is Tumblebooks. Your child can access story books and non-fiction books and hear these stories read aloud. To access the site, please go to this link: http://www.tumblebooks.com/library/auto_login.asp?U=isparis&P=books. You will then need to put in the username: isparis and password: books. Please do not hesitate to contact Michelle Metail at [email protected]
should you have any queries concerning your child‟s library time.
Ask your children about our buried treasure! Ask them what we did, why we did it and what they think will happen. November will see us learning to use our composter (the new one) as well as reusing materials for useful purposes. We need corks, plastic bags, bottle tops, toilet rolls, yarn, plastic bottles, puzzle pieces and used books for some of our projects. Please collect and send these to school care of Marianne. We will also participate in „Love in a Box’, a Paris based charity. More information on this will be communicated.
Cross Cultural Happenings
Our shared lunch in October was a huge success. We all love to eat. Many of us were risk-takers at this event! Thank you all for providing us with wonderful food. November will be a busy month. Our annual ‘Mother Tongue and Other Languages Day’ will take place on Wednesday, November 28. We hope that all families will be involved with this event. We also have Universal Children’s Day on Tuesday, November 20, as well as a
special Thanksgivingcelebration. More details about these events will be communicated.
English Language Support
It is ‘spring time’ for our English language learners. They are all blooming! It is truly special to be a witness as they begin to speak and make sense of English. The holiday gave them an opportunity to rest and recharge. All teachers are seeing a refreshed sense of commitment and energy in the students. Please continue to support your children in the ways we have suggested in previous communications.
Discuss with me
What it means to be a migrant Why people migrate Who in our family has migrated and their experiences Different strategies to add pairs of numbers Which number facts I can quickly recall A significant event in my life and how I felt
Should you need to communicate with any of the Grade 3 team, our emails are as follows: Erin Oliver [email protected]
Sean Walker [email protected]
Eileen McAteer [email protected]
Fiona Kemp [email protected]
Wednesday, November 21: Trip to Cité de l‟histoire de l‟immigration Wednesday, November 28: Mother Tongue Day
Please talk about these words in your mother tongue to reinforce the children’s learning: emigrate; immigrate; emotion; memoir; chronology; history; sum; total; product; difference; quotient; divide; multiply; graph; data; axis Best wishes, Fiona, Erin, Sean, Eileen, Christine, Agnes, Françoise, Marianne, Sara, Anna, Adivije, Michelle, Barbara, Florence
International School of Paris (www.isparis.edu) 'Where the world goes to school' Tel: +33 1 42 24 09 54 Fax: +33 1 45 27 15 93