Monthly Archives: May 2016

Back to basics

The second term ILT was lots of fun. The children had ample opportunity for collaboration, discussion, compromise and practicing many other group work skills.  They went back in time and researched about some of the Ancient South African cultures, namely the San, Khoi-Khoi and African Farmers.  Their task was to come teach the class about their culture in the form of an informative play.  They had fun working on a shared google document where they could see what each member of their group was writing and finding out.  Thereafter we looked at what a basic house would cost, which included a trip to Builder’s Warehouse to price the different items that Bob the Builder required to build Mr Preston a house.  The objective was achieved when the children realised it is not that cheap to build even a basic house.  We also had a look at the housing in informal settlements and we were blown away by the contributions the children made to this topic.  They then had to write up a blog under the following title:  “A day in the life of a child in an informal settlement.” Please feel free to go read your child’s blog post and leave a comment for them.  Just click on the link and then on your child’s name.  ehrainbirds2016.blogspot.co.za.

Take a look at some of the photos of last week’s ILT.

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Categories: ILT, Social Sciences | 2 Comments

Low Ground vs High Ground

As we are learning about the build of our beautiful South Africa, the children had an opportunity to “build” their own 3-dimensional diagram of a cross section of the land, using play-dough and toothpick-labels.  This proved to be so much fun!  Working with the play-dough brought out the playful side in the children and enhanced the practical learning experience.

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Surgery on Flowering Plants

During our Natural Sciences lessons, we are focussing on flowering plants.  We drew the internal structure of the flower and dissected hibiscus flowers.  This helped the children to discover all the parts of the pistil and the stamen that are used to form new seeds.

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At the Museum…

Last week the Pelicans and the Louries explored the way of life of the San and the Khoi at the Iziko Museum in Cape Town.  Did you know that “Iziko” is an isiXhosa word, meaning “a hearth”?  The hearth of a typical African home is usually found in a central place in the home.  Thus Iziko symbolises a hub of cultural activity and a central place for gathering together and learning about South Africa’s diverse heritage.

After our lesson, we were able to explore other areas of the museum.  We enjoyed our lunch under the trees in the Gardens.

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Taking a peep into the huts of the San.

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Exploring at the museum.

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We met a few “bony” creatures.

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Some of us were almost devoured by a shark!

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Admiring the rock paintings.

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Relaxing in the Gardens.

Categories: Outings, Social Sciences | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

The eve of a public holiday and long weekend!!!

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I would like to mention our Book Day from 2 weeks back. Although our campus did not carry one theme through for the day, it was most evident that the children were exposed to a rich array of books and characters and words and creative writing and wonderful input into the world of imagination that books have to offer. Our school foyer hosted a delightful reading chair and reading corner, our Grade 6’s ( and their spirit- filled teachers) dressed up as book characters and I thoroughly enjoyed their interpretations and creative style. I so enjoy seeing older children read to younger children and we are so fortunate to have our junior campus right next door. Our class set up a book display at the back of the class which featured all the children’s favourite books,
either from their home bookshelves, or from our school library. This table display was a centre of attention for the week and we had lovely conversations around characters, different scenes and general storytelling. Our pictures show some true bookworms in our class including the delightful ‘Mr B’.

Last week brought forth a most welcome public holiday….. Work, work, work, smile…….pause. The children delight in the mere thought of a public holiday, as do the teachers. There are always so many stories to share afterwards and our classroom mats during devotion time are scattered with flapping hands and arms wanting their turn to share their news. We have spent a considerable time in Grade 5 these past couple of weeks discussing ‘feelings and emotions’. We have brainstormed different feelings, we have shared stories personally and in diary format( this tied in nicely with our book week ‘diary’ focus) and we have explored different ways to deal with the various feelings and emotions that come our way. It is just amazing to see some children open up once the platform is there to share valid experiences and emotions.

We explored the fossilisation process in Natural Science during the week before last and we used our IT lesson so that the children could gain from a ‘flipped classroom’ experience by reading and learning from a superb website. This site is created by our local Fossil Park in Langebaan and allows children to investigate the fossil process by means of slides, which are animated. An informative paragraph follows before the animation is shown, so that they can capture the information in a cognitive and visual way.

We introduced the wonderful world of ‘Plants’ to the children this past week and our first lesson related the parts of a plant and the internal structure of a flower. The children were fascinated to learn that most flowers have both a male and female part to it. The flower lends itself to the essential practice of drawing a scientific diagram in their books.

One of our Social science lessons last week was also in the IT centre and we taught the children about capes and bays around our South African coastline. Google Earth was used to search for certain capes and bays and then they had to use the snipping tool to select a cape or bay in order to insert it into their worksheets. It was lovely to see the faster workers explore our coastline for other familiar capes and bays- each time a delightful story went with the finding.

I have also included some of my pictures which were taken at our museum outing and in the Company Gardens. Creativity is just everywhere where we look in Cape Town. What a privilege for us to teach in this environment and for the children to grow up here.

And now……. after another public holiday and a superb long weekend it is time to buckle down and prepare our Scallywags for the English cycle test this week.

Categories: English, General, Natural Science, Social Science | 2 Comments

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