Social Science

Having fun, using the 5 C’s…

Creativity … Critical thinking … Collaboration … Cooperation … Communication …

These skills were the focus of our Integrated Learning Task this term, using Ancient Egypt as our theme. This ILT is one of our Grade 5 highlights. It involves research about Howard Carter and King Tut’s tomb, mummification, Ancient Egyptian farming and Ancient Egyptian family life. The children collaborate and share their findings with one another. They use the content of their research as a vehicle to implement these very important 21st century skills.

The children wrote Diary entries for English, built pyramids together, performed an archaeological dig in groups, used their pyramids to complete a measurement and shapes task for Mathematics, created an informative Powerpoint slide on pyramids and wrote a letter to their friends in Afrikaans, telling them about our recent Egypt Day activities.

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Categories: English, ILT, Social Science | Leave a comment

Fabulous iPads and IT in action

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Puppet Pals ‘Draak’ recording

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IT lesson

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Multitasking with my computer and iPad

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Sources task

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Our deeper learning tasks, using the iPad as a tool,are developing really well after having implemented them on a few occasions now. The children are embracing the iPads in order to bring these tasks to life. The latest task was an Afrikaans task based on ‘Ruby en die Draak’ which is a delightful story which we covered in Afrikaans. The children had numerous tasks to complete but a highlight was the Puppet Pals iPad task where they had to record their voices giving an oral presentation of a description of their ‘Draaks’ which they had written themselves. To add to that, they also designed their own hand- drawn dragons which were then photographed and included into their puppet pals presentations. The children were enthralled with this task and loved choosing backgrounds, experimenting with the APP and then enlightening each other about their discoveries. There were some challenging moments but they have managed to submit some lovely final recordings to Google Classroom. I am amazed at their use of creativity and willingness to experiment with new material.

We briefed the children on a Rainfall and Temperature task for Social Science which entails keeping track of the rainfall and temperature for the week. They constructed rainfall gauges out of a 2l cooldrink bottle during their technology lesson, so these were put to use this week. This is a two week task which includes numerous skills in order to create the final presentation for submission.

During IT this week the children also were presented with an element of exploration. They were briefly introduced to the topic of Primary and Secondary sources and then went on to watch a Powtoon based on an explanation of these concepts. They then had to use that information to design two slides using PowerPoint in order to show their understanding of the topic. Specific questions were put to the children to answer in their slides. The visual side was also catered for by offering numerous pictures to be included so that their understanding was enforced.

It is great to reflect on the skills that are encompassed during these sessions and it is only when one breaks it all down, how one realises what it takes in order for them to complete these tasks.

Categories: Afrikaans, Social Science | Leave a comment

Rainbird “Rubbish bin dig”

In preparation of our exciting Ancient Egypt theme this term in Social Science, the children got to experience what it would be like to be archaeologists of a different sort. They were given a bag or “rubbish” items from someone’s bin. They had to collaborate and discuss what kind of family lived at each house and discover more about them by evaluating their rubbish. They had to find out where they were from, who was part of the family, what they did in their free time, did they have pets…

The children had fun trying to convince their team members what they had concluded from the different items. At least they got to see there is more to an archaeologist’s job than just digging in the ground.

 

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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

The week that was……

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Four weeks to go and we will be ‘downing tools’ and heading off on holiday again. It is worth mentioning that the true pace of Grade 5 has reared it’s head this week, and we have increased our pace and expected a little more from the children. It is interesting to see them accept the challenge and engage after a few short weeks back at school. I have included a pic of our Friendship day as I just love group shots, and I enjoy teaching the children and having discussions with them about being part of a group. I think it is a good time to explain how we are working together as a team to make this year a happy place in the Penguin class.

As far as the academics are concerned, Natural Science has kept the children busy over the past week. The children created beautiful mind maps during their soil erosion lesson and we highlighted pointers around making an effective mind map. This was after discussions and teaching during our Life Orientation lesson relating to our MEMORY and tips on how to improve your memory. It is most beneficial to interact and collaborate between various subjects in this way. The children have also been working in their allocated pairs in order to do research on African Soil Creatures in preparation for their ILT (Integrated learning task) next week. We look forward to some interesting presentations next week.

I popped in to the Penguin Tech lesson a week or so ago and found them battling away at trying to master the skill of joining wires together. Mr B has done a sterling job by standing in for Mrs Louw while she has been away on leave. I enjoyed the cheerful banter between the children while tackling their tricky, yet stimulating task.

It has been Mapwork all the way during our Social Science lessons, and we have been flitting between atlases and Google Earth/ Goole Maps in order to bring political and physical maps alive to the children. Exploring in an atlas,with no time constraints,is a child’s delight -especially when they manage to master the skills of reading the grids correctly. Finding Mount Kenya brings cries of joy and discovering 3D videos of Mount Kilamanjaro is enthralling for most- Sebabatso was the star of the day in this regard.

On a much lighter note….. We have been brought great joy at school, both students and teachers, by our tasty, delicious and healthy mobile tuck shop. Nicky and her team offer wonderful goodies to keep those hunger pains at bay. The children can certainly benefit from this wonderful introduction to our school.

I also managed to catch this positive glimpse of my girls, reading on our couch, in between lessons this week. It is superb to see them embrace books and be excited about filling in their book review slips in order to gain classroom merits. Long may this passion last!!!!

Our congratulations went out to Oliver Whitehead and Calum Marriott on Friday when they were presented with their U12 cricket caps in Assembly. There was much cheering among their peers to show their excitement for them. Here’s to an eventful and pleasurable last 4 weeks of the term.

 

 

 

 

Categories: General, ILT, Natural Science, Social Science | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

ILT: Early African Societies

As part of our Integrated Learning Task this term, the children researched the San, Khoi and African Farmers’ lifestyles.  Each group researched one of the people groups and then they had to write a script, using their facts.  The information was then presented to the rest of the class in the form of a play.

The researchers…

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… the actors …

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… and the audience!

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Categories: Social Science | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

SS and NS at its best

The first two weeks have already been action packed with activities. In Social Science we have been looking at the build of South Africa. It became so much more fun when we could show our understanding by making play-dough models of South Africa. The next step is to design an Explain Everything slide to show our understanding of the different land forms in South Africa.

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In Natural Science we have discovered the fascinating world of fossils. They certainly provoke many questions and endless discussions and we have learnt lots of interesting facts from each other. This week we tried our hand at drawing some fossil pictures. We are going to be creating our own trace fossils out of clay next week.

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Our outing to the museum combined a bit of learning on the San/Khoi cultures in historical South Africa and some more fossils. The children could barely contain their excitement while looking around and the touch room was a firm favourite where they got to touch various skeletons, stuffed animals and even get a glimpse of many insects. We ended the day off with lunchtime in The Gardens, while taking the opportunity to feed the birds and squirrels.

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All in all, a great start to term 2 and the atmosphere is abuzz at what lies ahead.

Categories: Natural Science, Social Science | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Learning about Diseases

During our Social Sciences, we have been learning how diseases like cholera, malaria and HIV/Aids are caused, prevented, cured and/or treated.  The children summarised information about these diseases in a table and then used the knowledge to create an informative play that can be used to educate others.

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Make sure not to touch someone else’s blood – this will prevent HIV.

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She has a very high fever – one of the symptoms of malaria.

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If you give your child the antiretroviral medication, you will help him to live a longer life.

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My child, please do not play in the river that is so polluted. It will make you sick.

Categories: Social Science | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

The Exciting Egyptians

Egypt day hit Elkanah on Friday with much excitement.  There was a wide variety of glits and glamour.  The children went the extra mile as they put together beautiful costumes that contributed to a very colorful day! The day was filled with activities such as moulding their own mummies out of clay wrapping it up and placing it in their home made sarcophagus and learning more about this fascinating ancient civilization. Now they are ready for the ILT where they will have more hands on activities about ancient Egypt.

 

 

 

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Categories: Social Science, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Social Science weather project

The Grade Five’s got their chance to be meteorologists.  They first made their own rain gauges and then had to measure the weather and rainfall over the week and compare their readings to the week’s forecast.  Their projects had to be presented on the iPad as a Keynote presentation. The children took to the challenge and we’re not only discovering weather conditions but also became better experts at using Keynote, including inserting graphs with their data on it.

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