Tu B’shevat Field Trip to UNF by Liza & Sadie

This post was written by Liza F. and Sadie H. 

On February 6th, in honor of Tu B’shvat the 4th and 5th grades went to one of the UNF Nature Trails. We looked at the different plants that grow in the nature trails, some of them they planted, and other that grew naturally. We learned about different plant habitats and what conditions they need to be in to grow. There were pitcher plants, sundews, cypress trees, long-leaf pines, eastern fence lizards , algae and lots more. We also saw one of their man-made lakes; Lake Oneida.

Pitcher plants are carnivorous plants (plants that eat insects). It has a tube that goes throughout the plant. That tube is its digestive system. This is how the plant gets food: at the top of the plant, there is a hooked shape part, on the back of it, there are little white dots. Bugs think that those dots are windows, so they go into the hook because they are attracted to a smell that the plant gives out that humans can’t smell. So, they go in, but it is very slippery inside the plant, so, once they are in they can’t come out. They end up in the tube that is there digestive system! Our ranger took a pencil and opened up the plant, and we all saw the dead bugs that it has eaten. It was really gross! Also, the pitcher plant was the oldest plant on the whole campus! The second plant was a tiny little plant called sundew. Sundews are also carnivorous plants. They trap insects by attracting them with their bright red color. They work sort of like a Venus flytrap. They have spikes on them and when a bug sits on it, the plant closes its mouth-like structure on the insect.

Cypress trees have very strong wood. They sort of look like pine trees. They also don’t rot! That’s why people use it to build houses and buildings. Longleaf pines are the pines that you probably see every day. At the top of those pine trees there is a “heart” that keeps the tree alive. When there is a fire, pine needles that are close to the top form into a cone that protects the “heart”.

We saw two eastern fence lizards under a rotting log. They were both very dark. We learned that they are very fast. They are the size of a typical lizard, about 3 inches. We saw algae at the edge of Lake Oneida. It was green and sort of flaky. It was floating very close to the edge of Lake Oneida.

The field trip was very informative and interesting. We had a very fun time at the UNF Nature Trail and we learned a lot of important things. If you want to go on a trail yourself here is the brochure!

 

 

 

 

Having Fun Learning Vocabulary

Last week we learned Hebrew vocabulary in a fun way.  Each student created a game that included all of the weekly vocabulary words.  In class we took turns playing the games.  This was a fun way to learn and to prepare for the weekly test.  All of the games were very creative.  Some examples of the games are board games, word search, matching, spelling game, Tiny Tap, Jeopardy and Quizlet.

  

The Hannukah Story

It is Kislev and Chanuka is on the way! In class we are studied the history of the holiday.  The unit explored the question: what are the sources of the holiday and aims at understanding the Chanuka story from the perspective of its heroes.

We learned the history of Chanuka from the perspective of Judah Maccabee. We analyzed the problem in each chapter and discussed the solution.  We also reviewed the Mitzvot and customs of Hannukah.

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Orlando Science Center Field Trip!

Let the journey begin.

Let the journey begin.

Our Orlando Science Center field trip was a success! We took an amazing Journey to Space in the CineDome on its Giant Screen. The images were extraordinary, clear and breathtaking. We were surrounded by images of outer space and learned a lot about the history of man’s exploration of outer space.

In the CineDome waiting for the show to begin.

In the CineDome waiting for the show to begin.

 

Students had a chance to do some hands-on exploration during our Discovery Lab Workshops. They molded scale models of the planets, learned about day and night, explored different telescopes and learned about the Sun’s energy.

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

We wrapped up our stay at the Orlando Science Center by exploring a room full of extreme weather conditions.

Eye of a tornado

Eye of a tornado

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Tornado simulation

Tornado simulation

Tornado simulation

Tornado simulation

Tornado simulation

Tornado simulation

Morgan's weather report.

Morgan’s weather report.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fun Shots

We have arrived!

We have arrived!

Attentively listening to the rules.

Attentively listening to the rules.

Class selfie!

Class selfie!

Exploring in the halls

Exploring in the halls

Discovery Lab Workshops

Discovery Lab Workshops

In the CineDome waiting for the show to begin.

In the CineDome waiting for the show to begin.

A visit with the Israeli Shlicha (emissary) Dana

Today we had a visit with the Israeli Shlicha (emissary) Dana.  We talked about the differences and similarities of kids ages 8 – 11 in Israel and in the United States.  image imageimage

First we brainstormed what we think when we hear the word Israel (Above in pink) and what Israeli kids think about Israel (Above in blue).  Then we learned about the daily life of a girl in Israel.

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Lastly we talked about the types of music that Israeli kids listen to.  We  realized that they listen to the same English music that we listen to and that they also listen to Israeli music.

It was a fun way to learn about kids in Israel and we hope to have more visits with the Shlicha.

 

If you would like to enjoy the Israeli music that we listed to on the Israeli radio channel click here.

Realistic Fiction Publishing Party

 

“We are the authors

The mighty, mighty authors

Everywhere we go

People want to know

Who we are

So we tell them

We are the authors

And we can tell our stories.”

   screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-3-20-36-pm  We wrapped up our realistic-fiction writing unit by having a publishing party on Friday. We had a great time celebrating and listening to everyone’s story.

Our authors put in a lot of hard work to get to this stage. They had the challenge of writing in a way that can relate to their readers, be realistic but not include the fantasy elements that they are very used to. They:

  • Collected story ideas by imagining stories from ordinary moments and issues in their lives.
  • Planned their ideas for realistic fiction stories.
  • Learned strategies for drafting their realistic fiction stories.
  • Learned strategies for revising and editing their realistic fiction stories.
  • And finally, published and shared their realistic fiction stories.

 

 

 

VIP Day 2016

 

The fourth and fifth graders performed for all the VIP guests in the Social Hall and they did an amazing job! In class, students and their special guests created flower centerpieces and wrote all the things we were thankful for on a vase. Students also enjoyed some Thanksgiving themed math games and created individual collages with their special guest(s). It was lovely to see everyone.

 

 

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. 

 

 

The unified classroom rules

We have been learning the rules for establishing a unified class.

The first rule that we learned is that We Should Always Help a Classmate.  ואהבת לרעך כמוך (You should treat your friend the way you want to be treated). 

The second rule specifies keeping the environment and daily surroundings clean הנקיון הוא מצווה. We read a story, we discussed ways to help the environment, and we also talked about keeping our own classroom clean. Everyone recognized that it’s a group effort to keep our work space neat and pleasant. We all have to help each other, work together, and offer to assist when needed.

The third rule is respecting each other’s property .  יהי ממון חברך חביב עליך כשלך

The fourth rule is to listen to your class mates and not interrupt them when they are speaking דברי חכמים בנחת נשמעים.

The next rule is about good sportsmanship האמת והשלום אהבו

The last rule we learned so far is not to call our friends bad names or make fun of each other.  We discussed that we are all created in God’s image and therefore should treat each other respectfully.  חביב אדם שנברא בצלם אלוקים

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The seven steps of T’shuva (repentance)

For the past two weeks we studied the steps for T’shuva according to the Rambam (Maimonides). Students learned that there is a seven step process to complete when correcting wrong behavior.  This applies to everyday throughout the year, not just during Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur.  Students enjoyed listening to the  story How Do We Make T’shuva?  Following the story, the students practice the steps in various forms.

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Florida State Symbols

Last week we learned about a variety of official state symbols. I proposed the following question to the class: What else do you think should be made official by the state?

What if Florida had an official state milkarticle of clothing, recreational activity, water bottle or dog? Have you ever considered an official state ice-cream flavor? We had not one, but two suggestions! Some students suggested a change to current state symbols. Check out the changes made to the Florida state flag and the proposed change of the state tree.

Check out the corresponding blogs to see what the class thought! Leave a comment! Let the authors know what you thought of their symbols.