For Inquiry this week we focused on the celebration of Dia de los Muertos - The Mexican Day of the Dead. This is celebrated in Mexico on November 2nd every year. Students learnt how the Mexicans remember their dead by tidying graveyards, laying beautifully colourful marigolds, having parades, making and dressing special altars in their house, dressing up and eating traditional foods together as a family and community. Students then created colourful masks modelled on the artwork and facial artwork created traditionally in Mexico. They also made traditional sugar skulls and Pan de Muerto - an aniseed orange sweet bread. Before the end of the day we celebrated by wearing our masks, eating Pan de Muerto and our sugar skulls whilst listening to Mexican traditional music.
On Tuesday Room 3 were able to participate with other schools in the valley in an educational, good-spirited and fun-filled teeball tournament. Students competed in games against other schools, but were also treated to a referee that was also a coach that was able to develop their skills along the way. The weather was beautiful and it was great to see our kids working together so beautifully, having fun and developing their skills.
Today in our writing focus, students used UV beads to test how strong the UV was outside the classroom. They then tested four different sunscreens to see how well they blocked out the UV rays. The students all did really well working as scientists, using stop watches, UV beads, observing and recording results.
We turned our thinking to magnets last week in writing time - discovering and investigating using experiments and materials in the Hutt Science kit Magnet Madness - including exploring polarity, strength, attraction and direction. The students wrote up their findings in reports, in addition to working on their science and investigation skills, thinking skills, team work and coordination skills in combination with their prior knowledge.
Last Thursday our students had the fabulous opportunity to practice their long jumping skills and develop their technique on the Muritai field long jump. There are so many fabulous budding long jumpers! We were very impressed with the distances achieved and the fact that each jump appeared to improve upon the last. Here are some piccies:
Today we were treated to the first of four professional softball training sessions for our 7 year olds and up. They developed their catching and throwing skills, pitching for baseball and softball and batting. It was such lovely weather for it and all students looked like they were having a wonderful time. The coaches were very impressed with the skills they already held too!
Our students in year 4-6 were fortunate to host Sally Bain and Terry from MIRO again to help them lay tracking tunnels to trace predators, helping to keep the dotterel population safe on our beach here in Eastbourne. The activity included many key skills such as measurement and direction - the students able to have a go using the GPS tracker that Terry uses to record exact positions of the tunnels. Make sure if you're down on the beach you ask your students about how they are helping their local environment and they may even be able to point out one of their tunnels!
This week we kicked off our Inquiry Focus on Celebrations around the world. We focused on Diwali this week - the festival of light and triumph of good over evil. We learnt about what Diwali is all about and discovered the story of Rama and Sita - one of the legends of Diwali. We then proceeded with a bunch of discovery activities to dip our toes into Diwali. We made a healthy Diwali traditional sweet called Lahdoo and paper flowers for a flower garland. We also made Rangoli outside using chalk to welcome our visitors as well as creating some for the wall. The students then turned to clay and made Diva lamps, decorating them with lots of colour and sparkles. We finished our Diwali discovery by celebrating with some traditional Indian music, dressing up in a Sari, lighting our Diva lamps and eating our Lahdoo. Namaste! Happy Diwali!
Looking to our Athletics Day in a couple of weeks, the students practised throwing skills for quiots and vortex last term and we were fortunate enough to borrow Muritai School's high jump this week to allow the Year 3 to 6 students to have a go at this fun sport. We graduated the learning, with students starting off with no bar and gradually moving the bar to the qualification levels. There were loads of smiles and lots of resilience and a huge amount of effort displayed down there.
Room 3 are using their thinking skills in the afternoon to solve BP Technology Challenges. This week's challenge was 'Airborne' - using given materials to come up with a way to launch a ping pong ball into the air. The catch is they have to see how far they can get the ball to fly through the air, so they are competing against each other. They have to do a series of thinking, designing, testing and adjusting before the come up with a solution that they are happy with. It is great to see the students working together through these processes and never giving up. They are not only learning design and technology skills, but also problem-solving, teamwork, cooperative skills and resilience.