Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Inquiry - Creating a Country

Yesterday both Rooms 20 and 21started the Ignition stage of our newest inquiry - Creating a Country.

We discussed examples of countries that we'd like to live in and why, as well the qualities of countries that we wouldn't like to live in.  Some examples of the former were: "New Zealand because it's clean", "Fiji because it's quiet", "The USA because of independence and freedom", and "The UK because of it's history".  Examples of places where people wouldn't want to live are: "Pakistan because of unrest", "Syria because of terrorism" and "China because of pollution".

We then discussed factors that would need to be considered if we were to found a new country.  Some ideas arising were: water, transport, law, government, medicine, roads, food (crops), military.

Monday, 30 March 2015


It is important to remember to be comfortable in your own skin and be proud of who you are - no matter what!  Here are a few pictures of Room 20 children showing just that!

The Inquiry Process

We have just started an "Intensive" Dr. Suess Inquiry Project that will replace some of our literacy programme, along with the already designated 'Topic' afternoon slots, during our final week of Term 1 - and if necessary (in order to ensure our work ins quality and not rushed) the first week of Term 2.

The first step for the children was to be introduced to the difference between "Skinny, closed" questions and "Fat, open" ones - the latter being better to encourage research, and deeper understanding in our learning e.g. 'Where was Dr. Suess born?' is not as valuable a learning question as 'How has Dr. Suess' style of writing impacted on the learning of children in New Zealand? Explain.'

We also discussed the Inquiry/Research Process and what that looks like discussing the fact that we are currently at Stage 1: Deciding/Planning.

Watch this space for our outcomes and evaluations/reflections!

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

The Krypton Factor

On Sunday 22 March The Krypton Factor - an inter-school event between a number of West Auckland Schools, hosted by the Lions Foundation - took place at the idyllic Konini School in Glen Eden.  The weather was beautiful and enthusiastic children and parents aplenty adorned the large school field ready for the starting parade.  The highly organised and direct Lions staff ensured that everything ran smoothly.

Our two teams behaved beautifully and represented the school with credit, showing team-work, support and a "can-do attitude".  The children and the parents thoroughly enjoyed the day and will no doubt be keen to be involved again in the future!

Reading - Key Words and Summarising

In Reading we have been learning about key-words and how they are vitally important if we are to write a summary for both non-fiction and fiction texts.  Today we have been learning about key-words in non-fiction texts in particular and how if we took them away the text would lose meaning and purpose.

In asking the children to see if they understood I asked what key-words to do with rain would be. Answers given were: water, evaporation, cold, clouds, grey, droplets.  This showed that they understood the concept.

We were working with a non-fiction text to do with animal and plant adaption to the environment.  This was whole class teaching to front-load the skill.  Over the next few days the students will work in reading groups to practise.

Monday, 9 March 2015

Math - Statistics

We have been busy in Math learning about Statistics - The Children surveyed each other to find out favourites.  Then they completed Statistical Investigations including Tally Charts, Bar Charts, Pictograms, Dot-Plots and Strip Charts.  The children also learnt about making a prediction/hypothesis and drawing a conclusion.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Room 20's Blog

Hello - We are Room 20 2015 @ Western Heights School!  Welcome to our Blog.