Yesterday students in 5B and 5C were hard at work identifying some of the physical properties of rocks and minerals. After the students had a chance to explore different rocks and minerals, we learned about the physical properties that scientists look for to help identify these substances. We learned about a mineral's luster, hardness, color, and streak.
Yesterday we started studying our unit on earth science. To kick start the unit students learned about the rapid changes to the Earth's surface. We talked about volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, and floods.
Some of the students asked if I could post one of the websites we looked at today:
This website is an interactive map of active volcanoes and earthquakes. Check it out! It is a very informative and detailed map.
5th grade is excited to announce that we are raising approximately 125 rainbow trout! The eggs were delivered January 10th and we have been learning how to take care of them as they grow and develop.
We will be raising these fish for the rest of the school year, and we will be releasing them into a local river in the middle of May. Trout in the Classroom is a national program, with schools participating throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York and many other states. The goal of the program is to help students foster a conservation ethic and to appreciate water resources. The Trout in the Classroom project works to protect local water resources by maintaining the number of trout.
Students will engage in many Trout in the Classroom activities. So far, two classrooms have been trained in testing the water for the correct pH, ammonia, and nitrite levels. As the trout continue to grow the student's responsibilities will increase.
We are excited to see our trout grow! If you are in school, feel free to stop by and take a look.
Be sure to check out this great website from scholastic: http://www.scholastic.com/scholastic_thanksgiving/
The website helps bring our social studies unit on Colonial America to life. The website is packed with many interesting web quests, videos, pictures, and much more. Enjoy exploring!
To close out our science unit on ecosystems, students got to dissect owl pellets. Prior to examining their owl pellet, students learned about the food web of a common barn owl and made a prediction as to what types of bones they would find inside their pellet. Then, they dug in and see what they could find! Ask your child tonight if they can explain what an owl pellet is and why it is helpful to owls.
Over the past two days our students went on a fantastic field trip run by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. On their boat, the Snowgoose, students explored the Patapsco River. We learned about the problems affecting this ecosystem, and learned how this ecosystem directly impacts the Chesapeake Bay watershed and the surrounding ecosystems. Students explored the river for evidence of biodiversity and conducted many water quality tests. We tested the water for dissolved oxygen levels and salinity levels. We also got to use a secci disk to see how clear the water was. We dredged for oysters and learned why oysters are such an integral part to the ecosystem. Ask your child about the trip tonight...I'm sure they will be full of facts to share with you!
A big thank you to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and our Snowgoose teachers John and Molly! What a great learning experience for all of our students.
In social studies we have been learning about colonial America. We spent some time learning about the lost colony of Roanoke and now we have moved onto the Jamestown Colony. Students here are acting out a scene in the "Jamestown Colony". Students wrote their scripts and practiced their lines. They helped make the scene come alive as they were interviewed by a news reporter asking how life was like in the Jamestown Colony.
We had an excellent time visiting all the boats in the Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race today! Students got to explore 4-5 different schooner-rigged vessels and learned about the science of sailing. On some vessels, students learned how to raise a sail and on others students explored what it is like to live on one of these boats. A HUGE thank you goes out to the volunteers who organized this day and all of the participating boats! Our students got a lot out of their visit. We wish you all good luck in the race!
In social studies class our students have been working in groups to research European Explorers. They have spent a lot of time creating explorer summaries, portraits, flags, and a map of their explorer's route. Today some of the groups presented their projects to the rest of the class. I am really proud of all of their hard work. Ask your child tonight which explorer they researched...you will be impressed with all that they have learned!
Yesterday we had a great field trip exploring the beach and the bay on Assateague Island National Seashore. We arrived to the Assateague Island visitor center where we explored the touch tanks, looked at the aquariums, and saw a movie about the park's most famous resident--the wild horses. Then, the park rangers took us to the ocean side as well as the bay side to explore. Students learned how organisms adapt to these unique environments. On the beach, students practiced living the life of a ghost crab...they had to be careful to not get caught by the gulls. We learned how the organisms of these habitats depend on one another for survival. Over on the bay side, students were able to go micro-fishing with small nets to see what they could find. Students found many comb jellies, shrimp, and other forms of plankton! Our park ranger helped us understand how all of these forms of plankton sustain the other larger organisms in the bay food web. Hope your child shared with you all of the great experiences we had on our trip. Check out some of our pictures below: