Friday, September 30, 2011


We are almost finished with our first DBQ.  I think every child is very prepared to answer the question:  How did the constitution guard against tyranny?  Today we are going to be writing our class essay that answers this question with support from the documents that we have analyzed.  We also are going to be learning more about the Declaration of Independence.

Next week we are going to be starting our journey through ancient civilizations.

In math, I am meeting with a group that I ran out of time to meet with yesterday.

Next week, we are going to be finishing up our study of fractions.  All of the fractions projects are going to need to be complete by 10/10 and turned in.  The social studies projects are going to have a deadline soon after.  I have to begin to get groups to present so that we can move on.

I am posting the Tic Tac Toe board for fractions in case your children have lost their copy.  It will be in the links section on here as well as on Edline.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


We had another great day in the life of a 6th grader!  We have continued our journey through the constitution. I believe the kids are really getting a firm grasp on the point of it and how it guarded against tyranny.  We are going to be finishing up the last two documents tomorrow so that we can focus on the essay on Friday.  We also learned a little bit about the Declaration of Independence today as well.  On Friday, we are going to be finishing that up as well.

Tomorrow we are going to be continuing our study of fractions as well.  I will be meeting with groups 3 and 4.  I will have some grades to post this week as well.

We, as a 6th grade team, are going to begin meeting with each of you for conferences.  We are going to be working on a schedule for our meetings and will be getting in contact with you soon!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Today was a great day in math class.  We were able to get everything done.  We have been continuing to explore the question: How did the constitution guard against tyranny?  We will be finishing that DBQ today and begin looking at the Declaration of Independence.

I have met with all of the groups now in math and have retaught the lessons from last week.  I think they all have a better understanding of what they were supposed to know.  I also met with each child and did an individual check on how far along they are on their math and social studies projects.  We are getting pretty far and by the end of the week I expect a few groups to be ready to present.  By the end of next week, most of the groups should be ready to present their social studies country projects.

As for the tic tac toe boards.  I have many students that have already completed one of the projects.  Their goal is to finish the one that they have started by Friday if they have not yet done that.  Many of them are working on  a second or third project and will have all 3 of them done by next Friday.  I am pretty excited after seeing what they are doing so far as to what is going to be turned in.

I am thinking that our math test on fractions will probably be at the end of next week.  I will keep you posted as we get closer to mastering all of the 6th grade fractions skills.  I will also send home a study guide prior to the test.

I hope you all have a great day tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Today, I retaught the skills from Thursday and Friday to groups 1 and 2.  They seemed to have a better grasp on the information.

We started working on our DBQ: How did the constitution guard against tyranny?  They had to read an article and finish answering the questions in their packet.  We will be going over the answers tomorrow.

I will also be meeting with groups 3 and 4 tomorrow.

On Friday, I will be doing a status check on both the social studies projects as well as the tic tac toe board projects.

This week we will be learning about the Declaration of Independence as well.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Today and tomorrow I will have a sub in my classroom.  I hope all goes well and the kids still have a great learning experience.  If you have any questions, feel free to email me and I will answer them this weekend.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Today was our first day of rotations.  It was a little hectic, but went over very well.  I got a lot of positive feedback from the kids.  They enjoyed having time to work in independent projects and homework, but still to get the attention they needed with their math skills.  Most of them were able to finish their homework in class.
I did not get to meet with all of them due to time restraints, and will be meeting with the groups that I did not get to call today.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Today we took our math pre-test on fractions.  As I suspected, there were only a couple of kids in the grade level that have already mastered the 6th grade standards.  That being said, about 1/2 of the kids need a refresher on their previous fraction skills such as adding and subtracting mixed numbers, which is where I am going to start their group.  About the other 1/2 of them have mastered all of their previous skills, but need to learn the new skills of multiplying and dividing decimals.

I have given each of them a tic tac toe board of projects for them to do in class when they have mastered all of their 6th grade standards.  Each child's requirements will be different based on how much time they have to work on it.  These projects should be done in class, not at home for homework.  If your child chooses to work on them at home that is fine, but they are not homework unless they waste their class time and don't finish.

On the homework note, homework will be assigned daily to the kids that I am meeting with.  They will have time in class to work on their assignment, so should not have much homework to bring home.  If you want to see what they are doing in class, they can bring it home and turn it in the next day.

I hope this all makes sense.  I think we will all be more comfortable with it as the week goes on.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

New Class Format

I just wanted to let all of you know that starting this week, there will  be a new format for math class.  I have been taking a class that has given me some more insight on how to make sure that I am reaching every student and helping them reach their potential.  Starting this week, things are going to be a little different.  I will be teaching in units based on the New Generation Sunshine State Standards.  This week we will be starting the unit on fractions.  The unit will begin with a pretest on all of the concepts that the students should have previously learned and mastered as well as the 6th grade standards that have not yet been taught.  I will be forming groups based on the outcome of their test scores.  The test will be broken apart by skill and that is how each group will be taught.  The students will only be instructed on skills that they have not yet mastered.   There will be projects that extend their learning once they have mastered the skills.  That being said, each group will be receiving different homework assignments.  The only downfall to the new program is that I will not be able to post the homework assignments ahead of time.  One of the positive points of this new program is that there will be time built in to their math block for them to work on and maybe even complete their homework assignments in class.  I hope this makes sense to all of you.  Your children will be able to better explain the process after they see how things go this week.  If you have any questions or concerns, don't hesitate to ask.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Today in class we are going to be working on estimating decimal division problems.  Remember, estimate when dividing means to use compatible numbers.  Here is an example:

321.6 / 82.7 =
You would round the 82.7 to 80, which is a number that is close to it that is easy to make a mental math problem out of.  Then you look at the 321.6 and ask yourself, what number is close to 321.6 that 80 can go into evenly.  So you would round the 321.6 to 320.  You would then divide 320/80 and get 4.  I hope this makes more sense for you if you were having a hard time.

Here is one more example:
114.35 / 109.88

Round the 109.88 to 110.
Then round the 114.35  to 110.
110 / 110 = 1, so your estimate would be 1.

On their homework, I want them to show me what they rounded each number to, and then give me the estimated quotient.  DO NOT DIVIDE THE PROBLEM FOR REAL, YOU WILL BE WASTING YOUR TIME!


Today we discussed more about our country projects.  I have posted a link on here as well as on Edline for the rubric that the kids created to score the projects.  Each group has divided up the labor of the project and each student will be receiving an individual grade.  A group grade will also be received in which the students will be giving their input.

In math today we reviewed dividing decimals by whole numbers and rounding our answer to the nearest 10th.  Some of the students are still questioning when they should round their answer versus rounding the problem.  My explanation for this is to round the problem if the directions say to "estimate."  If the directions say round to the nearest "whatever" they want them to round just their answer.  I hope this clarifies for those of you that weren't sure.

Also, when  you are multiplying and the directions ask you to estimate, round each of the factors and then multiply.  If you are dividing and the directions ask you to estimate, then you are going to use compatible numbers to solve the problem.

Good luck guys!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Homework week of 9/13

The homework next week will all be out of the workbook.  I am going to try to send home all of the pages on Friday in case they want to work on them over the weekend.
Tuesday - WB 15-16
Wednesday - WB 13
Thursday - WB 17

I hope this helps all of you.


Today our GSP kids got to go to GSP class.  They seemed excited about going and seemed to have a great day.

We reviewed dividing greater numbers and getting a remainder.  I also showed most of them how to add a decimal and a zero to the number and continue on to the hundredths place in order to round their answer to the tenths place.  We are going to continue on our journey of division on 9/8 reviewing compatible numbers as well as beginning to add a decimal in.

In social studies, we finally finished reading chapter 3 and are going to begin creating our rubric for our country project.  The students will have plenty of class time to do most of this project because I don't want it to interfere with their inventions and science fair projects.  I hope this helps.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Today we took our multiplying decimals test.  I was much more impressed with the scores.  I am glad to see that they are getting it.  I guess I just needed to slow down a little bit with them.  This week, we are reviewing division of greater numbers and estimating division problems using compatible numbers.  We are also continuing our social studies journey through chapter 3.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Next Week's HW 9/6-9/9

Next week we are going to be taking our decimal test on Tuesday.  It will be on multiplying greater numbers, multiplying decimals, rounding decimals, and estimating decimal products.

Tuesday night's assignment will be a basic division sheet to get us ready for dividing decimals.
Wednesday night's assignment will be a long division sheet with remainders.
Thursday night's assignment is a division sheet that would normally have remainders, but I want the kids to use compatible numbers to solve them instead.

An example of compatible numbers is:

If I gave you the problem 316 / 8, you would change the 316 into something close like rounding, that 8 can go into evenly.  So for this problem, you would do 320/8 which is 40.  I do not want you to go back and solve the problem, just use the compatible numbers.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Math Test 9/6/11

Yesterday I sent an email about a math test on multiplying decimals and greater numbers on Monday, but since I wasn't thinking and there isn't school on Monday, that test will be on Tuesday!  LOL!  Sorry, I am tired this week!