Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Media Literacy - The Big Picture

Today we looked at how camera angle, lighting and composition can affect the visual message transmitted by an image.  Select one of the images below and save it into your Google Docs Visual Language document.  You can click on the images to enlarge them.  Click the more button to choose your image.  All of these images are from the Boston Globe’s Big Picture website.

Language for Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Fast Friday Faceoff (on Wednesday)

New challenge:  EACH student who manages to match or exceed my typing speed of 64 WPM (with 2 or fewer errors) will get lunch.  If we can get the class average up to 40 WPM, we will have some kind of celebration (not sure what yet – but I’m open to suggestions)

The Secret Knowledge of Grown Ups

Read Aloud

  • Out of my Mind (Only 3 chapters to go!  We’ll finish before the break!)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Highview Junior Electives

The Highview Staff is pleased to offer students in Grades 4 – 6 an Elective program again this year. This year’s program will take place on Tuesday, February 7thth and Tuesday, February 28th 2012. (This conflicts with pizza lunch, so students are reminded to NOT order Pizza on these days).  Families are asked to select carefully as participants may attend the same elective or choose a different elective for each day. These activities will complement and extend our in-class programme. All electives will start and end within the school day.

Each activity has a maximum number of spaces. Student requests will be processed on a first come, first served basis. If a program is undersubscribed, it may be cancelled and students will be given their second or third choice.

The cost of each elective includes transportation. Please do not send any money with your registration form. Once registrations have been processed, a “Confirmation of Elective Selection” form will be sent home with instructions for payment and further information for each elective. Final elective costs will depend on the number of students who select each activity. Registration forms are to be returned by December 22, 2011. Confirmation notes will be available the week of January 9th, 2012 with full payment required by Wednesday, January 18th, 2012.

In order to speed up the selection and organization of electives, we have set up an online Elective Sign Up site that can be accessed from the Highview PS website ( or from your child’s teacher’s website or blog.  Please complete the paper sign up belowonly  if you are unable to access the online sign up form. 

Click here for a direct link to the online sign up form.

We will require some parent volunteers to join in the fun and help with supervision. If you have an up-to-date York Regional Police Vulnerable Sector Screening on file with our school office, and wish to help out, please indicate this on the registration form.

Thank you from the Junior Division Teachers.









Sportsdome, Aurora

Dodgeball, golf, soccer, flag sports, ultimate Frisbee


Bowling and Gymnastics

Stellar Lanes,

Pulsar Gym,


Bowling shoes included


Animal Life Toronto Zoo

Toronto, ON

Observe animals in their habitat,

Guided tour



JCB Danceworks, Richmond Hill

Broadway jazz, contemporary, ballroom, hip hop (Take back a video of your dance routine.)


Ontario Science Centre

Toronto, ON

Leonardo da Vinci’s Workshop

Liquid Nitrogen Extravaganza

Imax Film “Tornado Alley”


Stop Motion Animation and Board Games

Highview P.S.

Create your own lego movie.

(BYOL – Bring your own Lego)


Monday, December 19, 2011

Social Studies–Guest Post from Mrs. Landsberg

The Social Studies tests on First Nations went home today (Tuesday) and they should be signed and returned before the winter holidays.

Remember to hand in your maps on Canada and the World they are now due.

Math for Monday, December 19, 2011

  1. Take Up Show What You Know (Questions 1 – 10)
  2. Decimal Word Problem Worksheet
    • This must be finished and handed in BEFORE you try the decimal games below.
  3. Decimal Activities

Language for Monday, December 19, 2011

Bell Work:  Writing a lead to hook your reader.

The Secret Knowledge of Adults:

  • Writing Paragraphs
  • Example from Hamish X and the Cheese Pirates by Sean Cullen
  • Parts of a Paragraph (shared with you on Google Docs)
  • Set Learning Targets and Success Criteria (also shared with you on Google Docs)
  • Work on your secret explanation for your rule using the paragraph organizer provided (Google Docs)

Read Aloud:  Out of my Mind

  • Blog Posting:  Why do you think that her teammates still find it difficult to be genuine friends with Melody?  Even Rose seems to have some issues with Melody.  Why do you think that is?  What could Melody do or what should Rose and the other team members do to help this situation get better?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Math for Friday, December 16, 2011

  1. Take up practice questions from yesterday.
  2. Show What You Know
    1. Questions 1 – 10
  3. Complete this for Monday.  We will take it up to ensure you are ready for your test on Wednesday.

Talking Back Blog

Language for Friday, December 16, 2011

Fast Friday Faceoff

New challenge:  EACH student who manages to match or exceed my typing speed of 64 WPM (with 2 or fewer errors) will get lunch.  If we can get the class average up to 40 WPM, we will have some kind of celebration (not sure what yet – but I’m open to suggestions)

Open DNS Phishing Quiz


Talking Back Blog Question

  • Are the parents of these kids pushing their children too hard?  Are too many expectations being put on these children so that they can’t live normal lives?  Do we see the same things here in Canada with hockey or other sports?  Do you think it is fair to the children that their parents make these kinds of decisions?

The Secret Knowledge of Adults

  • Set Learning Targets and Success Criteria
  • Paragraphs
  • First Draft of Rule and Explanation

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Language for Thursday, December 15, 2011

  1. Bell Work:  Brainstorm a list of “rules” that apply to most people or specifically “kids”.
  2. Read Aloud:  The Secret Knowledge of Grown-Ups
    1. Brainstorming Examples
    2. Student Rule Examples
  3. Brainstorm some rules and reasons of your own.  Work with a partner to choose 1 rule that you will develop into a secret explanation such as those in “The Secret Knowledge of Adults”
  4. Use this organizer to plan your writing.
  5. If you finish, you can sketch a draft of an illustration that will accompany your final rule.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Math for Wednesday, December 14, 2011

  1. Today’s Lesson: Chapter 4, Lesson 6 - Adding and Subtracting Decimals (Pages 132-136)
  2. Learning Goals:
    • Addition and subtraction with decimals are extensions of addition and subtraction with whole numbers.
  3. Additional Resources:
  4. Classwork:  Practice Questions 1-12
    Hand in: 3, 5, 9, 11
  5. Homework Book:  Pages 54-55

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Social Studies Test Tomorrow

Don’t forget  your social studies test tomorrow (Wednesday).  We will have it during period 3 and 4 (between recess and lunch).

Language for Tuesday, December 13, 2011

  1. Advertising Errors?
    • Read the article about Subaru’s ad at
    • As a class, discuss the writing/discussion prompt at the bottom of the article.
    • Look at the reading prompt.  It states that the article was written from a neutral point of view (doesn’t choose a side).  Use Google Docs or Open Office Writer to rewrite the article as it were written from the perspective of a truck driver or from someone who wrote the ad for Subaru Canada.
  2. If you finish, you can do the following:
    • Write a blog post on your personal blog that predicts what you think will happen to Melody in regard to the trivia challenge team and how that will help/hurt her.
    • Read quietly
    • Finish your Attawapiskat blog posting from the weekend.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Language for Monday, December 12, 2011

  1. Bell Work: Attawapiskat Letter
  2. Rewrite the text below to make this student’s point of view clear. Use strong adjectives to describe what the student is so mad about and specific details to make a stronger case for the government to do something about it.  We will share together.

    Dear Prime Minister,
    I am so mad about what is happening in Attawapiskat. I am mad that kids have to live like that. I am mad that their houses suck. I am mad that they don’t have running water and have to use a bucket as a toilet. I think you should do something about it.
    A mad student.

  3. Reading: Nobody Knows the Difference
    • In class reading response
  4. Read Aloud: Out of my Mind

Math for Monday, December 12, 2011

  1. Bell Work:  Rounding Decimals (To be done together – requires Shockwave Player)
  2. Today’s Lesson: Chapter 4, Lesson 4 - Rounding Decimals (Pages 126-128)
  3. Learning Goals:
    • We use rounded numbers when we estimate an answer or when an approximate measurement is sufficient.
    • A number line can be used to round decimals.
  4. Additional Resources:
  5. Classwork: Practice Questions 1-10
  6. Homework Book: Pages 50-51
  7. Hand back math tests  Oops – forgot them at home. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

Math for Friday, December 9, 2011

Today’s Lesson: Chapter 4, Lesson 3 - Comparing and Ordering Decimals (Pages 121-124)

Learning Goals:

  • Place value and number lines can be used to compare and order decimal numbers.

Classwork: Practice Questions 1-12

Homework Book: Pages 48-49

About Attiwapiskat

About Attiwapiskat

Language for Friday, December 9, 2011

Bell Work

New challenge:  EACH student who manages to match or exceed my typing speed of 64 WPM (with 2 or fewer errors) will get lunch.  If we can get the class average up to 40 WPM, we will have some kind of celebration (not sure what yet – but I’m open to suggestions)

Please ensure that you have the final draft of your TED Talk shared with me in Google Docs or that you have handed in a paper copy.


From Our Homes To Theirs – Responding To Attawapiskat

Grammar Feature: 5 Ws (interrogatives)
In newspaper articles, 5 main questions often are answered: who, what, when, why, where.  How is also a common question/answer.
Read this article carefully and fill in the 5 Ws (and an H) for this article.

Who: _____________________________________________

What: _____________________________________________

When: _____________________________________________

Why: _____________________________________________

Where: _____________________________________________

How: _____________________________________________


Use the Talking Back blog to share what you learned last night about Attawapiskat, how you feel about it, or what you think can be done about it.  Each person should write one new post and respond to at least 3 other people’s posts.

Read Aloud:  Out of my Mind

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Challenge Club Cancelled

No challenge club tonight as I need to leave early.  Sorry Sad smile

Thousandth Grid

Just in case you need a thousandth grid…

Language Homework

Watch the news, read a newspaper or check online news sources to find out more information about Attiwapiskat.

Brainstorm some questions and ideas for discussion in class tomorrow.

Math for Thursday, December 8, 2011

  1. Today’s Lesson: Chapter 4, Lesson 2 - Exploring Thousandths (Pages 117-120)
  2. Learning Goals:
    • Numbers with thousandths can be written as decimals or as fractions.
    • Decimals can be written in expanded form.
    • Equivalent decimals name the same amount.
  3. Additional Resources:
  4. Classwork: Practice Questions 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10
  5. Homework Book: Pages 46-47

Language for Thursday, December 8, 2011

Bell Work:  Rewrite the example below.  Use specific and accurate words to show your reader exactly what you’re talking about  (Use an online dictionary if you need to) .  Try to:

  • help your reader see a picture in their head by using nouns and modifiers.
  • avoid words that might confuse the reader
  • try new words – but make sure you use them correctly
  • make sure you have used the best words that you can

My best friend is so nice.  She’s funny.  She’s really funny when we go to the mall and hang out together.  We like to do fun things that make us laugh a lot.  When we go out to eat we always order good things.


Attawapiskat:  Canada’s “Fourth-World” Community

Writing:  Mind Mapping – What to do about Attawapiskat (Prezi)

Read Aloud:  Out of my Mind

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

What a Great Day!

Thank you for sharing your ideas and being a respectful audience. it was fantastic to watch you think about the ideas shared and offer opinions of your own. Not every day in class will be like today, but it's good to share them once in a while.

Feedback on TEDx6

Please help me improve by filling out this form.  You can leave your name or complete it anonymously.  This is an opportunity to help future students and help me do a better job teaching you.

Feedback on TEDx6

Johnny Lee–Hacking the Wii Remote

I wish I had more time to do this kind of thing.  A couple of blogs that I follow are always coming up with great ideas for using things you have around the house to create really cool projects.  What kind of hacks have you seen that you thought were cool?

Talking Back Blog

This blog will be a place to share and discuss.  Today we will use it to discuss some of the professional presenters that we have watched.  Like all tools, I expect that you will be respectful in what you write on this blog.

Talking Back Blog

Welcome to TEDx6!


After each presentation please use the form linked below to give feedback to the presenter.  I will be able to see your name, but the presenters will not.

TEDx6 Feedback Form

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

TEDx6 Tomorrow!

  • Get a good sleep tonight!
  • Practice your TED talk!
  • Make sure you know when your slide transitions need to happen
  • Share your presentations and scripts with me on Google Docs or Prezi.
  • Feel great about yourselves!
  • Be enthusiastic!
  • Be awesome and inspiring!

The View out our window

Sometimes it's hard to focus on school . . .

Monday, December 5, 2011

Language for Monday, December 5, 2011

We took three periods today to work on our TED presentations.

  • Our TEDX6 mini conference is this Wednesday – all day.
  • You are expected to have your presentation ready to go.
    • Ensure each partner knows what they are saying.
    • Ensure that you know when your transitions will happen.
    • Your goal is to be between 3 and 8 minutes.
  • Your final draft of your transcript (speech) must be ready to hand in on Thursday morning during Language.
  • Please remember to check your work against the rubric (below).

Math for Monday, December 5, 2011

Friday, December 2, 2011

Holiday Help

Language for Friday, December 2, 2011

Bell Work:  Savvygram

Spelling:  This is your last day to complete your spelling assignments!


  • Mini conferences with Mr. Monahan
  • Writing your transcript
  • Working on your audio-visual presentation

If time permits:  Out of my Mind

Thursday, December 1, 2011

First Nations Test

The First Nations Test will be Wednesday, December 14, 2011.  Good luck! 

Math for Thursday, December 1, 2011

It’s time to start a new unit!  Unit four is all about decimals. You will learn how large numbers can be represented using decimals (Ex.  Sidney Crosby earns about 8.75 million dollars per year) and how decimals can be used to represent parts of whole numbers (Ex.  $8.64 is 8 whole dollars and 64 hundredths of a dollar – or cents). 

Tip:  What I would suggest if you have trouble with decimals is that you think of the decimal you are looking at as if it was money.  If I owed you 8.87 cents, you wouldn’t let me give you just $5.95 would you?

Take some time to consider the unit introduction on pages 112 and 113.  Check out the Learning Goals on the bottom left of the page.  Make sure you understand what each expectation means and the language used.  The information on page 113 might be more familiar to you if you think of computer memory.


Memory (approximate)

1 kW = 1000 Watts 1 kb (kilobyte) = 1000 bytes
1 MW = 1 000 000 Watts 1 Mb (megabyte) = 1 000 000 bytes
1 GW = 1 000 000 000 Watts 1 Gb (gigabyte) = 1 000 000 000 bytes
  1 Tb (terabyte) = 1 000 000 000 000 bytes

Pre-assessment:  Try this short quiz to see how much you already know about decimals.

Language for Thursday, December 1, 2011

When writing  the transcript of your TED talk, make sure that you pay attention to writing paragraphs properly.  This is expected in all your writing, but it is one of the areas of focus for your assessment on this task.  Writing your paragraphs properly will also help with the pace when you deliver your talk to the class.  It will help you take a “break” between big ideas.

Guidelines for Paragraphs

  • You should start a new paragraph when:
    • When you begin a new idea or point. New ideas should always start in new paragraphs. If you have an extended idea that spans multiple paragraphs, each new point within that idea should have its own paragraph.
    • To contrast information or ideas. Separate paragraphs can serve to contrast sides in a debate, different points in an argument, or any other difference.
    • When your readers need a pause. Breaks in paragraphs function as a short "break" for your readers—adding these in will help your writing more readable. You would create a break if the paragraph becomes too long or the information is complex.
    • When you are ending your introduction or starting your conclusion. Your introduction and conclusion should always be in a new paragraph. Some introductions and conclusions have multiple paragraphs depending on their content, length, and the writer's purpose.
    • When there is dialogue (speech) from a new speaker. If you have dialogue or speech between two or more different individuals in your writing, you should start a new paragraph for each speaker.
  • Other Paragraph Guidelines
    • Put only one main idea per paragraph.
    • Aim for three to five or more sentences per paragraph.
    • Separate paragraphs with a “hard carriage return” – looks like one space between paragraphs.
  • Example from our class blog.  The first paragraph below talks about the times that I planned to be available for Parent-Teacher Interview.  When I began writing about the fact that the times might not fit everyone’s schedules, I began a new paragraph that also included instructions for what to do if that was the case.

Requests for Parent Teacher interview times have been sent home and many students have already returned their forms.  I will be available  between 3:30 pm and 5:30 pm and from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm Thursday, November 24.  I will also be available on Friday, November 25th between 8:00 am and 11:30 am.  I will not be available on Friday afternoon.

If these times don’t fit your schedule, please contact me and let me know so that we can set up a different time.  Confirmation of times will be sent home with your child’s progress report on November 23rd, but if the time you have selected doesn’t work I will contact you as soon as I see a conflict (so far, everyone has been accommodated).

Language for Thursday, December 1, 2011

Bell Work

Rewrite the examples correctly below on paper so that you can use the document camera to share them.

  • some insects travel south in winter monarch butterflys will go 4000 km for warmth they now exactly when to turn around and hed north agin
  • don’t open the gate mr rogers dogs will get out and run away

Out of My Mind

I would like a few (3 – 5) volunteers to share their blog responses to yesterday’s reading.  You were asked:

Imagine that you were in Melody’s position (i.e. couldn’t speak or use sign language) and you received a computer that allowed you to talk. What is the first paragraph that you would write to your parents? What is the first paragraph that you would write to your classmates?

Spelling City

Many of you are not yet complete the two lists that are due on Friday! 

Many of you will also recall that this was discussed during your parent-teacher interview.  There are two reasons to be working on this task:

  1. It will help improve your spelling – if you actually do the practice and complete the activities to build your vocabulary.  If you don’t work at it, there’s no improvement.
  2. It shows that you can take initiative and be responsible for your own learning.  You’ve had two weeks to get to it!