Wednesday, June 24, 2009

CLass PArty Friday 26th June

This Friday the class has earned a day of celebration in honour of their hard work and good behaviour.
The party day will include extended PE, a dvd and shared lunch. Students may bring their PG or lower rated dvd selections to vote on with your permission. Each student needs to bring food or drink. Bringing their own cup to drink from would be in keeping with our sustainability theme. If you have picnic plates feel free to send them also.
We will try to encourage some organisation of what to bring so we don't get inundated with sugar.
Thank you for your support. Feel free to leave comments here confirming what you would prefer to bring in.

Amazing Nikola Tesla

For brainiac kids who love to discover, invent, design, solve or maybe even... destroy!!!

Nikola Tesla invented amazing things like electric cars, devices to defeat frost and even a DEATH RAY but have you ever heard of him? You may say "no" until I remind you of the Tesla Coil. He should be more famous, but was he kept silent by those who had reason to suppress his amazing inventions???
Read about him and find out more about this incredible man.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Kids teach teachers!

Yesterday we had video clips from Woodmonstas giving a brief intro to blogging for writers. The kids were definitely the stars of the show, with the audience loving the openness and enthusiasm of the young writers involved.
I would love to upload them all but we foolishly named ourselves [my fault] so for cybersafety reasons we can't upload all the vids.
Let's see who made the cut....

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Grammar Gorilla and Spelling with Shakespeare

Here are some links to online resources to help you strengthen your spelling and grammar skills.
I have employed some guy called Bill Shakes and a Gorilla to help you...

Level 4 Language stuff - English Online Speaking, Writing, Presenting

English Online Features of Narrative writing

English Online: Exploring language

Become a character

Guide to Grammar and Writing

Literacy Progressions

MysteryMan's Sports Report

This is MysteryMan's avatar to represent himself as a blogger. You may recognize it as the Chiefs logo.

Check out Mysteryman's review of the All Black test match versus France. He has provided a quality piece of journalistic writing for you to enjoy and learn from.

[- coloured words represent hyperlinks to related sites.]

Monday, June 15, 2009

Former Room5ian studies resources...

See what former Room5ians Hamiltron thinks about plastics and wood as resources.
Check out his research blog:

Using your brain while reading

Is your brain engaged in your reading and writing activities? Woodmonsta brains are - they do all these things when reading actively....

  • Summarize: Every once in awhile, you should stop, look at a portion of text you just read, and try to summarize the content in your own words. This is a good way to test your understanding of the material.

  • Make Predictions: To keep your brain fully engaged in the text, you should make predictions about what you think might happen next based on what you already know. It's always fun to see if your predictions are accurate.

  • Formulate Opinions: We have opinions on everything from the weather to politics. When you are reading, allow yourself to form opinions about the characters, the plot, the style of the writing, etc.

  • Make Connections: A good way to understand something that is new and unfamiliar to you is to connect it to something you already know or have experienced. Can you connect the text you are reading to a personal experience? Does it remind you of something else you've read or seen?

  • Ask Questions: Don't expect that you are going to understand everything in the reading with complete clarity the first time through. What don't you understand? What confuses you? What words are unclear to you?

  • Analyze the Author's Craft: As you are reading, you may notice certain things about the writer's style. Is there a lot of description? Is there too little description? Is the reading easy to follow or difficult in some way? Does the author use a lot of literary devices like similes and metaphors? Do you understand how and why the author is using such devices?

  • Reflect/React/Comment: What do you notice? What surprises you? How do you feel about what you are reading? What do you think about what you are reading?

  • Look for Patterns/Repetitions: What do you notice about the way the text is structured? Do you notice some kind of pattern? Is there some element in the text that is repeated? What is important about this pattern or these repetitions? How does the structure contribute to the overall meaning?
[- as described in Angela Maiers blog]

And thoughts on actively engaging with a txt:

Sunday, June 14, 2009

SIFE Survey for worm farmers

Survey Monkey is a cool way to do online surveys.
Here is one from our friends at S.I.F.E.
It's part of our learning regarding worm farming as a business.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Solo Taxonomy

We are learning how to understanding our learning processes, where we are at, what we need to know and how we are going to get there, by referring to the SOLO taxonomy.
Once we have had time to get to know the method, we will be able to describe and monitor our own learning journey [excuse the JohnMitchelism] using terms from the SOLO taxonomy.
This will encourage our metacognition and help us to be self-directed, life-long learners...
Can you relate your blogging or class tasks to different levels on the taxonomy?

Which place matters most?

Check out our Clustrmap image.
Can you name some interesting and obscure countries we have had visits from?

While you're investigating the planet, consider which parts are most significant in terms of the planet's ecology. I mean name three countries that are most significant in terms of environmental impact. You can't be wrong if you justify your answer.

Also, check out this cool site relating to ecology and conservation:

I think you'll really like this one and it has green tips for you:

Feel free to do reviews of websites I share on your own blogs.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Brazil - what do you know?

What can you tell me about Brazil? Crikey - it's huge for starters!!!
Is there something big and green that is majorly important to our world environment in Brazil? Tell me about your discoveries... [it does link to our studies on the environment.]
What is the history? Language? Why is it different to all the other countries in South and Central America?
Enjoy learning - maybe someone from Brazil will share some thoughts with us on our blog too. :-)
I hope to go there one day.

Creative Writing

If you are a keen creative writer, you might like to try writing an imaginary diary of your experiences on Matainui. As you design and construct your village with your fellow villagers you could create a story to go along with it.
This is optional but is a really good opportunity for keen writers to explore and share their talents online to a genuine audience and to receive constructive feedback from a community of writers that we will develop.

Also, Here is a link to a village game to investigate

Village is SimCity for the Third World
Instead of being mayor, be an entrepreneur. Build and run companies that transform lives. Village is a series of online and downloadable games that immerse the player into the role of an entrepreneur building companies to bring prosperity to the villages of the Third World.

["Village is SimCity for the Third World. Instead of being mayor, be an entrepreneur. Build and run companies that transform lives. Village is a series of online and downloadable games that immerse the player into the role of an entrepreneur building companies to bring prosperity to the villages of the Third World."]

Enjoy :-)

Making a personal difference

As a result of our inquiry into sustainability and how we make an impact on the Earth with every choice we make, I would like you to do the following:

1. Make a commitment to reduce your ecological footprint in three ways.
2. Create a "footprint diary" on your sustainability blog.
3. Monitor your progress honestly - don't feel bad if you find it difficult - just do your best.
4. Evaluate your choices weekly and estimate which of your three is the most effective.

So make some suggestions here as to what you may try and why. Then start your "diary" on your sustainable blog.

We'll see who has made the biggest difference to the Earth in Week ten.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Worm Farming

Can you please discuss here your understanding of the concept of worm farming, how it relates to our class, our school, our environment and what level of involvement you could personally achieve. If you are keen to be a worm expert, make a post about it on your personal blog.
I will select the most intelligent, dedicated, well-informed, persistent students to be involved.

Check out the links below:

They worm farm in Northland

Environment Waikato

What exciting opportunities exist to help us make progress with our school's ecological footprint, our impact on the Earth, that Environment Waikato could help us with.

What other environmentally friendly ideas have you got for the school?

Friday, June 5, 2009

School is what we make it

How about we come up with a list of positives about our special class so we can feel good about ourselves. If a parent came up with a positive comment that would be extra special.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Try some more maths

Here are two more websites with useful, fun, maths activities:

[Tell us which ones you found at the appropriate level]

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

What a load of Rubbish!

Wow - our school is creating a lot of waste, recycling nothing and being very naughty. It is NOT SUSTAINABLE!!!
Our planet needs some help from brilliant young leaders of tomorrow, like yourselves.
The young people [compared to me] who visited you today from S.I.F.E. were incredible folk. They were giving up their time to get across an important message to you all during their very busy uni exam study week. They do it because they CARE.
I was delighted at how positive you were about their message. Well done to those contributed sensibly to their discussion.
Can you remember what you learnt?
What shall we as a class do to help? Remember - don't make a commitment to something you don't intend to stick to...

Ski Trip Cancelled

The ski trip has been cancelled this year due to lack of interest.
[grumble grumble]
Please inform your lovely parents tomorrow night's meeting is cancelled.
[Grumble grumble]

The image is from last year's incredibly cool ski trip to Whakapapa.