May 20, 2015
by Mrs. Hamman
25 Comments

The End of Another Great Year!

Believe it or not, tomorrow is our last day of fifth grade! We’ve had a great year and learned a ton of new things. Our blog is a record of a lot of the things we’ve done in class, but we don’t blog about everything. Here’s a slideshow showing some of the things we haven’t talked about on the blog this year.

Fifth Grade 2014-15 from S Hamman on Vimeo.

Yesterday we were asked to choose one word to describe our fifth grade year. The most popular word was: awesome! Here’s a Tagxedo showing all the words we chose.

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The end of the school year is a good time to reflect on the goals we set for ourselves throughout the year. We’ve been doing that in our morning meetings and in our end of the year Memory Book. Take a look at our Classroom Vision video from the beginning of the year. How well do you think we met our goals as a class?

May 13, 2015
by Mrs. Hamman's Class
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Picture It 2015

Picture It

Our bulletin board for Picture It 2015

Picture It is another great collaborative project from Projects By Jen. With this project, we are matched with 23 other classes to create a work of art. This year the theme was “Quilts”.

We looked at pictures of quilts online and noticed the detail and symmetry in the patterns. You must need to be a good mathematician to be a quilter!

We noticed that some quilt blocks had a circular design. This led to our exploring mandalas. A mandala is a symmetrical, circular design with geometric shapes. These designs are meaningful in many cultures and religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, and some Native American tribes. We watched this video of Tibetan monks creating a mandala out of sand. Watch it to the end to see what happens to it!

For our quilt block for Picture It, we decided to create our own mandala artwork. Some of us colored designs we found online, while others used stencils to create our own geometric designs. Here are some of the blocks we made to send to other classes.

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The image at the top of this post shows the artwork we’ve received from other classes so far. It’s been interesting to see their pictures and read the information they sent with them! We are going to use the information from other classes to answer these math questions. You’ll see the answers in the comments!

Our class is the largest of the classes in our group (so far). What is the range of class sizes?

What is the mean of the class sizes?

Total all the boys and all the girls in all the classes from California. What is the ratio of boys to girls?

What is the ratio of boys to girls in our class?

April 22, 2015
by Mrs. Hamman
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Earth Day Resources

Today is Earth Day! We’ll be exploring resources about ecology throughout the day today. Later this week we’ll post presentations showcasing what we learned.

Here are some articles, videos and games about Earth Day.

April 16, 2015
by Mrs. Hamman
24 Comments

Moon Phases

In fifth grade science, one of the things we study is the movement of different objects in our solar system. Earlier in the year we learned about how the moon’s gravity affects the Earth’s tides. Now we are learning why the moon appears to look different in the sky at different times of the month.

We have been learning about the movement of the moon by using different models. For one, we put a styrofoam ball on a pencil. We used a bright lamp to represent the sun, and our own bodies represented the Earth. As we moved the Moon in a revolution around the Earth, we could see how the Moon was illuminated differently depending on its position in the sky. Here’s a slideshow showing this:

Phases of the Moon from S Hamman on Vimeo.

We also created moon phase models using Oreo cookies! In partners, we drew pictures of the eight phases of the moon, then we made models from the cookies. The frosting represents the illuminated part of the moon.

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Do you think planets have phases, too? 

(We’re going to find out the answer to this question after a video conference in a few weeks, and we’ll post the answer after we find out!)

March 10, 2015
by Mrs. Hamman's Class
5 Comments

Mad Science Day

Mad Science Day is a day when we spend all day doing science projects. It started a few years ago as a way of celebrating Halloween, but now we like to have multiple Mad Science Days every year. We love getting the chance to really explore science in a hands-on way.

We had our most recent Mad Science Day last Friday. Since we’ve been learning about physical science this quarter, all of our activities centered on the things we study in fifth grade physical science. Together with our friends in Mr. Maijala’s class, we learned about the properties of matter—by making food! We also showed the difference between chemical and physical changes in matter. Then we learned about motion and forces by making and testing balloon rockets and marshmallow catapults!

We realized that we never posted about our earlier Mad Science Day this year, which focused more on life science and the scientific process. Our video shows pictures from both science days.

Mad Science Day from S Hamman on Vimeo.

Next quarter we’ll be studying earth and space science.

What do you think we should do for our next Mad Science Day?