Thursday, October 18, 2012

Exeter-Milligan Update: 6th grade news

Kate Jansky, Trever Zelenka, and Josie Kresak show off their sarcophagi (burial boxes) for three different pharaohs

6th graders Joel Klemm and James Becker with their model of Hatchepsut's temple and tomb.
6th Grade News by Julie Polak

     The Exeter-Milligan sixth grade class is very busy with a new Math curriculum and trading off between science and social studies.  Saxon Math (Course One) is a bit different than the other elementary grades.  We still do our daily "Power-Up" sheets that include reviewing math facts, mental math, and problem solving.  The instruction focuses on one or two bits of information with some guided practice.  Then Mrs. Polak does some of the homework problems for us, and then we usually have time to work on the rest of the problems.  Whatever we don't get done in class, we take home to finish.
     We began social studies with how we know what we think we know about ancient civilizations with a brief study of Archaeology.  Mrs. Polak even went to the Nebraska Archaeological Society's Annual Artifact Show in Seward and shared some of what we did in class.  She even came home with a ribbon!  Our study of Ancient Egypt included projects;  some of us made a sarcophagus for a pharaoh, some made Egyptian temples, and some made tools the Egyptians might have used.  Others did a drawing of a royal barge that would have gone up and down the Nile River, or a picture of a carving that appears on a wall.
     We are studying physical science this year, and are having fun with Newton's Laws of Motion and demonstrating some of the vocabulary terms.  We just finished trying different lubricants to reduce the friction between our little pipe-cleaner-and-craft-stick skiers and a plexiglass slope.  Some worked and some didn't, but we learned to use the right terms to describe what exactly happened.
     The E-M sixth grade is also learning to diagram sentences, write critiques, and make nouns plural, and possessive.  We will begin a financial education program in the computer lab after the first of November, courtesy of the Farmer's and Merchant's Bank of Milligan and the First National Bank in Exeter.
     Mrs. Polak's reading class began the year with an environmental novel, The Talking Earth, and we liked it so much we are now reading another survival tale, Touching Spirit Bear. 
     It's going to be a challenge getting everything done that we want to do this year in Mrs. Polak's room, but it will be fun learning!

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