We started our day studying these amazing fishermen from Vietnam and talking about this incredible photograph. I am always amazed what comes out of these little people's mouths who have been on the Earth just five or six years. The first child that shared what they talked about with their partner very clearly stated that the two men on the boats were balancing, like the balance scale, and they had their other foot up on the stick so their side wasn't too heavy. They talked about the shapes they saw, and we thought about what would happen when they put fish in their boats.
We will continuing a tradition my classes have had for the past five or six years but with a big modification. We will be watching an eagle's nest. In the past we have watched the nest at the National Arboretum in D.C., but the two eagles, Lotus and Mr. President have moved to another nest in the area that does not have cameras. I blame it on Lotus. She moved in with Mr. President and replaced The First Lady after a season where no eggs were laid. Now Lotus wants a new home. I'm really sad because Lotus and Mr. President were very entertaining, as well as educational. I looked at other eagle cameras in the area and around the U.S. and decided on the Dulles Greenway Eagles Nest, www.dullesgreenway.com/eagle-cam/. If you are unfortunate enough to have a fine on the Greenway, you can pay the fine there too! We are late to the party on this nest with Rosa already laying two eggs. They were laid two days apart about a week ago. What you will see now on the nest is Rosa and Martin taking turns incubating the eggs. There are two views on this camera. I talked to the children about this being a wild nest and that they may see some things they think are gross, but I promise they will get used to, like when they tear a fish or rabbit apart for dinner. There is also the possibility that the eggs won't hatch, or when they do hatch, won't survive. We had one eaglet last year die shortly after hatching, but the children were very matter of fact about it saying that it was part of nature. Hopefully, we will follow DG3 and DG4 until they fledge from the nest. We will start a journal on Monday to document what we see and learn from this nest.
We started our Black History Month by reading a few African folktales. We read Anasi and the Big Stick, by Eric Kimmel and illustrated by Janet Stevens, Lazy Lion, by Mwenye Hadithi, and Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain, by Verna Aardema.
We continued our Black History study today by reading the book An American Story, by Kwame Alexander. This book beautifully tells the history of how the slaves from Africa were taken away from their homes, brought to America, and used as slaves. This book tells this harsh reality of America's past with stunning illustrations that are actually sculptures. The words Alexander chose are powerful and beautifully constructed, chosen carefully without overwhelming the reader with too many words. I stopped along the way as I was reading to discuss some of the words, and when we finished we just shared feelings and thoughts. Below you will find an interview with the author and artist who created this book.
In math, we continued working with the vocabulary more, fewer, equal, and including the word than to compare two groups. We looked at cookies and cupcakes and compared the groups using these words. We also talked about how they knew one group had fewer or more than the other group. We talked about using the fewer when we talk about a quantity instead of the word less. Precise language is important in math!
Have a great weekend!