Sunday, 2 October 2016

Sharing our progress as we “keep moving forward”

In Mathematics we have been building on our understanding of our number system, exploring the place value of numbers in the millions, and decimals to the thousands.  Students have worked through various challenges to deepen their understanding of the value of numbers, and the importance of place value in our base ten number system.  We have composed, decomposed large numbers and decimals, compared, ordered and rounded whole numbers and decimals, using various concrete materials (base ten blocks), grids, number lines and place value charts.  Students have practiced extensively and are ready to “keep moving forward”

In Language Arts we have started to consider global issues, through the reading of Iqbal.  During the read aloud students are questioning, discussing and reflecting on issues that are being presented through the text, through the voice of Fatima.

The comprehension strategy which is being modeled and explicitly taught through Iqbal is inferring.  Active listening strategies and other comprehension strategies are also being developed.  

This info-fiction about Iqbal Masih is capturing their attention and engaging my students in deep conversations about real world issues. Students are making connections and considering the issues presented through the text. This book, is setting them up to explore the Global Goals in detail and make further connections.

This week students will be introduced to the Global Goals, beginning with the World’s Largest Lesson.  It is going to be a very thought provoking week.

On Friday, September 30th, as you know we walked for Terry Fox through Beaver Pond. On our return to class, students were asked to consider why Terry Fox is considered one of Canada’s greatest heroes, and why the Marathon of Hope continues today.  They viewed various videos, and are now in the process of completing their own way of sharing his story, through their eyes. As they complete this reflective piece, I hope to share with you.

Sunday, 11 September 2016

A glimpse into the first week of School

It is hard to believe that the first week of school has already passed!  It was an amazing first week as I got to meet my students, all 53 of them and begin to build our classroom community with them.

As I teach Language and Math to two groups, it is important to invest time and energy in developing relationships with my students through various challenges which allow them to problem solve, think critically, collaborate, and get to know each other and me.

This past week students worked through the Marshmallow Challenge.  They were asked to form a group of 3 or 4 and work collaboratively to complete the challenge.  Together we developed criteria, worked collaboratively, and reflected on the process.  Together we then co-constructed what collaboration looks like, sounds like, feels like, and we have come to a common understanding of what it truly means to collaborate.  As we continue our learning journey we will continue to reflect, and consider what collaboration is, developing success criteria further.


Throughout the Marshmallow challenge, students engaged in the sharing of ideas, construction, and reflection in order to meet with success.  The classroom was filled with excitement and students were engaged in the learning process.

Following the actual challenge, students were asked to reflect on the process and record their thinking about what worked well, what would they change, and how they worked as a team in order to accomplish the task.

Sharing our story:

To develop relationships with my students, I shared some artefacts which reflect part of my story. Students were asked to consider the artefacts/evidence and consider Who I am.  They were then challenged to consider the question Who Am I? Through the course of this year, identity will be a central theme which we will continue to explore.

Students were challenged to create out of play doh an item which reflects or tells part of their story, who they are.  They were also challenged to select two words which connect to the creation, and to them.




We are starting our year with an Inspirational Week of Math!  As we work through collaborative math challenges, thanks to the work of Jo Boaler, Professor at Stanford University, students are developing a growth mindset in order to meet the challenges of the grade 6 math curriculum.  

Students are excited by the challenges and have engaged in great Math talk, as they work through the challenges, problem solving, thinking critically, explaining and justifying their thinking.

The week of Inspirational math will continue next week, with some great new challenges.  Please be sure to check in with your child and check the slides.

It has been a great first week and I look forward to the weeks ahead!

Friday, 2 September 2016

Welcome to a new school year!

Welcome to another exciting school year!  My name is Ms. Brambles and I will be your child’s grade 6 teacher for Language Arts and Math.  This year once again I will be working very closely with Mme. Tibshirani to make a seamless transition from French to English, and with my English teaching partner Mr. Mayhew, focusing on Language Arts and Math.

During the first few weeks we will spend time building relationships and a collaborative learning community. Through rich learning opportunities your child will be engaged in developing criteria on collaboration, learning goals, active listening skills, and how to respect each others’ ideas, opinions, and learning styles while still being able to honour their own.

The learning in our classroom will be grounded in our Catholic Social teachings and through inquiry, where students will be encouraged to ask questions, seek answers, challenge, search, and share their new learning in many different ways, as we develop the 6 compentencies (Collaboration, communication, creativity, citizenship, critical thinking and character). They will be given opportunities to work in partners, small groups and individually. Ongoing assessment and feedback will be done throughout the learning process and students will be encouraged to self-assess based on the co-constructed success criteria. They will be encouraged to take ownership for their learning, in a student-led classroom.

Please note that this year we will not have agendas.  Every day your child will be sent the slides from the day through Hapara along with reminders and updates.  They are asked to check their Hapara folders each night, review the slides and share their learning with you.

The purpose of this blog will be to share and reflect on our learning journey throughout the year.