Thursday, April 27, 2017

Not Without Us recap, Battleship images, two shots from Track & Field at Earlscourt Park and Relay exchanges, some finished school projects....

TIFF Kids:

Last week, we took in a great film at the TIFF Kids Film Festival.  Once again, here is the trailer for Not Without Us!


We will play for a small period of time today and then return to the Transformations on Friday.

Track and Field day at Earlscourt Park:

This is one of the few shots of the Track (seen in better days) at Earlscourt Park.  I did not take any photos, unfortunately, of the meet.  This image is from
Our walk home from the Track

As the upcoming qualifying meets for the Track and Field season beckons, our Gym classes will look at the importance of baton exchanges during the Sprint relays.


There has been some great progress with the projects the students have been working on in class.  Lunch hour and Recess time, when available, will be provided to wrap up these two assignments.

Dandelion Tree, Earlscourt Park

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

TIFF Kids, Moderated Marking for EQAO & School Community Cleanup, playing Battleship/reviewing some Geometry concepts

TIFF Kids:

Last Friday, we had the pleasure of taking in the film Not Without Us at the TIFF Kids Film Festival.
I caught a few shots, although they did not look superb, it seemed that most of the class enjoyed themselves and took something in from the film they watched.

Schoolyard cleanup:

I plan to spin the trailer, once more, and see what they took away from it.  We will do this on Thursday, on account of tomorrow being our Track and Field day at Earlscourt Park.

We missed the school-yard cleanup on Friday, so we did it yesterday, during the last period.
on the move

after the gathering

the gather!


I really like how the staff at Dovercourt work together to prepare the students for the EQAO assessment.  While we are doing some work, as a class, on some of the questions, Ms. Waxer and Ms. Ling have been taking our class to do some moderated work on old questions.

I posted the link to some helpful sites on the side of the blog, but in the group in Room 28, we talk about different strategies that can be used when approaching the question.  We finally got around to looking at the Felix Baumgartener question.  Here are the responses we looked at.

While the print may be too small to read, I took a page from Miriam's approach to using a highlighter to make note of some key items.

This is an example of our approach to answering multiple choice questions.
In the short answer questions, I provided a good example and a poor answer.

My first answer did not answer the question at all!  I did not read in carefully and was very off topic.   The second one is much stronger.

In the following images, you will see sample, scored, responses from EQAO.  I would probably score my first response as a 10 or I (for incomplete).

Battleship:  Reviewing the locations in the Cartesian graph 

The four quadrants of the Cartesian plane is something that is not supposed to be explored until Grade 7, but I thought I would go ahead anyway.  As I posted on an earlier post, playing the Battleship game on the graph is a great way to review how the coordinate system works.  We will be returning to our transformations (reflections, rotations, translations) after we have a final session of playing.  Here are some of the pairs in action, from yesterday:

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

EQAO practice: looking at Joseph-Armand Bombardier, School Cash Online system, giant asteroid misses Earth: IAS review, sample HW movie review & other items relating to graphing on the coordinate plane

EQAO prep

This is another review and exploration of the way EQAO questions are set up.  We began to take a look at the answers to a reading passage on Joseph-Armand Bombardier.  I must confess, I did not know a lot about him.  Here is an interesting link to some of his creations, which the reading passage touched on.  Here is the link:

As I mentioned before, there won't be the luxury of being able to talk about the reading passage before the assessment.  I figure while we are reviewing some reading strategies, why not explore some of the content of the reading passage. 

Schools Cash on Line

This was sent home, about the new School Cash Online system that will be used for future trips and excursions.  Here is a link, which I hope may be beneficial for you.  I will also post the handout, which went home last week.

for more info, check out:


There is one group in the class working on a Science project on asteroids.  There was a big news story, today, on a giant asteroid 2014JO25, is passing by the earth today.  Apparently, it is closest an asteroid has passed by earth in 400 years!  See more information at the NASA site:

An asteroid is a rocky substance which revolves around the sun but is not considered a planet.   Here is a link detailing some information on the differences between different objects in space that we may think of as asteroids.

Old link to an IAS review page:

Before Friday's test, I will take some time to review this concept for Data Management.

A review question.

Transformational Geometry:

I was using the overhead projector to first introduce some of the concepts to the class involving reflections, rotations, and translations.  I was finding that my hand was blocking the projector and the students were not able to see what I was doing.

So, for the homework that was assigned from Tuesday night, I decided to make a video of the solutions.  This video is a sample of the longer version I demonstrated in the class, allowing time for questions.  We will continue our investigations tomorrow and turn our attention to a few of the types of questions which may pop up on the upcoming EQAO assessment.

Here are a few interesting YouTube videos relating to plotting coordinate pairs.  One is from our favourite Math guy and the others relate to Minecraft.

As we begin to work on the full 4 quadrants of the grid, I thought we might play a version of the game that many of you may know as Battleship.  In this game, you will plot a variety of ships on a 4 quadrant coordinate plane.

The link to give credit to the author is not working.
Although our game will look different, this YouTube video might give you an example of what we will be doing.

Here is what our game sheet will look like:
There is a lot of information on this post and it does not cover all that we are doing so we may not get to the game by Thursday.  This game will serve as a midpoint review for this unit.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Malala Yousafzai visits the Canadian Parliament

Nobel Prize winner and Activist visits Canadian Parliament:

Malala Yousafzai, aged 19, is a remarkable powerhouse of a human being who visited our Nation's Parliament and received an Honourary Canadian Citizenship.  Here is her speech from yesterday, in Ottawa.


Although we did not get too far, Charlie Cash got us rolling with an example of a reflection from quadrant one to quadrant four.

TIFF Kids International Film Festival & paint

We are a go for next Friday's film at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.  A permission form went home today outlining the details and cost of the trip.

We also will be receiving some paint to match the small canvases I have.  Hopefully, we will get to this when the order arrives in a couple of weeks!

There is no homework over this long weekend.  Have a great rest!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Some helpful Geometry items, Pink Day


After looking at the introductory (or review) section of the textbook, and this great graphic from Pinterest, let's take a look at these two things.  One of them is silly, the other not, but both of them are informative:

I am also thinking of how we can use the concepts of a translation, reflection, and rotation in a short Dance/Movement routine!

Pink Day

I was very impressed to see members of the Student Council visit Room 28 and engage them in some great discussions about issues related to Bullying, Transphobia, and Homophobia.  I mentioned to them that I have taught in 5 schools and never seen a more proactive and involved Student Council.  

Student Council discussion with our class

These were some awesome messages produced by our students to challenge the many forms of bullying we see everyday.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Carl meets George (on Arthur) & the Numbers Guy, David Teitel, Math HW notes and review, some sites for Space Inquiry, WEAR SOMETHING PINK ON WEDNESDAY!

Looking, once again, at Neurodiversity:

I was using the term Neurodiversity and wanted to make sure I was using it correctly.  As I was poking around the Internet, I came across the name of Dr. Thomas Armstrong, who has written about topics relating to Neurodiversity ( &

To summarize, because I am not writing a research report, Thomas Armstrong is interested in looking at the strengths of individuals who may have ADHD, be on the Autistic Spectrum or have other brain differences.  This does not mean that brain differences, like all differences, can be challenging in different situations, but it the key idea is that there is strength in diversity.

I mentioned to the class about an old episode of Arthur where George meets Carl, who has Apbergers Syndrome which is on the Autistic spectrum.

This morning, I saw a link to a CBC documentary on David Teitel.  I remember him, when he was a cashier at Noah's Health food store at Spadina and Bloor.  He would often share interesting statistics and facts and I had no idea how he came up with them.  At the time, I did not know that he would exemplify the idea of Neurodiversity before I had the faintest idea that I would be a teacher and embrace the different ways our brains function.

Math HW:

Review of select questions from the homework assigned last week:

Space information:

Saya brought this to my attention for the project.  The link is below the image.

I only thought it was fair, and patriotic, to give a shout-out to the Canadian Space Agency.



There is no official homework assigned for tonight, but:

Book Talk Cereal Box assignment:  April 26 (new date)
Science Inquiries:  April 26 (new date)
Parent Surveys:  ASAP (thanks)
unfinished  work

Monday, April 10, 2017

TIFF Kids proposal, School Cash Online, Neurodiversity introduction, TDSB Parent & Student survey


I am going to propose to Ms. Kramer that we view this film as part of the Toronto International Film Festival for Kids.  It is beautiful, eye-opening and mind-stretching.

School Cash Online

In May, there will be a trip to the Ontario Science Centre.  As part of the payment, this trip will be paid for using the school cash online system (  This is the direction all schools are moving towards in the TDSB.  Ms. Kramer let me know that she will provide me with a handout/reminder paper of the steps involved in signing up for this payment system if you haven't already.


Today, we began a discussion on how we are alike and how we are different.  Sometimes we forget that there can be diversity in how our brains work.  I first wrote about this a week or so ago when I introduced the character of Julia, from Sesame Street.  Here is a CBC news story:

We will continue this discussion.  I think it is an important one.

TDSB Parent & Student survey:

This went home today for you to fill out.  Please return it in the same envelope, when you are done.

The student survey will be completed in class over the next couple of days.
Thanks, in advance.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

EQAO work, Geometry (coordinate plane review) HW, Health

EQAO practice:

On this rainy day, we finally got around to doing one of the EQAO Reading questions.  We voted to read the story on Marilyn Bell.  Here are some shots of the students at work:

After, we took a look at samples of how some responses were scored and the feedback they received from the evaluators.  Hopefully, this review over the next 6-7 weeks will familiarize the students with the type of thinking and work they will be doing on the assessment.


This is a coordinate plane.

This is a cool link which explains how the four quadrants work  Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, we are only looking at issues in quadrant one.

FYI, you will journey into the other quadrants next year, when they introduce the concept of Integers.  Personally, I think you could do it now:

This will mark our journey into the strand of Geometry.  The Homework, for the weekend, are on the following pages:

Health and Physical Education:  Healthy Living

Human Development and Sexual Health

I realize that this topic can be a bit intimidating and uncomfortable for some students, but I would like to provide a safe and healthy place for the students in Room 28 to ask some questions about early adolescence and topics related to puberty.

To do so, I have generated a short, anonymous, homework question based on the two expectations we will be looking at in the Grade 6 Health curriculum. 


Health question
Math textbook work:  pp. 188-189 # 1, 3, 6