This week we had the unique opportunity to see the last two living Northern White Rhinos in the world. Watch the video above and while you’re watching, I want you to reflect on your life and the world around you. These are not the only creatures on the verge of extinction. This is a scary trend and we’re losing animals faster than science can save them. We, as humans, need to be better to the earth; for the animals, for the planet, for our children’s children. For your blog post this week, I’d like you to make an action plan. What are 2 things that you can and promise to do to help create a better and healthier environment!
I am so amazed at what an incredible first few days we have had together! While the building looks the same as it always had, school itself is very different and I want to commend each and everyone of you for your incredible transition to our new reality. I have missed being in the classroom, missed being with a class teaching and while there are new regulations in place that are forcing creativity upon us all, I am grateful for the challenge. For your first blog post this year, I challenge you to find a lyric or song that allows you to describe how you felt your first week learning in school went. This can be funny, serious, happy, sad; anything you want but no cursing. For your post you are to post the lyric, the song title, the artist, and a paragraph describing why this quote connects to your first week at school.
As an example:
I have chosen The Grateful Dead, Scarlet Begonias and they lyric is "Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right." For me this quote describes our current situation at school as I believe I've been able to find new ways to be creative with lesson planning, finding ways to engage you, as students, and to do all of this it's taken a new perspective. If I look at this situation as a way to push myself further, become a better, more engaging teacher, then this becomes a positive place to find ourselves and so, I think this quote is very fitting for our current learning style.
Congratulations! You’ve done it, you’re at your last homework of grade five and for this, you only have ONE task! Enjoy, make it your best and we’ll read them on the last day of school :)
Make it fun to read! For homework this week please write a letter to MY (Mr. Steltman) future students; write to students who will be in my class next year a letter on “How to be successful in Mr. Steltman’s Class”.
You are encouraged to be funny, honest, and share whatever you would think someone do their best if they’re stuck with my and all my quirks.
These will be shared with my students on the first day of school in September.
That’s it, that’s your homework for the last week.
As for me, I want to thank you all for being such an interesting class, so full of life, excitement and energy about everything we learned. You were always willing to try something new, attempt projects, and put full effort into everything that we tried this year. It was such a great year, with our class really pulling together and being kind to each other. For me, you all really seemed like a family; willing to help eachother out, defend each other but also with lots of the small fights and apologies that we see in a family.
It was such a great year, so much laughter, shouting, and most of all, learning. You’re all incredible and unique individuals, and I want you to remember to be kind, be true to yourself, and to make good choices.
Thanks so much for this year!
Congratulations to each and every one of you as you begin to think about your summer and the completion of a very successful school year! End of year is always a time of reflection, to take stock of what you completed, what you were most proud of and what you still want to accomplish next year. With that thought in mind, I’m going to give a choice on a letter you can write. I will give you three choices on the letter that you can write:
In conclusion, I’d like to take this time to thank you all …
Dear Alex A, thank you for being the first person to class every day! Thank you for your growth as a student, thank you for your excitement! Your speed at which .you can switch between windows on the chromebook is incredible!
Dear Sabina, thank you for your questions, your curiousity, and your creativity. Seeing the effort you put into your art is inspiring!
Dear Juliet, thank you for your consistent willingness to share your morning math, for smiling all the time, and for always willing to take on new tasks. You will make an amazing teacher if you choose that route!
Dear Lilah, thank you for your quiet confidence, your hard work, your willingness to work through all tasks and for being such an amazing friend in our class. Your creativity and behind the scenes work in groups is awesome!
Dear Ava, thank you for always reminding me of what the time is :), thank you for questioning, working, and searching out answers. Your tenacity and desire to improve your own abilities is so powerful!
Dear Preston, thank you so much for always giving 110%, thank you for keeping me in the loop with what happens on break, thank you for trying your best! It's awesome to see you push yourself!
Dear Eric, thank you for smiling, thank you for your positivity, thank you for working hard on your work, even when it's hard. It's so great seeing the growth you have shown this year!
Dear Emma H, thank you for coming in each day with a smile on your face, for always saying good morning, for the kind words, and for being such a positive member of our class. I love that I hear you waaay before you enter our door each day.
Dear Mika, thank you for your energy, your consistent questions, your desire to do better, your horse sound effects, your creativity, and your hard work. No, you can't have a hug but how about a high five?
Dear Emma J, thank you for your friendships, thank you for your ability to be self-aware, thank you for working so hard on your novel study, thank you crushing the beep test. Keep on smiling!
Dear Willan, thank you for saying hello at least 40 000 times this year, thank you for growing so much as a learner, thank you for your jokes, your magic, and thank you for being a social butterfly!
Dear David, thank you for keeping us all smiling, thank you for your willingness to be silly, thank you for keeping me on my toes at all times. I really appreciate your willingness to look deeply at yourself and work to always improve!
Dear Tom, thank you for your initiative, your willingness to code incredible programs, thank you for sharing your knowledge with everyone who needs it, thank you for understanding me, even when I talk crazy fast. It's so awesome having you ready to share what I mean with others!
Dear Claire, thank you for your passion for everything, thank you for your laughs, your energy, and thank your incredible speed and athleticism. Your ability to showcase your math work, and willingness to share are so appreciated!
Dear Cadence, thank you for your DRAMATIC positivity, thank you for sharing your energy with the class, thank you for the notes, thank you for choosing to be my desk neighbour. Your kindness, willingness to work on, and desire to do your absolute best at all tasks are so awesome!
Dear Jumaana, thank you for always working so hard, thank you for being so kind, thank you for helping others in need, thank you for giving 200% on all your assignments, and thank you for your deep learning. Watching you work through challenging problems has taught me about persistence!
Dear Adithi, thank you for your positive attitude, thank you for trying not to draw during lessons you've already learned, thank you for writing stories that engage, thank you for reading everything! Your kindness, sharing, and strengths make every day better!
Dear Romina, thank you for sharing your stories, thank you for sharing your food pictures, thank you for letting us learn about you through your life. Thank you for your effort and kindness in all you do!
Dear Kevin, thank you for trying, even when you didn't want to, thank you for being a friend to so many in our class, thank you for showing your learning in so many different ways, and thank you for all your effort with line math. 1 billion vbucks for your efforts!
Dear Ciaran, thank you for coming in each and every day with a smile, thank you for your positive attitude toward all tasks, thank you for your kindness! You're able to check my answers and crush me at shut the box!
Dear Owen, thank you for changing your attitude toward math, thank you for saying positive things about yourself, thank you for being excited about learning! You're bringing passion and energy to our classroom!
Dear Alex T, thank you for your incredible ability to navigate a million different chrome tabs, for understanding how the history on your chromebook works, and for your brilliant writing on your blogs! Your ability to include youtube videos have made them come alive!
Dear Jacob, thank you for being so kind, thank you for always smiling, and most of all, thank you for your EFFORT! You work so hard, you always put in your best, and this resilience will pay off again and again as you move through your years!
Dear Jack, thank you for knowing the baseball rules when we play soccer baseball, thank you for your creativity, thank you for asking the questions to make learning clear! Your positive energy and hard work inspire!
Dear Alex Y, thank you for your knowledge of planes, thank you for the artwork that takes forever but shows deep understanding, thank you for sharing whenever you're called on, thank you for doing the math everyday and helping those who need it. Your quiet energy is incredible
Dear Ms. Nelson, thank you for putting up with my constantly changing music tastes, for knowing exactly what to do, for helping every supply teacher, thank you for you feedback on all things classroom related, thank you for being supportive of the craziness in our room, thank you for sharing this room with me!
Dear 5-1 Parents, thank you for your lending me your incredible children this year, thank you for supporting them, thank you for loving them, thank you for helping them with their homework, thank you for struggling through some very hard math questions, thank you for being such a strong community, thank you for helping me feel welcome in a new school. Thank you so much!
Thank you 5-1 for inspiring me this year, thank you for putting up with my ups and downs, my LOVE of math, my excitement about crazy things, thank you for trying out every new idea that popped into my head, thank you for the compliments, thank you for making me feel like a special teacher, thank you for making my first year at Tuck so incredible.
Enjoy your summer, can't wait to see you in the fall!
It’s JUNE! Can you believe it? When we read these blog posts there will only be three weeks left of school. This year has gone by so quickly! It seems like only yesterday that we were starting on this grade five journey and oh my goodness, you have grown so much: physically, emotionally, academically! Let’s use this week to look back, to have a look through all the great things we’ve done and documented as a class, and talk about how that event helped this year be a great one!
So, to describe, your blog post this week involves a few parts. The first thing is to write a paragraph that describes how you felt your year was. Did you enjoy yourself, did you learn things about yourself, did you grow as a person and as a student? Talk about your best memories, the good things, the goals you set, and the things you achieved. The second part of the task is quite fun. Click on this link to see all the pictures that we took on twitter this year. Go through from the beginning (Sept 8, 2017 was the first day of school), and choose one picture. Copy the link to that picture, put it in your post, and then talk about why that one event was special to you.
This is such a great way to showcase your learning, your growth, and your year. I’m so excited to read your posts and to see the photos you’ve chosen! My favourite part of the year was the growth, learning and engagement I saw when you all solved classroom problems, designed solutions, 3D printed them and then sold your designs as commercials. It was inspiring to see you all work together to create such an incredible project. Just another reason why I #lovemyhaltonschool!
For your blog post this week, I have a bit of a challenge for you. Can you track the amount of time that you spend on screens (computer, tv, iPad, etc.) from Sunday to Thursday. Track the hours of the following table. Once you’ve done this I’d like you to reflect on it.
Did you know that the maximum amount of screen time that is healthy is 2 hours per day? What do you notice about your screen time usage? Are you using more or less than the average? What can we do to make sure that we’re using our time in ways that are healthy? For your blog post this week, please write down five alternate ways that students could choose to use their time as opposed to being on screens.
I have been so proud of your efforts over the past few weeks, you are showcasing a growth mindset in class. As a class, you are truly kind, caring, and compassionate. You work hard in class and stay focussed. I have been incredibly proud of the dedication and effort that you put into the robots, the excitement and engagement I’ve seen as you take on difficult math problems, as well as your efforts for your breakout rooms last week! Thanks so much for being so great. As we think about inspiration, iteration and ideas of pushing ourselves forwards let’s continue that idea for your blog post. I want you to think to yourself, what would you try if you could not fail? What would you try that was different, what would you be, how much further could you go if you knew that you couldn’t fail? Is fear of failure or rejection stopping you from accomplishing something you’ve always wanted to do? Shoot for the stars and this week, tell us,
“What would you try if you knew you couldn’t fail?”
We had a conversation this week about respect and how it’s the most important rule that we follow in our classroom. I want you to take some time to think about what does respect look like in the different places in your life. When you’re with your friends outside, it’s different than when you’re in a classroom or when you’re at home. It’s sometimes really hard to figure out what is expected in all the different places we exist.
For your blog post this week, I want you to think about the two months we have left together, this is it, it’s only seven weeks and then our lives will head in different directions. Can you write down what three things you will do, in class, on a regular basis that will continue to make this class and this year an incredible one? What can I expect from each of you to make our final months amazing, filled with learning, and respectful? What are you going to do to make a difference in a positive way?
Think about it and write a paragraph telling us what we will see from you!
Watch the above video (please excuse the one curse word but the video was too good not to share, and I’m sure you’re mature enough to deal with it). I found the story that the man told so powerful. I had tears in my eyes at certain parts (especially the parts where they have a new baby). With the story that is told in the video, the poet also offers a very clear message about technology and how “social media” is making us less social. I really liked the idea in this message as I’ve been noticing at home, with Vera and Stella, that even when they watch tv, they both like to pretend they have a cell phone in their hands. As cute as it is, it’s also very scary to me because she’s copying MY behaviour and if this is what I’m showing to her, then I’m missing out on opportunities to be in the moment with her and my family. This video has inspired me to try and put my phone away when I get home from school and only check it 3 times during the night. I hope that this allows me to be more in the moment and not miss out on great opportunities with my family.
After going to the the ReWired conference a few weeks ago and listening to the dangers of multitasking, of not giving our full attention to one thing at a time, I want you to think of how you’re focussing on your events!
For you blog post this week, I’d just like you to post a reflection on the video. What did you think of it? How did it make you feel? What thoughts do you have now that you’ve seen it? Does it inspire you to do anything now that you’ve seen it?
For your writing you can answer, some or all of the questions or add your own ideas. I just think it’s really important that we watch this video and think about it.
For your blog post this week, your task will be to write a final chapter of your character’s story. What happens after their conflict with their classmate and how is it resolved? How does your character’s first week of grade 5 end? This is not to be a 90 page chapter! Please keep it sharp, well written, and of an appropriate length that we can read everyone’s stories :)
As a reminder, in class we learned about conclusions and the different types that we read in stories. Here are the various kinds of conclusions that we covered in class for you to consider for your story:
Mr. Steltman's Class
Our blog will be using inspirational quotes, news articles and more as jumping off points to showcase our digital footprint, ideas, and writing.