Haiku

Haiku is a form of traditional Japanese poetry. Haiku are  simple, three line poems that are usually about nature. They always follows a 5-7-5 syllable pattern.

Here are a few haiku that were written by poets in our class.  

Birds flying in air

Flap flap flap flap flap flap flap

Laying eggs in nests

by Mason

I live in water

I eat prey in the water

I have slimy scales

by Hayden

Jumping happily,

Swimming in some cool water,

Green, spotted, croaking

by Jamie

A caterpillar

munching on a milkweed leaf

almost been eaten

by Owen

 Grade 3’s, can you add a Haiku of your own about summer? We would love to read yours in comment section!

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All About Me – an Introduction to Poetry

We are very excited to be starting a new unit on poetry! Today we began by trying to decide what the word “poetry” means. This is a hard thing to determine. Some poems rhyme, some don’t. Some poems have rules to follow, some don’t. In the end, we decided that poetry can be all sorts of things. It is a way for writers (poets) to paint a picture in our minds using words.

Next we enjoyed some funny poetry that was written by Bruce Lansky. For a taste of more funny poems check out this site.

Giggle Poetry

Finally, students got the chance to have some serious fun with words! Their task was to use words that they found in old newspapers to describe themselves.

Check out their work below. 

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Story Writing by Leah and Cameron

This week I have asked Leah and Cameron to share a bit of their writing. They have each done an amazing job of capturing the reader’s attention by using details that “show” instead of “tell” the reader what is happening. This makes it easy for the reader to follow along with the action, and to visualize what is happening! I am sure that both students would LOVE to read your comments about their writing!

       Cassandra and the Crazy Talking Zebra

by Leah

  Cassandra was stuck trudging through the thick,tall African grass and weeds until … she heard something or someone following her. “I wonder who or what is following me?” she mumbled to herself. When she looked back…. THERE WAS A SNEAKY LION STALKING HER!!!!! Cassandra took off running at an alarmingly fast speed and as fast as  her little legs could carry her, the lion was catching up… wait did I say the lion? I meant lions! So where was I? Oh ya,the lions were hot on her trail! How was she to lose them? Then it happened she swiftly climbed up a huge rock in front of her and jumped over, as the lions all crashed into the giant rock and lay not knowing what hit them! After she jumped off the rock she ran a small distance. She took a break, sat down, and then took a tiny sip of fresh cool water. “Wow! I’m soooo glad I got away from those starving lions.” puffed Cassandra.Then Cassandra set off again looking for something interesting. A couple of hours passed, the blue sky was getting darker and darker until it was a cool summer night. This meant that all sorts African creatures would be out looking for dinner,so she quickly climbed a gigantic tree,got her hammock out her bag and dozed off into dream land. The next morning Cassandra awoke to talking!? She looked and saw nothing but a zebra. “Hmmm” she said. “Who could be talking at 5:00 in the morning?” Then the zebra spoke the words “Hello friend!” Cassandra nearly screamed! “A talking ZEBRA? How could this be?” she whispered to herself in terror and excitement. The zebra looked as if she were lost. And she was lost because she ran away from her cruel zebra pack. “W-w-would y-you be m-my pet?” Cassandra stammered. The crazy zebra yelled, “Yep Sharoney!” Then Cassandra said “What should I call you?” How about Stripy?” “Sure,yep okay dokay!”Said Stripy happily. “Oh,hop on my back Miss…”Cassandra” she corrected Stripy. When she got on  Stripy ,the crazy talking zebra took off at an alarmingly fast speed. “WHERE ARE YOU TAKING ME?!!!!” screamed Cassandra! She was taking her a safe place away from those nasty lions. When they got there, there was a hippo river, giraffes at every tree, and lots of friendly zebras and other animals. It was animal paradise! Cassandra raced around taking pictures of all the animals! When she was done taking pictures of all the animals she marched courageously back to Stripy and said “I have decided to get a newborn lion for a pet!” “You can’t!” yelled Stripy in terror! But Cassandra was already on her way back to get a newborn lion as her second African pet to be friends with Stripy. She saw some sleepy lions and  a newborn baby lion. This was her chance! Cassandra tiptoed her way to the baby lion grabbed it an ran for her life because the lions wanted their baby back! Cassandra was puffing,the lions were right behind her! Then she noticed the rock that she jumped. Then she jumped the rock and kept on running! As for the lions the same thing happened to them lying down not knowing what hit them! Well Cassandra got her pet lion after all. A couple hours of walking and jogging finally got her to the place Stripy brought her. But Stripy wasn’t there! Cassandra looked around and saw a woman who was just about to skin Stripy for a zebra skin dress! Cassandra ran and pushed that lady down hard. And untied Stipy,then jumped on her back and they were off! They reached the ocean in two weeks of trotting,walking and running with King the baby lion. When they reached the ocean they relaxed for a while then slowly started to build a raft. Many days passed on the ocean. Then at midnight they landed on the shore of Canada! They raced to Cassandras mansion with Cassandra in the lead! When Cassandra,Stripy and King got there she led them to there big open cages. Stripy and Kings cages were beside each other. Stripy and King got along very well and that is the end of Cassandra adventure!  

THE NIGHT LION

by Cameron

Crackle, crackle! Carson woke up.  It was 3:00, and he heard a big bang. He dashed downstairs and said, “Mom what’s that.” His mom said, “There is a thunderstorm coming.” Carson said, “What kind of thunderstorm?” “‘Just a normal one that’s all.” He said, “can I go and play in the tall grass?” “Sure,” said his Mother, “I call you back for breakfast.” “When its ready ok.”Carson said “Ok, I’ll come back for breakfast” “Oh” said his mother, “you can also go explore the jungle but be safe.” So Carson set of to the jungle and through the tall grass. He heard a sound it sounded like something was scraping a bone or a rock. He went to see what it was. It turns out it was a lion. Carson scrunched through the grass.The lion heard him and Carson hid behind the rocks and tried not to get the scent on him so the lion could find him. Carson took a deep breathe and started walking straight through the jungle. He saw a bunch of wildlife. But it didn’t seem like enough. He never pet a lion or even seen an elephant or got to ride on a zebra. So he started heading south were the elephants are. He would rather have a baby to pet than a giant elephant to try and reach.So the first thing he saw was a baby elephant so he pet it.He said that maybe I could keep it as a pet. But he said that he has other things that are more important. He has to live with his own family.Then something very bad happened there was a stampede coming and right behind it was a lion chasing them.The baby elephant started to run. So every elephant started to run. Carson was trying to get on one of the elephants and ride it rumble, rumble. Carson’s Mom was getting worried she heard the rumble in the jungle then she got really scared that Carson was hurt or safe. Carson saw dark clouds coming there was a humongous storm coming. Carson had to build a shelter before the storm came. It seemed really big but good thing he brought his binoculars and camera if he wanted to take pictures.  He wanted to go to the jungle were there is more shelter so he tried to get the elephants to it so he could make a shelter. He hadn’t realized that he had been out for a long time and he knew his Mother would be worried. Carson finally got to the jungle and started to make a shelter and went to bed he couldn’t sleep because of the thunder. The next minute it started to rain. Then he saw something it was a lion he wanted to go feel it but he couldn’t. He didn’t know if it was safe or not but he remembered that his Mom said that there is a knight lion and he had a feeling that it  was it even know that they all look the same but some don’t so he took a risk he walk over quietly and the lion was surprised and scared Carson but the lion didn’t bite Carson or grab him. Carson was surprised that the lion didn’t touch him or bite him or especially eat him for dinner. Carson decided to pet him he slowly wiggled his hand over to the lion and pet it.Carson said, “I finally did it I pet a lion!” He ran back to his Mom and said,  “Mom I pet a lion!” His Mom was still asleep. She heard a little crackle she got scared. She grabbed something to the person with. She saw a boy but she didn’t know who it was. She came closer. Then she realized it was Carson she ran to him and gave him a big hug and a kiss. Then they went to bed. The next morning Carson and his Mom woke up and said, “Looks like there was no storm after all.” Carson told his Mom all about the adventure. Suddenly Carson saw something golden in the distance it was the lion that he pet. When his Mom was talking Carson winked at him and the lion winked back. Then he smiled and the lion walked into the sunset. Carson remembered that forever and never forgot about him again. THE END   

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

We just wrapped up our teacher-led novel study of C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It was a huge hit!  Please have a look at our google presentation about the novel.

(Warning! Parts of the presentation may include spoilers!)

Hooking Your Reader

Writing a story can be a lot like fishing. You want to make sure you “hook” your reader right away by quickly getting them involved in the story. We will be learning about many ways to do this during our writing classes over the next couple of weeks.

To get us started, read the following paragraph from Owen’s latest story. He does a great job of adding details that quickly interest the reader and draw us in. I know that I could not wait to find out what happened next!

The Wildfire

by Owen

     It was a really hot summer in Australia. The eucalyptus trees were dry which was a bad sign, because wildfires were common. My dad and I and my 2 brothers had just got out of the business rush in Sidney. A few hours later my brother said, “We’re here!” and we jumped out of our pickup and helped my dad unload the tent, rations and sleeping bags. “Boy that ride was boring!” one of my brothers said. I looked around and caught glimpse of a warning sign with my binoculars.”Uh guys there’s a forest fire sign up there.” I said. “Whatever” my dad said.

Grade 3’s, what do you think might happen next? Do you already know who the characters are? What details do we already know that help us visualize the setting?

All Aboard!!! It’s Polar Express Day!

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This morning we all awoke to polar-like temperatures here in Central Alberta! Thankfully, the windchill was “only -38C.” so we could all make it to school. Once here, we climbed aboard the Polar Express for a fun-filled day of learning!

Many students chose to wear their jammies for the celebration. They looked great!

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We started our morning off by reading this classic story by Chris Van Allsburg. We all agreed that it is a wonderful story, with amazing word choice and incredible illustrations.

Next, we continued with a math challenge based on the Polar Express. Students worked in teams to solve a variety of problems. Great problem solving strategies, and excellent group work skills were displayed. Well done 3W!

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In Gym, we  played a couple of wild games called “Train Tag” and “Capture the Presents”.

This afternoon we sat down to watch the DVD. Students were  asked to look for similarities and differences between the book and the movie. I was very impressed by all the ideas they came up with!

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Grade 3’s, I am definitely in the Christmas spirit now! I would like to know a couple of things. First, what was your favorite part of Polar Express Day? Second, what was your favorite part of the Polar Express movie?

When Santa Fell to Earth by Cornelia Funke

When Santa Fell to Earth

Our class started the novel When Santa Fell to Earth by Cornelia Funke this week. While we may only be a few chapters in,  I can already tell this book is going to be a huge hit with our class! Thank you to Sloane and Mya for writing excellent “Reader’s Response” paragraphs after listening yesterday. Here is a little sampling of what they each had to say…

When Santa Fell to Earth

We are reading When Santa Fell To Earth it is a great book so far. We are using a strategy called visualize it is an awesome strategy. The characters in this story are Nicholas Goodfellow, Ben, Will, Dean the two angels and the elfs. This story takes place when Nicholas Goodfellow was pretty young. I would recommend this to lots of other grade threes and fours.

by Sloane

We have been reading  When Santa Fell to Earth.

This book is about when Santa fell to earth. He lives in a caravan with the elves and the angels. The elves are being bad, they are swearing and sleeping and one swears in his sleep and just not doing their work. And there is a mystery that Nicolas Goodfellow is santa?

by Mya

Grade 3’s, without giving too many “spoilers”, what is YOUR favorite part of the book so far?

EEKK!

Check out the great job that Kynzi and Rose are doing as they “Read to Someone” this morning. Both girls have their eyes on the book, and they are sitting knee to knee, elbow to elbow (EEKK!) They know that if their partner is stuck on a word, they can use the words “Coach?” or “Time?” to see what their partner would like them to do. Each partner is reading with a quiet, expressive voice which, as you can see, means they are having a great time reading together!

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Reading with someone is a one of my favourite things to do. Grade 3’s, who do you like to read with? What kinds of books do you like to read together? Are there any books you would recommend for the other families in our classroom?

A Conversation With Beverly Cleary

We have just finished reading the book, “The Mouse and the Motorcycle” in our class. We loved this story!  Hayden would like you to know that “it’s a good book about a boy, a mouse and a motorcycle.”  Makenna was “really anxious to hear the ending!”

Click below to watch a conversation with Beverly Cleary, the author of many beloved children’s books, including “The Mouse and the Motorcycle.”

Here is a link to Beverly Cleary’s website.

Beverly Cleary

Grade 3’s, have you read any of Beverly Cleary’s other books? Which ones? Has anyone else in your family read any Beverly Cleary books?

Summarizing…Less is More

Our class is enjoying a teacher-led novel study of the book “Frindle” by Andrew Clements. It is a fun story about the power of words. In this book, the main character, Nick Allen, is full of some very interesting ideas!

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Yesterday we read a chapter called “The Big Idea.” Afterwards, students were asked to summarize what they had heard into one “Big Idea” of their own. We know that summarizing is a great way to deepen our understanding, as well as to remember important information. We quickly realized that narrowing down a chapter to a sentence or two can be very challenging! After some time to think, and some writing and erasing, each student was ready to share their own summary. As students shared, I typed their responses to make the following “Wordle”.

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Grade 3’s, how can we use our Wordle to summarize the chapter we heard? Why do you think summarizing an important skill to have?