Browsing Tag:

6th grade

    Ice Skating Field Trip

    I have really enjoyed teaching my sixth grade students this year. My class is hard working and full of energy. A few weeks ago, we went on a field trip to Lozanpark Buz Pisti (Lozanpark Ice Rink).

    Now, ice skating is something fairly common to a Michigander like myself. However, some of my kids are from countries with a warm climate and several had never even seen an ice skating rink before.


    Falling down


    Prior to the field trip, we took an in depth look at ice skating from a scientific perspective. I introduced Newton’s laws of motion and we discussed how these related to ice skating. We also watched a National Geographic I Didn’t Know That video that discussed the possible reasons why ice skating works. The kids were excited and talkative on the bus ride to the rink.


    Ice skating in the rink



    We had forty minutes of skate time. I was impressed. Everyone attempted to skate and the students were so good at helping each other. We had lots of fun falling down, getting back up, and sliding around the ice. At the end of the forty minutes, we were all worn out.


    Group shot


    Silly group shot


    After taking off our skates and an intense game of tabletop foosball, we headed to a local mall for lunch.


    Conquered skating!


    I was so impressed by the way the students conducted themselves. They followed directions, got along with one another, and were smiling and laughing throughout the entire trip.


    Ready to skate


    It was refreshing to spend time with my students outside of the formal classroom setting. I enjoy my time in the classroom, but events like these give me a chance to connect with my students in a more personal way. It’s often easy to get distracted by the regimented schedule. I forget how important it is to show my students I enjoy having fun just like them. While I still maintained the position of teacher, I had a blast goofing off on the ice and laughing with my students when we ran into each other or fell down.


    Massage chairs



    My Sixth Grade Classroom

    And so another school year has begun. Just before we traveled back to Turkey, I was informed that due to a smaller class size (16 students vs. my 22 students last year), I would be moving classrooms. Last year I wanted a fun looking classroom, but didn’t know what decorations fit the age of sixth grade students. Now that I have a year under my belt, I felt like I have a much better idea of what to put in my classroom.

    On the first day of school, I had all of the teachers from my hall sign a white board welcoming back the fourth, fifth, and sixth grade students.


    Upper elementary hallway


    I was excited to move to the new room because there is a separated nook for centers. I also use this space for Bible class. It is nice to have a more relaxed part of the classroom where students can read or work in pairs. There are many different books that students can borrow when their work is finished. Recently, the favorite books have been the I Spy books by Jean Marzollo. These books are especially great for my ESL students because they learn new words as they identify objects.


    Sixth Grade Classroom


    I also dedicated this section to hold my craft supplies and supplemental work for students who finish early. There are several small games, pattern blocks, and a section where students can buy school supplies.

    I spent a lot of time creating a theme. I finally decided to call the classroom The Sixth Grade Lion’s Den @ Oasis. I thought that this was a simple enough theme, while still sticking to a laid back atmosphere.

    The pencil hanging from the ceiling was given to me last year by two teacher friends. It’s made from a mini wooden fence post and has worked well as a name plate for my room. I have many gifts from students in this section of the classroom that make it a unique atmosphere, including a crown (from a Spanish student), Dutch flag, and a catapult left over from a science fair project.

    The birthday wall is still a work in progress, but it should be finished by the end of the week. I printed bricks onto A3 paper and put them up to make it look like a brick wall. I have some birthdays coming up soon, so I’m having my student assistant help me with the board.

    This is my favorite part of the classroom. I think it is important for students to feel comfortable when they are participating in the learning process.

    As of now, this is my bulletin board for important information. I created a table cleaner schedule for the whole year and put it on this board so that the students can have advance notice of their duties. I also post the monthly character trait and other pertinent information here:


    Sixth Grade Classroom - character board


    This year, I thought I’d take a chance and get a class fish. After a series of elections, the class decided to name our new fish Shark Bait. I found him at a pet store in Cepa mall. The owners gave me a great deal that included the fish, bowl, and the food. This was a big hit with my students, especially my lower elementary Bible students.


    Class Pet Goldfish


    To give the students ownership of their classroom, I hung a flag for the countries represented in my class on the bottom of the paper lanterns.


    Sixth Grade International Classroom


    I have the classroom set up with two whiteboards and a walkway down the middle of the desks. Having that walkway has been great for proximity control. I also really enjoy having two whiteboards. It is nice to be able to write on one whiteboard, while the projector is being shown on the other.


    Sixth Grade Classroom


    Each of the colored paper sections are dedicated to a different subject. My goal is to hang the objectives here as well as extra notes and tips. I bought the mirrors at IKEA and placed them so I could see when someone walks through the door:


    Sixth Grade Classroom - subject board areas


    The bulletin board near my desk is covered in schedules and other paperwork. The students thought that the lamp mounted sideways was really neat:


    Sixth Grade Classroom - teacher's desk


    I had a teacher friend give me these superhero parts of speech posters. They are a great decoration for sixth grade and a great teaching tool as well.


    Sixth Grade Classroom


    I am really enjoying teaching this year. It’s great to back to a routine, and I am excited about the smaller class size.


    Field Trip to Feza Gürsey Science Center

    Recently, the fifth and sixth grade classes went to the Feza Gürsey Science Center at Altınpark. When we first arrived, we were treated to a presentation on static electricity. This was a lot of fun and several of the students touched a static electricity generator that made their hair go frizzy. I especially enjoyed the presentation because it centered around material we had just covered in class. The students were very entertained by the presentation and loved seeing their friends’ hair rise up.


    Hair raising


    During the presentation, two students went up to show how humans are good conductors of electricity (due to 70% of the human body being made up of water). These two were embarrassed when the man presenting required them to hold hands and typical adolescent giggles followed among their friends.


    Hair raising


    After the presentation, students walked around and participated in a variety of hands on exhibits. There was a phosphoric wall, many reaction time experiments, momentum explorations, and energy exhibits. It was not hard to keep the students entertained and they were disappointed when our time was up.


    Altinpark Science Center


    Although the students were disappointed to leave the exhibits, they soon were enjoying time in the park with friends. We finished the trip off with ice cream for everyone. Some students brought extra money and treated themselves or friends to extra treats.


    Ice cream


    Picnic lunch


    Soon it was time to head back to the school. I am so glad that we were able to take this field trip. As I said before, much of the material we covered this year in class was demonstrated at the science center. My students benefited from the hands-on learning experience and time spent with their friends. I benefited from the time spent outside the classroom with my students.


    The sixth grade