The UE Class went to Nature’s Classroom Institute from March 13th through March 17th. This year, instead of going to Mukwonago, WI we went to Lake Geneva, WI. The new facility was bigger and had more buildings for classes and dorms. The students had an opportunity to take different classes such as: dissection, trail blazing, making fire, potion making (making tea), and sensory overload. Each year, we participate in an all group historical simulation. The big simulation this year was the Underground Railroad. We all shared the experience of what it might have felt like to be discriminated against. In the end, all of the students who went to Nature’s Classroom had a great time and can’t wait to go back next year!
When we returned from Nature’s Classroom we had our last student led conferences of the school year. We all agreed that they went well. Each student shared with their parent(s) what they’ve been doing in class and how they think they’ve grown as a person.
In art, we practiced different watercolor techniques. Some were; wet on wet, wet on dry, dry on wet, dry on dry. There were also different effects such as; the splatter, salt, ombre, and a ‘bubble-like’ effect.
In April we continued with new art lessons. We learned about shading with chalk pastels and we learned about string art. When we used the chalk pastels, we used the Geometric Solids and a lamp to create highlights and shadow. We used pastels to draw the geometric shape, and then we had to blend lighter tints and darker shades to show dimension. For string art we used rulers and pencils. The string art was a way to show dimension using only straight lines. String art was created by a woman named Mary Boole. She used string art to teach women concepts of geometry and math during a time when women were not encouraged to practice math.
During April we participated in two mock trials based off of familiar stories. This was a logic exercise that we brought back from Nature’s Classroom. At Nature’s Classroom we participated in the trial of the Onceler from “The Lorax” by Dr. Seuss. Once we were back in our classroom we set up the trial of the huntsman from “Little Red Cap” by the brothers Grimm and the trial of Thidwick from another Dr. Seuss story. For both mock trials we all had to come up with arguments for both the defense and prosecution. We then split the class up into two teams, one for the defense and one for the prosecution. Each team thought of opening statements, questions for the witnesses, and a closing argument. We really enjoyed this activity and will be continuing with them throughout the rest of year.
Our annual open house was Thursday, April 20th from 9:30 A.M. until 11:00 A.M. We presented lessons from math, geometry, science, art, and history. Thank you for coming!
The 4th and 5th years have been working on identifying the 6th year’s strengths and weaknesses in order to write well wishes for their graduation. The 6th years have been working on their graduation speeches and their advice to the returning students about supporting the classroom community.
We will be finishing up the month of April by participating in TerraNova testing! This is our standardized testing for the year. The students will answer multiple questions in math, science, reading, and language mechanics.
Written by a fourth year and a sixth year