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Happy Earth Day

The sunshine we’re enjoying today is another reason to celebrate Earth Day. I hope you all are enjoying this beautiful weather!
Despite the rain – and the snow – we had an amazing time with your students last week for Earth Week. We had fun finding the Golden Hawk in the Escape Room challenge and made some delicious Greek recipes on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday, we learned a lot about animals from the Discovery Wildlife Center. Did you know that the oldest living turtle is 187 years old?!? On Thursday we made origami, mandalas, and marbled paper, and tested our knowledge with a game of Kahoot. And, on Friday, we enjoyed a sunny day at Lincoln Park Zoo. Mrs. Neil’s class also painted kindness rocks that we will scatter throughout campus for our book buddies – and other lucky Prairie Crossing residents – to find and enjoy. Use this link  to learn more about this nationwide movement.
This week in ELA we will wrap up our poetry unit with a final project. For this final project, students will choose two poems (from the seven poems they’ve already written) to revise and edit into a final draft. These two poems will be collected and graded. We will also be looking at figurative language and how writers use this language most effectively. Speaking of writers, we are lucky to have a published author, Natalie Rompella, come to PCCS. Ms. Rompella will be working with both ELA classes on nature journaling in preparation for our upcoming camping trip to Starved Rock. She will be visiting our classes once a week to share her personal writing journey and guide our students to become thoughtful, purposeful, and creative writers themselves.
In science, we will delve into Earth science as we begin to explore latitude and longitude as well as the northern and southern hemispheres. This introduction will lead into the reasons for the seasons and other Earth science related topics. We are also beginning 20% time in science. Each student will have an opportunity to choose a science topic that particularly interests them. Then, one day each week (20% of their time in school), they will work independently or in small groups to explore that area of science. Final reports or PowerPoint presentations will be made at the end of the school year. Please ask your child what area they plan to focus on.
This Thursday or Friday, weather permitting, the 5/6 grades will be involved in a demonstration prairie burn across the street from school. Please consider completing the optional Prairie Burn permission slip in order for your child to have the chance to participate. Thank you.