This week we have begun some exciting projects to work on beautifying areas around the school. As the projects progress we will be using our knowledge to create art which will involve the use of many of our senses. Everyone voted on which projects they would like to work on. After the groups were assigned we had our initial planning meeting with our group mentor. We were told about the problems which need addressing and were given a research task to help us develop ideas to address the problem. The areas we are working on are:
1. Plants for the garden that can survive with little water.
2. Plants for the garden to attract sunbirds.
3. A sound garden.
4. Ways to make the upper playground more fun and attractive.
5. A decorative piece for the ESL room.
6. The front guard's office.
7. Decorations for the ground floor corridor.
We have come up with many creative ideas and are ready for feedback from our mentoring teachers about ways in which we can proceed further.
Having spent the last few weeks inquiring into the senses and art forms, today we had the opportunity to participate in an area of our own interest further. We then shared with the rest of the class what we had chosen to focus on. We had a painting, drawing, digital art on the Ipad and puppet shows. We worked on our presentation skills - using a loud voice and looking at our audience.
For our Show and Tell this week we had performances from lots of children in the class. Jiwoo, Sophia, Ella and Keshav played the piano. Zahin played the drum. Ella also played the melodian. Swini and Keshav were risk takers as they sang a song each unaccompanied. We were a respectful audience and appreciated the efforts of others by clapping at the end of each performance. It was great to see so many confident performers. Mrs Hayward also played the clarinet for us. We were interested in all the buttons and parts of the instrument.
This week has been a short week, but he have spent time going further into are inquiries about patterns and symmetry. We've explored different patterns to extend our knowledge of 'AB' patterns. We did this using ink stamps. For symmetry we used the pattern blocks to create symmetrical patterns and used mirrors to check if our patterns were symmetrical. Some of us also started to explore shapes and patterns with 4 lines of symmetry.
On Thursday we visited the Science Centre to explore more about how we use our senses. There were optical illusions, moving items on a giant zoetrope, instruments to experiment with, a mirror maze and so much more! One of the highlights was crawling up into a bowl of spaghetti for a photograph as well as making smoke rings with a large rubber ring which required team work to operate. Below are a selection of the photos to show our explorations.
To find out answers to this question we used the science inquiry cycle. First we formed a hypothesis in groups and gave a reason for our thinking. Then we noted our method for the experiment which was to taste different colours of drinks and guess their flavour. After tasting them we found out some of the drinks had food colouring added to them. Many of us thought the red drink was strawberry or watermelon flavour, but it was actually lime. The purple one could have been blueberry or grape, but it was just plain water! We concluded that our eyes give us an idea of what tastes are because they send a message to our brain.
To inquire more into the question do sight and taste work together we did another experiment which involved tasting jelly beans while wearing a blindfold. It was hard to guess some of the flavours, although the orange and lemon ones were easier. We thought this was because they are tastes that we know, where as tutti fruiti and island punch are not tastes that we know.
Ella brought in a traditional Korean drum called a Sogo. She said it feels rough and makes sounds. She showed how it is played. Siu also showed us how to play it as he had played one before. We were interested to find out more about the drum so we watched a video of the Sogo being used in a group dance.
Swini showed us her wooden flute and explained that she uses her mouth to blow, her hands to move over the holes, her eyes to watch her fingers and her ears to listen to the sound. Keshav asked how it makes a sound and Swini showed how to blow into it and move her fingers on the holes to change the sound. Sophia asked how touching the holes changes the sound. We discussed the high and low sounds and how they are different depending on the length of the instrument so by covering different holes the length of the instrument is changed. Amanda asked why there was a hole at the bottom so Swini tried blowing by covering the hole and then with it uncovered. We found out it made the sound quieter when the hole at the bottom was covered.
Sophia played the harmonica for us. She showed how she can blow and suck air to change the sound as well as move her mouth up and down the instrument to make higher and lower sounds. Then she showed us how she could change the way she played to make it sound angry, sad and excited. Amanda asked why there are so many holes and Sophia replied that if there are no holes there would be no sound. Then Sophia showed us that the sound only works if you use one side of the harmonica. If you try to blow it on the back no sound comes out. Swini asked how the holes make music. Sophia said the air goes in and it makes music.
Siu brought in different percussion instruments which he could play. He said the Korean name for them and Jiwoo helped to translate for him. He had a triangle, cymbals, a castanet and tambourine. Swini asked why the triangle didn't make much sound if you hit it with your finger, but it was loud when you hit it with the metal stick. He said because the metal is hard so it makes a louder sound. Amanda asked what the small metal dot on the castanet was for, he said it was to make the sound.
Omer showed us two pictures he had made using stickers. He explained the first one had fish and the second one had leaves. He said he used his hands to touch the stickers and his eyes to see the picture.
Guangyuan showed us a detailed picture of a zoo that he drew. He had learned all the names for the animals in English and said them clearly for us. He had an elephant, 2 turtles (a big one and small one), a bear, monkey, cat, giraffe, lion and fish. When asked in Mandarin what senses he used, he replied he used his eyes and hands. Keshav asked why there was a man on the lion's back as he thought the lion would eat the person. Guangyuan said the man was the person who worked at the zoo so the lion wouldn't eat him.
Sota showed a step by step guide to drawing a dinosaur. He used shapes to begin with and then filled in the outline. He said he learned it from watching a video.
Keshav brought his sister's ukulele and played it for us. Then he talked about the strings making different sounds, high and low. He said it is made from wood and the strings are made from plastic. Amanda asked why there is a hole? Keshav said it makes the sound. Sophia asked what the small black twist parts are at the top. Keshav explained they are for tuning.
To investigate this question students talked to a partner through different materials including a balloon, mini whiteboard, fabric and paper. Each group had varying results in how well they heard their partner through the materials. Everyone found the fabric cushion made it harder to hear and listening through a balloon changed the sound of people's voices.
When posed with the question 'Does sight affect touch?' there were varying answers in the class. Some thought yes, some thought no. Keshav commented you need sight so you don't touch what you are not supposed to. Swini said you can still touch even if you can't see. After forming our hypotheses we did some investigating by doing a blindfold walk across different textured materials. Afterwards during our time of reflection we discussed that we could all feel even though we couldn't see. We used interesting words to describe the textures of the leaves, stones, shaving foam, cotton wool and water. Some of us were nervous about feeling different things as we couldn't see them, but we were all risk takers and did the walk.
While we were waiting our turn to do the blindfold walk we did a listening activity in the garden. As we sat quietly we heard many different sounds all around us and drew/wrote about what we could hear. We also did some quiet reading from our Daily 5 folders in the shade of the trees. We enjoyed being outside and learning in the outdoor environment.