Last Wednesday the English Class fourth graders presented Google slide presentations about the planets of the solar system to English Class first and second graders. Working in small groups the fourth graders had researched a planet and then prepared their presentations on their Chromebooks.
The first and second graders were very attentive during the presentations. English Class second graders have been studying space and the solar system in their environmental studies lessons for a while now so this was the perfect end to their unit of study.
Last week English Class first and second graders continued their studies of space by listening to more of Mauri Kunnas’ book, Kaikkien aikojen avaruuskirja/The Out-Of-This-World Space Book. Pupils also used their iPads to research the appearance and colours of the planets and sun in our solar system.
On a sunny spring day the pupils spent time outdoors on the playground drawing with chalk their versions of what creatures from outer space would look like. Some fanciful multi-headed aliens cropped up on the asphalt.
The second graders worked on replicating the planets of the solar system on the papier maché planet balls they made last week. The space theme lends itself to other creative forms of self expression as well.
English Class first and second graders, together with the kindergarten class, got together on Tuesday of this week to learn about space and the solar system to which we belong. They read excerpts from the wonderful book by Mauri Kunnas called Kaikkien aikojen avaruuskirja / The Out-Of-This-World Space Book. Then they watched a short video about the sizes of stars and the planets in our solar system. The second graders continued their space studies with some hand-on work. They covered balloons using a papier-mâché technique that uses potato flour. Once the balloons have dried, the second graders will paint them to resemble planets.
In yet another of their collaborative ventures, English Class first and second graders joined the English kindergarten class this week to work on learning parts of the body. Together they drew outlines of a body and then labeled the body parts, as well as major internal organs.
The children worked together smoothly and everyone was engaged in the experience.
English Class second grade pupils had a sterling opportunity to learn some interesting songs and body rhythms recently. For two weeks in March students at the Palmgren Conservatory of music came to our school and worked with our second graders, teaching them these songs and body percussion. It all culminated on the evening of the 21st of March when pupils performed their songs and rhythms for their families. It was very gratifying for the second graders to have the chance to gain experience performing, and it was enriching for them to hear different instruments played in a live band format.
Kalevala Day, the last day of February, is the day that Finnish people celebrate their rich and unique culture. The collection of epic poems collected by Elias Lönnröt from Karelian and Finnish oral folklore and mythology is called The Kalevala.It is an inspiring work of Finnish literature. English Class pupils at all grade levels noted The Kalevala in some way in their studies yesterday. English Class second graders and English Class kindergarten pupils practiced playing the song, Satu Meni Saunaan on the “kantele” which is a kind of Finnish zither and is the national instrument of Finland. They also made some traditional designs on relief foil to make medallions. English Class first graders heard the story of creation according to The Kalevala and played traditional children’s games.