Today was a very exciting day in the world of math and science, and we were there to catch it! At 10 AM we watched the live press conference from NASA where they announced the discovery of 7 rocky planets (3 of which are in the "Goldilocks Zone" of habitability) orbiting a sun in the Aquarius constellation 40 light years away. You can catch a replay of the news conference here: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/100200725.
During the news conference, students wrote down questions and handed them to Ms. Alyx who live tweeted the questions using the hashtag #askNASA. Check out our twitter handle at https://twitter.com/MCHTurquesa to see the questions we posted.
Afterwards, the scientist at the JPL at NASA did an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit where we posted a few questions. Ms. Alyx asked what kids of Turquesa's generation can do for space and this was their reply:
NASAJPL- It's an exciting time to be a kid, and to be an explorer! If students out there are interested in joining us here at NASA, taking as much math as possible is always good. That said, it's also important to study language arts, too, so that you can communicate your discoveries and innovations. In the meantime, check out the exoplanet travel posters for inspiration about worlds we might someday visit: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/alien-worlds/exoplanet-travel-bureau/ -- Stephanie
NASAJPL- There are potential future NASA telescopes currently under consideration that may be able to search for signs of life on Earthlike exoplanets. These missions may launch in the 2030s, so we'll need the next generation of scientists to study the data we collect from them! Two of these concepts are called LUVOIR (https://asd.gsfc.nasa.gov/luvoir/) and HabEx (http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/habex/). Maybe someday you could work on one of these missions, or a similar one! -G.A.
You can also learn more about the new solar system here: www.trappist.one
The kids were enthralled and so fascinated with everything. Playing around with NASA's Eye app you download on your computer is a great way to expand the learning at home. With their "Eye on Exoplanets" app, you can learn more about the Trappist system!
Ms. Nicole & Ms. Alyx
It's great to be back in school and getting back into our regular routines!
Last week we have wrapped up our Ancient Egypt studies with presentations of student projects. We hope you saw your child's work on SeeSaw and had a chance to discuss their presentation with them. Our next project will be introduced in a couple of weeks. It is an Ancient Greece Biography Project. This will be a six-week project and will involve careful use of the writing process. We are launching our studies of Ancient Greece this week with an introduction to the geography of the Mediterranean.
In preparation for this biography project, we are ramping up our formal language arts lessons. We will continue with Sentence Analysis, informal writing and journaling. We will add weekly Writer's Workshop lessons designed to help the students develop their use of precise language, construct effective paragraphs, organize their thoughts and more. Today, for example, we did a fun lesson called "Synonym Olympics." It was a team-based, mildly competitive lesson that emphasizes what a synonym is and drew a distinction be quality and quantity in word choice. There are times when we are looking for a perfect word in our writing, and there are times when we are looking for an interesting word that moves us forward to the next thought. This introduction today required both attempts in a supportive team atmosphere, and the kids really enjoyed it.
In science, we are going more deeply into human space travel, starting this week with an intro to the history of NASA's space program and continuing into an investigation of astronauts and NASA's scientists. We are really inspired by the movie Hidden Figures, and are thrilled to be incorporating some of its themes into our science work. If you have a chance to take your child to see the movie, we highly recommend it. We will also take this opportunity to help children strengthen their approach to reading and understanding non-fiction resources.
We're also adding both formal cursive lessons and word problem lessons to the students' weekly lives. We find that our people are ready for more now that we're finished with the Odyssey!
Scholastic order forms are coming home today. You can order on the website using code MMJ3L. Book orders are due March 3.
Students have Wordly Wise Lesson 13 to complete this week with a vocab test on Friday. They also have spelling words to practice, as well as Choice and Lit Books to read.
Stay in touch if you have questions. We love to hear from you!
Ms. Nicole and Ms. Alyx
Well, after our epic journey from the Odyssey, we are back! Thank you so much to students, parents, staff, and volunteers who helped pull this production together. We couldn't have done it without everyone's help!
Our two days of snow days threw us for a loop last week and we dove back in to a sea of play producing chaos, but it was fun and a wonderful life lesson for students in being flexible. Everything turned out wonderful and we are now in the process of easing back into our regular schedule. We also came out of conferences with tons of tools and great ideas.
Ms. Nicole & Ms. Alyx
Ms. Nicole & Ms. Alyx
El Salon Turquesa Co-Lead Teachers