Wednesday, April 30, 2014

SHOW your ending.

Good writers don't say "The End" when their stories are done. They SHOW their stories are finished, and make sure their readers feel like their stories are over, like we did:

Landon shows all the truck drivers working hard, then relaxing more and being happier while using a forklift later.

Eric showed the end of his trip where they stayed at his mom's friend's house.

Haylee showed the same parking lot at the zoo as the one in the beginning of her book, only this time, her car is driving away from the zoo instead of toward it.

Kaydin showed his exact same room (same furniture, etc.)...only it's FINALLY clean after being sooooo messy!

You know you're not supposed to stay at the zoo after dark, right? Maddy used stars to let you know it was time to go.

Gavin decided to let you know something at the end of his story.

Brooklynn thanked her mom at the end of her story.

Trinity's dad drove her home after being left at the park. She added a drawing of her house so you'd know the event was finally over!

Friday, April 25, 2014

What's Your Point?

We've been talking about how Mo Willems SHOWS us things with his illustrations as well as tells us things with words. We tried showing all kinds of things, but we had to keep one important question in mind at all times: WHAT'S YOUR POINT? In other words, what's our purpose in writing our books? What do we want our readers to think and feel while reading our stories?

Haylee showed us what it was like to take a trip to the zoo. She wanted her readers to feel that they were right along with her for her trip, and did this by showing many details.

Trinity wanted you to feel happy with her by writing a book about her first birthday party, so she showed herself and her mom in a happy way (happy faces, arms up).

Logen's brother, Bailey, caught a nice bass while fishing. Can you see how he zoomed in on Bailey's eye looking at his fish? He wants you to see how important that catch was to Bailey.

Cheyenned found her stuffed bunny. By zooming in and showing her arms and face in happy ways, she makes you feel happy too--all with no words!

Maddy, like Haylee, wants to take you on a trip to the zoo. That's her point!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Cheez-It Math

Eric's mom was so nice (again!) and brought us delicious snack mix to eat. Since we're doing data collection, Mrs. Overman thought it might be fun to sort them first. We created pictographs and analyzed our information...then we ate it all! Yum!

Illustrating to show time passing

We noticed that Mo Willems often shows time passing like this, with a series of illustrations:

So, of course, we tried it too!

Logen's dog sleeps, them wakes up, then sleeps more.

Can you tell Will was fishing for a really loooooooong time and had no luck?

Maddy showed she was lost for a long time and felt very scared and sad.

Katlynn too.

Look how long Trinity was swimming!

Kaydin showed that he swam for awhile and then went home.

Elliette showed the process of her leaving a favorite place and how long and difficult it was.

News for the week

We have had one of our busiest weeks EVER! This week, we:

*learned how to measure in inches and centimeters
*studied many illustration techniques (which you have hopefully seen all week as we posted them on our blog)
*almost finished redwing The Tale of Despereaux
*took our final NWEA tests on the computer for the year
*had spring pictures taken
*played and worked outside (yahoo!)

More things you might like to know:
*Permission slips for all three field trips we're sent home his week. Please sign them and return them with $4 ASAP.
*I will send home the results of our NWEA computer test as soon as they are available next week.
*Midterms will be sent home tomorrow. Please call or stop by if you have questions or concerns.
*Just a reminder: we do not have enough space available for parents to attend the first two field trips. However, we'd love for you to come with us to the zoo (but you MAY have to drive your own vehicle). Please DO NOT bring siblings along to the zoo...this is a time for you to celebrate the end of second grade with just your second grader. 

Have a super weekend!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Keeping character details the same.

We learned that we need to keep details of our story the same like Mo Willems does in his books so our readers aren't distracted. For example, if a character's pajamas changed during a sleeping scene, we'd wonder why instead of paying attention to the important elements of the story. Here's what we did:

Haylee wore the same hairbow throughout her story.

Trinity kept consistency in her style by labeling her characters.

Lynk always has three spikes of hair.

Maddy's character is always wearing a heart dress.

Kaydin was careful to make sure his family's car always looked the same.

Kaydin's Tip:

Always write a capital I. 


(See his capital I there?)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Showing Two Sides of a Space.

Sometimes writers show what's happening inside AND outside of things and places, or above and below things, like we did:

Haylee showed what was under the water.

Logen showed his dog inside his fence.

Kaydin showed the people inside his car going crazy.

Trinity showed herself swimming underwater while her parents watched.

John showed inside his car from a bird's eye view.

Gavin P showed the inside of his house as well as what was happening outside.

Brooklynn showed this inside of her house.

Maddy showed the inside of her neighbor's house.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

News for the Week

It's a short week this week, but it's been crammed full of good stuff! Here are some things we've done:

  • We've been working on telling time to the the five minutes QUICKLY, knowing what a.m. and p.m. is, and understanding what we do at certain times of day. We've also learned how to say times of day multiple ways, such as "quarter after," etc.
  • We've been learning cursive, which is helping our brains develop further (and is quite challenging for some of us!). Read more about why Mrs. Overman is having us do this by clicking HERE.
  • We're doing a new illustration study focusing on the work of Mo Willems (see some of his books HERE, watch an interview with him HERE). Look back at our posts from this past week on our blog and see what we've done!
  • We've continued to do word work as always even though we haven't had a spelling test.

There are lots of important things coming up you need to know:
  • There is no school tomorrow. Happy Easter!
  • Next week is Grandparents' Week. Come eat lunch with us and visit the Book Fair in the Little Theater!
  • Our class will visit the Book Fair on Monday to shop. If your child would like to bring money (less than $20,  please) to spend, that's fine.
  • Next week we will complete our final NWEA tests on the computer on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. There will be no spelling test next week because of these cuts a good hour out of our day.
  • Our first field trip of the spring is Friday, May 9th. We will be going to the high school for Agriculture Day. The students always love this, but since it's only for a small part of the day, we won't be needing chaperones.
  • Toward the end of May we will be riding the Dixie and visiting the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo. More information will be coming home about that in the next two weeks. :)
Have a super weekend!

Why Illustrators Draw From Different Positions.

We are continuing to study the work of Mo Willems and are discussing why he illustrates the ways he does. Why does he sometimes put us in various positions, such as looking at a character from above, looking from behind, seeing a character from the side, etc.?

We think that he often shows his character, The Pigeon, straight on because he wants to talk directly to the reader. 

In his Goldilocks book, he shows us looking down at Goldilocks climbing up a ladder so we can see how high she is and what's at the top that she wants.

Sometimes we see the pigeon from the side so we can see his emotions more.

In the Knuffle Bunny series, Mo often puts us on the same level as the children in the story so we feel more like them.

We also think that having a variety of positions for your reader makes your book much more interesting. Here are some photos of us thinking and some of our work on position.

We did an experiment at our desks. We sat in our chairs and looked at them like normal, straight on.

Then we decided to try a different position and look from below. We still see our desks, but differently.

Then we stood up high and looked down. We could only see the tops of our desks.

We got down to look at the sides only.

Then we got together and studied how Mo Willems puts us in different positions in his books.

Cheyenne drew someone panicking from the side. She said she drew her so the reader saw her from the side so you could see her hands up by her face better.

Payton drew a very tiny person up in the stands. He's so tiny because he's very far away from us.

Kaydin's reader looks down at his table from up high so it can be seen that he has LOTS of French Toast on his plate!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Most of us added settings. One of us didn't!

Katlynn decided her illistrations should not show her setting because "I was all by myself and I wasn't paying attention to where my mom was", and she got lost. Katlynn said, "There were only boring lockers behind me when I was lost at the middle school, mad I want my readers to notice ME, not the lockers." So no setting for Katlynn!