Elementary LA/SS

November News:All Elementary Students

          This November in the Language Arts and Social Studies class we will complete our study of Africa. Students will finish their trip across this great continent.

In class and at home students will be building a book of knowledge about these topics. Parents, please speak to me with any questions you have about this or have an idea related to the topic you would like to work on. 

          The end of the unit exhibition night of student work/evening potluck to celebration will be on November 16th! If you want to volunteer to make this event amazing, please contact me right away. Students can follow up and work on projects that interest them at home. Please be sure to adapt all assignments to fit your child’s age and ability.

          I have included an assignment work schedule for all elementary students. We will review this at each monthly conference per the ALE laws.


Also ALL OCEAN students in the elementary school are encouraged to participate in National Novel Writing Month in November. Please go to the website below to check out this great event.


Reading assignments for students to work on at home:

  • Read non-fiction books about Africa
  • Read fiction books, picture books, folktales about Africa


    Writing assignments for students to work on at home:

  • Projects: Pick up a project from the project
  • Post Cards
  • Journals -  Character Journals
  • Writing Journals – Write in these 15 minutes everyday when you do not have another writing assignment.
  • NaNoWriMo stories!   


    Project Bank – All Africa Radio: As you visit each country you will complete one to three projects about this place.


    #1.Culture: Research the different ethnic groups that are found In the country you are visiting. Write an overview report about this or focus on one group that interests you. Illustrate your report.


    #2. Clothing: Research about traditional clothing of your country. Write an essay that explains the customs and styles. Create  some paper dolls or sew mini-outfits that are in this style.


    #3. Life cycle events: Research about how people in the country you are visiting celebrate birth, marriage and/ or death. Write a report that explains it. Illustrate it or make a collage that helps illuminate your report.


    #4. History: Learn about an important event in your countries history. Write a report and illustrate it or write a play that teaches us about this event.


    #5. Famous People: Research a famous person in African country you are visiting and write an essay about them. Then make a children’s book about what your research or make a graphic novella about your research.


    #6: Famous People 2: Research a famous person in the African country you are visiting and write a monologue in the voice of a famous person that tells about their life and their importance today. 


    #7. Visual Art: Research a famous African artist or style of art (traditional or modern) in African country you are visiting. Write an essay about it and make a painting in the style or inspired by this art.


    #8. Music:. Research the traditional and modern music in African country you are visiting and write an essay about it. Try writing a song in that style or learn to play a song by the composer.

    #9. Animals: Research animals in your country. You might want to focus on endangered animals. Write a report about one or more and illustrate them or make an animal mask.


    #10. Famous Man Made Places:  Research a famous man made place in your country. Write a report about it and create it on paper, make a model or make a diorama that shows this man made place in African country you are visiting. Be sure to write paper that explains what is happening in the diorama.


    #11. Famous Natural Places: Research a natural area that is important in your country. Write a report and create an illustration to go with it. You can also make a diorama of it.


    #12.Everyday Architecture: Research and write about the traditional homes of people in your country. Make a model or diorama of this.  


    #13. Holidays: Research and write about holidays in your country. Teach us about this in class.


    #14. Current Events: Research a current events in the African country you are visiting and write a news story/newspaper front page about your research.


    #15: Poetry: Read the poems of a famous African poet and write a series of poems inspired by them.


    #15: Write an argumentative essay that explores an event or issue in African country you are visiting. Be sure to have a clear position.


    #16. Research and write about the languages spoken in the country you are visiting. Create a Language Dictionary or  Alphabet Book about it.


    #17. Map: Draw a series of  maps of your country – physical, political, population density, ect…. Write a reflection on what you learned bby making the maps.


    #18. Food: Research and write about the foods and food customs of your country. Make a meal and photograph it or share it with the class.


    #19: Read a number of African folktales from African country you are visiting and write one in the style of the stories you have read. Turn this into a puppet show if you like.


    #20. An idea of your own you share with the teacher. 

    Above and Beyond Enrichment of your trip

    1. Read a series of fiction books set in Africa (at least three) and write a book talk about each one.
    2. Research African geography and create a board game with at least 50 facts.
    3. Bring in an item from a country you visit, actual or student created, and present it to the class with a written explanation.
    4. Write and perform a song about a country you visit.
    5. Dress up as your character for class.

    6.  Draw or make a three-dimensional model of your mode of transport.




      Important News and Upcoming Events:


      1. Student work exhibition night and family potluck is Thursday 11/16/17. Students will present (briefly) their Africa work or read from their NaNoWriMo stories. See previous email.


      2. Seattle Art Museum Trip Friday December 1st. Look for upcoming email.


      3. Join a committee: (We have fun!).

                - Field Trip Planning

                - Fund Raising

      Please contact Daniel if you would like to work on one of these.


      Thank you so much. You all have amazing children!




      Questions for Daniel?  Email him at:



      November 2017

      From Cairo to Cape Town: Africa!


      Please bring all work to class each time. Even if you are only partly done your work it helps to see what you have accomplished. Remember there are 5 parts to visiting each country. #1.Country Page #2.Country Project #3.Project Extension #4. Post Card  and #5. Journal


      #1. Novel and Non-Fiction Reading:

      Select and read fiction and/or non-fiction book(s) that is related to your NaNoWriMo story.  See me for help with this. Try to read 30 minutes each day. Each of you should complete the monthly book assignment on at least one of the books you read.


      Book Assignment: Complete One!

                1. Pick the big idea/theme of your book and write an essay that examines this topic in the book, your life and/or the world.

                2. Pick an intriguing character from the book and write an essay about his/her motivations, aspirations, success and failures. What lessons can you or others learn about life from this character’s actions?

                3. Compare and contrast this culture with your own? What surprised you about this culture? What can we learn from this culture? What were the similarities and differences in this culture and our own?






      #2. Writing Assignments:

      Create an awesome work of fiction of your own choosing. Create character, problems, setting and set a word goal. Then write, write, write!

      Week 1 (11/6) – NaNoWriMo – 1/4 of story

      Week 2 (11/13) – NaNoWriMo – 2/4 of story

      Week 3 (11/20) – NaNoWriMo – 3/4 of story

      Week 4 (11/27) – NaNoWriMo – Complete story read to the class.


      #3. Social Studies – African Safari – A great website to use is Our Africa


      Week 1 (11/6)  – Complete all work for Africa Project

      Week 2 (11/13)  – Create cover, assemble Book of Knowledge, Present as Student Exhibition Night

      Week 3 (11/20)  – Present in class

      Week 4 (11/27)  - Controversial Issue Essay – Outline and Rough Draft



      #4. Geography: Countries of the world: Africa

      This year we are going to learn the countries of the world. We will start with Africa. You can use Sheppard Software


                Week 1 (11/6) – African countries – Study for final Quiz on 11/13

                Week 2  (11/13)- All Africa final quiz, Monday 11/13/17!

                Week 3 (11/20) – South American Countries  - Study

                Week 4  (11/27) – South American Countries – Quiz

    7. Language Arts and Social Studies:

      Work Schedule K/2  

    8. Please bring all work to class each time. Even if you are only partly done your work it helps to see what you have accomplished.


      #1 Reading

  • Create a NaNoWriMo story.
  • Work on reading skills for 15 minutes each day
  • Out loud reading – Keep a list of books read out loud together.

     #2. Writing Assignments:

            - Work on writing skills 15 minutes each day at age appropriate level.

            - Write or dictate about Africa


#3. Social Studies: Inventions / Invent a culture

  • Choose an topic to read about on Africa. Create book of knowledge pages on this topic.  
  • Create a book of knowledge page from the list projects