The Changemakers Project
Thursday, March 10, 2022 Volume 16 Issue 22
A few weeks ago, I wrote about our Changemakers Project, where each of our classes studies an influential Black or African American person who has made a difference in our world. Some of our classes chose to narrow their focus in on an artist from the Harlem Renaissance, inspired by our Black Lives Matter week. Others chose to study a Changemaker in our own community. Last week, Ezell Stephens (founder of Ezell’s Chicken and Heaven Sent Fried Chicken) visited Ms. Bodden’s class. Yes – he brought delicious chicken for the class! This week, Mayor Bruce Harrell came to visit Ms. Glass’ students after they studies his life and created a beautiful timeline to share what they learned with our school. During his visit, students got to interview him to learn even more. (I learned that Mayor Harrell is perfectly comfortable singing Disney songs with a class of 2nd graders!).
The beautiful thing about the Changemaker project is that so much of it is driven by student choice. Students get to choose the person they are interested in learning more about, and students get to decide how to demonstrate what they learned during their study. I’m sharing a few of our pictures in this issue and will be putting pictures of every class’s project on our website so you can see your children’s work. We love seeing our students’ excitement about what they are learning, and it is great to see how offering our students choices is a powerful motivator in learning.
Science is another part of our curriculum where I have been seeing excitement for learning. I’ve had the opportunity to visit a couple of our 2nd grade classes recently as they work through a unit on experimental design. Students are trying to find ways to create the stickiest glue possible. Through a series of tests, they create their own recipe with their research partners using materials like flour, salt, and baking soda. They make predictions and then try out their recipe to test their mixture. Students learn the scientific method by doing the work that real scientists do. Ms. Powell shared these pictures of her scientists at work.
You should have received a robocall from some of our students this Friday inviting you to join us on Monday, March 14 for our 2nd Academic Parent Teacher Team meetings.
You will be getting a couple more messages to help keep this on your radar. Fifth grade students from Ms. Egelhoff’s class did a great job recording these reminders. They were a little nervous making the recordings when they realized they would go to the entire school community, but they persevered through the nervousness and did a wonderful job. I hope they will convince you to join us!
Global Reading Challenge
Our 4th and 5th graders have been reading and studying 8 novels to prepare for the Global Reading Challenge (GRC). This annual reading trivia competition is hosted by the Seattle Public Library. Students read current novels with global perspectives and compete in teams to answer questions about the books. For our in-school competition, 5 teams completed trivia questionnaires in an attempt to qualify for the semi-finals. The winning team, the Thurgood Marshall Monarchs from Ms. Reddy’s 4th grade class, answered the most trivia questions correctly. They advanced to the semi-finals to compete against other winning teams from schools around Seattle. The Monarchs started strong, correctly answering every question in the first round of the semi-finals. The competition heated up through two more rounds, and the Monarchs continued to answer most questions correctly. They worked well as a team to deliberate and decide on each answer. The semi-finals ended with the Monarchs coming in 2nd place overall with 85 points, only one question behind the first place team!