Thursday, December 23, 2010

Researching Egypt

It has taken me a while to get this post in. I’ve been visiting my children and grandchildren who live in Utah, and life has been like a whirlwind. So to bring everyone up to date, the last week before we left for break, students (in periods 2, 4, and 7) spent three days in the library researching for their persuasive essays. In seventh grade they will be required to produce an essay on demand as part of state testing. It takes a lot of time, effort and practice to be prepared for that test, so we begin preparing in 6th grade. I am really proud of the way the children focused in the library to get the information needed to support their writing.
When we come back from winter break, we will continue to work on our essays.  The first week back we will focus on how to write the different parts of an essay: the introductory paragraph, the body or supporting paragraphs, and the conclusion of the essay. These rough drafts will be due Jan. 7th. Then students will have access to the laptops the second week of January so that they can type up their papers and bibliographies. Their final persuasive paper will be due Jan. 13th. I do provide a lot of time in class to work on their papers, but as always, if students cannot complete their papers in class, then they need to work on them at home.
Below are some pictures of students in the library. They really do like me to post their pictures. Once when the Red Block was researching in the library I forgot to bring my camera. I mentioned to a couple of the girls that I guess I wouldn’t have pictures of their group. TD looked up at me and said, “Go get your camera, I’ll hold down the fort!” So I quickly ran back to class, got my camera, and took their pictures.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Pharaohs, Tombs, and Egyptian Geography

We are well underway in our study of Egypt. This last week students created maps of current Egypt, and then they became acquainted with some of ancient Egypt’s most famous pharaohs. These pharaohs liked to leave behind eternal remembrances of themselves, so we “visited” some important monuments that they built. Besides looking at the Great Pyramid of Khufu, we looked at Hatshepsut’s temple, Deir el-Bahri,  and Abu Simbel built by Ramses II.
Please be aware that students in periods 2, 4, and 7 will be researching for information to write a persuasive essay about ancient Egypt. He/she should show you the project and get your signature to turn in this Thursday. They will choose to write about one of the following prompts:
  • If someone could visit only one Egyptian monument before they died, what monument should they visit? Why?
  • Who do you think was the greatest Egyptian pharaoh and why?
  • Why would Egypt be considered an important civilization for study?
This promises to be a busy but exciting week as we go to the library and continue to learn about the unique culture of the ancient Egyptian civilization.
By the way, have a very safe and Happy Holiday Season!
Enjoy the following photos of kids reading about the geography of Egypt.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Ancient Egypt: Up and Coming

Next week will mark the beginning of our study of Egypt. Students enjoyed looking briefly at Mesopotamia and had fun creating advertisements to sell real estate in antiquity. On the list to accomplish for our study of Egypt: maps, hieroglyphs, important pharaohs, mummies, and writing persuasive papers. Egypt is a fun unit and students enjoy learning some of the yucky secrets of mummification. Many of the ancient pharaohs really were larger than life, and made their monuments to last forever. During the next month-and-a-half, let your student share what they are learning about this ancient civilization.
Below are pictures of students sharing their advertisements of Mesopotamian real estate.