Friday, January 20, 2012

Weekly Class Summary: Jan. 16-20

SOLs Covered: 6.6b & 6.7 Consumer Applications with Fractions & Decimals
Upcoming Assessments: Multiply & Divide Fractions (Fri. 1/27); Second Benchmark Test (Tues. 1/31 & Wed. 2/1)

After enjoying a three-day weekend, we came back to our consumer applications unit.  While students added and subtracted with fractions and added, subtracted, multiplied, and divided with decimals last year, students explore the "real world" uses for this a little more in sixth grade.  We spent a lot of time breaking done word problems that touch on the real, practical need for these skills in day-to-day life like balancing a check book and using/purchasing goods such as flour for a recipe, material for a sewing project, and lumber for fencing.  We talked about how estimation is a great tool for figuring out the total your grocery purchase before getting to the register in addition to being a great way to check work to ensure that answers are reasonable.

As I had promised students last week, we watched an episode of Extreme Couponing© and calculated the savings on each person's purchases.  Several students say they are now hooked on the show and while they may not go to the same extremes as the people in the show, some say they will now start couponing.  I hope students will keep this in mind as they grow older and start having to manage money and bills on their own, as the work we've done in this unit and while watching the show is some of the most practical, useful kind of math they will need as adults.

Students had an opportunity to log onto the netbooks on Thursday to check grades and missing work as well as to complete JLabs for extra credit.  Students are reminded that the end of the first semester is next week and all make-up work is due by Monday, January 23 (see End of Term #2 Reminders! for further details).  All of next week's grades will be added to Term 3 grades in order to allow students a bit more time to make up any of that work as needed.

The week wound down with the seventh spiral review quiz.  This quiz was a slightly modified version of one of the old Math 5 SOL tests in part to remind students of the connections all of last year's materials has to what we are doing now.  For those students who completed with time to spare before the end of the block, there was an activity that had students rounding different fractions to zero, half, or one whole.  This will continue to come in handy as students receive more complex questions involving computation with fractions, especially as we start multiplying and dividing fractions next week for the first time.

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