Small Group ACE Update

3rd grade Level 2 ACE Math students have moved on from the unit on logical thinking and are now tackling tasks requiring spatial reasoning.  We’ve already tried our hands at Slitherlinks (tricky little puzzles requiring a great big amount of forethought!) and played the game Bloxorz (a big hit – find it at and are in the middle of creating our own tessellations (dragons and schnauzers and cats – oh, my!).  Throughout the unit, there will be loads of opportunities to explore problems requiring spatial reasoning using a variety of hands-on materials.

3rd grade Level 2 ACE English students, meanwhile, have been launched into our Word Play unit.  It’s oodles of work, but tons of fun!  We started by reading a short biography of Duke Ellington, listened to his music, and then crafted poems to capture the essence of his work.  Try to read these two stanzas by one third grader without tapping your foot!



King of the Keys.



Slick steppin’ ease.”

4th grade Level 2 ACE English students are winding up their look at symbolic thought in literature.  Some have written three paragraph essays detailing the symbolism in The Happy Prince, while others have created posters summarizing the symbols encountered throughout the unit.  And a few of the kids have managed to do both!  Next up: a unit on debate.  Once we’ve learned the elements of a debate argument, we’ll start preparing for our first debate.  The topic: Would it have been better to be a passenger on the Titanic or the Hindenburg?  Should be interesting….

4th and 5th grade Level 2 ACE Math students have continued their incredible work with math problem solving.  On that front, I just received news that our fourth graders are fourth in the nation in the Continental Math League!

And last, but not least, 5th grade Level 2 English students are learning all about tropical rain forests in preparation for our claymation unit.  The kids have learned about the four layers of the rain forest, the flora and fauna that make up the rain forest, and, perhaps most importantly, they’ve been learning about the threats which face rain forests, as well as some of the great strides made in recent years to protect them.  Once they are well versed in all things rain forest-y, plans will commence for our original claymation productions set in, you guessed it, the rain forest!





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