JU-A Weekly Note

Dear JU-A Families,

This week, students played the roles of scientists, artists, and archaeologists. We wrapped up last week's conversations about gender in ancient Greece and archaeological methods through an activity in which students pretended to be archaeologists from the future. They observed and drew inferences about modern-day artifacts related to gender, such as a Barbie doll and a photo of the U.S. Congress. In comparing ancient Greek and modern-day gender roles, students both celebrated how much progress has been made yet reflected on the ways that stereotypes and gender roles still "box us in" today.

For the past two weeks, students have been practicing spelling "personal words," i.e., words that they frequently misspell. By relocating the words they missed last week to their list this week, they are getting the chance to practice and re-practice some challenging words.

Our study about everyday life in ancient Greece continues to be hands-on. In this week's study of clothes, jewelry, craft, and industry, we started making Greek bracelets. Students are designing a Greek-style pattern for the bracelets. Additionally, students came closer to finishing the mobile project this week. Through this project, they have had a hands-on experience with the principal of center of gravity that Archimedes discovered.

We also visited two exhibits at the Penn Museum on Thursday: The Golden Age of King Midas, and The Ancient Greek World. Students enjoyed making connections between the Midas exhibit and what they heard in Dr. C. Brian Rose's presentation last week about his archaeological digs. The exhibit features more than 150 artifacts from the Phrygian Kingdom. At the exhibit about ancient Greece, students excitedly recognized many familiar Greek characters and scenes on Greek pottery and coins.

With student-led conferences approaching, students have continued preparing for what they will share next week. The purpose of the conference is to:

  • give children voice and shared power,
  • encourage a sense of ownership for learning,
  • foster risk-taking, critical thinking and decision-making,
  • build strong student-teacher-parent relationships,
  • encourage organization,
  • give students opportunity to experiment with oral discussion,
  • and encourage children to take a role in problem-solving and self advocating

We look forward to seeing you at conferences!

In partnership,

Jenson, Emily and Julia