JU-C Weekly Note

Dear Families,

It's hard to believe it’s mid-May!  It feels like just yesterday that we were starting the year together.  This week we continued learning about the Silk Routes; next week we will start meeting in “city groups,” which will work together to decide what happens in a particular city.  The simulation itself will occur the last week of school, both at school and at our last day at The Schuylkill Center (June 8).  Ask your child what she/he has learned about the Silk Routes (most likely about a particular location).

We watched a DVD of a Monkey King movie (in Cantonese, with subtitles).  The students enjoyed seeing the story they knew come to life, and they appreciated the stylistic touches that made this movie different from a Disney version.  We also watched a BBC commercial for the Beijing Olympics that featured Monkey (https://youtu.be/Yr5ZWYRaAyw).  (In case you’re wondering, it’s the composer and animator for the group Gorillaz.)

We saw the 3B play on Wednesday afternoon.  While there was some disappointment that we weren’t going to see both plays, it would have made a long Wednesday to see both in one day (because Thursday is our Schuylkill Center day).  The current JU remembers the songs well from their own plays!

On Thursday we finished looking specifically at deforestation in part by reading The Lorax by Dr. Seuss.  At The Schuylkill Center, students played a game that reflected either a sustainable system or a non-sustainable one, and then wrote a sequel to The Lorax in which the Once-Ler has figured out how not to destroy an ecosystem.  Next week we’ll be testing water near the school and will not be going to The Schuylkill Center.

The fourth graders finished their Derby/probability work in math. Laura was able to calculate Always Dreaming’s odds within our class, and because almost every student bet on that horse, the odds were actually 1-2 (a $2 bet means you get that back plus $1 if the horse wins).  Because of that, the house still beat everyone. Lesson: Gambling is designed to make the most money for the people running it, not people who gamble.

Finally, today we heard a wonderful recital in the gym.  The middle schoolers who performed impressed (and inspired) our students. TPS leaves such an incredible musical legacy on our students, even if they don’t go on to musical careers.  

Stay dry this weekend, and know that warmer weather returns next week!


Laura and David