Dear JU-D families,

It was a wonderful abbreviated week in JU-D. Students worked to understand family in ancient China, acted out reading as an active comprehension strategy, continued to study the compass, and moved outlines of auspicious papers into first drafts.

The week started out with a peek at the Chinese familial structure known as filial piety. Students began with a working definition of the term and were introduced to the 24 paragons of filial piety, a series of stories meant to exemplify the traits of filial piety or reverence for one’s family. Students tackled these texts in pairs, filled out flow charts to fully grasp the plot of the story and will collaborate on a comic version of these stories. We will use these representations to come up with a clear and comprehensive picture of what filial piety is and how it differs from western cultural practices.

In our reading work, we continued to reinforce the RARE strategy for reading responses. Students are seeing the ways in which this technique can create solid responses to any type of question (many kids are using the RARE structure to answer math questions.) To spice things up, JU-D members acted out scenes from our class reading Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. Not only did this allow students to flex their dramatic muscles, it also acted as a way to visualize the action of a story.

Finally, students learned about the rich history of Chinese exploration and its connection to the compass. Students role played villagers seeing Zheng He’s Treasure Fleet and played the role of court advisers and weighed in on whether China should continue to invest in oceanic exploration. We then returned to the Schuylkill center equipped with this cultural context and continued to work to familiarize kids with the use of the compass in orienteering.

We hope you have a wonderful weekend. Friday folders will be returning this week. Make sure to remove work samples before sending them back to school.


Noelle and Nick

-- Nick Dekker Junior Unit Teacher