Poll: Vacation or Staycation?

17 Oct

Have a nice vacation. We’ll see you on Monday, October 27th (Day # 4: F-G-H-E Day). Comment and tell us what your plans are for the vacation. Read a book!



India Week Celebrations!

17 Oct

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I Want a Great Book!

13 Oct
s49wzrp1xg2ax9d9o8cnStudents are always looking for new books to read. We have reviewed many places where you can find new books. Here is a list of some links. Remember, your friends are always the best source of ideas!
Mrs. Hall/Ms. Jaya’s Book Blog
Mr. Martin/Ms. Jaya’s Book Blog
Popular Grade 6 Books from goodreads (scroll down and click the next page to find more!)
Great books for boys 
Great books for girls
Awesome 6th grade books
You can also find books by reading level, as well as other links on our Moodle page.

Remember to write a book review this week!




Learning to Farm

12 Oct

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This is  a video playlist gives an overview of what we are learning in Chapter 2, Lesson 2 – Learning to Farm and Raise Animals. Think about: How did agriculture change the way people lived together? What are the major crops grown in your country? Write your country and list the major crops.



2014 Nobel Prize Winners

10 Oct
Source: Getty Images (BBC)

Source: Getty Images (BBC)

The 2014 Nobel Peace Prize went to advocates for children’s rights with Pakistan’s Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi of India sharing the award on Friday.
Yousafzai, a schoolgirl in Pakistan’s Swat Valley, became a worldwide symbol against abuses by the Taliban after she was shot in the head in 2012 by militants who stormed the bus she was riding with other students.  Yousafzai, now 17, later become an advocate for girls’ education and has appeared in some of the most high-profile forums, including an address at the United Nations last year.
Satyarthi, 60, has fought against child labor more nearly two decades and is credited with helping free tens of thousands of children from harsh work conditions and other forms of forced labor, including in the carpet industry and traveling circuses popular in India.

Read this really nice interview with Malala, who talks about her favorite books.

Find this book in our school and class library.

Find this book in our school and class library.

News: Cave Paintings in Indonesia Redraw Picture of Earliest Art

9 Oct

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Great timing! Here is a story that Mrs. Hall and Mr. Hoover shared with me. According to this National Geographic article, a “hand painted in an Indonesian cave dates to at least 39,900 years ago, making it among the oldest such images in the world, archaeologists reported Wednesday in a study that rewrites the history of art.The discovery on the island of Sulawesi vastly expands the geography of the first cave artists, who were long thought to have appeared in prehistoric Europe around that time.  This BBC article features a short video on the caves. Click on the map below to enlarge, and you will see where Sulawesi is located in Indonesia.

Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 8.47.15 AM

A Journey of Learning

8 Oct

Paul Salopek shares a video message to students around the world from Turkey where he currently is on his Out of Eden Walk. His latest blog post is entitled ‘This is not a life.” It is about his time in a refugee camp in Turkey on the border of Syria. Check it out!


Exploring Cave Art

8 Oct

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Students finished lesson 1 of chapter 2 with an art project where they created their own cave art. Here is a link with some of the best cave art from around the world. The Bradshaw Foundation has some good links also.  The next lesson will focus on how early humans learned to farm and raise animals.

Writing Tips from Marshfield Dreams Author

4 Oct
In our Language Arts class, we have been working on writing our memoir and hearing read ‘alouds’ from various memoirs, including Marshfield Dreams by Ralph Fletcher. Author Ralph Fletcher has a nice website and it includes some helpful links for young writers. Check out this page on writing tips and a Q & A (question and answer) page with for the author, as well as a list of other books by him. If you have enjoyed Marshfield Dreams, you can find it in the library along with other books by him. Please continue to work on your memoir with the aim of finishing your first draft by next class.  Have a nice weekend!

October Author of the Month: Linda Sue Park

1 Oct
Photo by: Jaya Shanker

Photo by: Jaya Shanker

The next time you step into our Grade 6 classroom library, check out our author of the month series. Linda Sue Park is the “daughter of Korean immigrants, she has been writing poems and stories since she was four years old, and her favorite thing to do as a child was read.”  Take a look at the Facts (aka FAQS) page on her website to learn more about her and see the books she has written. Her website features all kinds of information about Linda Sue Park. Sign out one of her books to read. Finally, you are all added to our book review blogs. Congratulations and thanks to the students who have already written and shared book reviews. Please write a review about a book you have read this year, or find new books on our blogs.
photo (3) copy

Photo by: Jaya Shanker

October Birthdays

1 Oct

birthday-cake-clip-art_Happy birthday to the following Grade 6 students celebrating birthdays this month: Tsukiho (2nd), Ai (5th), Aaron (12), Woosung (25th), Junsik (27th), and Min Wook/Eric (28th). If we made any errors or left anyone off the list, please let us know ASAP. Have a great day!  Happy birthday!  Ms. Jaya, Mrs, Hall and Mr. Martin


Word Hippo

1 Oct

Image Source: Word Hippo

Vikram shared a really cool website with me and some of this table partners today in Language Arts. Word Hippo is a website that you can use to find word meanings, rhyming words, word forms (past tense, future, tense, and much more!), example sentences, and translations. It looks like a great website that would be helpful to all students. We are always looking for great sites to add to our Moodle pages and our class blog. If you find helpful websites for Language Arts or Social Studies, please send the links to Mrs. Hall, Ms. Jaya, or me. Thanks, Vikram!

Thanks! Mr. Martin

Out of Eden: Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author Answers Us!

26 Sep
Image source: npr.org

Image source: npr.org

Great news! Paul Salopek responded to our questions we sent to him. Currently, Mr. Salopek is in Turkey observing and writing about the refugee crisis on the border of Syria. Last week, we brainstormed a list of questions we would ask him if we had an opportunity. Mr. Martin sent four questions from Tsukiho, Hanung, Yuki I., and Kennedy. He answered those questions on his blog.  We have cut and pasted his response below:
From Paul:
Thanks so much, Rob. To answer the questions:
1. What do you think your entire budget will be for this journey (Yuki, Japanese)?
Paul: It’s evolving, Yuki. I started on a shoestring. Thanks to great partners such as National Geographic and the Knight Foundation, the Abundance Foundation, the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, and Project Zero, I’ve now got the shoes to go with it. Daily expenses have ranged from about $2 USD to $500 USD, depending on whether I was traveling with camels and a full team of desert guides in Saudi Arabia or walking alone across Cyprus and living on iced coffee.
2. What has been the best moment of your journey, so far (Kennedy, American)?
Paul: An impossible question, Kennedy—like asking which is the best moment of your life so far? All journeys, short and small, are made up of highs and lows that we sometimes only recognize years later. Mohammed Banounah’s jokes. Seeing the Gulf of Aden from the rocky hills of Djibouti. Or the hundreds of “ordinary” days when walking seems effortless—steeped in meaning and beautiful. Take your pick.
3. How many articles of clothing do you carry with you (Tsukiho, Japan)?
Paul: I’m still wearing the same t-shirt I started with in Ethiopia. My original pants were beyond repair, though. I have replaced them twice.
Mr. Martin’s note: see this article from NPR – What do you pack for a seven year journey?
4. What will you do when you finish this journey—write a book (Hanung, Korean)?
Paul: A couple of books are coming. I’ll pause halfway (2016) to write the first.
Read more about his seven-year journey in our other blog post or on this National Public Radio article (hear him talk in this interview!). Please add other questions in the comment section here. We will continue to ask him questions throughout the year. You can also follow his blog posts and journey using the RSS feed listed on our blog (scroll down and look on the right side of the blog).
Have a great weekend and add some more questions. First, look at his website and the links and learn more about his journey before thinking of questions.


Cave Paintings and Prehistoric Art

25 Sep
In Chapter 2, we are learning about Early Human Culture and the development of art. There are many examples of ancient cave paintings, particularly in France and Spain. Watch the playlist and also check out website for the Lascaux Cave Paintings in France (also mentioned in pages 6-7 in your textbook). Click ‘visit the cave’ to enter this cool website that features some really amazing early art. Women made most of the oldest-known cave art paintings, suggests a new analysis of ancient handprints. Here is a link with other examples of cave paintings around the world. The Bradshaw Foundation also features good information on cave art around the world.
What does this art tell us about early humans?  Where are some of the places where prehistoric art or cave art has been found (see Bradshaw Foundation link and other links in this post).



Otzi, the Ice Man

24 Sep
Image source: South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, Italy

Image source: South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, Italy

Why is Otzi’s discovery so important to archaeology and the world?

You can learn more about Otzi and the artifacts they found with his body by viewing the link of the museum where he now resides:

South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, Italy



21 Sep

Here is a video playlist which nicely describes memoirs.

Out of Eden Walk

19 Sep
Source: pulitzercenter.org

Source: pulitzercenter.org

In class we are learning about early humans and migration. Follow this great story and blog by National Geographic writer, Paul Salopek as he makes a seven year journey following the footsteps of man.  His Out of Eden blog can be found here. Read more about his project here:

From 2013 to 2020, writer Paul Salopek is recreating that epic journey on foot, starting at humankind’s birthplace in Ethiopia and ending at the southern tip of South America, where our forebears ran out of horizon. Along the way he is engaging with the major stories of our time — from climate change to technological innovation, from mass migration to cultural survival — by walking alongside the people who inhabit these headlines every day. Moving at the slow beat of his footsteps, Paul is also seeking the quieter, hidden stories of people who rarely make the news.

You can follow his blog or dispatches on our class blog. There is an RSS feed listed on the right side of the blog and you will see his most recent posts. You can also ask Mr. Salopek questions about his journey. He posts thematic maps here and you can see where he currently is, if you see this Google Map. This is a very cool story, one that you can follow for the next several years. In class, we are brainstorming questions we would ask Paul. We will collect the best questions and post a message on his blog, Out of Eden Walk. Hopefully we will respond during his trek. Below is a video playlist about his journey and human migration (see pages 46-47 in our textbook).


United Nations International Day of Peace

19 Sep
Source: un.org

Source: un.org

Celebrate the United Nations International Day of Peace at AISC. Post a comment and tell us something you enjoyed about how UN Day was celebrated at school and your feelings about peace. What does peace mean to you? Watch UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s video message.




E-Books @ AISC

18 Sep

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Mr. Jet came to our Language Arts classes this week to talk about e-books and how to access them. We learned that we have thousands of new e-books. You can access the list of e-book links and passwords via Moodle. Go to the main Middle School Moodle page, scroll down to the CIC section and click on the link that says ‘Great CIC online subscriptions and e-books.’  You can also find them on our Moodle page under general resources. Just as we are reading ‘just right’ books, please choose just right e-books. Have fun exploring the new e-books and tell a friend about a great book you have read.



International Mindedness @ AISC

15 Sep

This week at AISC, we celebrate Dot Day and UN International Peace Day. How do you define international mindedness? What have you learned about ‘international mindedness’ as a student at an international school like AISC? (click on the images below to see a larger image).  Share your opinion. 

United Nations

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Website

International Mindness (1)

International Mindness Mug Design

Source: AISC website

Source: AISC website



History is Cool!

10 Sep
Source: G. Hartwig/Universal History Archive/Getty Images

Source: G. Hartwig/Universal History Archive/Getty Images

Here is a really cool article I saw on National Public Radio (NPR) about a ship that was lost more than 160 years ago. It was recently discovered by Canadian archaeologists. Click on the link to read the story.


9 Sep

In advisory class today, all grade 6 students did an activity related to The Dot by Peter Reynolds. What does this story mean to you? Do you ever feel like Vashti? How do you feel about starting something new? How do you feel when things seem difficult to do? What is something you would like to improve? How will you “make your mark” on 6th grade? Post a comment, and answer one or more of these questions. Share a story or your opinion on The Dot.  Here are some other links related to the story:

Peter Reynolds website – the author of The Dot

International Dot Day – September 15th is DOT Day


Scholastic Book Fair!

7 Sep

Book-Fair-ArrowThere will be a Scholastic Book Fair from Monday to Wednesday this week in the Black Box Theater (BBT). Stop by before class, during recess or lunch, or after school. We hope you find something great to read!



Sadako, Paper Cranes, and Perpective

6 Sep


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Students in Block H (SS) were treated to a demonstration of how to make paper cranes by our Japanese students. This was a wonderful opportunity to enrich our learning after reading “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes”. Thanks to Rin, Miyu, and Yumi who demonstrated and to Hidetaka and Yuki H. who helped students when they needed it!  Check out some of these book reviews and trailers that students did last year. You can find copies of the book in the CIC. We will continue talking about perspective next week. Remember to update your books you are reading on the 40 Book Challenge document you have in your L.A. folder.
Book review 1, book review 2, & book review 3.

Primary vs. Secondary Sources

4 Sep

In our final lesson from chapter 1, you will learn about primary and secondary sources and how historians study the past.  Click on the hyperlink to see an Infographic that highlights the differences.  The video playlist has several videos on primary and secondary sources. Check them out!




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