Friday, October 17, 2014

October Newsletter 2014


Dear Parents-


We spent the first quarter getting to know each other and exploring the definition of a true hero. Each students also explored an individual real life heroes; such as Martin Luther King Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Buzz Aldrin, Ceasar Chavez... When these projects are complete we will be spending some time comparing and contrasting a few based on their characteristics of these heroes.


Also, this quarter we participated in a couple of quick projects to get our creative juices flowing. First students had a blast building spaghetti and marshmallow towers. In teams they were given the challenge to build the highest tower they could using a set number of dried spaghetti and marshmallows. Some were very successful and everyone learned a great deal. The other creative activity we engaged in was entitled What's in the Bag?. This idea came to us via some friends from The DiscoveryEducator's Network (The DEN). Each student was given a bag filled with a variety of art supplies with the following directions: Inside this bag you will find a variety of items. Please create something using as many of these items as you can. You may only use the items in your bag scissors, a stapler and glue. We truly ended up with some wonder ideas.

Finally, starting this quarter we will begin to explore ways to be heroic on Prine’s Campus and in our community. To help us with that process we will be using the Challenge Based Learning (CBL) framework. With CBL students are required work collaboratively to solve a real world problem. Through CBL many Florida State Grade Level Standards are infused into this process. However, our main focus in goals/standards will continue to come from Florida's Framework for K-12 Gifted
Learners, which the CBL framework also covers effectively.
 
Since I am only on Prine’s Campus on Monday and Tuesday the best way to contact me is through email snyderf@manateeschools.net.

Thank you,
Frances (Francie) M. Snyder
Educator of the Gifted

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Spaghetti Towers

       This week we had a blast building spaghetti and marshmallow towers. Students were placed in teams and given the challenge to build the highest tower they could using a set number of dried spaghetti and marshmallows. Several tips to aid them in the challenge were shared and teams were given time to plan their strategy. Some were very successful and everyone learned a great deal. 
 

     Please enjoy some pictures of our fun! 
video

Writing Our Own Rules

Like everywhere else on campus our Gifted Laboratory has rules and here the students worked to help develop them. Before we put our heads together to establish a set of rules we first explored the reasons why rules exist. 

We spent some time discussing what it means to be a Prine Hero, which calls us all to:  
Have Respect
Exhibit Responsibility
Remember Safety
Open Our Minds to Learning

We then participated in a thinking routine entitled Chalk Talk.  During a Chalk Talk there is a piece of chart paper with an open ended questions in the center of the group and students are asked to respond to the prompt in written form only. They may respond directly the question or they can respond to another person's thoughts. On our Chalk Talk questions were:

-Why should rules be followed?
-What would happen if there were no rules? 
-Why do we need rules?



After completing and discussing our Chalk Talk, we used the Frayer Model  to explore what things would look like, sound like and feel like with and without rules. 





Finally, we spent time writing a set of rules for our time in gifted and signed them in agreement. 


 

Friday, August 22, 2014

August 2014-Newsletter

 Dear Parents-

Hello my name is Frances (Francie) Snyder and I would like to welcome you for the 2014-15 school year. I am so excited about this year and really can’t wait to get started. I have been teaching here in Manatee County for over eighteen years with the last seven of which working with the Gifted Populations at Oneco, Tara, Manatee and Palm View. This year, I will be here at Prine Elementary on Monday and Tuesday with the rest of my week being spent at Oneco Elementary.

Throughout this year we will be exploring ways that we as individuals can be a heroic and promote others to do the same.  Before we will be exploring literature and current events to help us define exactly what a hero (heroine) is and what characteristics are needed to make up a true hero. From there we will be exploring ways to be heroic on Prine’s Campus, in our community, and within the worldwide digital community.  To help us with that process we will be using the Challenge Based Learning (CBL) framework.  With CBL students are required work collaboratively to solve a real world problem. This framework consist of the following elements:

-Big Idea: a broad concept that can be narrowed down by asking questions and exploring its different aspects.
-Essential Question(s): Comes out of the Big Idea and helps identify what is important and helps narrow down the topic and define the idea.
-The Challenge: Comes out of the essential question(s) and students are asked to create a solution that can result in a measurable action or actions.
-Guiding Questions: These questions are generated by the students and are based on what they need to know to solve the problem.
-Guiding Activities: Activities to help students solve their problem and to gather resources.
-Solution(s): Should be student generated, require student action, be thoughtful, clear, concrete and publishable in one form or another.


 Through CBL many Florida State Grade Level Standards are infused into this process. However, our main
focus in goals/standards will continue to come from Florida's Framework for K-12 Gifted Learners, which the CBL framework also covers effectively.

If you need to reach me, the best way is through email, the best way is through email snyderf@manateeschools.net. 


Supply List
-2/ 70 page spirals
-2 ream of white copy paper
-4 sharpened pencils
-8 AA batteries (Energizer, Duracell and Marks Brands preferred)

Thank you,
Frances (Francie) M. Snyder
Educator of the Gifted





Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Why this blog?

 It is my hope that with this blog we will be able to open up the doors to our laboratory just a bit more and allow others to see a bit of our work in progress. The posts here will be brief glimpses into the laboratory and occur on a much more frequently than on my blog and/or our website.