Robotics is just one of the many exciting projects we are engaging with this term. In term 2, the students had a go at programming a sumobot with our lego robots. We have a white circle surrounded by a black ring and the students have to program a robot that will begin in the centre, drive to the side, turn around, search for another robot and then force it out of the arena. Our last attempt was moderately successful but we ran out of time. This term we have launched straight into the same challenge to refine our robots and our coding skills. As always, programming the robot requires extensive problem solving and design skills. The students have to continually test their code to observe how the robot responds and then adjust it to fulfill the criteria. When the challenge begins the robots have to operate autonomously so we need to ensure our programs are operating effectively. I have done the challenge myself but every new robot responds differently and it is always a challenging learning experience.

This term we have been focusing on editing to make sure we apply our knowledge of grammar, punctuation, spelling and effective expression to all our written work. The students were provided with a prompt and composed an exciting story beginning. They then passed their work to another student who continued the narrative. We continued to pass the works around, adding more to the story each time. The students had to include a different technique to each paragraph, such as “begin a sentence with an adverb” or “include an effective metaphor”. Today we continued to pass the narrative around the class but we focused on editing the work. At every station the students had to focus on a particular editing skill such as capitalising proper nouns or editing direct speech. We learnt that editing involves more than just correcting mistakes – it means looking for ways our work can be improved. We also found that many narratives seemed to ramble on without direction, which reinforced the importance of planning our narratives before we begin.

In maths we have been conducting an investigation into the relationship between the volume and mass of water. While the students have been working on their projects I have been pulling out particular groups to learn about mental methods to solve long multiplication problems.

The shooting of our class film is almost completed and we are entering the editing stage. Our chosen subject involves many special effects that the students will have to deal with while editing. It looks challenging but I’m certain we will pull it off.

Our “Adole:sence” program begins in two weeks’  time. The class will be exploring the physical and emotional changes they should expect to happen as they enter their teen years. It is an extremely valuable experience and our students take a lot away from it. If you do not want your child to take part, or you have any questions, please contact me.

We also have our surfing program coming up in week 5. If you want your child to participate, please make certain you return the permission slip as soon as possible.

See you at Music in the Valley on Friday!