Friday, December 19, 2014

Reflections on our amazing work!

Woah!!!  We've had a BUSY December and it has been SO much fun.

From building towers to building bridges to graham cracker houses and creations, from learning about the spread of Ebola to sending treats to troops who have helped in West Africa: we have learned so much!  This week we've taken time to reflect on all of our work.

And the team with the best reflection is......

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Architecture in F3 with the DLR Group!

Wow!  it's been a great week so far and it's only going to get better tomorrow when we head down to the offices of the DLR group.

For now, though-- check out our skyscrapers!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Our care packages have arrived!!

Hi Everyone!

The packages arrived to one of the destinations yesterday: Fort Bliss, Texas.  The soldiers there are in the middle of their 21 day quarantine after serving in Liberia. As you can see by the pictures, they were thrilled to receive the treats and letters sent by Maple families. In all, we sent 19 care packages last Thursday. Nine packages full of candy and letters went to Ft Bliss and the other packages are still on their way to service members working right now in Liberia.

On another note, I took a trip to the White Center Food Bank yesterday to deliver the canned goods and large boxes of cereal donated.  One hundred pounds.  I am astounded each year by both the generosity shown by our community and the gratitude shown by those on the receiving end.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Ms. V.

from LTC Michael Indovina:

Thank you so much for this great surprise from you and the children of Maple Elementary.

It was so nice to see the Soldiers, Sailors, Airman and Marines read all the notes from the kids. All of us are very appreciative of the thoughts and act of kindness you and the kids did for us.

I was in awe that the team went for the letters just as much as the candy and other items. We posted the letters on the wall for all of us to read in the common area.

The pictures were sent earlier from my roommate. We will send more.

Thanks so much for letting me have the opportunity to talk with your kids via face time. It made my day! I hope they were able to learn more about what we are doing in Liberia.

You are a superstar for teaching the kids about this topic and providing them the awareness of such an important issue.

Every point counts to ensure we keep this virus away from the US and help the people that are sick in Liberia.

If there is anything we can do again please let me know.


LTC Indovina 

And another message from Maj Stamm!

Dear Ms. Ventura's Class,

I am one of the servicemembers who have just returned from Africa and are currently at Ft. Bliss, TX.  We received your packages the other day, and I just wanted to let you know how thankful we are.

Most of us have been away from home for several weeks, and we have to stay here for a total of 21 days so the doctors can make sure we aren't sick.  I can assure you, we aren't.  Well, homesick maybe, and we all just want to go home.  I want to go home to my basset hound, "Rosebud," who is so lazy she probably doesn't even notice I'm not there.  Seriously, the dog is LAZY (see attached photo).

The best part of the day is getting mail, especially when we get packages such as the ones you sent.  We have been eating the goodies like we never had candy before.  I'm eating some right now.

Please know how happy we are you thought of us.  Now, do your homework and get good grades.  If you do, then one day you can be like us if you want, traveling the world helping other people.  And get to wear camouflage pants.

Thank you again.

Maj. John T. Stamm

US Air Force Reserve

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Rosetta meets Comet

Artist's depiction of the landing.

Today, the European Space Agency completed a mission they started ten years and four billion miles ago.  The spacecraft Rosetta landed a probe the size of a washing machine on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.  Since the comet is moving at about 24,000 miles an hour, scientists have said this mission is about as hard as "trying to land a fly on a speeding bullet."

A simulated picture of Rosetta launching the probe towards the comet.
On the journey to meet up with the comet, Rosetta circled the solar system several times, using the gravity of Earth and Mars to boost the spacecraft's speed to match the comet.  This video illustrates where Rosetta has been for the past ten years.

To secure the lander probe, harpoons will shoot into the comet's surface and anchor it.

Once the probe, named Philae, is securely attached to the comet, it will start transmitting video and scientific data about the comet's composition back to the command center in Germany.  It takes about seven hours for the data to travel at the speed of light from the comet back to Earth. For now, we have some awesome photos and simulations of Rosetta's approach to the comet.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Learning about Ebola in F3

We've been following the spread of Ebola.  In class we've had conversations about viruses, curfews, and public health workers.

UPDATE: On October 8, 2014, we learned about and mourned the death of Mr. Duncan who dies of Ebola in Dallas this morning.  Our hearts go out to his family and friends and to the doctors who treated him.

Another update: On October 15, we learn that the nurses at the Dallas hospital were not prepared, and that is how the virus may have spread to the two nurses.

October 16:  And another update on the situation in Liberia. What is it like to be an ambulance worker?

Update: October 29:  Following our discussion on quarantines, what do you think of this?  How does the cartoonist feel about the quarantine orders?

‘Don’t Fence Me In?’

October 31:  How is the US Military helping in West Africa?


"Texas sees first case of Ebola in U.S." from Newsela

"Retracting the Steps" infographic from the New York Times

Timeline infographic from the Dallas Morning News

Learning about Ebola involves knowing about social studies and science.  What have you learned about Ebola?

Added 11/17: The latest news on Ebola

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Learning about 9/11 in F3

We're going to be taking some time during social studies to learn about what happened in this country on September 11, 2001, and how the events affected people and our government.

We'll being learning about 9/11 through making maps, interviewing our families, and watching two videos: a Nickelodeon documentary and a film called "The Second Day".

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Welcome to F-3!!

Hello! I am Marcia Ventura, and I will be your child’s fifth grade teacher this year. I have taught in the Seattle School District for twelve years, and this is my 8th year at Maple, and I love it here deeply!

Fifth grade is a very exciting year for students. At this moment they are one year from starting middle school, and as such, it is critical that throughout the year, students become academically and socially ready for that transition. Instruction, especially in the areas of reading, writing, and math, will be rigorous to ensure that readiness.

What will students learn this year? In science, they will work with microscopes, learn about erosion and ground water, and even become engineers.  In social studies, your child will learn about early US history and the principles this country was founded on.  

Homework will be given Monday through Thursday. Students should be spending about 30 minutes on homework, and thirty minutes reading a book of their choice.  I expect homework to be done completely independently. If your child is asking for help often with the homework, or is completing homework very quickly, please let me know. All homework given in class will be directly related to what was taught during that school day.

Coming up very soon will be fourth and fifth grade camp!!   Most of the students are already signed up and paid for. If you are not, you'll be receiving a phone call from me very soon :). Camp is very exciting and will be taking place at Camp Seymour in Gig Harbor from September 24-26. More information about camp can be found in the links on the right side of the screen.

Please visit the blog often!  Also, the kids will get started on podcasts soon.  They will be their reading stories over "the air" and you will be able to listen to their weekly KOF3 radio shows.


Ms. Ventura

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Census Data!

Today we are going to look at Census data from 2010 and compare the data to the 2000 Census maps we have looked at. Then we will be making our own 2020 prediction maps!!!

Check out the maps here!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

All About the Judicial Branch AND Getting ready for our Field Trip!

Tomorrow we'll be visiting The Honorable Fred Bonner of the Municipal Court of Seattle.

Please check out his page along with the others below so that you can be ready as can be for the field trip tomorrow.  Write down any specific questions that you have in your Municipal Government Notebook.

Mayor Ed Murray
Council Member Kshama Sawant
Council Member Bruce Harrell
Council Member Sally Clark
Police Chief Search

Try to think of questions that are about individual rights vs. the common good. We'll be talking more about this in class.  Leave room in your notebook to right down what you learn tomorrow, May 14!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Learning about the Executive Branch!

Our Mayor, Ed Murray

The Executive Branch executes the laws!  For example, Mayor Murray makes sure that the laws that have been passed by city council are in effect.

Learn more about Mayor Ed Murray!  

  • What parts of government is Ed Murray most excited about?
  • What questions do you have for the Mayor?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Learning about the Legislative Branch

Seattle City Council 2014

The Legislative Branch of government makes the laws!

On May 14, F3 will go to Seattle City Hall and meet two members of City Council: Kashma Sawant and Bruce Harrell.  Please go to their council pages to find out:

  • what laws do they want to pass?
  • what areas of city government interest them?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Learning MORE About the Duwamish

For the next several weeks, we are going to spend our time in science focusing on the Duwamish River.

Here are the focus questions developed by F3 Kids:

1. What does it mean that the Duwamish is invisible?
2. How did the Duwamish watershed lose so many species?
3. What was the purpose of making the river straight and How did they do it?
4. Why were people dumping toxins and other pollutants in the river?
5. What happened to the Duwamish Tribe?
6. If they knew that the Duwamish was an estuary for salmon, why was it changed?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014: What is the EPA's Role in cleaning the river?
listen to stories:
working on the river
living along the Duwamish
how clean is clean?
all  about the EPA
Monday, 3.24 The latest news on the Duwamish

Wednesday, 3.19 What does Boeing have to say?

Wednesday, 3.5: Alberto Rodriquez from the DRCC comes to visit 

Tuesday, 3.4: From LDWG: The Lower Duwamish Waterway Group 

Monday, 3.3: Next let's learn about who is working to clean up the river?

Thursday, 2.27:  Let's start out by reviewing its history.

Monday, March 31, 2014

All about water quality

Last week we did water quality testing at the Duwamish Waterway Park.  What do these tests mean?

pH tests

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Oso Landslide

On Saturday, March 22, the town of Oso, Washington-- 60 miles north of us-- suffered a terrible landslide.

What do we know about land and water that can help us understand what happened?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

F-3 represents the 12th Man!!!! Go Hawks!

On February 2, the Seahawks won the Superbowl!  On February 5, the city of Seattle threw a huge parade.  Twelve kids-- yep- 12- were out of class that day representing F3.  Those of us still at Maple that day also had a terrific time too!  We watched the parade and the rally on the big screen.  We also celebrated a moment of LOUDNESS at 12:12 pm.

We've been having a ton of fun in F3 lately.  Our unit on Colonial Boston is coming to a close, and soon we'll be writing out own class constitution.  We're working with iPads almost everyday in science in our Land and Water unit and learning about the affects that water and land have on each other.  In math we are multiplying fractions-- which we thought was easy until we started multiplying mixed numbers.  We'll hang in there though and figure it out.

Right now our episodes on KOF3 have been about traveling in a time machine.  We're also in the middle of a major writing project-- we are writing a narrative from the perspective of out colonial character on what it was like to be in Boston during the "Boston Massacre".

As you can see, we've been super busy and are having a great time in F-3.