Wednesday, January 29, 2014

January 2014 Newsletter

Dear Parents,

We are all busy exploring topics here on Oneco’s Campus that we feel we can make a difference with meeting the needs of our students. We are exploring these topics through Challenge Based Learning. With Challenge Based Learning, students are required to work collaboratively to solve a real world problem. The students work on variety of academic skills and many higher level thinking skills. The framework to this curriculum consist of the following:

-Big Idea: a broad concept that can be narrowed down by asking a 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 a manageable idea.
-The Challenge: Comes out of the essential question(s) in 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 answer the guiding questions and gather.
-Solution-Should be student generated, require student , thoughtful, clear, concrete and publishable in one form or another.

Throughout this process students use many academic skills and will be documenting and responding to their process in their reflection journals and in their Interactive CBL Notebook.

Also, we will continue to have weekly “Mind Joggers”, which are brief (5-10 minutes) weekly creative and critical thinking activities to begin class with. An example might be: Tell how many ways you can communicate a hundred. These activities have proven to help us all expand our thinking.

It is a true honor to work with all your children and thank you once again for sharing them with me.  As always, if you have questions or concern please contact me at 751-7018 Ext. 2049 or

Thank you, 
Frances M. Snyder
Educator of the Gifted

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Comparing and Contrasting CBL and the Scientific Method

Oneco's Science Fair is tonight and the school is abuzz with excitement. In honor of this event, I thought I would ask my fourth and fifth grade gifted students to compare and contrast Challenge Based Learning Process and the Scientific Method. We started out with a T-Chart, but went on to writing in our reflection journals. Below are just a few of those responses.