Fourth graders tested their balloon-powered vehicles this morning to see how far they could travel. In this annual STEM project, students learn about Newton's Laws of Motion and the Engineering Design Process (EDP). Students follow the EDP to design, build, test, modify, and retest balloon powered-vehicles.
Pre-kindergartners and kindergartners went ice skating this morning at the Babson rink. Every student took a 30-minute lesson, followed by 30 minutes of free skating. This is part of Tenacre’s Physical Education curriculum, in which every class learns a recreational sports skill during P.E. This group skates three times during February and March.
Second graders performed their class play this morning, “The Holly Jolly Pirates of Piñataville.” The fun and lively tale tells the story of a band of candy-loving pirates who steal the town’s piñatas. After being captured, the pirates are penitent and apologize for their actions. The townspeople decide to let it go if the pirates agree to help them make more piñatas for the upcoming holidays. The pirates are delighted to help, not only paying their debt to society, but making new friends as well.
In science class this morning, Tenacre sixth graders load-tested their popsicle stick bridges, part of an interdisciplinary project STEM project that integrates science, technology, engineering, and math. Students are graded on the cost efficiency of the bridge, the load capacity (it must have a minimum load capacity of 10,000 grams), aesthetics, and the collaborative effort of each two-person team. In math class, students used their blueprints to assess the angles, incorporating their geometry skills. They used their technology skills to test their designs in the West Point Bridge software. If the design passed, they could move on to physically build the bridge. The bridges are tested in science class for how much weight they can hold before breaking.
As part of an upper grades art project, every Tenacre student in Grades 3-6 completed a ceramic tile inspired by the Iznik tiles in Istanbul, Turkey. The goal of the project was to create vibrant art for the new space outside the Performing Arts Center. In creating their unique tiles, students explored design, symmetry, organic and geometric shapes, analogous colors, and composition. Students in sixth grade chose the message and arranged the final composition for each of the tiles to be placed on the wall.
Tenacre fifth graders created textiles in technology class through Adobe Capture and also designed their own custom shoes through nike.com, vans.com, and converse.com. In art class, students learned about Andy Warhol’s early career as a shoe illustrator and created their own shoe designs. Next, students combined their textiles with collage elements in art class to create a show with texture.
Tenacre third graders performed their class play this morning, the lively and entertaining “Wing It.” The baby birds have decided they like their snug little nest. Why leave home when it's so nice and safe in the nest? Through the course of this musical, all of the other birds--rapping raptors, humming hummingbirds, honking geese, and mor--work to convince the babies that eventually everyone has to try to fly and make it on their own.
Fourth graders honed their research skills yesterday with a timely project on Tom Brady. In library class, Mrs. Frazee, a huge Boston sports fan, created a collaborative project in which students conducted research using both books and the Internet. Needless to say, every student was completely focused on this assignment!
Artist Carol Hudson visited Tenacre this morning to describe how she works with nature to create art. Carol is a Wellesley-based floral designer and master gardener who combines fresh flowers with locally sourced foraged branches, flowers, plants & mosses to create stunning, one-of-a-kind works of art. After giving an all-school assembly, Carol worked with second graders in art class, where they each created their own terrarium to take home.
First and second graders had a blast when they went ice skating yesterday at the Babson College rink. Ice skating is part of the P.E. life skills program, where students in every grade learn a lifelong sport. Tenacre students spent an hour on the ice at Babson College, where plenty of teachers and parents were available to help as needed. Pre-K and kindergarten students will have their turn to skate next week.
Tenacre fifth graders created mugs in art class recently as part of a class community service project. After making the ceramic mugs, they donated them to A Place to Turn, a food pantry in Natick that serves the Metrowest community. In addition to the mugs, Tenacre students brought a recipe for homemade tomato soup, straight from the Tenacre kitchen.
This afternoon, sixth graders tested their memories as they all recited the Gettysburg Address, a Tenacre tradition that ties into the social studies curriculum. Everyone dressed up as Abraham Lincoln—complete with black top hat, beard, and long black coat--for the performance. At the end of the individual recitations, they recited the Address as a group.
Tenacre students participated in the National Geographic Bee this afternoon, answering a myriad of questions about world geography. Eighteen students from grades 4, 5, and 6 took part in the educational competition, which is open to any public, private or home-schooled group in the U.S. or its territories. This is the first time Tenacre has competed in the GeoBee, and the students loved it!
In art class, third graders brainstormed the signs of a great snow day (all while keeping their fingers crossed that it will actually happen!). They thought about the items of clothing that might be left behind such as scarves and gloves in the midst of sledding or building a snowman. Next, they collaged a winter scene using materials that would normally be used in the Tenacre dining room. Can you guess how they used salt and forks in this landscape?
First graders started their day this morning by participating in the Mexican holiday Día de Los Reyes (Three Kings Day), a Christian tradition that takes place on January 6 every year. For this tradition, Mexican children leave out a pair of shoes the evening of January 5. During the night, the Three Kings fill them with goodies. Tenacre students each left a pair of shoes at their desk last Friday before leaving school. This morning, they found a paper dragon and some small candies in their shoes. Celebrating the holiday ties into Grade 1’s study of Mexico and its traditions, culture, geography, and people. It was an exciting way to start the day for our first graders!
Tenacre’s sixth grade class spent the day at MIT last Friday, participating in a structural engineering workshop, which connected directly with their work in science, math, and art at Tenacre. In science, sixth graders have been working on the engineering design process to prepare for their Big Bridge Fail (BBF) project. At the MIT workshop, they learned about structural issues with the John Hancock building and brainstormed ideas about how the problems were addressed and solved by engineers. After that, they built a truss bridge out of newspaper and popsicle sticks and load tested the bridge. This was a great introduction to the BBF, which starts this week.
The Tenacre students also learned about suspension bridges, working in collaborative groups to design and construct the bridge cables using a 3D printer design program. Students load-tested their suspension bridges, analyzed the results, and then collaborated in larger groups to improve the cables.
Art was incorporated after lunch, when the group viewed the Arthur Ganson Kinetic Sculpture exhibit, where students were encouraged to look at the various sculptures, choose one, and then sketch it and write about how it made them feel.