Growing things

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This term our inquiry topic is “Plants in action”

We have grown seeds in their own little hothouse (plastic bags)

We have also investigated a flower, we looked at the cross section of a flower and sketched the parts.

Yesterday we began revisiting our wonderings from the beginning of the term. Hazel’s wondering was “how long does it take to grow a mango?” we watched a short film to show how to grow a mango from a mango pip. We think that it takes 2-3 years for a mango tree to grow and produce fruit.

Earlier this week we planted seeds in soil. We chose from nasturtians, alfalfa, beans, mung beans and sprouts. They are growing quickly as you can see from the photos above.

What have you enjoyed most about our enquiry topic?

Main idea

This week we are focusing on identifying the main idea of a text and finding the supporting details. This is one of our many comprehension strategies that we use to better understand the texts we read.
The main idea of a text or paragraph is often stated in a sentence within it. It helps readers understand the most important idea about what is being said. The other sentences include pieces of information that tell more about the most important idea. These are called supporting details. Sometimes the main idea is not obvious and the reader has to infer the main idea using the details.

Why do we need to know about this strategy?

* Finding the main idea helps us understand the text better
* We can work out what the most important parts of the text are
* This strategy helps us get ready to summarise a text

This strategy works for texts that try to persuade, inform or entertain us. Watch the clip below and see if you can work out the main idea and find the supporting details.


What is the main idea of Mr Peabody’s Apples?
What are the supporting details?

What is the main idea of a text that you have been reading this week?
What are the supporting details?

Excellent Endings

Now that we have written the mighty middles of our personal narratives, it’s time to look at excellent endings.

What makes an excellent ending? The ending is about tying up the pieces of the narrative, solving the situation/problem and leaving the reader with a sense of resolution.

This week we have been looking at what makes a great ending and we have come up with a few techniques that author’s use. Some of these are:

1. A question/open ended statement: “I never found out what had happened….”

2. A decision: “Now I will…”

3. A surprise: “He slowly opened the door, it was……”

4. A feeling: “I felt so happy!”

5. A memory: ” I will never forget that day.”

6. A hope/wish: ” I hope that …..”

7. A  thought: “As I drove off I wondered….”

8. A lesson: “From that day on I ….”



“The Red Woollen Blanket” by Bob Graham begins with: “Julia had her own blanket right from the start”

I like the ending which leaves the reader with a thought….”It could have been anywhere at all…and she hardly missed it.”

Which technique did you use for your excellent ending?


Bold Beginnings

Writing must have the following;
1. A Bold Beginning
2. A Mighty Middle
3. An Excellent Ending

Let’s Take a Deeper Look at Bold Beginnings……

Here are seven great ways to begin a piece of writing, with an example of each using the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
1. With a question
Have you ever wondered why anyone would even dare to step through the door of a bear’s home?

2. With an interesting fact
“Bear attacks are relatively rare, but frequent enough to be of concern for those who are in bear habitats.” Why would a young girl named Goldilocks even dare trespass in a bear’s home?

3. With a single word or sentence fragment
Goldilocks? Scared?

4. With dialogue
Goldilocks’ mother always said,”Don’t go into the forest. It’s full of big scary bears.”

5. With a strong opinion or feeling.
There is no such thing as bears who eat porridge!

6. With something that leaves the reader wondering.
“As she slept, a large paw pulled open the front door.” but let’s not leave you hanging….let’s start at the very beginning….

7. With a sound

“Creeeek,” the door opened….


Here are some of the BOLD BEGINNINGS that 3A came up with for their own personal narratives!

Will: “I could see the beautiful sun reflecting on the navy blue water”

Isaiah:  “Splodges of red, green orange and blue filled my eyes up with beautifulness”

Valla:  “In the light of the full moon had she escaped?”

Hazel:  “The light shone on the red mats which made them look green, I took a deep breath and stepped on stage.”

Zoe: “I walked in, the place looked like a mountain of rocks”

Billy:  “It was rolling up like a snowball as it got scooped up”

Lily:  “Great pumpkins, where’s your tail?!”

Archie:  “I knew somewhere in my heart I was wrong and I was right too.”

Pippi:  “I could hear the footsteps behind me.”

Johanna:  “Mum, I didn’t think we would be that close to the Lions.”

Gracie:  “Please, (I said in my head to myself), I don’t want her to be late.”

Tess:  “It was cold morning when I saw a little, yellow, fluffy bowl.”

Jasmine:  “YAY! I screamed like my head was going to fly off!”

Byron: “I can’t believe my eyes!”


What is your favourite bold beginning?

Why are bold beginnings important when writing personal narratives?