Jefferson celebrated its 23rd annual "Author's Day" on Monday, April 11th. Started by former Jefferson parent and author/illustrator, Julie Downing, Author's Day is a much loved tradition connecting Jefferson students to Bay Area authors/illustrators and promoting the love of reading. This year, eleven authors/illustrators visited our school: Isabella Kung, Marcus Ewert, Julie Downing, Christy Hale, Marta Lindsey, Emma Smith, Oliver Chin, Eda Kaban, Lisa Brown, Deborah Underwood, and Susan Gal. In preparation for Author's Day, students read multiple books by the authors and prepared thoughtful discussion questions. The PTA generously provided a catered lunch for the authors and Jefferson staff and purchased new books by the authors for the Jefferson Library.
2nd Grade, Room 206: Plant Life Cycle Study
Every spring in 206 we plant brassica seeds that have been specially developed to go through
their life cycle in 35-40 days. Their trade name is Wisconsin Fast Plants, and they were
developed for research and classroom use. Each student has their own plant/s, and at each
stage of the life cycle, students observe closely and sketch and write what they see. When we
get to the flower stage, we do flower dissections (of larger store-bought flowers) to learn about
the parts of a flower and their functions. We also make art flowers with scientific labels for the
bulletin board in the hallway. At the end of the life cycle we collect seeds from the pods so
students can experience the circle of life!
5th grade, Room 212: Freedom Quilts
In honor of Black History Month, Room 212 read the book, Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt, by Deborah Hopkinson. We learned about slavery and the Underground Railroad. The students worked in small groups studying quilt design, and the patterns used in the quilts to help slaves escape. The groups then created their own quilt, which included a short write-up explaining what messages their quilt would convey to runaway slaves.