Activities & Lesson Plans - 5th & 6th Grade Newsletter Kindie Music Rocks

Grade: 5th-6th

May 17, 2010 | Grades 5&6

In This Issue: Kindie Rock, Popular Baby Names, Newton's Apple Tree 

KindiefestKids' Rock
Parents, please turn down Radio Disney and listen up: you can find music that both you and your kids enjoy. There's a brand new beat for kids, played by the likes of They Might be Giants and Dan Zanes, of the Del Fuegos. Called kindie rock, the genre is growing and attracting exciting new talent.  
Activity Ideas - Language Arts
Kindie rockers write catchy tunes about kids' interests and concerns, including bullying, being stuck in the outfield and new haircuts.
  • Write a song about things in your life that annoy you (i.e., big or little siblings), interest you or make you laugh. 
  • Brainstorm ideas and catchy lyrics with a friend or family member. Keep in mind your intended audience. 
  • Try to incorporate creative, fun-to-say words (ukulele?) and silly sounds, using alliteration and onomatopoeia.
  • Review your lyrics; does your song tell a story? Lots of kids' songs are written as narratives.
  • Name your band. Use words or concepts that would interest younger kids.
  • If you'd like, select a song's beat and stage a fun performance.
Learning TipsForms of Writing

Name That Baby
What's in a name? In 2009, it was vampires—think Twilight's Edward Cullen; in 2008 it was pop stars—Miley Cyrus and Jonas Brothers. In its recently released list, Most Popular Baby Names for 2009, Social Security noted that Cullen was the biggest riser among boys' names. 

Activity Ideas - Math
Curious to know what names were big the year you were born? Survey your classmates.
  • What question(s) do you want to ask?  First name, year born, location of birth.
  • What might a birthplace tell you?  Whether names differ by state or region.
  • To ensure that the data you collect is representative, would you survey a small group of friends or as many of your classmates as possible?  As many as possible
  • Imagine that 10% of kids surveyed said that they didn't know if they had been named after a relative; 50% said that their names had no family significance. Based on kids' responses, is this claim valid or invalid: 60% of kids surveyed weren't named after family members.  Invalid; it's possible that some of the 10% who didn't know do have family names
  • Is this question biased or unbiased? Explain your answer. "Wouldn't it be cool to be named after a rock-and-roll legend?"  Biased because you are suggesting it would be cool.
Bonus: Graph your results. Then research pop culture or headline-grabbing events during the year you were born; do any of your year's most popular names refer back to events of the times? 
Learning Tips:
Statements Based on Data 
Names Through the Ages:  
Wolfram|Alpha Name Directory

Newton's Apple Tree
The apple tree that inspired Sir Isaac Newton to discover the laws of gravity is now experiencing zero gravity. Astronaut Piers Sellers carried a sliver of wood from Newton's tree into space. The 4-inch piece is just one historic part of the journey; this is the last mission for NASA's Space Shuttle Atlantis.

Activity Ideas - Math & Science

  • Define "gravity": the force that pulls on every object on the Earth
  • Find two books of similar size and weight. Hold one in each hand, waist-level or higher, and let go at the same time. 
  • Write down what you observed. (i.e., the objects fell at about the same speed)
  • Use two apples for this next experiment. Cut one in half; set the other half aside. Weigh the whole apple and the apple half. Record their weights. Which do you think will drop the fastest? Why?
  • Test your hypothesis. Hold the objects at the same distance from the surface, one in each hand. Drop them at the same time. Make note of which fell the fastest. Repeat this two more times to confirm your results. 
  • Draw a conclusion from your experiment.
Conclusion: Objects that weigh a lot fall at the same speed as objects that weigh just a little. Why? The force of gravity pulls on heavy and light objects equally.
Bonus: How much would you weigh on the moon? Crunch the numbers
Game of the Week

Game of Week
Join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Copyright ©2009 Big Purple Hippos, LLC