Friends School of Minnesota Blog

A Quaker school blog about progressive education.

Summer Curriculum Work

Over the summer, Friends School of Minnesota teachers worked on revising the 3rd and 4th grade social studies curriculum and developing new benchmark assessment for middle school humanities.

Sharing Our Differences

I had the joy of introducing my extraordinary friend Tiffany Busone to the Bayou third and fourth grade class last week following their reading of Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper. The book chronicles the unique childhood of Melody. “Born with cerebral palsy, Melody, 10, has never spoken a word. She is a brilliant fifth grader trapped in an uncontrollable body. Her world is enhanced by insight and intellect, but.. Read More

Creating City Maps in Spanish Class

Friends School of Minnesota students are creating city map drawings in Spanish. Students are using active vocabulary in labeling designs of imaginary cities. We have been looking at marketplaces and cities throughout the Hispanic world through videos and a variety of lessons. This group project is a culmination of our unit on “la ciudad” (the city).

New Art Studio in Action!

Lately I have been reflecting on how the new art studio has affected my teaching. I am still in awe of the space and realize that it has become what I used to dream about—an inspiring creative space for discovery, exploration, deep thought, and joy. It is truly an art teacher’s dream room! The kindergarten class has been working with clay and thinking about two questions: “What things can be.. Read More

Buddies: Kindergarten and 3rd/4th Grade

We believe children learn best in community and our buddies program is one way we build and strengthen our school community. Buddies is a time for older and younger children to play together and learn from each other. It also provides an opportunity for friendships to form that can last from kindergarten through eighth grade. This year, the Bayou class 3rd and 4th graders are buddies with our kindergarten. (Next year, Bayou students will have.. Read More

Spring 3rd/4th Grade Field Trip to Fort Snelling State Park

Friends School of Minnesota third and fourth graders had their last visit of the school year to Fort Snelling State Park. Despite the unpredictable weather, students were able to study phenology on Pike Island, pull baby buckthorn with our DNR Naturalist, and attempt to seine the river for fish. The fish apparently thought is was still winter, however, and were hiding in the deep waters! We caught one very tiny.. Read More

Within a Gem: The 3rd and 4th Grade Play

Last month, Friends School of Minnesota 3rd and 4th graders performed their original play Within A Gem,  a musical mystery which takes place at Plumnut Academy for super heroes. The kids did a wonderful job throughout this whole process. Yes, we put on a play.  But students also learned a great deal about working together and depending upon one another. They learned about timing and comedy and memorization. They learned how to.. Read More

The Science and Art of Minnesota Birds

Third and fourth grade students recently completed a multi-disciplinary study of Minnesota birds. We started with a science unit taught by 3rd-4th grade teacher Kak Jarvis and Environmental Education Coordinator Kris Bennett. Students conducted individual studies of a native bird species of their choice. Research included identification tips such as body size and shape, feathers, beaks and feet, as well as habitat, range, and behavior. Using Powerpoint and voice recording,.. Read More