Saturday, March 21, 2015


Electricity started with a trip to the computer lab where we made circuits on a PHET simulation. The children quickly learned that circuits need to create a full circle: a closed circuit. They also discovered what a resistor does. And that longer wires act like resistors. And that adding more light bulbs acts like a resistor. Not to say that these definitions are completely accurate but what great observations.

Throughout these electricity lessons, we have studied open and closed circuits, the inner workings of flashlights with an emphasis on conductors, insulators and simple machines, along with the flow of electrons creating an electric current. Now it's time to try out a real experiment. Can they test what they know and create a light of there own?

And so comes the moment of truth, the electricity tests. The paper to pencil test was given, corrected and returned on day one. However, it was day two that measured understanding. Could they build a novel item displaying their electricity understanding. Some students were asked to create a toilet paper roll flash light while others made a light up style as a buzzer. Both, groups of students were welcomed to the challenge with a motivational video and a set of criteria to follow. The buzz in the room was amazing. The children were excited to DO SCIENCE. 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Fraction Word Problems

Can you write a word problem that requires you to use equivalent fractions to solve?

Monday, March 2, 2015

Happy Dr. Seuss Day

In true Dr. Seuss style, enjoy our rendition of a scavenger hunt!

Thing 1 and Thing 2
Have scattered some clues
We have fluffy blue hair
And pop out of nowhere
Even though we are crazy, clumsy and messy too
Come to our school, we want to play with you
Go to each place and collect a new clue
The clue you will find; it’s clear what to do

Each item you find you must wear til you’re through

This place is where a lot of books are found;
A to Z you won't leave with a frown.
This place is where all the stories are at
up up up you can surely bet that.
It doesn't matter if you're small or TALL
All it takes is a walk down the hall.
This spot is nestled between two fourth grade rooms; these teachers are quite nice,
The basketed books in this closet should be as quiet as mice.
If you go to room S24
you'll see books and much more.

Announcements are made from here.
Mrs Conley speaks with cheer.
BAD KIDS,sick kids can be found;
In this place help is all around.
Thing 1 and Thing 2 can be heard ringing;
You may also find Mrs. McDonald singing.

At your next destination at the end of the hall,
You'll find kids creating paintings for the wall.
You may find an animal that has a big trunk.
You might see some children filled with spunk.
The weaving, the pottery, the self portraits too.
When you come to this room you won't be blue!

This is a place where you can take a seat.
And you'll find many things to eat.
You can eat delicious food.
Even pizza if you are in the mood.
A little factory where people bake.
Yummy foods like cookies and cake.
Eat and talk with all your friends too.
And this is where you'll find your clue.

It is where you run around.
And basketball nets do abound.
Do you hear the sound?
You'll see lines.
And lots of signs.
You'll make a sweat.
And become wet.
And you can energize.
On pull-up lines.
And this is where you look to find your surprise!

Come on down to the kindergarten hall
iPads are on and kids are having a ball
Near the staircase next to the printer
You'll find the best class you've seen all winter
When you look for the door
It's 102 plus one more

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Explorers, Explorers and More Explorers

Throughout the late fall and winter, we have discovered that the conquerors weren't just the bad guys who ended great civilizations but also the time honored explorers. We've focused on the Aztec, Inca and Maya people and how these civilizations ended. Now,we leave the learning up to the children. The research is for the children to decipher. Students were given directions, examples and links to follow. Direct instruction was offered in short mini-lessons with the emphasis being on the children making their own discoveries. Take a gander at how they did!

Some other incorporated skills in this project included map skills, recognizing centuries, research and writing. The children were able to utilize these skills in a novel way to demonstrate their learning beyond their reading. In the end, the children became the teachers as they taught the rest of the class about their researched explorer.

This is such a proud moment for me as a teacher. Being able to allow the children to drive their own research and organize their own learning is a testament to all the teachers I have shared and continue to share your children with. Seeing how capable they are of the research and the technology indicates that these students can dive into their own inquiries and share their DISCOVERIES! They were able to multi-device by using their iPads and a desktop computer simultaneously. They each used only one sheet of paper for this whole project!

Be sure to check out the last step of the project. The children were asked to find out what else was going on at that time to get a feel for what the world was like. They each researched their own person, structure or event. This is always my favorite part; I really get to see what is interesting to each child.

How Do You Evaluate?

Describe how you use PBEMDAS to evaluate expressions and equations.  This week you need to write one equation that includes 6 of the 7 rules in the order of operations and explain step by step how you solve the problem.  You may use one of the math problems from this week's homework.  Remember to explain where you are in the steps and what you did to solve it.  Put your name at the end.