Sunday, January 31, 2016

Understanding is Sharing

You might not guess that these children are in school, but guess what, they are. These children are reading and responding on their iPads. Every day, the children followed along while listening to Hatchet. As the chapters went on, the responses became increasingly thought provoking. In the beginning, the children were met with short answer quick responses, yet as we got deeper into the text, we layered in some requirements. They needed to use TTQA (Turn the question around), had to respond to questions with multiple steps, and even some responses requiring evidence. 

The children were able to respond right on their iPads so that their fellow students could see and elaborate on another's thoughts. In the end, every child had a voice, and every child had an opportunity to hear or should I say, read another's. 
As is always true, the children are given weekly words to learn and use. These words come right from the week's reading. They receive a reading inventory so they can recognize the word prior to coming to it within the reading. They have these words in front of them. They are also encouraged to find other words as they follow along in the book.
There's never a shortage of support from teachers or peers in ELA. Our guiding questions aren't much different than the questions asked in the comment section of the book; however, they are more individualized. My favorite memory of Hatchet this year would be when a student pieced together the moose going crazy with the coming tornado. He remembered that animals sometimes act off when the weather will change drastically. I never even considered this before.

This is what the children see in front of them on the screen. As they encounter questions, the text is highlighted, the story is stopped and the children respond. The reasoning behind the stopping is to model what good readers do. When I come to a point in the text where I make a prediction, a connection, feel a turning point and more, I take a pause and have a reflective moment. My hope is to inspire the class to do the same.

There's nothing better than matching the right book with the right person when it's your job to have children read. But, when you can get a whole class to love a book, you really now you've done something right.

If you look at the answers on the right, you will see 4 responses; if you could see the top of the string, you would see the question. The students can scroll through the string for ideas to get started, or to see what opinions others have. On the left is the text with sections highlighted to signify questions. 

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Be Prepared: Blog Under Construction

Dear Parents,

The blog will be under construction. I am working on adding tabs, but as I add them, they will not make sense. They will also link to pages with no content. Please forgive me as I try to make the site more supportive for families in my different classrooms.

The blog posts will continue. There is no work being done to the area of the blog where content is posted.

Thank you for your understanding.

Kim Lynch

Sunday, January 24, 2016



Can you write me an equation one way and change the solution by adding or taking out parentheses? Show it both ways with the answers. Work it out step by step and line by line just like we do in class. Make sure to put your first name at the end of your post. Be sure to show EVERY step!

Example:  6*10+4=64                or               6(10+4)=84
                60+4=64                                      6(14)=84

Saturday, January 16, 2016


Write a word problem that depends on a variable. Write the equation and list three possible numbers for the variable. Then solve.

Joe wants to buy some toy cars. They each cost $2.50. How much will the cars cost if he buys c cars.

2.5 * c = x

If c = 4, x = $10
If c = 6, x = $15
If c = 10, x = $25

Saturday, January 9, 2016

You Light Up My Life

Students were met with this very challenge and they lived up to the challenge.

Beep, beep, beep. We are interrupting this electricity test for an emergency. We need to use Morse Code to signal S. O. S. for someone to save Mrs. Lynch from the innards of this alligator. Can you use the approved items to create a flashlight so that she can use it to signal for help? The universal code for S. O. S. is three dots, three dashes, three dots. Flash your own handmade flashlight to save her from the powers of the evil swamp alligator. Dots are quick flashes and dashes are longer flashes of light.

You must follow the directions at the top of each list to create a flashlight that uses a complete circuit with a switch. Circle items to complete your shopping list.

You pass the challenge when you show a teacher it works, you’ve used all the parts and you can explain how it works. Hope you can save me!

On day 1, we read the directions, shopped for our items and started to formulate a plan. They tried to put the pieces together so they would light up, be effective for turning on and off and stay together. 
Construction is quite the challenge but perseverance and a plan come through and save the day.
Student try different ideas to see what will work.
As day two begins, most students were able to quickly get their bulbs to light up. Putting the flashlight together in a way that would allow it to turn on and off was the larger problem.
Using tinfoil as the backing for the light allows the light to reflect and be brighter.
Students continue to share materials and ideas to work on their design.
Day three marks some pleased faces. All students were able to make a circuit that worked. They used problems to improve their design and learned that in this example the electricity would only flow in one direction!