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Friday, October 21, 2011

The Conga Line of Learning!

Do you ever had a time where students jump into the learning process and bring a fun attitude for learning?  Well, my students certainly brought this perspective as they decided to turn our skip counting by 12's into a conga line of learning.  It's exciting to see the students use their creativity to make learning more enjoyable and dynamic!  Way to go students...all of you shine brightly as you motivate yourself to learn :)

Monday, October 17, 2011

This Wednesday's Exciting Skype with Antarctica!


Over the weekend, I had the most awesome opportunity come up that I would love you to be able to experience.  A Twitter contact (@ksivick) helped connect me with Michael League, an explorer, researcher, teacher at the McMurdo Station in Antarctica!  He works with an organization called PolarTREC which stands for teachers and researchers exploring and collaborating.  Mr. League is currently in Antarctica, but will be returning this Friday. We don't have much time to prepare, but we are busily get ready for this exciting event!  My class is thrilled we could sqeeze in this excellent learning opportunity.

Mr. Leagues's Latest Polar Connect Session from Friday, October 14, 2011(AMAZING pictures!)

Friday, October 14, 2011

A Storm of Learning Captivates Students' Attention!

Mrs. Kendra Kent, chief meteorologist of FOX Carolina joined our class to share her professional knowledge and real world experience about weather developed through her past and present experiences as a meteorologist.  Before Mrs. Kent's visit, students blogged the questions they wanted to know about her experience in this field and what it was like to do her job. We also worked with our German teacher, Mrs. Kristen Ferre, to learn several German weather words to teach Mrs. Kent.

For our exciting day, we choose students to perform specific jobs to document this special visit.  Students asking questions, used iPads to not only ask their question from the blog, but to take electronic notes to be used in their future blog posts. Six other students used the iPad cameras and flip videos to capture important details from this meeting we wanted to have for future learning.  The exciting day finally arrived!

* Severe Weather Challenge Question at the end of this post!

The bloggers and questioners were ready!

The videographers were ready!

The intriguing time of learning began, and boy did Mrs. Kent know how to teach and share a wealth of information, especially about severe weather!

Mrs. Kent shows us how to be safe during a thunderstorm!

As she spoke, students recorded ideas they learned, thought were interesting or wanted to learn more about in the future.  If students were not working on an iPad, they documented their ideas and thoughts in their writer's journal.

I LOVED the curriculum connections Mrs. Kent helped students see; math and 
science can be found in weather!

Mrs. Showalter, our principal and Mrs. Snow from our district office
joined us for this excellent time of learning!

Towards the end of the presentation, Mr. Riordan, a 4th grade teacher asked Mrs. Kent what advice would she give 4th graders about preparing now for their futures and how to deal with the challenges and difficulties of school.  Here is what she had to say.

I am so proud of all the students as they listened quietly, but then came a live with knowledgable questions and ideas for discussing during our added time of questioning Mrs. Kent! At the end, we presented Mrs. Kent with a beautiful weather cookie to show our appreciation and thankfulness for her spending time with us!  

On a side note, I think my teaching partner, Mrs. Witherspoon found a wonderful weather friend in Mrs. Kent.  For those of you who don't know, Ms. Witherspoon is an MAJOR weather enthusiast!  One day she would love to chase storms and live in extreme weather somewhere in Antarctica!  Check out Ms. Witherspoon in the background of this picture...her face says it all when it comes to her weather enthusiasm!

In the time since Mrs. Kent's visit, my students are still talking about this special lady and have been blogging about this day, drawing pictures, and acting as if they were a FOX Carolina meteorologist! The thoughts and ideas captured from their time with Mrs. Kent can be found on our Math/Science Student Blogs.  Please join the continuing conversations from this exciting day on each students' blog; we would love to hear your thoughts and ideas!

Student's, don't forget Mrs. Kent wants you to submit your weather pictures to the studio!  The contact information is below.  Let's see if our class can have pictures broadcasted on Fox Carolina!

If you would like to stay in touch with Mrs. Kent and FOX Carolina, here are several ways you can:

Mrs. Kent's Twitter name is KendraKentWx
Thank you Kendra for making a difference in our lives and showing my fourth graders the passion, enthusiasm, and excitement for learning about weather!  We love you Kendra :)

I am always grateful, Kendra
for you willingness to come!

Severe Weather Challenge Question:
What are the highest wind speeds recorded for a tornado and where did it occur?  Watch this video for the answer!

October Terrific Kid Awarded to...

An amazing girl, our Terrific Kid for October, Seleena!!!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Latin Fun Skip Counting by 11's

I have been so excited about the fun my students and I have had every morning as we sing to practice our skip counting.  This week, congratulations to Ms. Witherspoon's class for doing such a great job with the 11's.  I can't wait to see how a simple activity like singing will be so helpful as we start multiplication in the next couple weeks!  Keep up the SUPER job, students!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Walk to School Day, 2011

We had a beautiful day for our Walk to School parade down the street and neighborhood of our school.  Many parents came and joined us in this wonderful experience.  Prior to the walk, each class desired a poster to represent ideas promoting exercise and good health.  Our class representative, Saleena did a great job with our poster, and was the driving force behind our class winning the grade level competition...thank you Seleena!  Come enjoy the shots from our experience of Walk to School, 2011.

Let the walking begin!

We took a picture of the photographer from the newspaper!

Some friendly neighbors came out to enjoy our exercise festivities!

We had a blast, got some great exercise, brought Miss Tripp's blood
pressure down, and was ready to do it all over again!