The results are in from Round 1 of our poetry tournament, and the winner is: Monster Mothers! Thank you to everyone that voted. We had a total of 56 votes and 32 of them were for Monster Mothers.
During Poetry Madness we have been working on reading with fluency. Poetry is a great way to practice fluent reading. Reading fluently means:
This week we have four new poems to vote on. They are read by Alicia, Bennett, Wynn, and Sophia.
Which poem will join Monster Mothers in the final four? You decide! Have a listen and then vote for your choice.
Every March in the USA there is a college basketball tournament. It has the nickname “March Madness” because it is always action-packed and full of excitement.
We have our own version of March Madness, but instead of basketball teams, we have a tournament of poems! We call it “Poetry Madness.”
This is how it works: There are 16 poems in the tournament. Every day Mr. Salsich reads two poems and the students privately vote to see which poem is more popular. The winner moves onto the next round and the loser is out of the tournament. After the first round, we will get down to 8 poems, then 4, then 2, and finally we will crown the champion poem.
We want to have our families, friends, and blogging buddies be able to vote for their favorite poems too. So, each week we will record four poems from the tournament and ask visitors to vote for their favorite one. The most popular poem will advance to the next round. After four weeks we will have the “Final Four” most popular poems. Then these will face off against each other to see who is the champion poem of 2013.
Here are the first four poems to vote for, read by Brendan, Piper, Cole and Sandy:
In our class we love to connect and learn with our friends around the world.
Today we are launching a new global project called Our World, Our Numbers.
We have a blog http://ourworldournumbers.edublogs.org where we’ll meet up with our blogging buddies to learn together for the next five weeks.
In late 2011, many of us worked on an award winning global project called Our World, Our Stories. This latest project is based on a similar format with a mathematical focus.
The students are all from primary (elementary) classes and are from three different continents and five countries.
Mr Avery’s sixth grade class from Massachusetts, USA
Mrs Monaghan’s 3/4 class, Room with a View, from England
Mrs Morris and Miss Jordan’s grade four class, 4KM and 4KJ, from Victoria, Australia
Mrs McKenzie’s 2/3 class, B4, from New Zealand
Mrs Yollisí 2/3 class from California, USA
Mr Salsich’s third grade class from Connecticut, USA
Mrs Watson’s K/1/2/3 class from Canada
Students from all classes will connect and collaborate by sharing their mathematical lives. This will happen through the blog and involve a variety of media.
A different class will lead a mathematical topic every four days or so, publishing posts and replying to comments. The other classes will read the posts, possibly publish their own posts, and leave blog comments.
We will share topics such as currency, seasons, time zones, population data etc.
Through blog posts, the students will teach each other about different aspects of mathematics based on aspects of their own culture.
The learning will continue in the commenting section where students, teachers and parents will engage in conversations to explore mathematical and cultural topics further.
Students will gain an understanding of mathematics through the eyes of children in different countries and cultures. They will make comparisons and contrasts between their lives and other students’ lives.
If you want to keep up to date with how the fun and learning unfolds, there is a “subscribe via email” box on the right hand side of the Our World, Our Numbers blog.
Today we started practicing for the World Education Games, which will officially take place March 5-7.
Every year students from all over the world compete in friendly, 60 second competitions of math, spelling, and science. It is a great way to get faster at math, spelling, and keyboarding – and it is a lot of fun!
When we played today we played against students from as far away as Nigeria and Hungary, but we also played against some of our friends right in the classroom!
It will be fun to have practice games, and the real thing on March 6, 7, and 8 will be very exciting. Last year 5.9 million students from over 235 countries combined to correctly answer 293,571,830 math questions! Wow! How many will we answer this year?
Since part of the fun is seeing what country you will be playing against, we will keep track of the countries we have played against in the comments.
Click here (or in the Learning Links) to visit the website and login to compete with students all over the world.
We have been interested in the desert habitats of Arizona since the beginning of the year. Maybe because we have a huge papier mache cactus and life-size desert diorama in our classroom!
And also because in September our classmate Cole went to Arizona and brought back lots of cool stories and specimens!
Here are a few pictures of what Cole brought back from the desert:
A few weeks ago we received a package from Mrs. Fraher’s third grade class in Gold Canyon, Arizona with some souvenirs from the Sonoran desert.
Here are some pictures of what they sent us:
They also sent us postcards, newspaper articles from their town, and a piece from a “jumping cholla” cactus, which we had to be very careful with because the spines can hurt a lot!
Finally, we had our first video chat of the year with our desert teachers from Mrs. Fraher’s class.
The Skype call was lots of fun and They shared some amazing facts with us about the desert habitat where they live.
During the Skype call we learned more about cholla cacti, prickly pear cacti, and roadrunners. Here are some of the facts we learned:
Prickly pear cactuses are covered in spines; long needle-like ones and tiny hair-like spines. The small spines are called glochids and they are much more painful and harder to remove than the long ones.
These cacti grow in flat segments called pads. The pads face east and west so they don’t get the full force of the sun during the day.
Prickly pears grow a juicy, sweet fruit that is purple. The fruits are covered in the small hair-like spines.
Many animals have adapted to avoid or ignore the spines and eat the juicy pads and fruit. The prickly pear is an important food supply for birds, insects, and mammals such as jackrabbits and javelinas.
Roadrunners are birds in the cuckoo family. They have X-shaped feet with two toes in the front and two in the back. This helps them stay balanced and run extremely fast. Roadrunners can speed along at 17 miles per hour!
They have long tails that they use as rudders to help them steer.
Roadrunners mainly feed on insects, fruit, and seeds but they will also eat snakes, lizards, and bird eggs. They love quail eggs!
Sometimes two roadrunners will work together to kill larger snakes. They will kill the prey by using a strong blow with their beak to the base of the snake’s neck, or they will bang the prey’s head against a rock.
Thank you to Cole and Mrs. Fraher’s class for helping us learn more about the deserts of Arizona! Be sure to check out the great desert posts on Mrs. Fraher’s class blog.
This website from the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum has lots of great links to learn more about desert plants and animals.
I am very excited to announce that our blog has officially been nominated for Best Class Blog for the 2012 Edublog Awards!
Voting is open until 11:59 pm on Sunday December 9th.
It is a great accomplishment to make the short list of nominations. Hundreds of other blogs were nominated, and we have made it to the final 35!
We have had a lot of visitors to our blog this year! Since the beginning of the school year in September, we have had over 52,000 visits!
More than half of those visits have come from the United States, but we have also had thousands of visitors from around the world. In fact, 143 different countries have checked out our blog this year.
Below are some screenshots of our visitors map (“ClustrMap”) before it got reset to zero last month. Since Flag day is coming up, we also had fun drawing flags from some of the countries that have visited us.
Most of our visits were from North America. 35,000 visits were from the U.S.A., and almost 6,000 were from Canada. Here are flags from a few of the North American countries that visited us:
We didn’t get a lot of visits from South America. Maybe that is because most of the countries there speak Spanish or Portuguese. Here are flags from some of our South American visitors:
As you can tell from the red dots on our ClustrMap, we had a lot of visits from people in Europe. Most of our European visitors were from the United Kingdom.
Many of our visitors from Africa were from the country of South Africa, where a lot of people also speak English.
In Asia, we had many visits from India. Hmm, can anyone guess what one of the main languages of India is?
It’s no surprise that we had a lot of visitors from the region of “Oceania” since our blogging buddies 4KM & 4KJ live in Australia, and B4 live in New Zealand. Also, English is the official language of many of the countries in this area.
Thank you to all the people that have visited our blog, left us comments, and helped us learn about the world!
We have learned a lot about the world through our blog this year!
At the start of the year we were part of the award winning blog Our World, Our Stories where we learned about life in Canada (Sointula), Australia (Leopold), New Zealand (Reefton), Belize, Ghana, and California, USA.
Back in November we ate some Vegemite to learn more about the popular foods in Australia and New Zealand.
Just last month we tried some popular sweets from the countries “Down Under” – we had Tim Tams from Australia and Pineapple Lumps from New Zealand.
(We got the Lumps in the mail from Mrs. McKenzie and B4 during January but didn’t sample them until April, so they may have been a little extra chewy!)
Here is a video of us trying the sweets and our reactions:
“Ding-a-ling! Ding-a-ling!” The bell that signaled the end of recess rang out over the playground. The students grumbled quietly but their feet marched across the playground into perfect straight lines. All the feet, that is, except for those belonging to two students who stayed huddled behind the big slide.
“Maximilian, we have to line up! You’re going to get us in trouble again.” exclaimed Tiffany, scrunching down behind the slide. “Oh, relax Tiffany. We’ll sneak in right after we investigate that wobbly rock I told you about.” Replied Maximilian. “And my name is Max.” His name really was Maximilian, but nobody called him that except his mom – when she was mad at him, and his friend Tiffany – when she was mad at him.
When the last student and teacher had gone inside the two friends sprang from their hiding place and darted over to the large flat rock that Max pointed to. “This is it.” said Max. “But this rock has always been here.” replied Tiffany. “I know, but I’m almost positive it wobbled when I stepped on it today.” Said Max. “Here, help me try to lift it.” The two friends started to dig around the edge of the rock.
Dirt got stuck in their fingernails, but they didn’t mind. Max never minded getting dirty, and if it was part of an adventure Tiffany didn’t mind too much either. When they had scraped away enough dirt they started to push and heave at the rock. All of a sudden, it lurched to the side and a gust of wind blew up in their faces. Wind? From under a rock? “Now this really is an adventure,” thought Tiffany with a smile.
“Wow!” Max exclaimed. Wow indeed. At their feet was a large hole that seemed to stretch away under the ground in the direction of the school. “Let’s check it out,” said Max, starting to climb into the dark hole. “Uh, I don’t know Max. What if it’s dangerous?” asked Tiffany. But Max was already out of sight inside the tunnel. “I hope I don’t regret this,” murmured Tiffany as she peered in after him and began to crawl.
At first it was pitch black inside the mysterious tunnel but then a dim light flickered on and off from somewhere in the distance. Finally the light stayed on and they looked around them. The tunnel was made of moist dirt and rocks with little roots sticking out of the walls and ceiling. Max and Tiffany noticed that the air was warm but pleasant, and there was a faint scent of mint. As their eyes adjusted to the dim light they realized it was tall enough for them to stand. The two friends glanced at each other nervously (but excitedly) and then began walking slowly down the tunnel.
As they got deeper they noticed that the walls began to get smoother and the air was less damp. Then, far off they caught the sound of… something. “Uh, I don’t think we’re alone in this tunnel.” Max whispered. “Yeah, I agree.” replied Tiffany. As they pressed onward the walls got smoother and smoother until they seemed to be made of polished stone. The dim light began to brighten. As they turned a corner their eyes rested on something that made their mouths fall open in amazement. The two friends gasped and stared at the incredible sight before them. “I was right,” murmured Max. “We aren’t alone in this tunnel.”. . .
The results are in from Round 2 of our poetry tournament and the winner is… The Land of Bumbley Boo! We had 71 votes and Bumbley Boo got 27 of them, while If Only was a close second with 21 votes.
Poetry Madness 2012
This week we have four new poems to listen to and vote for. Here are the readers for this week’s poems:
Which one will join Monster Mothers and Bumbley Boo in the final four? You decide! Have a listen and then vote for your choice.