Dreams of Harmony

We are very lucky to have a fantastic music teacher, Ms. Young. She teaches us fun, interesting songs every week. This is one of our favorites that we sing at all-school assemblies. It is called “Dreams of Harmony” because we say good night in different languages.

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Good night, bonne nuit

Oyasamina sai, buenos noches,

Lala salama, wan an,

Spokoinyui noche, gute nacht,

Lila tov

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Wherever you rest your

Head tonight

We are all one family

Let’s hold tight

and fill the world with

Dreams of Harmony

tonight.

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No matter what words we use to say… goodnight…

Margot’s Magical Blog!

We are very excited to announce the first student blog from Mr. Salsich’s class!

Margot’s Magical Blog

Margot's Magical Blog

Margot's Magical Blog

Margot has worked hard to earn her own blog. She always writes marvelous comments on our blog and our buddy blogs.

Margot’s Magical Blog will feature posts about her hobbies, her art, her adventures, and her fantastic ideas.

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Click on any of the links or the picture above to visit her blog, and be sure to listen to “Comet”, her voki!

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Native Americans and The Sea

Recently we took a field trip to the local aquarium for a special program called “Native Americans and The Sea.”

Resources From The Sea

Resources From The Sea

The  native people of this area lived right next to the Atlantic Ocean. They got lots of food and materials from the sea and the coast. During the summer they would move their villages to the shore for fishing, clamming and farming. Then in the winter they moved back into the forests to get away from the cold winter winds.

(For more information about their life through the seasons, click here.)

"How would they use this?"

"How would they use this?"

At the aquarium we got to examine many of the animals and materials that the local tribes used.

We talked about how they would use these things for five different purposes: food, tools, clothing, wampum, and fertilizer for gardens.

Here is a slide show about what we learned:

(To learn more about wampum, click here.)

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What was most interesting or surprising about what the Native Americans used?

What other things would the Native Americans have used from the sea?

How do we use things from the sea? What is similar or different from how the Native Americans used things?

Mysterious Project

We have had a lot of snow days lately, so some of our blog posts and other projects have been put on hold.

We will have new posts up early next week. In the meantime, here is a sneak peek at part of a big project we have been slowly working on over the past two months.

Can you guess what it is?

What is that thing?

What is that thing?

What do you think the students are making?

Why would they be making it?

(To our class: No fair answering because you already know what it is.)

Snow Days!

We had a HUGE snow storm last week! Our town got about 18 inches (46 centimeters) of snow. Because the roads were so slippery we had no school on Wednesday and a delayed opening on Thursday.

Slippery Roads

Slippery Roads

Snow days are one of the most exciting things about winter in Connecticut. The students (and teachers!) get a surprise day off.

In this post we are going to share some of our favorite things about snow days.

Making snow Forts

Making snow Forts

The night before a snow storm I am so excited my heart is thumping with joy. A huge smile spreads across my face as I jump around. “Yes! A snow day!” I exclaim.        -Erik
Snow Tubing

Snow Tubing

My favorite snow day activity is sledding. When I go flying down on my sled I feel the breeze on my frozen face. As I listen closely I hear the wind whistle by my ears. I watch the ramp ahead of me so I can get my sled in the air. If I take my eyes off the ramp I might wipe out.       -Tyler

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Here is a slide show with more writing and more pictures from our snow day experiences:

(If you have trouble viewing the slide show, you can also watch it on Picasa here.)

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Does it snow a lot where you live?

What did you think of our writing and our pictures?

What is your favorite winter activity?

Equal Groups of Things

We are starting to learn about multiplication in math.

Multiplication is really just a faster way to add together equal groups of things. Here’s an example from Alison:

7 groups of 4

7 groups of 4

Here are 7 ladybugs.
Each ladybug has 4 spots.

Because each ladybug has an equal number of spots, we can say that this is 7 groups of 4. You can figure out how many spots there are altogether by adding 4 together 7 times:

4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 = 28.
There are 28 spots in all.

Multiplication makes it easier than adding up each 4. We also call multiplication “times” because you are adding the same number a certain amount of times. So, 7 groups of 4 also means:

7 x 4 = 28.

Here are more examples of turning equal groups of things into multiplication:

With multiplication you can quickly find the total amount of equal groups of things.  We will use this a lot next week when we start doing serious skip counting and figuring out arrays.

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What did you think of our multiplication pictures and sentences?

Can you think of examples in life where multiplication is useful?

Ring & Pin Game

This is a short video about one of the games that Native Americans of this area used to play.

We call the game “Ring and Pin” and it is not as easy as it looks! There were a lot more misses than catches, but the video highlights the good techniques that led to success. Enjoy!

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The local tribes played games and sports for fun, but also to improve their hand-eye coordination and their concentration. Playing these games helped them improve their hunting, fishing, and tool making skills.

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Does this game remind you of any other games?

How else would good hand-eye coordination help the Native Americans?

What are some things that you need good hand-eye coordination for?


Native Americans of Connecticut

Before vacation we started to learn about the first people who lived in this area, the local Native American tribes. In our part of New England there are several tribes: the Pequot, the Mohegan, the Niantic, and the Narragansett people.

Statue of a Pequot Man Taken at The Pequot Museum

Statue of a 18th Century Pequot Man. Taken at The Pequot Museum

We are learning a lot about how they used to live. In the next couple of weeks we will have posts about their traditional clothing, houses, games, hunting, and much more.

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In the meantime, you can check out our Native American Wiki that last year’s students started.

It is full of videos, pictures, and voicethreads about local Native American cultures of the past. We will be adding to it this year.

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What would you like to learn about the tribes of this area?

What questions do you have about the picture of the Pequot man?

Do you know why Native Americans are sometimes called “Indians”?