Thursday, March 30, 2017

Read to Self

Research shows that having uninterrupted blocks of time to just read, read, read every day is critical for improving reading.

Every day, our class has time to read self selected "just right" books (books that are neither too easy, nor too hard). It is so exciting at this time of year to see the kids fully engaged in their reading, and able to independently read for sustained amounts of time. Here's a glimpse into our class when all the kids are reading, reading, reading!!

 Students record the books they have read in a Reading Log.

After reading 10 books, students sign up to have a Book Conference with an adult, where they review the books they have read, and choose one book to read aloud. The adult is able to reflect with each student to ensure that they are choosing "just right" books.

The hum of the classroom while all kids are reading is the definition of music to my ears!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Fractions and Measurement

We had fun this week creating 2 art projects that incorporated what we've been learning about fractions and measurement.

First, focusing on the fraction 1/2, each child created a colorful 1/2 and 1/2 square of Classroom Fraction "Rug."

Today, we tried to chase the snow away by creating some cheerful spring fractions flowers, focusing on the fraction 1/4.

The kids followed step by step directions and used measurement and their knowledge of fourths to help decorate our wintry looking windows.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017


As part of our science unit on animals, we have been comparing living and non-living things.

We have learned that since plants and animals are both living things, they both need the same things.

A poem and some videos about photosynthesis taught us how plants get what they need (and also how good they are for our earth!).

In order to observe the ways that plants get what they need from the environment, we created biomes (an area with plants, adapted to an environment). 

First we put gravel in the bottom of a cup to help the soil drain.
We then added a layer of soil, and noticed that there were flecks of "food" in the soil for the plants.

We added our grass seed.

After watering our new plants, we found a sunny window to watch them grow.

I asked the kids why they thought we were putting tops on the cups. One idea was so that the grass didn't grow too big. Another was so the water would stay in the cup.  

We are excited to discover how these plants have everything they need to live.  

Stay tuned and we'll give you an update soon....

Friday, March 17, 2017


We have been learning about measurement for the past couple of weeks.

Students measured lengths of tape using "baby steps," "basketball player steps,"  and popsicle sticks. They discovered why we get different measurements depending on what units we use.

Estimating is an important part of measurement. Before measuring with inches and centimeters, students learned to estimate how long common classrooms items are.

Finally, we used rulers to accurately measure with both inches and centimeters.