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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Project Based Learning- Native Americans

We recently wrapped up our unit on KY Native Americans and students got to use a project menu to choose their project to complete.  They also got to choose the Native American group they focused on to provide opportunities for choice.  They used a rubric to score themselves and guide their work as they completed this project.  We also had some poetry!

Save the Cherry Pie- Engineering Design

We spent three days, helping a local cherry farmer design hand pollinator to save his cherry tree farm and increase the pollination of his cherry trees.  Students had to use the materials provided to do this and there was a limit on the resources they could use.  They also had to figure the cost of their hand pollinator and on the last day, we compared the amount of pollen that was left on the tree compared to the price of the hand pollinator and the cherry farmer purchased three of the pollinators!  

Day one consisted of designing and constructing and testing.  Day two consisted of redesigning based on the results from the day before and figuring out if we could reduce the cost of our hand pollinator.  Day three consisted of testing and then comparing the results of all the groups.  We focused on the amount of pollen that was left on the cherry tree and the total cost to see which hand pollinator was the best!  We rated them using a 3-star system.

4-H Speech Winner

Our very own, Mr. Matthew, placed first place int he 4-H speech contest at the local level!  He will now move on to the next level and compete at LWC.  Good luck on your speech- we are so proud!

It's Like Christmas- New Mini iPads!

We are so excited here in Studio 214!  I applied for a grant this summer to purchase iPads to use during RTI for math-casting and we got the grant!  Whoop! Whoop!  Today we got our iPads and covers!  We cannot wait to get them up and going so we can use them in class!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Appalachian Storyteller

We had an Appalachian story teller today at CCES and she sung some songs with our kids and told some great stories!  They were hanging on her every word!

Evaluating Student Work

Students evaluated student work samples of an extended response about soil recently and used the KPREP scoring rubric to score them and match up the feedback with the correct responses.  They then discussed the major differences between a distinguished and proficient answer.  We will continue this work of looking at student answers and scoring them.

Leader in Me Leadership Day

We had our Leader in Me Leadership Day this week and it was so much fun!  I was so proud of our students for showcasing their talents and their leadership abilities for our community members and visiting school teachers.

Dissecting Flowers

We dissected flowers today in science to take a closer look at the structure of the flower and the different parts to explain why flowers are structured the way they are (to reproduce).  It's amazing all those tiny pieces work together to create more of itself!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

#TBT to Review!

We are going to have some snippets of our classes reserved on Thursdays for #TBT (Throw Back Thursday) to throw it back and review some things we learned about during the beginning of the year!  We will have a display in the hall of things we are reviewing, as well as some funny pictures of the fourth grade teachers from when they were in elementary school for kicks and giggles!  Stay tuned for some funny pictures!

Self- Reflection- "Grease" Style

I relate so many things to songs- I was thinking the other night during the night about what we were going to do the next day with our reflections and a song from the movie "Grease" came to mind.  So on our reflection, one side is "Uh-huh" meaning "I got this and could teach it to someone else" and the other side is "Tell Me More", meaning I have not mastered this topic and need more help.  Below is a link to just the piano version of the song that could be played while students are reflecting!

Leader in Me: Setting and Tracking Goals

Setting goals are super important, whether they are academic goals or personal goals!  We have really been working on setting goals in fourth grade and then figuring out how we will reach those goals!

This is a picture of data tracking in our students' data binders.  They are tracking their scores on the PAS test for reading and math.  We will take it one more time this year before the K-PREP test.

This is an example of some personal and academic goals that our students set after Christmas break.  No goal is too big when it is our dream!

This is a display in our fourth grade hallway and students decided on this goal as a grade!  Students are working hard to earn AR vocabulary words as they read AR books.  The mountains show which class is in the lead and the students at the bottom have already earned 100 vocabulary words!

Released Science Extended Responses

We are using some of these for our fourth grade students to evaluate some student responses for science extended responses and to discuss the differences between distinguished, proficient, apprentice, and novice.  I love that this site also includes some performance tasks too!  It was too good not to share!

KPREP Funk- Testing Song

We are learning a new song in fourth grade that I wrote over the first set of snow days!  It is written to the original song "Uptown Funk".  It's fun to sing for a brain break and we will be creating a video to this one!

Van Gogh Jigsaw

We had a special reward this afternoon for filling up our marble jar.  Students wrote a S.P.A.T. for writing on demand last week to persuade me to choose their reward choice.  We combined several of the choices and decided on an afternoon of art, ice cream, and silly socks!

Panthers Rock Rehearsal for Leadership Day

We have some students who are going to sing and dance during our first Leader in Me Leadership Day!  They sound awesome and I can't wait to hear them on Tuesday- Panthers Rock!