May 5, 2014

How Do I Learn?

Have you ever asked your students to answer this question?  You might want to give it a try, I think you would be pleasantly surprised by the answer. I know I sure was.  A couple of weeks ago, I asked my grade twos this question (It comes from the Inspiring Education document from the Alberta Government) and I wanted them to video tape each other and post it to their blogs (Yes.. you read that correctly, I have my students video tape themselves all the time). If you are interested in going to take a look here are the videos on How Do I Learn
After reviewing the video, I picked those I felt the students needed to hear because of what was said. Here is what the students said: 

We then talked about, what evidence shows your learning? I was blown out of the water by what these little people came up with.  Yes... all my reinforcing of vocabulary has paid off.

You might want to try asking your students, how they learn and have a conversation about it one class.  It think it would make for an interesting discussion.

Reducing our global footprint

Earth Day was this past Tuesday and our class decided to collect our garbage and recycling to see how we can reduce our global footprint. The students discovered they throw away a lot of plastic bags as well as wrappers from processed food (shocking I know).
When discussing what they could do differently, they decided to reuse the plastic bags by taking them home and asking parents to reuse them as well as washing out the plastic containers yogurt, apple sauces and fruit cups go into and recycling them instead of throwing them in the garbage. 
They made some reasonable decisions I know they can follow through with. It would be great for you to have a conversation with them about how else you can reduce the amount of garbage thrown away.

Happy Earth Day 365 Days of the Year!

Apr 23, 2014


Some of them finally figured out what the lone Band-aid was doing way up on the wall beside the clock. I had many guesses like; it's holding the wall together, there is a crack and the Band-aid is holding it together and it has a sore. The students have been WONDERING since day one why it was up there and I couldn't tell them. I just left them guessing. 
Well, when we started the Band-aid Investigation, I heard this loud cheer from one boy in particular, it went something like this, "YES!!! Now we get to find out why the band-aid is on the wall." Inside, I had to laugh because of how important that thing was to them. To be honest the real reason it was up there, wasn't to capture their attention but because I'm too lazy to take it off. Now I know they will be interested and wondering why it's there next year. 
Here are some photos of us measuring the height of a giant in our classroom. If you look back to the beginning of this blog you'll see use trying to solve the height of the giant. He is 6 cubits and 1 span tall and the students have to show how tall he is at the beginning of the year. 
Today they had to measure the giants height with the measuring tool they'd made with only one band-aid. You could have heard a pin drop in the room with how engaged they were. 
If you're interested in seeing what they produced go to the class blog page
Here are some photos of the work we've done. 

Jan 14, 2014

Adding Photos to Kidblog

Here are some screen shots to help you add photos. 
1. Open a new post.
2. Either write at the beginning or after you've loaded the picture. 

3. Look in bottom right hand corner for the photo icon. 
4. Press it and a screen like this will appear. 

5. Either take a photo or choose one from your library. 

6. It will add it to the body of the post. 
7. When you are done writing hit the publish button and it will be published. 

8. All done. Looking forward to seeing some photos. (This was taken at the Blue Rodeo concert, Ms Brown's Favourite band). 

Jan 13, 2014

Math Reasoning

Here is an example of what math reasoning sounds like. The first time he was explaining it to me, he was far clearer and didn't get confused. The students were trying to figure out whether 33 groups of 3 penguins worked. The initial problem was trying to figure out how many ways 100 penguins could be organized into equal groups.
He knew you could reverse 33 groups of 3 penguins into 3 groups if 33. From there he added the 33's together to make 99. He has one penguin left over so this combination can't work. 
Math reasoning is a huge component of our math curriculum.  My goal in grade two is to get them to reason why a strategy or answer will or will not work. When this happens it's truly amazing to hear them thinking and being logical as to why it does or doesn't work. This boy clearly has mathematical reasoning for this particular problem. He understood that by switching or reversing the combinations, you could find other combinations.

We want them to be thinking about the reasons why it should work because of what the numbers can and can not do. This particular student isn't doing gobs and gobs of math worksheets, instead they are working in a problem based math classroom where it challenges him to think and reasoning. I love it when this happens, now I just need them all to do this :-).