Friday, December 12, 2014

Career Talk: Chatting with CybraryMan!

This week our 3rd graders talked to Mr. Jerry "Cybraryman" about writing books. Our teacher, Mrs Deyamport knows Mr. Jerry from Twitter and was very excited to have him speak to our budding authors. Mr. Jerry shared the process he goes through to publish books. First he starts with an idea or inspiration and then continues to do research to narrow his topic. Once he finishes his first draft and makes edit, he receives a dummy copy of his book before it is published. He also showed us an author's role in choosin the artwork or illustrations for a book. Can you believe it took him about a year to publish a book?! This shows us that writing a book takes time, but is so worth it in the end! Thank you for the advice Mr. Jerry! We can't wait to start writing our own own books.

Below are some Thank You letters from our class:

Dear Mr. Jerry, 

Thank you for telling us how to write books and telling us your opinion. I really liked it because I have a lot of trouble writing stories. I want to write speeches to use when I get old enough to do debate. My favorite pictures were the ones that were edited, but keeping some of the things from the non-edited pictures. 



Dear  Mr. Jerry, 

Thank you so much! I think that it must have been hard and fun to come up with the words! I'd liked it because you taught us about how hard illustrating can be. 



Dear Mr. Jerry, 

Thank you so much for all the information about writing a book and what you need to do to write a book. I really liked it because we got to ask you a lot of questions about writing a book! 



Dear Mr. Jerry, 

Thank you so much for telling us the steps a write does and how long it took to write a book on the safety of the world wide web. I really liked it because I got to talk to someone who has been into it. 



Dear Mr. Jerry, 

Thank you for telling us about yourself. I really liked it because I love books! You're a great author! 



Dear Mr. Jerry, 

I love how you let us look at your comic books and at your superheroes, and letting us ask you questions. I really enjoyed it. 



Thursday, December 11, 2014

The "Code" Never Bothered Us Anyway!

This week our students have participated in the Hour of Code. This is a campaign hosted by to get students interested and started with the basics of code or coding. Coding is basically the language that we use with computers. Different codes tell computers what to do and we see this everyday in our lives, especially with games.

While the idea of coding may seem a bit intimidating and complicated at first, we tried the tutorials on Angry Birds and Frozen to get us started. These tutorials helped us practice some basic lines of code. All throughout, we practiced working in groups (Group Dynamics) and problem solving. After completing the tutorials we also received a certificate for our participation in the Hour of Code. This goes to show that "the code never bothered us anyway!"

Play some of the Flappy Games we made below.
(Click on each student's name to play their game.)







Books Galore!

Today, Dr. Bomhold visited our 3rd graders to discuss her career as a librarian specialist. She is a "super" librarian, who trains future librarians at our local university. Dr. Bomhold discussed how libraries are important for not only finding books to read for pleasure, but for research as well. As information professionals, librarians are also responsible for organizing and purchasing books. As an activity, Dr. Bomhold shared some books from her personal collection and had students organize them into categories such as animals and adventure. Students had to scan the books as well as determine and justify how to categorize them. Finally, students picked 3 books to not "purchase" for the library and pick a favorite to share with the class. We also received a book and a notebook to continue our journey with literacy. Thanks so much, Dr. Bomhold!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Making Cents

This month, Mrs. Jessica McCarthy came to visit our REACH class to speak about her career as a CPA. She currently operates her own accounting firm and brought along some Comic Books for the students. She also discussed the accounting component that goes behind the scenes when opening a business. Thanks for the talk, Mrs. McCarthy! 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Mona Lisa Parody

The Mona Lisa. We have all seen her or heard of her. Perhaps the biggest mystery is the reason behind her smile. This is what we think she's smiling about. We hope our creations have put a smile on your face!

Reading Project Showcase

We have been so busy in REACH. So busy in fact that we are just now getting to post our awesome reading projects! This summer students read a novel of their choice that they then had to share. Instead of writing a book report, they decided to share their books in creative ways. Have a look at some student samples. You can also view projects in the Office Foyer at our school.

Novel Voice Overs

This project was for the tech savvy! The objective was to advertise their novels using a voiceover. After examining several professional examples for television series, students created their own scripts and added sound effects using Garageband. The challenge was to summarize their novels in ways that will engage listeners and utilize media that complimented the theme or mood of the novel.

*Click on the student names to listen to their voiceovers. 

Theme Meme

We see memes frequently online, but not at school. Not until now that it is. For this project, students had to capture the mood and themes of their novel through a meme. Their meme had to include a word and tagline to explain the theme. Students used their advanced vocabulary skills and summarizing skills in novel ways.

Hansini: Moon Over Manifest 
Andrew: 39 Clues: Maze of Bones  

Scene It: Readers' Theater

This project was for those students that enjoy acting and making costumes. Students were responsible for recreating and acting out a scene in their book. They had to include a script, props, a set, and puppets to bring their scene(s) to life.

Character Suitcase

To explore characters, we created a suitcase for them. Students had to answer the question, "If your character had a bag or suitcase, what would he/she put in it?" This project was for students who enjoy designing and creating.

Peyton: The 68 Doors
Gabriel: Island of the Blue Dolphins

Message in  Bottle

For this project, students had to write a message to another character in their story. They also designed the bottle to send their message. This was an excellent option for those students that enjoy creative writing.


Setting Illustration/Portrait

Finally, this project was meant to unleash the inner artists. Students had to illustrate a painting or picture for the setting of their story. Students researched a famous artist's style and had to recreate their setting using that style.
Emori: Mashup of Impressionism & Pop Art

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Skype Sharing

Today we had our first Skype call to share projects with Ms. Lasher's class. We presented our Reading Projects and explained the products we made for our novels. Ms. Lasher's class shared independent projects such as a Cardboard Challenge Game, Perplexers, and Mystery Stories. They are even willing to send the Perplexers to our class so that we can solve them! We enjoyed seeing what other gifted classes are working on and look forward to solving some puzzles.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Career Talk: The Dr. Is In!

Dr. John Gaudet came to visit our 6th grade REACH students to talk about his career in medicine. Dr. Gaudet is a pediatrician in our city and has even treated some of our very own students. He shared some tools he uses for the trade, discussed his path in becoming a pediatrician, and explained how important it is to know all subjects because they may be useful in our future careers. He also reminded us that we must know ourselves and personalities in order to choose a career that is right for us. Thank you for the helpful advice, Dr. Gaudet! 

Career Talks: Hand It to Us!

Las week, Ms. Thu came to speak to our 3rd Graders about her career in nursing. She also taught us the correct way to wash our hands to stay healthy. The trick is to rub our hands with soap and water while humming the tune to the song, "Happy Birthday" in our heads twice. To test out our new method of washing hands we even tried an experiment with glow germs

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Career Talks: The Science Behind Medicine

This week Ms. Deborah visited our 5th grade REACH class to discuss her career as a Medical Laboratory Technician. She introduced responsibilities and background required for her career.  As a lab technician, she does a lot of the "behind the scenes" work required for diagnosis. She also reviewed science terms such as the difference between a virus and a bacteria and some tips to help keep us healthy.  A huge thanks to Ms. Carter for scheduling this talk. We look forward to having more Career Talks with family and community members. Stay tuned!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Show What You Know: Our First Try at ScreenCasts

Helping each other with screencasts.
Our 4th grade TEA Time group has been working hard on their Day Out Projects this semester.  For this project, students had to research and plan a field trip for their class to surrounding cities in the state. Some information we had to take into account were admission, transportation, and mileage costs. We also factored in a PTA Field Trip Grant to help us out with costs. As we were planning for this trip, we used our communication skills by calling some museums to inquire about admission costs as well as planned our scripts for our final screencast. It was important for us to show our work and thought processes throughout our project. Have a look at our final products below and wish us luck as we will be presenting these to our principal for approval!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

DIY Challenges

We're back and ready to start making! Our teacher, Mrs. Deyamport has learned about the Maker Movement and Maker Spaces on Twitter and thought it might be a good idea to give it a shot in our REACH classes. The Maker Movement (a.k.a. Maker Spaces) promotes the idea that students learn by doing. It puts students in charge of their learning because they are responsible for selecting, planning, and the actual creating or building of whatever it is they are making. This month we are participating in the Maker Movement by completing different DIY Challenges. Below are a few projects we are working on: 

Independent Projects 
Some of our 6th graders have had the opportunity to work on their own DIY challenges. They have worked independently on the planning and actual making. As they are working, they are given guidance on their problem-solving and brainstorming as needed. Both students have also thought or worked on their projects from home, which is not a requirement. While one student mentioned that he started to build his helmet at home, the other actually brought some patterns from a craft store to add to the final design of her project. 
Asma is designing her own room.

Jacob's cardboard costume.
To Enhance Reading Projects
Our 4th grade group has recently completed reading the novel, Tuck Everlasting, and was given the option to re-create a scene from the story using cardboard and other items. This project was modified from one of the DIY challenges and a great opportunity for students to be creative in creating scenes from a novel that did not have any illustrations. We also reflected and discussed some recommendations for staying organized and building things. This group offered some great tips and were very engaged and helpful towards each other throughout their DIY time. 
Recreate a Scene from Tuck Everlasting.

So far, the process of making is a messy one but so well worth it! Our greatest challenge is staying organized and finding storage for all projects. Right now, we are using these storage bins and placing them under tables and on top of file cabinets. As soon as we can find a solution for storage or as students complete their projects, we will have other grade level groups complete their own DIY challenges. Overall, the challenges have pushed students to learn in a different way and bring to life their plans and the content. Needless, to say they have also been a huge hit! 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Let's Invent!

This month we have presented several contests for our rocketeers to tap into their creative talents. One theme that these contests have in common is inventing. With this theme in mind, we took some advice from the one and only, Kid President.

So what are you waiting, for?! Let's invent! Well said, Kid President- we will do just that. Here is a line up of a few of our contests.

In a Word- Ceate the longest list of words for the word: Industrial. We will submit our entries to Calliope Magazine.

Values Essay- Write an essay about a barrier in your life and how values such as courage, determination, and perseverance helped overcome that barrier. This one is in honor of the values that Jackie Robinson used to live by during his career. All entries will be submitted to Appleseed Magazine. 

Doodle for Google- Design a doodle that represents an invention that would make the world a better place.

3M Young Scientist Challenge- Create a video about an idea or innovation that could solve an everyday problem.

What contests are you participating in this semester or term? Feel free to leave a comment with your favorite ones.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dont Judge Me!

By: Langston

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My dream is that someday people will not be judged by their character or what they like. For some its hard just to just eat ice cream without someone telling them that that flavor is nasty, stupid, or weird. I also think that people are discriminated for their style. I have friends that get picked on because of their shoe color or what instrument they play. If judgement of character did not exist, bullying would be at an all time low. But with 70% of bullying gone you still have 30% to eradicate. If people were not hated for who they "like" or who they're friends with, they would have more friends than they do already. So long story short, I wish that people will not be judged by what they like, character, skin color, religion, or even their own judgement.


By: Jacob
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My dream is that someday all the nations of the world will no longer fight and there will be no war anymore. Wars have a huge impact on our planet. Thousands of people die, and the Earth is damaged by the factories and materials used to create weapons and dangerous chemicals. "Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they practice war anymore."

Bye Bye, Minimal Wage

By: Asma
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My dream is that they will quit paying minimal wage for jobs that take lots of skills than for those jobs that pay higher for people who just sit down and organize files. For example, one job is where you have to know how to count, organize, be helpful, and have strength and confidence. The problem is that they are the ones being paid minimal wage. Meanwhile, those who just sit and organize are being paid higher. The people who are being paid for minimal wage need counting skills to be on the cash register. They need to organize the objects on the shelves and in the bins. They need to help the customers who are looking for certain things to buy or eat. They need strength to carry heavy loads, to stand on their feet, and not pass out. You need confidence to do your actual job. So I say that we fight for fair wages.

An Opportunity

By: Ricardo
   My dream, my wish, my desire is for low-income students to get a Bachelor's degree. Everyone deserves a chance to be successful, to show the world how great they can be. There are many students out there that have great ideas for the present and the future of our generation, but probably don't have the right amount of money. Technology might have been more advanced if students who have fresh ideas for future transportation and future communication chance to help. The world would be better if we had more successful people. Everyone deserves a chance to be successful and reach goals that have never been reached.   


Less Hatred

By: Destin 

My dream is for... less hatred in the world.  With less hatred in the world, there would be less racism, fighting, and war. Without any of these, there would be world peace. World peace would be good for countries, and your community.


Money Isn't Everything

       By: Andrew

  My dream is that someday, people will not be separated by how much money they have any more.
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  Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once spoke of a dream where people would not be separated by the color of their skin, and that dream still lives on in the fact that people are still separated, but not by skin color, but by money. I think if I fulfill my dream, I will also complete his dream.

War; Is It Necessary?

By: Casey
My dream is that wars are ended all over the world. Wars are not for anything important enough to kill thousands of people in the army. War does not decide who is right, only who is left alive. War separates families and destroys the land that they were fighting for. War takes time and money that could be used for more important things like education and charity. Scientists should be finding the cure for cancer, not stronger guns. Ending wars would create world peace and a better world.
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Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This week we have been learning about Dr. Martin Luther King's legacy thanks to the help of Tim and Moby on BrainPop.  His famous "I Have a Dream" speech had us thinking about our dreams for a better world. The next few blog posts will highlight some of our dreams and hopes. We hope that you enjoy them!

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