Dioramas and Pumpkin Centres

This week the Super Kids created their dioramas for their nocturnal animal projects.  Each diorama was to have the animal, shelter, food, and a water source.  The kids created a plan and a materials list before sharing their thoughts with their 3/4 buddies.  Our buddies came to help us with the plasticine and the results are wonderful!  The kids are so proud of their designs.

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On Friday, our class had pumpkin math centres.  Thank you to those families who brought in a pumpkin for this activity.  A big thank you to our two parent volunteers that joined us for the afternoon. We even had a Super Kid’s baby sister join us.  She is an honorary Super Kid now!  The class cycled through several pumpkin math activities that involved estimating and measuring.  Before we could get to our pumpkin centres in the afternoon, we had to get ready in the morning with a math warm up and an estimation lesson.  For morning work, the class was partnered up and given two nine sided dice.  They had to roll and add the numbers together.  This was complicated math for my grade one friends, but with the help of their grade two partners, they soon were counting up and excited to be doing “tricky math”.  The person with the most shaded pumpkins won.  This was a big hit!  The Super Kids even asked to play it on Halloween.

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After recess we talked about what estimation is and practiced this skill by estimating how many items were in a jar on each table.  The kids were so excited when they came close to the actual number.

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The pumpkin math centres were a lot of fun!  Our 3/4 buddies joined us for the first half hour of our centres before they had to leave for a presentation.  The class had to predict if a pumpkin would sink or flat, estimate and measure how many blocks tall a pumpkin was, estimate and measure how many creases were on a pumpkin, weigh a pumpkin, estimate by picking a string to measure the circumference of a pumpkin, and measure how many pumpkins tall they are.

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Do you like toasted pumpkin seeds?  We carved a couple of pumpkins that I brought in and decided to find out.  It was a mixed reaction. 🙂 We tallied if we liked or didn’t like them.  On Monday we’ll graph our findings.


I snapped a few pictures of activities that the class picked for choice time. Some were adding numbers with dominoes, others were reading, and some decided to become pirates.  It has to be my favourite time of the day.  I enjoy listening to them interact with each other, cooperate, problem solve and get creative.

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Monday is Halloween!  We’re so excited for our classroom party, school parade, and they can’t wait to see what I’m going to be.  I wouldn’t tell them.  I’m sure it is going to be super..hint, hint. 🙂



Nocturnal Animal Projects

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This week we began our nocturnal animal projects.  With Halloween fast approaching it seemed like a natural fit.  The kids are fascinated by spooky things that go bump in the night.  So talking about animals that are awake at night seemed perfect.  After reading several fiction and non-fiction books about these animals, the class picked an animal to research.  Stellaluna has become a class favourite.unknown

We talked about how we can learn lots from just looking at a picture and we used the website Pebble Go for information about our animal.  Topics include owls, foxes, bats, racoons, hedgehogs, and opossums. The class loved being researchers and sharing their information with others.  Some Super Kids even took books home to share with their families.  We watched a Franklin video where he makes a new bat friend, but they have trouble playing together because his new friend stays up at night.  This week we will be creating dioramas of our animals habitat with our 3/4 buddies.


This week is going to be a busy one with our dioramas, pumpkin centres, and research projects. Stay tuned…:)





Introducing Jeff! Our new class pet!

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It is official…we have a new class pet.  This week we were discussing what living things are and their characteristics.  I borrowed a few living things from around the school.  A plant from the office, the stick bugs from our 3/4 buddies classroom, and the beta fish from the kindergarten room.  At first the class was asking for some stick bugs…that wasn’t going to happen. 🙂 They quickly moved on to a fish.  I had to go to the pet store after school for some dog food and ended up staring at the fish.  My daughter quickly convinced me that I had to get one for my class.  Of course she insisted on picking it out for the class and volunteered to look after it on holidays.  Next thing I knew we had a fish!  The class was very excited to welcome our new pet to our classroom.  After several votes to narrow down our choices, we settled on Jeff.  Never heard of the name Jeff for a fish? I hadn’t either.  I was talking about it with my sister in law last night and it turns our my nephew named his beta fish Jeff too!  Crazy!  The class has fallen in love with Jeff.  He has a paper home that his little tank can fit into thanks to a few creative girls at choice time today.  They even read to him.

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Today we created our own spooky halloween houses in art.  We first talked about what a silhouette is and how blending watercolours creates spooky backgrounds.  We looked a several examples of spooky houses for some ideas about shapes we could use.  I also shared student examples of similar projects I found on the internet.  I didn’t tell them that they were created by much older kids.  To be completely honest, I wasn’t sure how this project was going to turn out.   Wow!  I shouldn’t be surprised, but I was. They did a wonderful job.  We have them hanging up on our bulletin board in our classroom, on our door windows, and on the wall by our classroom door.

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Here are a few snapshots I took this week showing some examples of extending our learning.

Yoga Time


Excited to finish a math centre during math workshop.


Making his own number line at choice time. 🙂


Dream Box math


Jeff became part of the science centre.


Exploring a wasp nest brought in by a super kid’s family.  Thanks!


Enjoy your weekend!

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope that everyone is taking time this weekend to focus on their family.  The turkey is in my oven!

This week we took the time to share what we are thankful for.  We talked about what truly matters…our family and friends.  Many of the Super Kids mentioned their brother and sisters, even if they bug them. 🙂

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QR codes, writing around the room, the chipo game, and the pebble go website were a few of the reader’s workshop centres this week.  Students cycle through two centres a day during our reader’s workshop time.  I am thrilled by the kid’s enthusiasm when they come over to work with me in their book clubs.  Beginner readers are working on their sight word recognition, stretching the sounds, chunking words, and looking at the picture for clues.  Other groups are working on reading with expression, clarifying words, and comprehension skills.  Many of the Super Kids have asked to read to the class and I will always say YES!  On Friday were treated to one of  Mo Willems classics.


We played “Guess My Number” this week.  Students had ten minutes to write as many ways to show a number of their choice. Number sentences, tally marks, picture cues, dice patterns, and even word problems were used as clues.  Then we walked around the room and tried to guess everyone’s number.  There was lots of excited kids when they guessed right! We also focused on patterns and number lines this week.



Many of the Super Kids didn’t know their addresses, phone numbers and some didn’t know their own birthdays.  This become our mission in Social Studies.

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One of our favourite things to do is go to the library.  Mrs. Z always has a great story to share with us and she helps us find great books.  Some of the Super Kids discovered the globe and were looking for countries they know. Awesome!

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I hope everyone has a great long weekend.  Happy Thanksgiving…and I’ll see all of my Super Kids on Tuesday.