Thursday, February 28, 2013

Probability

One of the units in math this marking period is probability. When we think about probability we think about whether or not something could actually happen. A lot of us were surprised that this is math because right now, it doesn't really have anything to do with numbers! But we have learned a lot of words like:

  • impossible
  • unlikely
  • equally likely
  • more likely
  • certain
and how they related to our lives. We had a great time working with partners to show things in our lives that fit in each of those categories. Coming up with things that were impossible was the best part! After we added our own ideas to post-its we swapped our probability line with another pair, and they had to try and put our post-its back in the correct spots on the line. There was some very interesting discussions about what people put in each spot. 

This was a really fun activity to learn about probability, and we're looking forward to learning more with our partners!








Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Dear Patricia Polacco

Dear Patricia Polacco,

This week our class read your story The Junkyard Wonders. We all really liked your story, even though it was very sad at one part, and we really learned a lot of lessons that will help us. We did a chalk talk, but we used markers instead of chalk, to think about what we learned while we listened to your story. Mrs. Bair took pictures of everything we wrote so you could see our ideas.





We wanted to say thank you because your story really helped us understand to believe in ourselves and know that anything is possible. We are all going to try our best to take what we learned reading The Junkyard Wonders and remember it every single day.

Thank you for being a great author.

Sincerely,
Mrs. Bair's Class

PS - We have a nickname, too. Your class was the Junkyard, and we are The Bairs Den!

Our Last Set of Podcasts

Our teams have worked very hard, and we are also excited to share what we've learned about wetlands. Here are The Conservers' podcast:





And the Oogaly Oggs (I let them pick their teams names - you'll have to ask the kids what it means!) would also like to share what they have learned:




Team Super DJ finally had all of their team members present so they were really excited to record their podcast and share it, too!



As always we would love to hear what you think and answer your questions so please leave us a comment!


Monday, February 25, 2013

More Wetlands

The Pollution Pals would like to share what they've learned about wetlands.



And the Black Cats would also like to share their learnings about wetlands.



We'd love to learn from you and with you! Leave us a comment and we will answer it as soon as we can!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Wetlands!

We are pleased to present our first wetlands podcast for your enjoyment and learning!

Team Bob would like to share this important information with you:


Be on the lookout for more exciting podcasts coming in the next few days!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day

Is there anything more fun than getting that big box of Valentines? We don't think so!! :)








Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Understanding Pollution

During the last two weeks, we've been developing an understanding of the names of different types of wetlands, what wetlands are, and how they help the environment. What's pretty exciting is that our school was basically built on some wetlands (yes, that's been making us think a little bit) so we can go out and do some exploring in our own back yard.

After learning some metaphors to help us understand the functions of wetlands, we took a walk with Mrs. Towsen's class yesterday to look for pollution in and around our wetlands. Everybody agreed that we thought pollution was another word for trash so we went looking for things that didn't belong in our wetlands. Here are all of the things that we saw:

After we compiled our list we noticed that not everything on the list was trash. So in our groups we talked about what pollution might actually be. As we talked groups talked about other things that might be pollution like bad smells, or chemicals we can't see, or the cars on the highway right by Bear Creek. After about 10 minutes our groups came together, and we decided these were the characteristics of pollution:

Then we put everybody's ideas together, and our definition of pollution was:

Pollution is when you put something into the environment that doesn't go there and it hurts the environment.

Then we looked up the definition of pollution. If you can read the very small print at the bottom of our second slide, you can see that while we didn't use the same big grown-up words, we were right! Pollution doesn't belong in the environment and can really hurt it. Our next job is try try and teach all of you about wetlands and why we should try to protect them. Be on the look out for some awesome podcasts in the next week or two!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Western Day & Class Meeting

As part of our continuing celebration of National Counselor Week, we had our Western Day today! Check out our friends showing off their school spirit!




We also joined with Mrs. Towsen's class to have a class meeting today. We watched this movie about the Sports Illustrated Kids of the Year:


After watching the video, we spent a lot of time talking together about the lessons we learned from Connor and Cayden. These were some of the themes we talked about in conjunction to the things we saw in the movie:


  • giving 100% effort no matter way
  • teamwork
  • supporting each other
  • trust
  • walking away from us when people say negative things
  • stopping and thinking before we say something
  • spreading rumors
Please ask your child to tell you more about Connor and Cayden and how we hope to be a good friend like Connor every day.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Watersheds

In Science we're currently learning about wetlands and watersheds, and today we had a special presenter come in to talk to us about how many of the things humans do impact our local watershed. Did you know that we are part of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed? We have many creeks and streams here in the Elizabethtown area, and all of them flow into the Susquehanna River! Mrs. Risser, our special guest, talked to us about how farmers can only use a little bit of the land and showed us a model of what our local watershed could look like.

The water shed model



Mrs. Risser shows us how much land farmers can actually use by cutting an apple




Mrs. Risser talking to our classes

After we learned about the different locations on the model, we started talking about some of the things that people do to impact our local watersheds. We learned that famers, builders and loggers and affect the soil and cause it to erode. Home owners, farmers and golf course owners sometimes put pesticides and herbicides on their property and that can get into our water systems. We also learned that oil from cars and chemicals from factories and sewage treatment plants can get into the water system. Each time we learned about things that could affect our watershed, one of our friends sprinkled some powder on to the model.

Wyatt adding eroding soil to the model

Emma adding herbicides and pesticides

Then there was a TERRIBLE storm!

Autumn and Kelsey create a storm with the spray bottles
As the girls created the storm we saw how the powders representing the various pollutants very quickly washed from their original spots and into the river! We know that this pollution will continue on to the Chesapeake Bay, and it can harm the shellfish and other creatures that make their homes there. We asked lots of questions about what people can do to stop this and how the pollution might affect animals and land closer to home.


We really appreciated how Mrs. Risser came to talk to us today about watersheds and how our actions can impact places far away from Elizabethtown. We're going to use this information to help us as we continue to learn about wetlands and watersheds and what we can do to protect them.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Digital Learning Day

Wednesday, February 6 is Digital Learning Day! Of course we'll be doing a lot of the things that we do everything with the iPads, blogging and even using calculators to bring technology into our classroom. But did you know there are a lot of different things you can do at home with your child even if you don't have iPads or fancy technology around your house? Sometimes simply visiting a website with your child and talking about how to develop a positive digital footprint is a great way to support digital learning.

This easy to read blog post has a variety of suggestions of websites and activities you can do with your child at home to work on digital literacy. And as always, we'll continue to work on blogging, creating Google presentations, and using a variety of apps and websites to showcase our learning.

If you would like to learn more about the digital tools that we're using here in our classroom, you can check out our Websites page here on the blog and scroll down to the "Tools We Use" section to give them a try. And if there is anything I can do to help you support your child's digital learning at home, please let me know.

Trip to Harrisburg

As part of our unit on Pennsylvania's History, the Bair's Den took at trip to Harrisburg, PA, our state capitol, on Friday, February 1. We started the day in the Capitol Building where we learned about the history of the building, visited the House and Senate chambers, and spent some time in the courtroom where the state Supreme Court Meets.

After lunch we headed to the State Museum where we visited many different exhibits about the land, people and natural resources of Pennsylvania. Everybody had a great day, and we'll all be writing about our trip on our blogs so please be on the lookout for our experiences!

Until our posts are up, please enjoy this slideshow of our trip. Thanks to Devin for helping to take some of the photos you see!

video