Friendship Quilt

In second grade we have started our travels around the world to learn about various walls and their concrete and abstract meanings.  We started with a trip down under, to an island south of Australia, called Tasmania.  The children learned about a wall at was built to celebrate the different cultures that are present in Tasmania.  It is called The International Wall of Friendship.  The kids created a symbol to represent friendship.  Below you can see the kids symbols and hear about the reasoning behind their creations.

Testing Update


Testing is currently taking place for the Kindergartners. We are in full swing and I hope to be finished by the end of the week, barring any absences.  Qualification letters will come home sometime next week…probably closer to the end of the week.  Please email with any questions or concerns.

Middle School Testing:

I am currently taking nominations for Middle School testing.  Students can test for English, Math, or Both.  If a student is currently in GT, then I already nominated them.  Testing will begin in February and last through March.  Results will not come home until May.  If you have questions and/or concerns please email me.  BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR THE PERMISSION TO TEST FORMS.  I will send them home in the next week.

New Students:

If a student is new to our district, and was in a GT program in a previous school, then I will also be testing those students.  Please be patient.  Between classes, kinder and middle school testing my schedule is quite swamped.  I am working to be as quick and efficient at possible

Ants, Ants and More Ants

Our study of Biomimicry has led us to look closely at ants and the tunnels that they build.  The kids are truly beginning to understand that humans don’t always know best.  There is a great deal to learn from being observers of nature.  Perhaps one of these students will lead us find better ways to design, build, create, and problem solve through their observations of nature.

Ants, Ants, and More Ants on PhotoPeach


This week we watched a great video about Biomimicry.  What is biomimicry, you say?  Well, watch the video clip before to find out!

So, look around.  Can you find things that were created by man…but inspired by nature?  Scientists, Architects, Mathematicians, Designers all look to nature for inspiration. 

Please help us think of some real world examples where Biomimicry is at work.

Understanding Structure

The second graders were introduced to the world of crystals this week through a book called Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg.  We read the first part of the story where a group of worker ants headed on an adventure to recover some delicious crystals found in an unknown place…a family’s kitchen.  Two of the ants found the crystals so delicious they decided to stay in the bowl of crystals and eat to their hearts content.  After the children put on their different thinking hats to consider whether staying in the bowl was a good idea, they started to wonder what crystals might be in that bowl.  The kids thought perhaps jewlery from the mother, a broken necklace, a crystal rock, pencil lead, etc.  There was a wide range of ideas.  The one thing the kids decided was that one must take a closer look in order to truly know what was in that bowl.  We broke out the jewlers loops and the digital microscope to look carefully at 2 crystals that are found in most every kitchen around the world…salt and sugar.  Here are two images from our investigation:





                SALT                                                                                                 SUGAR

After looking back at our defintion of STRUCTURE the kids decided that crystals were example of Natural Structures…structure created in nature.

Help us think of other structures that are created in Nature.  How many natural structures can you think of?

Busy, Busy, Busy

The second graders were hard at work taking the InView test.  It is a long three days for the kids…their first experience with standardized testing.   They also had the opportunity to listen to an author that came to our school.  This equated to very little time in GT.  Boo! Hoo! 

Due to our limited time I introduced the kids to a new logic puzzle called Ken Ken.  If you are familiar with Soduko, it has a similar premise to Ken Ken.  We also read a portion of Two Bad Ants and were putting out Six Thinking Hats on to consider a decision made by the two ants in the story.  We will continue the story and our thinking next week. 


Structures…Many Meanings

In second grade we are going to spend time learning about the many meanings of structure and how it fits into our learning.  Today the kids took a pre-test to help me understand what they already know about structures.  I will use this information to help guide our curriculum.  The kids came up with some great definitions.  It is obvious that the word Structure is not unfamiliar.

We need EVERYone’s help.  Please click on comments section below this post and share examples of structures.  This brainstorming will be important to next week’s discussion.  We will look more closely at the different types of structures and begin to sort and categorize them.  The more ideas the better.  We would love to hear from students, parents, siblings, friends, etc.  Thanks for your help!

Put Your Thinking Hat On

In second grade the kids were introduced to the idea that there are many ways we can think about a problem, suggestion, or idea.  I brought up the suggestion of putting a Ferris Wheel on the playground.  The kids went around the room and considered the idea from many different viewpoints.  After looking at the different thinking we did, I introduced the Thinking Hats.  Each hat signifies a different way that we should consider an issue before us.  Below you will see a picture explaining each hat. 

Now it’s your turn to get involved.  Let’s take turns putting on our different thinking hats and consider the proposal below.  To add your thoughts, just click on the link below.  It will take you to our dabbleboard.  Be sure to hit save when you are done sharing.

NO SCHOOL ON FRIDAYS? Click here to share your thinking!

Puzzling Through

What a great first day with my second graders!  Today we focused on understanding what it means to be a GOOD thinker.  Each student was given a borderless puzzle to solve without tips or hints from me.  Throughout the process we would stop and think about our thinking.  This is a new concept for the children and one we will continue to work on.  The kids learned the importance of collaborating, sharing and discussing when working to solve challenging puzzles.  I am really proud of the way they persevered!

Puzzling Through on PhotoPeach

Australian Animal Mix-Up

The second graders have been busy travelers this year and one of our favorite destinations was Australia.  The kids loved learning about all of the neat animals native to that part of the world.   They researched two animals and then created their own creature by mashing the two together.

Two of the second Graders took their PowerPoints to the next level by putting them into photostory, adding voice, music and transitions.  Clickon the play button to enjoy!


Here are the PowerPoints:

View more presentations from bcegt.
View more presentations from bcegt.
View more presentations from bcegt.