3rd Grade: Zoom

The 3rd graders used their learning about the Big Ideas of Systems to create a Zoom research project.  The 3rd graders and I looked “read” through Zoom, a wordless picture book.  The kids realized that the truth is all in perspective.  We had a great Socratic Dialogue about it.  We also watched a video on YouTube called The Power of Ten to reinforce the idea of perspective.  The children then chose a system that they wanted to research.  They then had to look for a system within their system and research that as well.  They zoomed into their system 3 to 4 times, doing 3 to 4 mini-research projects.  After gathering their information, they used Prezi to put it showcase their learning and how the systems were nested within each other.

2nd Grade: Biomimicry Thinglinks

The second graders have been hard at work creating Thinglinks to advertise their Biomimicry Invention.  They used a whole host of apps in their projects: Comic Book, ChatterKid, Educreations, PicCollage, and of course, Thinglink.  I love the individuality of each child’s work.  A few projects are not quite finished, but I went ahead and posted everyone’s.  As they add more to their project you will see the added tags show up on their Thinglink.

We have a Thinglinks inside of Thinglinks. 🙂 Click on the tag next to your child’s name and it will take you to their Thinglink.  Click on all of their various tags to learn about their invention and which animal inspired it.

The kids also started researching a famous bridge for our last project of the year.  I can hardly believe that we only have one class left!

First Grade: Australian Animals

Over the last couple of weeks, the 1st graders have been busy researchers.  They each chose an animal native to Australia and used two websites to gather information about what their animal.  Everything from their animal’s habitat, to their food habits, to unusual habits.

After gathering their information, they were ready to create a project to share their knowledge with their classmates.  Each student was given an iPad and we discussed how we could find a picture for their animal.  Most of the kids knew that they could “GOOGLE IT”, but none knew that many of the images found on the internet are copyrighted. So, I started with a mini-lesson on how to use search tools to make sure they are finding free to use images.  We started by googling our animal.  Ishowed them that we could modify our search so that we were only seeing images, by clicking the IMAGES button below the search bar.  I then introduced them to the button SEARCH TOOLS, which allowed the kids to see the choice USAGE RIGHTS.  The first graders needed a picture that they were allowed to reuse and MODIFY.  We learned that modify means to make changes and since we were going to make our animals talk and be a little silly, we needed to choose images we are allowed to reuse with modification.  After clicking on this option we now were able to choose the picture we wanted and add it to our camera roll.

Next we opened a new tool on the iPad, called Chatterpix.  The kids inserted their saved image into this tool, added a mouth and recorded their animal’s script.  Note, before they were allowed to start using Chatterpix they had to have a completed script with factual information about their animal.  I hope you enjoy their work below.

Quokkas by Jovanah

Goannas by Trevor

Marsupial Moles by Aubrey

Tasmanian Tiger by Emily

Tasmanian Tiger by Ethan

Tasmanian Devil by Hudson

Tasmanian Devil by Justin


Cuscus by Sofia

1st Grade: Animal Research

In first grade we are learning that the world is full of discoveries, some that are new to us and some that are new to the world.  Last week the children researched an animal that was new to them using Pebble Go.  This week they took their information and compiled it in a non-fiction story format.  They used an app called MyStory and did a terrific job.  Enjoy their work below.

3rd Grade: More Leo

This week the kids started their morning by reading some mirror writing, to get a feel for what it would be like to read Leonardo da Vinci’s notes.  The kids had a good time trying to figure out the phrases.  They then chose one phrase and created a cartoon that demonstrated the meaning of the saying.

We took a brief break from Leo to learn another legal move in Hands On Equations.  I love that the 3rd graders enjoy HOE as much as I do.  Everytime I start a lesson there is a resounding “YES!” from many of the kids.  We are nearly done with level 1 and will then start in on some tricky verbal problems.  Who knew algebra could be so fun?

To celebrate the wonderful Thanksgiving Feast put on by our awesome cafeteria, I invited the kids to eat their lunch in our room and watch an animated movie about Leonardo.  We all had a great time, and learned a little more about this amazing thinker.

After lunch the kids broke up into groups to complete their Educreations on their assigned chapter from Who Was Leonardo da Vinci?  The kids will share their video with the kids from our class and from two other GT programs in our district.  Rather than read the whole book, fellow GT students will be their teacher.  It should be a great experience.  Here are the chapters that my students covered:

Tremendous Thursday by Jackie and Rylee

Thanks to our Student Bloggers, Rylee and Jackie for sharing a few tidbits about our day.

Today in G.T we learned lesson 3 of H.O.E. We did verbal problems.We also did bridge research and 2 of us made a bridge movie.We had lots of fun. We did some research on our not-so-mystery-person Leonardo Da Vinci.He is very talented.I just love his art and music.


Today in G.T. we did our bridge probe about our bridge that we researched.  A probe is a small report. We ate lunch in the classroom and talked about our old book we read for the book club.  It was called The Homework Machine.  We also ate delicious brownies and we started our 3rd lesson of H.O.E. it was fun. We did a pretest on brains and at the end of the day we got a new book for our book club it’s called Frindle, it’s about a boy that created a new name for a pen
called’’’Frindle.’’’ I am really excited to read it.

We have three students who have finished their Research Probes on their bridge.  They used an app called Educreations to showcase their bridge.   Enjoy.





Marvelous Monday by Kaylee H.

Hello visitors.  My name is Kaylee.  Today, GT 2nd Grade is learning about biomimicry.  What is biomimicry, you ask?  Well, biomimcry is where you scrutinize animals to make an invention to make the world better.  For example, people looked at butterfly wings to make paint and geckos for tape that feels not sticky, but is very sticky.  I researched an orca for my invention.  Did you know an orcas tooth is 3 inches  long? Crazy, right?

                                                                                          Your friend,


                                                                                           2nd Grade GTer

Bridges: Part 1

In 3rd grade we have entered the exciting and fascinating world of bridges. 2 weeks ago the kids took a pre-test to showcase their current knowledge and we have been filling the gaps ever since.

Last week the kids were introduced to the three main types of bridges: Beam, Arch, and Suspension.  Through some video clips and the Building Big website they were able to get some rudimentary information on each main category of bridge.  The kids then set off to use K’Nex to build bridges.  Each group was given a different type of bridge to focus on.  Over the next few weeks we will learn more about each type of bridge and why one is chosen over another.  They will learn about forces and how that impacts bridge building as well.  Below you can enjoy pictures of the kids in action.

Building Bridges on PhotoPeach

Punished:  We just finished our novel, Punished last week.  The kids and I have had a terrific time playing with words.  Puns, oxymorons, anagrams, and palindromes have been great fun.  This week I had the kids create a poem, story, rap, or song using at least 5 palindromes.  They all did a great job.  Here is a small taste of what they created:

Palindrome Poem

By Rylee Davis

I was walking outside in the dark, stormy sun.

I said to my mom, “Is supper almost done?”

Then mama said to me, “Yes, Hannah, darling dear.”

Then I heard a quick step right down at our pier.

I peep open the door in a subtle, quiet way.

Then I look who’s out there, it’s my dad, John Ray.

Then I gave him a big hug and mama did too.

THen we lived happily after with my brand new shoes.

Guest Blogger: Renee

I am thrilled to have our first guest blogger of the school year.  Our first of hopefully many guest bloggers is a 5th grade GT student.  Enjoy.


  Renee G.

I am an 11 year old girl in the 5th grade.I watched a webinar about Robert Nay in G.T. who was the 14 year old who created bubble ball. He inspired my to create two games of my own. You can play them at the links below.

Game 1

Game 2

When I was with my father; I watched a program about Nikola Tesla V.S. Thomas Edison in the stock markets. It inspired my to create the biography from the link below.

Magnificent Monday…

Monday was a great day with my enthusiastic first and second graders.  Below is a quick look into my time with each group.

First Grade:

In first grade we are going to focus on Discoveries.  On Monday we started by brainstorming anything that comes to mind when we think about the word Discoveries.  The kids started brainstorming independently as a pre-assessment.  This allowed me to see each student’s starting point.  We then shared our thinking and I added their ideas to a large chart.  I was quite impressed with their thinking.  I think the kids were surprised with all of the different ideas that were shared.  After we discussed their understanding of Discoveries.  We talked about how we can discover new things about ourselves all the time.  The kids drew a picture of themselves and shared different discoveries they have made over their last six or seven years.  Enjoy their work below.

Discoveries on PhotoPeach

**Coming Next Week: The kids started writing Discovery Poems.  We will finish them and share Monday.

Second Grade:

In second grade we have been building our understanding of the word STRUCTURE.  This week the kids began to research their first structure: Tunnels.  They were broken into groups and each group was to research one section on tunnels, using a wonderful website called Building Big.  The kids will share their learning next week and we will dive a little deeper into the world of tunnels.  This will lead to our study on Biomimicry as we think about where humans looked to learn about tunnel building: nature.   Below are some pictures of the kids doing their research and creating their posters.