5th Grade Gets Bigger and Better!

Our 5th grade GT class has 18 students this year, which is pretty big for a GT class.  I anticipated a huge mess when we started working on our Cardboard Challenge – and I was right – but I didn’t anticipate the fabulous synergy I encountered! Despite the large group of people, I heard no arguments and everyone seemed to be collaborating fantastically well.  I was really encouraged to hear their great ideas and see the amazing products starting to come together.

Like 3rd and 4th grades, the 5th graders also helped to narrow down what matters to them so we can figure out which charity will benefit from the proceeds of the Cardboard Challenge.  After getting feedback from all 3 grade levels, we have decided that the three most important topics are: families in need, animals that are abused, and pollution.  5th grade and the Hidden Forest Maker Club (who is also participating in the Cardboard Challenge) both voted for animals.  After I tally up 2nd-4th grade votes, we will see which one wins and research some charities related to that important concern.

5th Grade Character Floor Plans

Floor Plan

The 5th graders created Character Floor plans, and chose either Thinglink or a video creation tool on the iPads to explain their designs.  If the student created a video, I have linked it to Aurasma so that the floor plan can be scanned at home in order to see the video.  I have included links to their explanations below:

Anna (also linked in Aurasma)







Paige (also linked in Aurasma)

5th Grade Considers “The Big Idea” of GT

This blog post is brought to you by Aubrie.  We will have one more blog post (hopefully later this week) sharing the Thinglinks and videos students created for their Character Trait Floorplans.)

Today was our last day in G.T., and we were very busy doing an array of activities.

We created slideshows about the meaning of G.T. using quotes we found on Pinterest, and presented them to the class. We were also able to add music and pictures.

We connected to a new group on Edmodo that is just for 5th graders that are going to middle school. This way, we can still talk about G.T. and other related topics.

Mrs. Eichholz got a sphero with the great big check she got for being an *amazing* teacher, and we all got a packet of papers about how to use the sphero. We had to complete a challenging challenge with with the sphero: programming it to follow our instructions. If we correctly programmed it, we got to do Maker’s Studio.

We also did our report card self-assesments, where we rate ourselves on various things, like working well with others.

Lastly, we watched two videos, *(attached below)* one about Kid President and another one about kindness.

Have a great summer!


A Pep Talk from Kid President to You – YouTube

Life Vest Inside – Kindness Boomerang – “One Day” – YouTube



5th Grade Does an Aurasma Scavenger Hunt

This blog post is brought to you by Aubrie.  I didn’t really get a check for being a great teacher 😉 It’s a check for money to purchase more materials for our Maker Studio.  You can see this post for more information.

In G.T. today we were able to do Genius Hour, and Kris, Connor, Cooper, and Harrison presented their projects. Cooper and Harrison presented about rare or uncommon sea creatures. They made a scavenger hunt, but instead of using clues, they told everyone the general area where they were hidden, such as the playground or the library. We would scan them with Aurasma, and a video would pop up. The video contained facts about the fish and their names.

Kris and Connor made a pop quiz with random facts, like- What is the atomic weight  of uranium? or What note does a car horn beep on? They also used fun sound effects whenever someone was right or wrong. Alexia will present next time, and her presentation will be the last one.

We watched a video about an app called Floors, and got to play it as well.

Mrs. Eichholz bought an app called Tangible Play, or Osmo. Since we were one of the first people to test the game, we got a thank you card from the people who invented it, and a $50 discount, if we want to buy the game!

Mrs. Eichholz also got a check for $2,129.40, for being such a great teacher!!

 Only 1 more G.T. class left!! (Oh no!)

Come back next week!

 Photo May 22, 10 33 43 AM

5th Grade Learns About Grover Cleveland and Lego Stop Motion

This post is brought to you by Aubrie.  

In G.T. today we were able to do Genius Hour, and Aubrie (That’s me) presented a project about Grover Cleveland. I traced him back to 1540, and made it into a game. Alex and Kenneth also presented their project about Lego Stopmotion, which is where you take a lot of pictures of one thing moving, and you put it together to make a video. They made a scavenger hunt to look for pieces of paper with Lego facts on it and made a quiz about it. They also made a Lego Stopmotion video and presented it.

We watched 3 videos as well *(attached below!)*, and talked about the meanings. (Although, 2 aren’t on here).

Lastly, I bring you bad news: *Only 2 more G.T. classes left!!*


See you next week!

Careful canine reaches for ball – YouTube

Axtell Park Awesomeness

The Time You Have in Jellybeans

5th Grade Begins to Put Together Their Dream Teams

This blog post was brought to you by Aubrie.

Today in G.T. we got to do Genius Hour, and Paige presented her project about Albino animals. She made two videos, and presented them to us. Aubrie (that’s me!) will also present next time we go to G.T.

We got to do Maker’s Studio, and Mrs. Eichholz got a new app for us to play. It is called ‘Floors’, and you can make your own video game using symbols in it. The app works on IPads, and they might extend it to other devices, but for now, try it out!

We worked on our character trait floor plans, and are working on connecting them with Tellegami or Puppet Pals.

We are also working on a project called ‘Dream Team’. For now, we are just working on finding two people who have shown a good example of a habit, and explaining it.

Lastly, I have bad news. *Only 3 more G.T. classes left!!*

So do something awesome! Watch the video attached below to inspire you.

Come back next week!

5th Grade Gets a Lesson on Anne Frank

image from: annefrank.org

image from: annefrank.org

Two of the girls used their Genius Hour time to learn more about Anne Frank. Their presentation included a scavenger hunt that took students around the school to learn, and then an assessment back in our classroom.  As we reflected about the lesson, the students appeared to have learned quite a bit, and we had a valuable discussion about the persecution of the Jews during World War II.

Another valuable discussion that we had was during a Socratic Dialogue about how to keep schools safer.  Having just finished reading The Giver, which brings up the question of how much freedom we are willing to give up to be safe, this topic seemed to be very pertinent after last week’s soft lockdown.  The consensus of the group seemed to be that they do not feel our freedoms should be restricted any more, even for the sake of safety.

I was very impressed by the student contributions to the “Scribble Challenge” posed by an elementary school in Minnesota in which we are participating. I’ve included some of the creative entries below! (Remember that you can click on each thumbnail to view a larger version.)

5th Grade Learns the Meaning of “Uffdah”

This blog post, by Aubrie, is for last Thursday, April 17th.

Today in G.T. we spent a lot of time on our “Leadership Trait Home”. We are focusing on adding little online titles and explanations for why we put the rooms where we did.

We were able to do Genius Hour, and Lainey and Anna are going to present next time!

We also watched a lot of videos about engineering and chain reactions. *(attached below!)*

We also have contacted a G.T. class in Minnesota, and have learned a word from them. We agreed to try and use “Uffdah” 5 times this week if they use “Ya’ll” 5 times. *( Uffdah is used as a complaint, exclamation etc.)*

Lastly, we got to do Maker’s studio, and we have discovered even more things to do with the Makey Makey.

America’s Got Talent 2013 – Sprice Engineering an Extreme …

This is Your Brain on Engineering (GoldieBlox Easter PSA …

The Page Turner – YouTube

5th Grade Works on Character Floor Plans

This post is brought to you by Aubrie.  I also included some pictures from last week’s Rackspace field trip.

Today in G.T. we talked a lot about character, and what traits you have. We all did an activity where we wrote down five traits we have, and then we made a floor plan, with the traits as rooms.

We got to do Genius Hour, and the evil challenges as well. Kris and Connor did their Genius Hour presentation about airplanes, and several people will present in the next few weeks.

We also did Maker’s Studio, and Mrs. Eichholz gained another cool gadget, called the “Makey Makey”. The Makey Makey can make anything into a computer arrow, piano, or bongo. We experimented with Playdoh, bananas, and even people. *(There is a video of the tutorial attached below)*

Come back next week!

MaKey MaKey – An Invention Kit for Everyone – YouTube

5th Grade Reflects on The Giver

Today’s blog post is brought to you by Aubrie.

In G.T. today we Did Genius Hour, and 3 or 4 of us will be ready to present within the next  2  weeks! The challenges are still as cruel as ever, and Genius Hour is still as fun as ever!

We watched a video by the founders of a college (actually, they are not the founders, but one of them helped develop the Scratch programming language), and they have the same idea as *Rackspace: everyone works together and is treated equally.

*(The field trip is on April 4th!)

Mrs. Eichholz created centers for us to do as well, including the Cubelets , Little Bits,  3Doodler, and an assortment of fun games!

Lastly, Mrs. Eichholz made questions for us to answer via Ipad about “The Giver”.

Come back next week!