Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Panda's Perfect Plurals!

Mrs. Yollis' class has been working recently on learning to spell 
plural nouns correctly!

There are so many rules about plurals to follow!
Did you know that plural nouns never use apostrophes?
Did you know that not all plurals have an s added to them?

  Panda and Hoppy have some plural spelling rules to share with you:

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1. When a singular noun ends with x, ch, sh, or s, add es
Examples: box - boxes              bush - bushes
2. When a singular noun ends in a consonant and y, change the y to an i and add es.  
                 Examples: penny - pennies         fly - flies
3. To some nouns ending in f, simply add s.
                 Examples: chief - chiefs             bluff - bluffs
4. To other nouns ending in f or fe, change the f or fe to v and add  es
                 Examples: wolf - wolves            leaf - leaves
5. Some singular nouns form their plurals in special ways. There is no rule for these, so you just have to memorize them!
                 Examples: tooth - teeth               mouse - mice
*     *     *     *     *
Hoppy challenges you to use three different plurals in a comment!
Here is Hoppy's example:
Dear Class,
Yesterday three flies landed on my lilypad. I tried so hard to eat them, but they got away!  I wonder how many of you children would want to eat flies instead of candies on Halloween? 

After missing the flies, I hopped off my lilypad into the water where I saw some geese paddling by. They were carrying some leaves back to their nests. I swam along, so I could say hello to their babies!

I'm looking forward to reading your comments full of positively perfect plurals!

Ribbit and regards, 

P. S. Be sure to use html code to make your plurals bold!

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Statue of Liberty!

Mrs. Yollis visited the Statue of Liberty when she was in New York for the Google Teacher Academy. (Here is a link to resources from the Google Teacher Academy.)

Today, students looked up facts about the Statue of Liberty, and we "jigsawed"  the facts together in this post! The text is a great complement to Mrs. Yollis' photographs!

The Statue of Liberty is a patriotic symbol of freedom.

Visitors from all over the world come to Liberty Island to view The Statue of Liberty.
Tourist must pay a fee to board a ship that will take them to Liberty Island.

The tourists approach Liberty Island.

Tourists disembark the ship on a gangway
(Can you tell what disembark means? Use the context clues!)


  Liberty Enlightening the World!

(That is her real name!)

Lady Liberty, as she is nicknamed, is about 305 feet tall from the ground to the torch. She was a gift of friendship from the French. The Statue of Liberty is a symbol for freedom.

Many immigrants passed Lady Liberty on their way to Ellis Island. Ellis Island was an immigration station. It is now a national monument.

What does the word immigrant mean? 

What is a monument

There were many park rangers at the Statue of Liberty. Park rangers share factual information, give tours, teach classes, and make sure tourist follow the rules of the park. Park rangers wear uniforms and have badges. The national park system has an online web ranger site! 

Park Rangers at the National Monument

Here, a park ranger is leading a class. Read her document about Alexandre Eiffel! 

The statue has an iron framework on the inside, but the sculpture is made of copper. The copper is approximately two pennies thick.

The Statue of Liberty is a beautiful statue from any angle. 

The Statue of Liberty has many special features.

Each feature has its own subheading


The crown has seven rays. Each rays represents one of the seven continents. 

The crown will be open for visitors at the end of October!


The torch symbolizes liberty enlightening the world. Liberty means freedom.  

The Statue of Liberty's right arm is 42 feet in length!

In 1916, flood lights were installed inside the torch.  In 1984, the torch was changed. Now light reflects OFF the gold torch rather than having lights inside the torch. 

The ranger said the torch is covered in gold leaf. 

Sadly, no visitors are allowed in the torch. Read below to learn more about the torch.
(Click photo to enlarge.) 


(Click to enlarge.)


The Statue of Liberty is dressed in a Greek robe. The robe is a symbol that Greece was where democracy started.

What is democracy

Do you see the panels of copper that were put together?
She is made of 300 copper pieces.  

Because she was closed, Mrs. Yollis could not get a photo of the broken chains around her feet. The broken chains symbolize freedom. 


The tablet has July 4, 1776 on it. That represents America's birthday! 

The numbers are in Roman numerals. 
Leave a comment with 1776 in Roman numerals!

Roman numeral key:   

M=1,000   D=500   C=100   L=50   X=10   V=5   I=1

Mrs. Yollis was thrilled that she got to see this powerful American symbol! She was a little disappointed that she could not go in, but is happy for the people who will get to go inside when she reopens on October 28. 

Can you add any new facts about the Statue of Liberty?

Have you ever visited this national monument? 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Scooter's ABCs of Bully Prevention!

Today we had a talented and inspiring guest at our school, Scooter Christensen of the Harlem Globetrotters!

Photo by Mrs. Ranney
Scooter performed some impressive and entertaining basketball tricks.

Scooter Christensen is an expert basketball spinner. In fact, Scooter holds two Guinness World Records. One for spinning a basketball on his nose and one for spinning a basketball on his head.

Although everyone enjoyed watching Scooter, he came to the school with an important message about bullying prevention. Scooter said that bullying is wrong and that we need to end it. He taught us his ABCs to prevent bullying.

Here are Scooter's ABCs of Bullying Prevention:

A is for action. Take action if you are being bullied or you see someone being bullied. Go immediately to an adult who will help. 


B is for bravery. Be brave when faced with a bully. 


C is for compassion. Show concern for others. Be a friend and help one another.

What did you learn from Scooter? 

What did you enjoy most about the assembly?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Staff Development Day: Blogging and the Google Teacher Academy

I am a teacher and a life-long learner. 

On Monday,  I am presenting a session for my district's Staff Development Day. 
I will be sharing about blogging and what I learned at the  Google Teacher Academy. 

I will also be learning from my district colleagues. (kol • eegs) 
Colleague is a fancy word meaning the people I work with.

It is exciting to learn new things!

*     *     *     *     *

Here are some links and resources I'd like to share!

• Blogging Resources •

Click here for Mrs. Yollis' Educational Blogging Wiki.

Click here
 to learn about teaching commenting skills. 
This video was created by my students to help teach this very important blogging skill.

Click here to read a blog post summarizing the ISTE 2012  presentation:  
Flattening Classroom Walls With Blogging and Global Collaboration. 
Kathleen Morris and I presented this session together. 

Click here to watch a webinar of the ISTE 2012 presentation:  
Flattening Classroom Walls With Blogging and Global Collaboration.  
Kathleen Morris and I recorded this session together. 

*     *     *     *     *

• Google Teacher Academy •

My colleagues at the Google Teacher Academy in New York City!

 Team Swan and our leader (in blue), Kern Kelly.

The Google Teacher Academy (GTA) was an amazing professional development experience for me. Although I learned about many innovative tools and techniques that I will apply in my elementary classroom, the friendships and connections I made in the GTA community are what I value the most. The GTA community is a forward thinking group of passionate educators who are quick to lend a helping hand.

 I strongly encourage other educators to apply to the GTA.

Here is my one minute video that was a part of the application process.
The topic is Motivation and Learning

 I learned so much at the Google Teacher Academy in NYC! 

Here are some projects and tools I'd like to share with you.

1. Somebody's Hero Project

Somebody's Hero is a wonderful community project launched at GTANY by lead leaders Amy Mayer and Cory Pavicich.
Individuals, classes, schools and/or communities can submit a local hero and then students can document their hero using digital media tools. Ms. Mayer and Mr. Pavicich have set up a Google Site template for you to use in your community. Each local community can take a copy of the site template to use, then they can contact Ms. Mayer or Mr. Pavicich and they will add the community to the main site.

2. YouTube

James Sanders and Jim Sills presented a wonderful session about using YouTube to enhance learning. They recommended using videos to hook students, to start a discussion, to flip the classroom, and to document learning. In YouTube I can:
  • Create and share PLAYLISTS to organize my videos 
  • Search videos and/or playlists using COMMAS (examples:  polygons, elementary   or   fractions, playlist)
  • Scroll to the bottom of YouTube to turn on and lock SAFETY MODE
  • Create using:   http://www.youtube.com/create
  • Edit inside of YouTube using the VIDEO EDITOR!  (www.youtube.com/editor)

  • Add a Chrome extension that will remove all ads and comments. Here is a link to the Chrome extension:  YouTube options for Chrome. (I love this!)

My Asia Video Without YouTube Options for Google Chrome:

My Asia Video With the YouTube Options for Google Chrome!  :-)

3. Tech Sherpas

Google Certified Teachers are asked to create an action plan after the Google Teacher Academy. Kern Kelly's  9th grade students, who presented at the GTA, heard about the action plan and decided to do a student action plan. Check out their weekly  Tech Sherpas project! Submit a tech question and they'll help you! They meet every Tuesday at 3:00 EST.

4. Researching and Google Docs

5.  Google Apps Scripts in Spreadsheets

There were many useful scripts that were mentioned!
 Check out what's available in Spreadsheets: Tools>Script Gallery

Useful links for scripts:

6.  The Google Art Project

Visitors to the Google Art Project site will have a wonderful time exploring museums around the world! After selecting a museum, or the White House, choose "Explore the Museum" or "View the Artwork". There are many drop-down menus (and side information bars) to navigate around. You can even create and share your own collections online! The Google Art Project can be used on a Google Hangout and someone could give a tour! Wow! 

*     *     *     *     *

Did you find a useful resource here?  

Can you share a technology resource that would be useful in an elementary classroom?

Students, do you like using technology in the classroom? Why or why not? 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Skip Counting: Charting Patterns

Second graders have  been learning about number patterns. 

When we checked out our blogging buddies blog in New Zealand, we were pleasantly surprised to see that they were studying patterns just like us!

 Here is a video Mrs McKenzie's students made to share some patterns they'd discovered!

They made number pattern posters. We loved the ideas and have recorded our learning as well!

Thanks, Open the Door to B4, for the inspiration!

Here is our video!  

Can you answer any of the questions from our video?

Do you see any patterns in your home? 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Celebrating Traditions!

This week Mrs. Yollis' class is starting 
a new unit in Language Arts
called Celebrating Traditions!

 A tradition is something that family, friends,
or another group of people has done for many years and continues to do on a regular basis.

 *     *     *     *     *

The story for this week is "The Keeping Quilt".
 In the first story, "The Keeping Quilt," by Patricia Polacco, the author retells the story of her family's handmade quilt. In the story, a Russian immigrant mother and family arrive in the United States. She plans to make a quilt from a basket of old clothes, telling her daughter, "It will be like having the family in backhome Russia dance around us at night."  The quilt is passed along from mother to daughter for four generations. It becomes a Sabbath tablecloth and a wedding canopy. It even becomes a blanket for new generations of children. "The Keeping Quilt" is a heart-warming story about one family's tradition.
*     *     *     *     *

In the comment section, please 
share a tradition your family celebrates. 

It can be an annual party, a holiday, or any traditional event.

Please include details about: special foods,  decorations, songs, and/or activities.
 Your comment should be 4 to 6 sentences long. 
 Students: Your comment is due on Friday, October 19!