Saturday, June 13, 2015

Pools, Pancakes, Books and Goodbyes

 The Oginsky Legacy...I have had the pleasure to have ALL of these amazing children in my class over the years.  When David was in my class (he was first!!), Josef was born a few weeks into our school year.  Now, David is graduating from Skyline High School and Josef graduated from my 4th grade class.  In between...David and Josef...Maria, Miriam and John (for third AND fourth!).  I will miss this family, but can't wait to see where they all land!  
 Germany is calling.  They want Sandy back.  She has made a lasting impression on SO many people here and I hope she comes back to visit (per Michigan law).  We will miss you!
 Best.  Gifts.  Ever. 
What an amazing year!  You have WONDERFUL kids and I love them ever so much!  I was lucky enough to be a part of their every day lives and I had a blast!  We did a LOT this year and I am so proud of each and every one of your children.  We had a wonderful time at the pool on Thursdaythe weather cooperated(ish) and they all had a great time.  The pancake breakfast was a BIG hitand totally DELICOIUS!  Thank you so much for all of your help.  MMmmmMMM! 
Thank you SO much for the amazing end of the year treasures.  I am in love with this book.  Your kids wrote amazing Student of the Day letters to me and will cherish them forever.  I hope you enjoyed Student of the Day as much as I did!  I love writing letters to them and enjoy (despite crying every single day!) reading YOUR wonderful letters too.  You are a fantastic group of people and I loved being a part of your world.  I will always be there for your kids!  For life!

Have an amazing summer!  Don’t forget to WRITE me! 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

At the end of every year, I assign an end of the year homework assignment that asks kids to create something using recycled materials.  We have spent a fair amount of time talking about recycling and the Haisley Green Team helps to make our school EMERALD GREEN!  Yay!  I bring samples of cool things that will get their creative juices flowing and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE what they come up with.  It’s wonderful to see their personalities and creativity pop!  Your children are simply amazing.  Bravo!

Here’s the assignment (and the results!):
You are nearly fifth grade students.  Thank you for a job well done.  I am very proud of all of you.  Please read the directions carefully!

You have been asked to create an object made from RECYLCED material.  The object you create must follow the rules.  You can use any kind of materials you can get your hands on - please ask permission from your parents before you use things in your house!
On a piece of LINED NOTEBOOK PAPER write (using your best handwriting) the following:
  I used the following materials: 
  I used these materials because:
  This is how I made my project:
  Recycling is important because:
You will present your final product to the class and give an ORAL presentation.  Don’t forget to practice!

Here are some guidelines:
  Your CREATION must be made from recycled materials.  Think about the things I showed you as an example and create something COOL!
  Create something decorative, useful or fun!  It should serve some sort of purpose.
  You must turn this assignment in ON Tuesday, June 10th .
  Your final product must be 3D.
  You CANNOT have help from an adult. 
(This is all about YOU!)
  You are free to use ANY materials you want.

Think creativly!  Do you want your creation to be useful?  Do you want someone to wear it?  Will it be used as a decoration?  Does it serve a purpose?  Does it solve a problem?  Could it be sold?  Who would want to buy it?  Create something THOUGHTFUL and MEANINGFUL. 

Your hard work will be evident.  If you don’t put effort into the proect, that will be evident too. 

Don’t forgetHAVE A TON OF FUN! 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Our Final STEM Activity of the Year!

 Bravo!  We love doing STEM activities!  They are SO much fun, kids learn a LOT, and they are buzzing with excitement the ENTIRE time we are working on the activity.  For our last activity, we created a parachute for an egg that we will launch from the playground structure. 
Day One
We watched videos of how to create a parachute and ways to protect the egg.  We discussed problems they could encounter and the materials they would be able to use.  (Thank you for sending things to school!)  They were really excited and loved watching the videos.  We also talked about doing STEM activities this summer.  There are a million ideas out there and many of them don’t require a lot of preparation or materials.  We also found a great resource on line called  They have a TON of cool projects and helpful videos!
Day Two

Creating our parachutes and egg container.  On their own, I asked them to think about what they wanted to do for this project and let them brainstorm for ten minutes.  I then partnered them up (with our cool phone app) and set them loose to make both their parachute and egg container.  They all used the same garbage bags, but modified the shape and structure.  Some partners used four strings, while other used up to eight.  They were round, oblong, square, and rectangle.  It was interesting to see how much variety there was in each design.  They could only use five pieces of material for their carrier, making them really think about what was important and how to use their resources.  Bubble wrap, packing peanuts (1 cup of peanuts = 1 ), Scrap Box items, and tissue were among the most popular items.  The partners talked, tested, experimented, and practiced launching their parachutes.  The class was BUZZING.  It was evident that this was not their first STEM activity and that they were using all that they had learned in the previous activities to make this work.  Patience and cooperation was in full force.  There were great ideas bouncing off of the walls of room 306.  I loved watching every minute of it!

Day Threeit’s time to launch!
This is a test...this is my first time attempting to link a video!  Here's hoping it works!  =)  If it doesn't connect you directly, you can copy and paste the link.

Ella and Jacob:
JaVonte and Jane:
Drake, Shantell and Jeffrey:
Adam and Arjun:
Nico and Lexi:
Colin and Ashlee:
Richie and Elise:
Kristina and Miles:
Josef and Annalise:
Dorien and Max:

YahOooOoOoo!  We launched our parachutes and eggs off of the slide on the upper el playground.  Every single egg survived.  One broke but that was only because the tape came away from the egg containeronce fixed, it survived without a hitch.  Yay!  They were so excited to see their parachutes and it was so cool to see how different (and similar) their designs were.  They come away from these lessons having learned a lot, not only from what they did, but from what others do as well.  They notice things.  They figure out ways they could do it better and differently next time.  They talk to each other.  They problem solve.  They are remarkable.  I am really impressed with how far they’ve come!  STEM activities rule!  Try to do some over the summer! 

What we LEARNED!

I am so proud of every single one of my sweet chiddlers.  They did an amazing job this year and learned SO much during our STEM activities!  YahOOoOOoOoO!