Sunday, February 1, 2015

January bites the dust... Why hello there, February.

It's Superbowl Sunday. You've got guacamole to make and I've got Downton Abbey to watch. Let's keep things brief, all right?

Friday's Genius Hour was extra special because we were joined by Sierra's mom Lianne and the 3D printer that Sierra and her sister Sage raised money for with an indiegogo campaign last summer. While I worked in the classroom on other Genius Hour and SCR&P projects with students, Lianne was able to lead a group of students in learning TinkerCAD and designing pieces that the 3D printer printed right then and there. The Petrocellis have been gracious enough to lend us the 3D printer for the next couple of Friday afternoons and resident experts Sierra and Quincy will be able to help other students learn to use this powerful and uber-fun piece of technology.

Lianne's visit got me thinking... Who else out there has some fun expertise and a little bit of time to share on a groovy Friday afternoon? I know that George and Tristan are looking for some guidance on building their submarine; Carly, Morgan, and Morgan are nearing the finish line on their carousel; Aaron is trying to fix a broken RC car; and I just issued a new makerspace challenge designed to help everyone get their steampunk on (Aidan, Grayson, and Stephanie are very intrigued by this)... I assure you that your time won't be wasted if you swing by to share your talents with our innovators. If tech isn't your thing, don't worry. I think we have an audience for lo-tech time passers too. Are you a quilter, knitter, sewer, woodworker, scrapbooker, designer, or otherwise worldly and wise? Let me know and we'll see about having you stop by to ignite some creative fires here in Room 110.

This week we will get back on the Word Study horse, with weekly meetings based on spelling data I collected in the waning days of 2014. Word Study will be contained to Monday afternoon Literacy Workshop time. Book Clubs are humming along and we are going to spend the week doing some crash courses in The Great Depression and World War II to keep a thread running through our study of Human Rights but not miss out on these giant events in 20th century American history. The kids have been making fantastic headway on their SCR&P projects too, and are overcoming a huge logistical challenge by creating blogs for their work and figuring out the "how?" of their collaboration requirement. These projects are hugely rewarding for everyone who is actively involved in them!

As you know, I will be on Jeopardy! on Friday evening, February 6th. All week long at lunch, teachers will be hosting Jeopardy! games in the cafeteria to get everyone on board for this exciting event. I have a feeling our "30 Schools in 30 Days" feature will be airing on WCAX to coincide with my Jeopardy! game, so I'll keep you posted if I hear anything from Keith McGilvery over at the station.

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