NASA’s Mission to Jupiter with Bill Nye

I love space and I love Bill Nye (If my Grandma heard me say that she would have gotten very upset and said, “Noooo! You like space and you only like Bill Nye. You LOVE your grandma!)

So, when I saw this new compilation of Bill Nye videos on NASA’s mission to Jupiter, I put on the popcorn, the fuzzy rabbit slippers and settled down to enjoy! By the way…classic line in one of the videos…”If you are anything like me, and I know I am…”

Here they are! (If you need fuzzy bunny slippers let me know!):

What’s Up in Grade 4? (Psst! There’s Videos!)

So, I wanted to share some things that we have been doing in school lately. It’s been awhile and, while I am sure you have been hearing lots and lots about school at home (especially about my evil twin brother, Bob), I thought I would share some things with you. But don’t think that this is just for the parents. Au contraire, mon frere! Gather the kids and check it out!

In Language Arts, we have been doing a author study on the really cool and very interesting author, Chris Van Allsberg. He writes these fascinating books that are fantasy based. As part of this, we have been learning that fantasy books have three characteristics: they are usually based in the present, they take place in normal places but strange things happen and they have an element of magic in them like animals that talk. We have read a number of his books in class and have also talked about theme where the author writes a book to share a main idea. This is a tougher concept for the students to grasp as it is not very easily discerned. However, the books are a lot of fun with just enough of a twist to them to keep the kids interested. After the Thanksgiving break we will be starting our Home Reading program.

In Science, as you probably know, our class is doing a unit on Animal Habitats and Communities. As part of this unit, students are going to be assembling terrariums. The terrariums are homes for various plants and animals that typically live in or on the forest floor. Observing what happens in the terrariums gives students a chance to learn about the habitats and adaptations of animals that live in this type of environment as well as gain knowledge about the role these plants and animals play in the larger ecosystem.

We need your help in making this the best learning experience possible. Your child will need a variety of supplies in order to build their terrariums. The supplies they will need are inexpensive but I wanted to give you a heads up so you will have time to collect the items to send with your child. As you collect the items, you can send them with your child so they are ready to go once we begin to build the terrariums.

For Tuesday, Oct. 15th

Your child will need:

  • A small trowel
  • Boots
  • A small plant
  • Small amount of grass seed or birdseed
  • 1 small plant such as strawberry plant, sweet alyssum, violets or other small garden plants which you can get fairly cheaply at Home depot, Walmart, Rona or a garden place.

We started today looking at the soil that your child brought in. We found some very cool things in the soil which were unexpected. We will talking more about soil and the importance of soil in the food chain, setting up an experiment with soil and starting our Terrarium habitats on Tuesday.

Here are some pictures from our look at soil:

Speaking of habitats, we have learned a lot about habitats and I found this cool video that I thought everyone would enjoy!

Finally, I found this awesome video on Science experiments you can do at home…and it has Oobleck in it!!! I don’t think you are ever too old for Sesame Street, especially when it’s done this way!

A Couple of Cool Science Things

Welcome back, everyone!

I hope everyone had a great time over the Spring Break. I thought to start off this last sprint to the finish line, I would put a couple of really cool space items on the blog just to make your mind boggle!

First of all, here is a video taken from the satellite, Voyager 1 showing a time lapse of Jupiter. If you watch closely, you can see a couple of the moons float by.


Next, take a close look at this picture.







This image is taken from the Vista telescope in Chile. It shows a very, very, very, very, very, very small part of the night sky (less than 1%). Would you have thought that this one tiny little picture show over

200,000 galaxies?

Finally, have fun with this moon lander game! And you land the rocket safely?


Fun Science Pages

Last week, we had some great fun putting together some models of Mars Landers. We were talking about how scientists use models to help study things that are way too big to study up close. For examples, planets are too huge and far away to study up close, so we use models to help learn about how they work. Afterwards we made some Mars Landers as models and launched them from up in the High School lobby. It was great fun. You can see the pictures below.

I have also included a copy of the model. If you want to make another one, just print out a copy and make your own. I would suggest you print it on heavy paper so that it is not as floppy.

A Little Canada, A Little Fun And A Little Learnin’ All In One!

So I was sitting on the coach taking a breather from a long day of working and thought to myself, “I need to get more fun stuff on the blog!” So here goes:

Just a reminder that tomorrow is our one year anniversary of Canada winning the gold at the Olympic Men’s Hockey tournament. It was such an exciting day. Remember to wear your Canada, Olympic or hockey gear tomorrow. Here is the magical memory from our friends at Youtube!

So, if you are feeling in the Olympic spirit and want to get into some physical activity but don’t happen to have an Olympic speed skating track in your basement, here is an easy to make ping pong game. Just get a couple of juice containers like in the picture and a wooden stick. Cut some holes through the juice containers (maybe get your parents to help. You don’t want to get an Olympic size injury!) and insert the wooden sticks through the holes. Voila! There is your ping pong game. Now, all you need is some paddles and a ping pong ball. If anyone wants to make one for the class and bring it in to show us, that would be fantastic!


Our dining room table gets used a lot and not just for dining.  We eat at our dining room table nightly but after the dishes get cleared, let the ping pong games begin!  We turned our dining room table into a ping pong table.  You can do it, too, by following these easy steps.

Ping Pong Table:  DIY Project Materials Needed

  1. 2 plastic containers (one for either side of the “net”) that holes can be poked into (I suggest Odwalla juice).  Must have lids.
  2. Pennies, marbles, sand or rocks to weight the plastic containers.
  3. Wood dowel to make a “net” to reach across your table.
  4. Screw driver or scissors to poke hole in plastic container.
  5. 2 ping pong paddles and balls.

First, empty, clean, and dry plastic containers.

Fill bottoms of each container with your material of choice.  I used pennies.  Put on lid.  Consider gluing lids on if you have little ones around.

Cut holes with scissors, screw driver or other tool.

Push wood dowel through holes.

Finally, here is a little learning fun for you. Not related to anything in our science this year, but learning is still fun no matter what it is or where it comes from. And who says we have to learn just what we have been told to learn. So here is a neat video showing the distance our Moon actually is from us.

Did you catch it? There was some stuff about light which is what we are studying now! If you missed it, watch it again. First person to tell me that it takes light one second to get to Moon, gets a prize!

Enjoy and we’ll see you tomorrow!

Spelling for the Week

Here are the spelling words and links to Spelling City for the week. Scroll all the way to the bottom for a special treat!



Here are the links to Spelling City! Remember! You can bring in your completed Spelling City test with 100% on it to receive an extra point on your spelling test! Why lose out on this great deal! Get your free mark today!

M6 O4

I found this picture the other day as I was roaming around on the net. Seeing as we all love Star Wars so much and also as we mourn the loss of our AT-AT and look towards the day when we get it back, I thought I would include this picture for fun! Enjoy!

What If Dr. Seuss Wrote Star Wars!


A Couple of Fun Things For You!

I thought I would start the week off with a couple of fun things for you! A puzzle and a video. The video is a real thing that happened in one of the world’s largest subways. It must have been pretty cool and everyone, especially the passengers, were very surprised! Lots of fun! Don’t you wish you had been there? I also embedded a winterish game for you to enjoy!