Music of the Week

It isn’t often that I get to speak about the music of the week but the music we are listening to this week is from my favorite collection. For music of the week, I usually pick a genre, composer or style of music to play throughout the week, usually at lunch time. I try to make sure there is a mix of classical, jazz, musicals and others that I think the students would enjoy. I typically introduce them to the music on Monday, tell them a little bit about it and show a couple of videos of the music if there are any. I think it is really nice to be able to expose students to a wide variety of music beyond what they might typically hear on the radio. There is so much out there that is beautiful and amazing.

This week, we are listening to the musical version of The Lord of the Rings. It was created and performed first in Toronto before moving on to London and, as you can imagine, is a pretty major effort to get onto the stage. Three massive books in 3 and a half hours is not easy. But the music is, oh  so beautiful and I thought I would share a couple of my favorite videos of the music with you.

The last video is a neat video of the Eagle Nebula


The Moon and our Earth

Yesterday we were talking about the moon and how it does some pretty amazing things that even have an effect on our Earth!

First of all, we learned that the Moon and Earth both spin but that the Moon spins much more slowly than the Earth. The second thing we learned was that we only see one side of the Moon because the Moon spins so slowly. We also learned that the Moon’s orbit is slightly different than ours so the Moon is not always hidden by the Earth.

Finally, we learned that the tides on Earth happen because of the Moon’s gravity. I was telling the class about the tides and how, as a boy, when I was growing up in Nova Scotia, there was a little village nearby called Hall’s Harbour. At Hall’s Harbour, you could see the amazing tides as they came in and out. At the beginning of the day, the boats would be lying on the mud. Not too long later, the boats would be floating high up at the top of the dock. You have to see it to believe it! In fact, I have a video of that exact thing! Watch and be amazed!

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.

Pumpkin Day Math and Science Fun – 2011 Edition

Well. Another Pumpkin Day is here and gone. It always seems to come up so quickly and then pass just as quickly. The kids had a great morning of Math and Science fun!

The students did a lot of work in a very short amount of time. Much to there surprise, students were not just carving pumpkins any ol’ way they wanted too. Pumpkins are amazing plants and we took a lot of time practicing our observation skills and learning how God’s creations are all wondrously and perfectly made.

We started off with looking at the outside of the pumpkin asking the big question: Does the weight and circumference of the pumpkin have any relation to the number of seeds inside?

Students weighed and measured, then got to go inside the pumpkin to look at how the seeds were arranged. Counting the seeds was the next challenge as students worked hard to find the fastest way to count seeds. Once all that information was recorded, students went up to the smartboard and entered their data into a special Google Docs spreadsheet where a graph of their results was automatically created. It was really cool. Finally, students planned and carved polygons into their pumpkins as a pattern as they learned that polygons were shapes consisting of more than one connected straight line.

The students had a lot of fun. I have placed the spreadsheet of our results below. You will probably have to scroll through it.



A Fun Ride!

During the summer, I won’t be writing as much but will try to add some thoughts and fun things throughout the weeks. So keep checking back to see what I find!


Two Digit Division with Ease!

DivisionIn Math, we have been continuing to look at the division of two digit numbers. Now that we understand how we can use place value to show why we place the numbers where they go in our division equations, it is time to take that learning and transfer it to the more traditional way of doing division.

The students all came home with a strip of math questions. There are only three of them on the strip and the students are expected to complete all three questions for tomorrow.

I have also completed a video using my nifty new app to help review the concept if the students need a reminder or if they just want to listen to my beautiful voice!

The Mystery of Oak Island

nickell-mapOn an island off the coast of Nova Scotia, there is something hidden. Nobody know what or who hid it but something is there at the bottom of a pit that no one can get too. Stones with clues, log floors built every 10 metres, coconut fibres, traps that fill the pit with water from the ocean. . . these are just a few of the things to be found on Oak Island.

As part of our writing today, students took a look at the things that pirates stole or plundered. As we learned, most times it was not gold, silver and other precious metals. Most times it was plain ordinary things that the pirates needed. However, there are lots of stories, myths and legends concerning buried treasure and one of them is about a hole on a little island off the coast of Nova Scotia.

Here is some info and videos. I also included a couple of links to find out more!

The Story of Oak Island

Oak Island – Wikipedia