Our World, Our Numbers: Global Project

In our class, we love to connect and learn with our friends around the world.

Today we are launching a new global project called Our World, Our Numbers.

We have a blog http://ourworldournumbers.edublogs.org where we’ll meet up with our blogging buddies to learn together for the next five weeks.

In late 2011, many of these classes worked on an award winning global project called Our World, Our Stories. This latest project is based on a similar format with a mathematical focus.

Classes involved

The students are all from primary (elementary) classes and are from three different continents and five countries.

  • Mr Avery’s sixth grade class from Massachusetts, USA
  • Mrs Monaghan’s 3/4 class, Room with a View, from England
  • Mrs Morris and Miss Jordan’s grade four class, 4KM and 4KJ, from Victoria, Australia
  • Mrs McKenzie’s 2/3 class, B4, from New Zealand
  • Mrs Yollis’ 2/3 class from California, USA
  • Mr Salsich’s third grade class from Connecticut, USA
  • Mrs Watson’s K/1/2/3 class from Canada

  • How will it work?

    Students from all classes will connect and collaborate by sharing their mathematical lives. This will happen through the blog and involve a variety of media.

    A different class will lead a mathematical topic every four days or so, publishing posts and replying to comments. The other classes will read the posts, possibly publish their own posts, and leave blog comments.

    We will share topics such as currency, seasons, time zones, population data etc.

    The learning

    Through blog posts, the students will teach each other about different aspects of mathematics based on aspects of their own culture.

    The learning will continue in the commenting section where students, teachers and parents will engage in conversations to explore mathematical and cultural topics further.

    Students will gain an understanding of mathematics through the eyes of children in different countries and cultures. They will make comparisons and contrasts between their lives and other studentsí lives.

    If you want to keep up to date with how the fun and learning unfolds, there is a “subscribe via email” box on the right hand side of the Our World, Our Numbers blog.

    Get Involved

    We encourage all members of the community to get involved!

    4KM and 4KJ are leading the first topic by sharing their currency.

    Head over to the Our World, Our Numbers blog now to check out our post and leave a comment.


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    What do you think of our new global project?



    12 Days of Blogging

    The holidays are upon us! As we move through December, we’re getting ready for our holiday break while many of our friends from across the world are just about to finish up their school year. Some of our great blogging buddies like 4KM and 4KJ and B4 are having their last day of school.

    We wanted to find a way to wish everyone a happy holidays as well as tell our friends that we wanted to thank them for participating with us in some amazing projects this year! With that, we modified the 12 Days of Christmas song into the 12 Days of Blogging. We hope you enjoy and we hope you have a wonderful holiday season. We’ll see some of you back here in January and for the rest of you, we’ll see you when you start your new school year!


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    Did you enjoy our song?


    How will you spending your holidays?

     

    Global Monster Project


    For the first time this school year, we partnered up with 4KM and 4KJ in Australia to work on a project. We’ve worked with them in previous years on projects such as our Storybirds and the Tale Trail. This year we’ve teamed up to collaborate on a fun monster-themed project.

    Here’s how our project worked:

    1. Students from Mr. Avery’s class were paired up with students from 4KM and 4KJ.
    2. All students drew a picture of a monster.
    3. Next, the students wrote a detailed description of their monster.
    4. The two classes swapped their writing (but didn’t swap pictures).
    5. The student’s had to draw their partner’s monster using the detail written in the description.
    6. We then compared the original drawing the the drawing our partner made using the writing!

    It was really interesting to see the results. Some of the drawings were pretty close and some of them not so much. It definitely taught us that detail in our writing is important. Writing creates an image in your mind and in the mind of others so the more detail you can add to it, the better you can share how you imagine things with others.

    Take a look at our Prezi below. You’ll be able to see our writing, our original images (always on the left) and then the drawings that our partners in 4KM/4KJ did of our writing. You can make the Prezi full screen by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner. You can then scroll through by using the arrows on the bottom of the presentation or autoplay it by clicking the play button with the stopwatch behind it.


    If you’d like to see our attempt at drawing 4KM and 4KJ’s monsters as well as their original writing and monsters, you can do so by clicking here. Also, since Halloween isn’t something that’s commonly celebrated in Australia, they had some questions for people who do celebrate it. You can answer their questions by clicking here. Lastly, if you’d like to see the monster drawings that students from our class did last year when we completed this project with Mr. Salsich’s class, click here.

    Thank you so much to 4KM and 4KJ for working with us on this project. We had so much fun on it and we hope you enjoyed our monsters!


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    Do you think you’d be able to come close to drawing the monsters?


    Why do you think descriptive writing is important?

    The Tale Trail Audio Book


    We recently were fortunate to be able to collaborate with some amazing classes from around the world on a project we called The Tale Trail. Six classes worked together to vote on a topic for a story. Then, Mr. Salsich’s class started the story. Each class added on part on until it was wrapped up by 4KM and 4KJ. You can view more information on the project by clicking here or read the part we wrote by clicking here.

    Since the completion of the story, all classes recorded their part in SlideRocket. You can find the full story narrated by the students from all six classes below. Click the play button to begin. You can move through the slides with the arrows. You can also make it full screen by clicking on the icon in the bottom right hand corner.


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    Thank you to all the classes who participated in this project with us!


    Did the story end how you thought it would?

                                                                                                                                                                 

    The Tale Trail – Part 4

    Our collaborative writing project with five other classes, The Tale Trail, continues right here!  

    Several weeks ago, the classes voted on a topic for the story.  The topic with the most votes was “An underground tunnel is found below the school.  It takes you to…”

    Classes have been taking turns adding to the story.  So far, Mr. Salsich’s class, Mrs. Yollis’ class, and B4 have written their parts of the story.  

    We’ll now add our part of the story and then Mrs. Watson’s class will continue it.  
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    As they were about to eat the cotton candy, they heard muffled noises that sounded close by.  “Max, what was that?” Tiffany exclaimed.“I don’t know. Let’s go investigate,” Max replied.  As Tiffany was about to say, “No, I don’t think we should,” Max was already walking towards the noise.  When Max took his first step, the stone beneath his foot slowly began to sink into the ground.  The dust and dirt around the stone began to retreat towards the newly formed hole.“Max, what did you do?” Tiffany yelled!  Suddenly, the whole ground started to violently shake.  The torches on the walls began to flicker as the flames danced between life and death.   From the corner of her eye, Tiffany saw a rock suddenly starting to move on the wall.  “Max, what is going on? I don’t like this at all.  Let’s get out of here!”“We can’t leave Tiffany. Don’t you remember that the secret door closed behind us.  The only way for us to get out of here is to keep moving forward.  We need to go see what that is.”By this point, the rock had completely rotated out of the way, revealing a small, wooden chest.  As Max inched forward towards it, Tiffany shoved him out of the way.  “Fine, if this is what we have to do, let’s just get it over with.”  She reached forward, lifting the cover.  The insides of the chest were covered with ruby red felt.  Sitting in the center of the chest was what looked like a piece of paper.  She picked it up gently.  “What does it say?” Max asked excitedly.

    Tiffany started, “Umm…it says…

    “That’s it,” Tiffany said.  “The rest of it is ripped off.  There’s no name.  I’m not sure that I trust this at all.  I don’t like this one bit.”

    Max glanced over at the chest.  “There are the two buttons that the note talked about.  You heard what it said.  We need to hit the red one.”

    Tiffany responded, “I don’t like that idea.  There’s no name.  We have no idea who wrote this note.  And look at the date.  It was written on April Fools’ Day!  For all we know, they could be trying to trick us!  Besides, the red button is always the bad one!”

    Before Max could say another word, Tiffany was pushing in the green button.  The floor opened beneath her feet and Tiffany disappeared into the darkness.  The floor suddenly closed back up showing no signs that there was ever a trapdoor there.

    Tiffany pushed the wrong button!

    “Nooo!  Tiffany, where’d you go?” Max yelled.  There was no response.
    Max couldn’t believe what he had just seen.  His friend was suddenly gone.  He had no idea where she was.  While the rest of the students were probably sitting in class learning about multiplication, here he was under the school with no idea where Tiffany had gone.  He wanted to find her so badly but he couldn’t take the chance of what could happen to him if he hit the green button too.  He knew he had to follow the note and hit the red button.  “Here goes nothing” Max thought to himself.  He closed his eyes and reached out for the red button.  As his hand reached it, it felt cold.  He could feel it pushing in as he applied more pressure to it.  As he finally pressed it in as far is it could go, he heard a noise coming from near where the floor opened and swallowed Tiffany.  “Oh no,” Max thought as he prepared himself for a fall.  However, his feet were still on solid ground.  He opened his eyes to find that a new door had opened in the floor showing a solid stone staircase.

    Max knew he would have to descend the spiral staircase

    Max knew he had to push forward.  He began to descend down the spiral staircase.  Every step he took was illuminated by the torches on the walls.  He suddenly came to a halt.  That same muffled noise that he heard earlier with Tiffany was now audible again.  For the first time, Max could feel chills running up and down his spine.  The hairs on the back of his neck were standing on end.  He was brave before when he had Tiffany with him.  Now he was all alone.  He didn’t want to continue anymore, but he had to find Tiffany.

    He continued on, this time much more slowly and more cautiously.  When he reached the bottom of the stairs, he encountered a door.  It was old and wooden.  Spiders crawled through their webs in the corners of the door.  One dropped from a single thread down towards the ground.  In the center of the door was a faded rectangle, with a slightly different color than the rest of the door.  It looked like there had once been something there.  Suddenly, Max felt something on his leg.  He looked down to see a spider crawling up it.  He shook his leg and the spider flew off and landed on something golden.  Max noticed that whatever was laying there was the same size as the faded mark on the door.  He carefully reached around the spider to pick it up.  It turned out it was a nameplate.  Max dusted it off and he could see the name Dr. Drakken sprawled across it.  As he reached for the rusty, brass doorknob, he quietly said to himself, “let’s hope Tiffany’s in there.”

    Max came upon an old door with a nameplate on the floor

    Max had to shield his eyes as he had to try to adjust to the sudden bright light of this new room.  All he could smell around him was an awful concoction of must, moth balls, sulfur and gasoline.  As his eyes began to adjust to the light, the room began to come into focus.  He could see machinery all around him, including one giant piece of equipment in the center of the room.  There were cylinders, beakers, and test tubes of liquids of almost every color imaginable scattered throughout the room.  As he continued looking around, that’s when he heard it, the muffled cries that he had heard earlier.  This time it was even louder though.  Max moved towards the sound.  He rounded the machine in the middle of the room.  That’s when he saw her!  Tiffany was there except she was tied up in a chair back-to-back with a man Max had never seen before.  He was mostly bald with only tufts of fluffy white hair coming off the sides of his head.  He wore a dirty, tattered lab coat that made him look like he had been down here for years.

    Tiffany is found tied up with Dr. Drakken

    Max ran over to untie Tiffany.  He pulled the tape off of her mouth.  “Max, I’m so glad you found me!  Benjamin Franklin grabbed me and brought me in here when I fell through the floor.”  He finished untying her.  She stood and stretched out her legs.

    “Who is that?” Max asked Tiffany.

    “I have no idea.  He was in here when I was brought in.  Do you think we should untie him?” Tiffany replied.

    “Let’s just take the tape off and see what he has to say,” Max answered.

    As Max slowly peeled the tape away from the man’s mouth, he spoke.  “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!  I’ve been tied up down here for so long.”

    “Who are you?” Tiffany asked.

    “I’m Dr. Drakken.  I’ve been working down here for decades perfecting my time machine.  I’ve been working with the different departments at the school.  I wanted to bring back Benjamin Franklin to give a speech to a history class.  I tried bringing back a prehistoric snake for a science class.  I’ve tried bringing back so many different things.  However, something went terribly wrong.  My machine just doesn’t seem to be right as it’s changed them all in some way!  Benjamin Franklin went from being the nicest man I’ve ever met and when I got him back here he was totally different.  When the snake got back here it had two heads and could talk.  I don’t know what I’ve done!”

    Dr. Drakken's time machine in the center of the room

    “Can we help in any way?” Max asked.

    “I wish you could,” Dr. Drakken replied.  “I just need my special cotton candy I invented.  I misplaced it and now have no idea where it is.”

    Tiffany reached into her pocket and to her amazement, the small bag was still there.  She pulled it out and asked, “You mean this?”

     

    Continue to the next part of the story.

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    What parts of the story could you visualize best?

     

    What do you think could happen next?
                                                                                                                                                                                

    The Tale Trail


    In the coming weeks, we’ll be taking part in a collaborative project called The Tale Trail. Classes will be joining together to write and illustrate a story through their blogs. It will start with one class writing the first part of the story and posting it to their blog. Then, the next class will read the beginning of the story and add on to it through their blog. We’ll continue until we get to the last class. They’ll put the finishing touches on it and wrap the whole story up!

    Each class will have 3 school days to work on their portion of the story. At the bottom of each post, there will be links to the parts of the story that have already been done as well as the next part of the story once it’s finished. In order to read the whole thing, you’ll be taken on a journey through the blogs of all six classes. Down below you’ll be able to find the dates around when each class should be posting their portion of the story. You can also see a map showing the locations of all the classes.

     

    Of course one of the most important story elements are plot, characters, and setting. The plot is what takes place in a story. The characters are who is in the story. The setting is when the story takes place. As of right now, all of that is missing from ours! We need your help in voting for what our story will be about. Use the poll below to vote for your favorite story topic. Voting will close on Saturday, May 5th. Then, check Mr. Salsich’s class blog next week to find out what topic was chosen as they kick off the first part of the project!


    What topic did you vote for and why?

     

    What’s your favorite part about writing a story?

    Happy Birthday Miss Jordan!

    The past couple years have been filled with milestone birthdays for our blogging buddies! In the past year or so, Mrs. Yollis, Mrs. Morris, and myself all had big birthdays. Now, Miss Jordan celebrates one as she turns 30!

    Miss Jordan teaches as part of 4KM and 4KJ in Leopold, Australia. We’ve gotten to know her as we’ve worked with her class on projects over the last two years.

    Some of her blogging buddies put together a Wallwisher to send along some birthday messages! Click the “post a sticky” tab to leave your own!


    We hope you have a wonderful birthday!


    Leave Miss Jordan a birthday message by posting on the Wallwisher or by leaving her a comment!

    Thank You!

    We have some of the most amazing blogging buddies around the world. They are always there to share amazing comments when we add a new post. We’ve done so many incredible projects with them over the course of the last couple years. Now, they’ve helped to make a big birthday pretty special for Mr. Avery.

    Upon waking up on Saturday morning, I noticed my our blogging buddies had quite a few new posts. Upon further inspection, I noticed that they were all about the same thing, my birthday! I was so impressed that they all took the time to make something to celebrate my day!

    Mrs. Yollis, 4KM/4KJ, Mr. Salsich, B4, and Mrs. Watson, all had posts up that included a Prezi that they all collaborated on to create. Within the Prezi, each class had made a video to wish me a happy birthday. I highly recommend you check it out by clicking on any of the links above! Mrs. Kistler and the 49ers also had a great blog post for us as well!

    We without a doubt have the best blogging buddies we could ever ask for. They’ve made learning so much more exciting and real for us. As opposed to learning about a location on a map, we’ve been able to learn about it through connecting with these classes. They’ve shared so much more with us than we ever could’ve imagined and we’re so grateful for that.

    So, to all of you, THANK YOU!