Saturday, December 14, 2013

Six Steps to Becoming Math Wizards

This following video was the inspiration for our project;

Step 1: Acquire wizard names, hats, and a beards.

Step 2: Make wands using measurement skills and create a reading spell book.
Step 3: Claim, label, and fill magic trees with math fact snowballs.
Step 4: Pack the magic snow hill with math facts.
Step 5: Create a magic forest.
Step 6: Make a movie that shows evidence of said wizardry.

Math Wizards in Winter II from on Vimeo.

And just in case you're keeping a Common Core tally at home;
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.B.3 Apply properties of operations as strategies to add and subtract.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.B.4 Understand subtraction as an unknown-addend problem.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.C.5 Relate counting to addition and subtraction.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.C.6 Add and subtract within 20, demonstrating fluency for addition and subtraction within 10. Use strategies such as counting on; making ten; decomposing a number leading to a ten; using the relationship between addition and subtraction; and creating equivalent but easier or known sums.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.D.8 Determine the unknown whole number in an addition or subtraction equation relating three whole numbers.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3a Know the spelling-sound correspondences for common digraphs.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3c Know final -e and common vowel team conventions for representing long vowel sounds.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3f Read words with inflectional endings.
  • CCSS.Art-Drama.OW.1.4c Oh wait.  There are no standards for art or drama in first grade.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

In the (Reconstruction) Zone

I was given a gift card.  I wanted to spend it on LEGOs.  So one day the kids caught me looking at LEGO sets online.  Their reaction to the Tower Bridge was overwhelming.  When I told them it was for 16 year-olds and over, they responded with a resounding "WHO CARES!?"  How do I say 'no' to that, right?  So the bridge was purchased and the project was developed.  Here's what happened all because the kids wanted to build a bridge together.

One hour per day, for ten days straight, our classroom was transformed into London. 

We were still in the middle of our read aloud book, The BFG by Roald Dahl.  But Instead of finishing it, we reconstructed our own ending to the book (the PDF stories cannot be read on an iPad-sorry).

While all of this was going down, we had four student photographers every morning documenting the process (using the Aviary photo app).  Click here to view the gallery if you are on an iPad.
And just in case you're keeping a Common Core tally at home;
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.2 Retell stories, including key details, and demonstrate understanding of their central message or lesson.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.3 Describe characters, settings, and major events in a story, using key details.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.7 Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy W.1.3 Write narratives in which they recount two or more appropriately sequenced events, include some details regarding what happened, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide some sense of closure.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.C.5 Relate counting to addition and subtraction
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.OA.C6 Add and subtract within 20, demonstrating fluency for addition and subtraction within 10.
  • CCSS.Social.Studies.x;lke Oh wait.  There are no social studies standards for exploring the world.
  • CCSS.Science.2452 Oh wait.  There are no science standards for following step by step instructions, accepting trial and error as a process, and creating structures.
  • CCSS.Art.423.4 Oh wait.  There are no art standards for creating your own works of art.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Any More Brainbusters?

                    Who?        Mr. Rollo

                    What?       Book Signing

                    When?      Sunday, November 17th

                    Where?     Magic Tree Bookstore

                    Why?        Because he makes books!

Monday, November 11, 2013

When We Last Saw the BFG..

he was sitting Sophie down on the Queen of England's window sill at Buckingham Palace.

But we're going to put our latest Roald Dahl read aloud on hold so we can literally construct our own ending to the story.  We're about to make three London landmarks in LEGOs, create Giant puppets (to scale of course), write our own ending to the story, and put it all together using the LEGO stop motion app (download here for free!)

Oh, and we'll be sure to take our tea breaks and do our maths while we're at it.  Could 1st grade be cooler?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Writing Matildas

For the past month, all of #mannschool has been working on the school wide writing prompt, "If I lived in....".  We were assigned the continent of Australia.  The following happened because of a simple prompt:
  • read nonfiction books to learn about the continent and its people, places, and landmarks.
  • collectively researched things online that were interesting to us.
  • used Google Earth on our iPads to help us tour through the main attractions of the continent.
  • organized our thoughts and findings onto a note organizer.
  • interviewed two Australians on Skype, getting a window into the daily Australian life.
  • wrote one (or two) rough drafts and made corrections.
  • wrote a final draft using a pen!
  • made a fun way to present our writing.
Take a look! (once again, if you are on a tablet please click here for the gallery)

And just in case you're keeping a Common Core tally at home:
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.1 Ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.6 Distinguish between information provided by pictures or other illustrations and information provided by the words in a text.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.10 With prompting and support, read informational texts appropriately complex for grade 1.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.2 Write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.5 With guidance and support from adults, focus on a topic, respond to questions and suggestions from peers, and add details to strengthen writing as needed.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.7 Participate in shared research and writing projects.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.8 With guidance and support from adults, recall information from experiences or gather information from provided sources to answer a question.
  • CCSS.SocialStudies.SS.  Oh wait.  There are no Common Core standards for Social Studies in 1st grade.  Hmmm....

Friday, November 1, 2013

Hot off the Press & Stuff

 Whoever said the day after Halloween was the worst was WRONG:

We also concluded our October Author of the Month by going to the computer lab and commenting on our favorite books.  Be sure to scroll around and check out all the books we read.

 And oh yeah, it's rivalry week in room 110. 

Monday, October 28, 2013


Here's a little snippet of what went down on "Teaching Mr. Kaegi Day".  Photos are taken, edited, and filtered by the students.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Rolled Into Sight

This is the first installment of our "Smiley Plus" page. You can now click on that tab if you'd like to go back in time and see some of the fun stuff we have made over the year. For iPad users, click here.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Happy Columbus Day!

A blast from the past in more than one sense.  Here are last year's Kangaroos retelling the story of Christopher Columbus.

Columbus Day from on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Book Fair Excitement

The kids asked me to put this up.  I made it for a grad class assignment and showed it to them in preparation for the book fair.
Scaredy Squirrel Prepares for Halloween from on Vimeo.

Sunday, October 6, 2013


How we got there (click here if you're on a tablet or phone):

The final product:

Charlie & The Chocolate Factory from on Vimeo.

And just in case you're keeping a Common Core tally at home:
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.2 Retell stories, including key details, and demonstrate understaning of their central message or lesson.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.3 Describe characters, settings, and major events in a story, using key details.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.7 Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.1 Particpate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 1 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and large groups.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.2 Ask and answer questions about key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.5 Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

So Mysterious

If you have been checking out our "Author of the Month" tab over there on the far right, you have noticed that Chris Van Allsburg is our author under the microscope.  Recently we stumbled upon The Mysteries of Harris Burdick.  This book more than excited us, as there was no story to go along with the pictures.  We plan on writing stories about three of the pictures.  Can you guess which ones?

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Jammin' in Jammies

A Rich & Chocolatey Process

So this happened;

Then this;

Then the final vote was a tie (!) so we flipped a coin.

And now we're Mr. Kaegi's Chocolate Factory.  Booya!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

What?! I'm not the Only One in the Universe?

So we got a little carried away while looking at our houses on Google Earth today...

View Larger Map

P.S. Charlie found the Golden Ticket.  I know you were worried. 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

One More Time, Sweetness

What. A. Year.

8 Down, 0 to LEGO*

If you need a recap on this project, click here. Otherwise, enjoy;

*3 students collectively decided they did not want to finish their project.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

6 Down, 3 to LEGO

If you need a recap on this project, click here.  Otherwise, enjoy;

Thursday, May 2, 2013

I Can't Believe I Ate the WHOLE Thing

We started fractions today.  It was cool. 

And we talked about food...a lot.

We also completed another compliment word! (reward TBD)

Monday, April 29, 2013

4 Down, 5 to LEGO

If you need a recap on this project, click here.  Otherwise, enjoy;

Friday, April 19, 2013

Monday, April 15, 2013

2 Down, 7 to LEGO

When students have completed their LEGO project, they have;
  • ranked their top project choices and who they wanted to work with
  • created a background that fits the theme of the project they were assigned
  • classified all of the pieces into groupings of their choice, making it easier to find pieces when they built
  • followed step-by-step instructions, using trial and error to find a solution(s)
  • took a picture for each step using Web Campanion on a student netbook
  • took a final picture and added special effects using Aviary on the iPad
  • uploaded the pictures onto Windows Movie Maker and added font effects to create their stop-motion film
  • selected a song (of 7) to use as their background music
  • had fun

Friday, April 12, 2013

Ostrich in my Pocket...Er, on my Street

Next week, starting April 15th through April 19th, we will be celebrating Poetry Month by launching a Poem in Your Pocket celebration.  Kids in grades 1 through 5 should keep a poem in their pocket (or shoe!).  Mr. LeDeaux and Mr. Reynolds will be asking students throughout the week if they have a poem.  If the kids can a produce a poem, they may win a small prize. It's a fun way celebrate poetry here at Mann!

Speaking of poetry.  We stumbled upon this as a class today while talking about ostriches.  It's pretty poetic in its own way...

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Our first try at AABB patterened poems (click to make more readable);

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C Projects Underway

1. LEGO project: Students are working in groups of 2-4 to construct a LEGO kit of their choice, while also creating a stop-motion movie of the process.  This project follows many science standards, including following step-by-step processes and classification.

2. "How to Survive 1st Grade" project: Students have started to brainstorm ideas for a writing and video project for the incoming 1st graders. The writing piece will include a mixture of past focal points like persuasion, using voice, and of course, "how-to" writing. Like always, students will also have a hand in the movie-making process.

3. We have finished the word F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C with compliments!  Students have voted for a nature & animal day, beating out dance party by four votes.  Our nature & animal day has a TBD date, but will most likely come closer to our field trip to the nature museum.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


We had unplanned, yet in depth conversations about whale sharks and butterflies today.  Here is some more information for the curious minds;

Google Earth whale shark tracking off the west coast of Australia
National Geographic video for whale sharks

Caterpillar to chrysalis time lapse

Chrysalis to butterfly time lapse

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Tuff Detectives, Indeed

1. Read Tuff Fluff, a mystery of sorts, in which a bunny detective is recruited to find a duck's missing brain.
2. Review all of the suspects.
3. Use reasons to persuade the reader on who stole the brain.

4. Finish the book.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

iWonder News Team

Before you enjoy all eight minutes of gold below, please consider the following that the students (and the teachers) had to do to create this newscast:
  • researched all 7 natural wonders individually, with classmates, and with their 4th grade buddies, using both iPads and laptops
  • listed their top two choices they were most interested in reporting on
  • watched and critiqued different styles of field reports from real news shows
  • collaborated with their group members to establish roles, create a field reporting style, choose the green screen images, and write an informational script
  • created cue cards
  • practiced their reports before taking to the field
  • chose climate-based attire
  • filmed their reports without reservations
  • helped create an informational location map
  • had fun!

It should also be noted that this project was completely taken over by the kids.  Ms. Labak and myself started the project with a very rough idea of how it would turn out.  We  never dreamed they would take us here:

Friday, March 1, 2013

The Journey has Started...

We have completed Despereaux's quest to save the princess.  Next up?  Milo's journey to "The Lands Beyond".  We have started tracking Milo's trek.  This will be fun...

Friday, February 22, 2013

tseB. yaD. revE.

Backwards Day for spelling S-U-P-E-R with compliments?
A fresh snowfall?

Mustache Spirit Day?
Learn how to play the harmonica with Mr. Milan?
Quadblogging with our buddies in England?
Finish our 7 Wonders green screen reporting?
1st grade is pretty cool...