Summertime Haiku

It’s hard to believe that summer is here! We began our year with free verse, sharing the many things that we liked. We end our year with the simplicity of Haiku – a few lines of reflection, from nature to friends to thoughts about the summer.

Thank you 3B, for our wonderful journey together. We have learned so much. I have learned so much.

Enjoy a few of our Haikus from a few students who wanted to share.


Jungle  by Troy

Ocelots live here.

Tons of trees and wood is here.

Visit the jungle.


Friends  by Lindsey

A friend is the best.

A friend can help everyday.

A friend makes you smile.


Plants  by Valmik

I like plants a lot.

Plants need lots of clean water.

They grow in summer.


The Fox  by Jingyi

I live in grassland,

red fur of a beauty

fast as a lightning.


Reading  by Lindsey

Reading is the best.

Reading gets you smart and wise

If you are relaxed.


The Basketball Area Inquiry


Our measurement learning led us to a large inquiry. What is the area of the shooting zone on the basketball court? This particular zone is a rectangle so we were curious about the area. How many of our 1 meter squared newspaper units would fit into this zone?

The students started their inquiry by creating 1 meter squared units with newspaper. This in itself was not an easy task as newspaper pieces do not come in perfect meters! 


Once the newspaper units were made, the collaborative work continued.

Some groups joined forces to work out the length and width of the basketball shooting zone. Partners were essential on the windy days as the newspapers tended to get caught by the wind.

The interesting part of the inquiry came when the students grappled with how to use, measure, or ignore the “extra bits” of the measurements, for each of the sides of the rectangle did not come out to be perfect square meters.

Some of the groups rounded down to the nearest square meter. Others rounded up. Some rounded up one side and rounded down the other side. A few groups decided to use calculators and go to the nearest 100th of a meter.






When the reflection time came, the groups shared a variety of measuring methods and answers:

20 meter squared: Rounding down, 4 m by 5 m.

25 meters squared: Rounding up one side and down on the other, 5 m by 5 m.

30 meters squared: Rounding up, 5m by 6m.

27.47 meters squared: Measuring to the nearest 100th of a meter, 4.77 by 5. 76

27.21 meters squared: Measuring to the nearest 100th of a meter, 4.74 by 5.74

Despite the varied answers, the take away learning was about area, and what it meant to measure area.

And what is area?

“It’s a space.”

“It’s measuring the space.”

“It’s the inside space of something.”

“You could jump on the meters to find the space. I counted 20 squares, plus the extras.”





No matter what method the students chose, the basketball area inquiry engaged everyone in measuring, thinking, working together, and learning. And that is what mathematics is all about: thinking, learning, and inquiring so that we can understand and describe our world as best as we can.

From Trading to Selling – A Continued Look at Perspective






Our last blog post shared about our trading game, and the affect this trading game had on our lives.

The students shared different perspectives on this  – some said the game affected their lives a lot, they were sad about their trade and thought about it late into the evening and even the next day, others said that it affected them a little, they didn’t think much about it, after the trade.

This concept of perspective has continued throughout this Unit of How We Organize Ourselves.

The students are now organizing what goods or service they would like to offer at our Grade 3 Buddies Carnival, and considering the perspectives of their customers.

What would their buddies like to do or buy? What service can we provide that would be fun for our buddies?

What would our buddies consider to be a good prize or a good product/good?

Would kindergarteners like comics? Would they like this comic? Would 3rd graders like this comic?

What would they consider is a fair price? What is too expensive? What is too cheap?

What type of advertising would be most persuasive?

The students are continuing to consider the concept of perspective as they near the opening of their Grade 3 Buddies Carnival on May 3rd.

Please enjoy some of our planning and preparation photos in this Flickr Album – Organizing and Preparing for our Buddies Carnival.





Perspectives on Trading






Our current Unit of Inquiry is underneath the transdisciplinary theme of How We Organize Ourselves. We are exploring a variety of related concepts including currency, exchange, and supply and demand. We also are looking at the broader concepts of function, perspective, and change.

With a focus on our central idea of “How The Exchange of Goods and Services Affects People’s Lives, the students reflected upon our recent trading provocation.

Some were disappointed with their trade, others were easily contented. Many felt that the trading experience affected their lives in some way – for better or for worse. We also learned that “wanted items” were very different for each person, depending on the person’s needs or wants. Our perspectives on the items were not the same.

“I learned that when you like someone else’s thing, they might not trade with you because they don’t like your toy.

“I figured it out, that if it is a toy that I don’t like, someone else maybe won’t like it either, just like me.”

“I chose a toy that I don’t like, but I’m sure that the boys would really like it.”

Our inquiry into perspective, function and change continues.








Design Thinking: From Planning to Creation to Reflection to Improvement

The KS and 3B learning buddies have been concentrating on being design thinkers throughout this year. Design thinkers plan, create, reflect, and improve. The improvement may occur during the design cycle, or it might occur after the cycle, when a new design might be inspired or planned. The learning is continuous. Currently the students are at different stages in their design thinking, with designs ranging from books to pop-up cards, bird houses to pencil holders. We hope you enjoy this link to the Design Thinking with KS and 3B Flickr album, where you can view a few photos from our learning or toggle your own slideshow if desired.