Be A Bridge

This lesson started out in the library with Mrs. Randall, our librarian, reading a story, Be A Bridge by Irene Latham and Charles Waters.

After a short discussion, students thought about what they could do, today, to be a bridge. They recorded their ideas.

Next, students engaged in a STEM activity in which they needed to use the provided materials to build a bridge that would span the river.

Observing Soils

Over the past 2 days students have had a chance to investigate four different soil samples. They took time to use magnifying glasses to observe closely and record with drawings and words.

Then we came together to share the words we used to describe the samples and students had the opportunity to add more to their own recording sheet.

After that we looked at 4 location pictures and completed a shared writing activity, listing words to describe each location and deciding on a name for each.

The last step was to decide where each soil sample came from. Students used their knowledge of writing complete sentences using the conjunction “because” to record their thoughts.


Traps Galore!

After  a very busy week of planning, building, revising, adjusting, and sharing students finished their trap project.  This project was a consolidation of science concepts that they had been working on for the past month within the structures and mechanisms unit. Students combined their knowledge of strong and stable structures with knowledge of the force of simple machines including gears, pulleys, levers, and inclined planes to design and build a trap.

It began with a question:

Students got into groups and began to plan.  There was a lot of discussion as they learned to compromise and share ideas in a respectful way. Students drew their design, labelled various parts and made a list of materials needed.

Then students got down to building! Our classroom turned into a VERY busy construction site! The project prompted a lot of problem solving and discussion. Once the building was completed the grade 1’s came in to view the projects giving our class a chance to share their learning. It was certainly a project to be proud of!

A HUGE thank-you to all of the families that donated building supplies! Your support is greatly appreciated!

Testing Levers

The grade 4’s are continuing their study of machines and mechanisms. Today they began an inquiry around levers.

We started out with a question:

Then it was time to investigate.  Students followed directions to complete the following experiment:


  1. If you had to move a heavy boulder in order to dig a new garden, how would you design your lever? Think about the materials you would use and where you would position the fulcrum.
  2. If you had to move a pile of stones to put around the edge of your garden, what kind of lever would you use? Would it be the same or different from the lever to move the boulder? Explain.

Building Structures: Testing Materials

The Grade 3’s worked through a science investigation today about the topic of building materials.

The questions they started out with:

  1. What are the properties of plastic, paper, fabric, and aluminum foil?
  2. When would you use each of these materials?

Students proceeded to conduct the following experiment and record their results.


  1. If you were building a toy bridge, what materials would you use? Explain.
  2. If you were building a pillow which material would you use? Explain.


Species At Risk

This project began with a presentation by the Ontario Parks, “Species At Risk”.  Then we continued our inquiry with a poster project.

This is the task the students were given:

As students began working we engaged in small group guided reading of the information slides and had some lively discussion about the information presented. Students worked on determining important information, making connections, and inferring.
Some students chose to work individually and some chose a partner. They had the choice to use Google Slides or create a paper poster.


Diversity Detectives

As a class we walked to Little Lake Park with ipads and clipboards in hand. Our task was to look  for signs of a variety of plants, animals, and anything that may harm the habitats. As we moved through the various habitats within the park, students found many interesting signs and rich discussions were had using vocabulary we’ve been learning about in the classroom such as habitat, consumer, producer, affect, and species.

Students examined their written and photo data and created a slide to highlight their findings. They presented their slides to the class adding more explanation.


Density Tower Experiment

Yesterday, we put on our science hats and continued our inquiry around water. We had already investigating the sinking and floating of heavy and light objects. So, we turned our attention to liquids and asked, “Are some liquids heavier or lighter than others? Are all liquids the same?”

We started out by examining a variety of liquids. We looked at water, vegetable oil, dish soap, corn syrup, and rubbing alcohol and made several observations about colour and movement. We also made predictions about which liquid is the heaviest and which is the lightest.

Then it was time to pour each liquid into a jar and make observations along the way.







With the help of a little food colouring we were able to see all of the layers of each liquid and were surprised to find that the syrup was the heaviest and the alcohol was the lightest! We created a second jar and shook it up just to see what would happen. We did notice that the liquids seemed to mix together but this morning we discovered that the oil had separated from the other liquids.  We’ll continue to talk about this idea today as we experiment with water, oil, and alka seltzer!

Building Inquiry Moves onto Bridges!

The students have built many different types of houses and gardens and beaches with Lego.

Today we posted this challenge:

Here are some of the responses:

The next step will be to try a variety of building materials and create a list of questions about planning, building, and revising. Then we’ll do some experiments and make connections to structures and forces.