There will be Lies by Nick Lake

This Monday, Nick Lake will visit our Middle School book Club the Book Fanatics. Read an excerpt here. It is an awesome book. Very mysterious, sarcastic, human, and magical.

Shelby (spoiler alert) is Deaf. She lives with her overprotective mother who won’t let her near men AT ALL. She won’t even be able to go to college. But she slowly gets to know why her mother is so scared of men. It is a cover. When she meets Mark, the cover, the lies start to explode.

Check out a blog post he wrote about his inspiration for the book here.

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What is research?

Click here to see the polls. I used polleverywhere to crowdsource answers and assess understanding. The 4-6th graders had fun using it and seeing their answer light up on the screen. Based on Threshold Concepts, I tried to build up their conceptual knowledge of basic research skills before embarking on a research project. Concepts: research, resesarch questions, sources, primary sources, secondary sources….next, authority! Here are some screenshots:

What questions do we need to think about to answer the big question WHAT IS RESEARCH?

What are some examples of research questions?
Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 12.37.24 PM
What are sources?
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What is a primary source?

What are some examples of primary (first-hand) sources?
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What is a secondary (second-hand) source?

What are some examples of secondary sources?
Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 12.54.34 PM

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Taino vs. Columbus

The 4th graders read Jane Yolen’s “Encounter,” a retelling of the first encounter between Native Americans and Tainos, and an excerpt from Christopher Columbus’ diary. They took notes about the first encounter and the two points of view. Then they used MS Word to create an imaginary dialogue between the two, using a historical drawing as the background image.

They learned to cite the image and create speech bubbles, right-clicking to send the speech bubble to the front.Picture 2

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Hansel and Gretel by Neil Gaiman, illus. by Lorenzo Mattotti

a fire to keep them warm in the woods

Our 4th graders drew as they listened to Neil Gaiman’s retelling of “Hansel and Gretel.” I encouraged them to use a lot of black ink like Mattotti, but their expressiveness lies where it lies…..enjoy!

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Skype visit to Roald Dahl Museum in Great Missenden, England

The 4th and 5th grade are big Roald Dahl fans thanks to the fun read alouds last year. Penguin invited us to visit the Roald Dahl Museum just north of London.
We learned that when Roald Dahl was a kid, candy companies would come to his school and have the kids taste-test new flavors. This made him feel very important, and inspired him to write Charlie & The Chocolate Factory! He ate chocolate so much that he lost his teeth. Every one of them. They are in the museum! As well as chocolate doors that SMELL like chocolate….mmmm….

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Battle For The Net

If you woke up tomorrow, and your internet looked like this, what would you do? Imagine all your favorite websites taking forever to load, while you get annoying notifications from your ISP suggesting you switch to one of their approved “Fast Lane” sites.Think about what we would lose: all the weird, alternative, interesting, and enlightening stuff that makes the Internet so much cooler than mainstream Cable TV. What if the only news sites you could reliably connect to were the ones that had deals with companies like Comcast and Verizon?On September 10th, just a few days before the FCC’s comment deadline, public interest organizations are issuing an open, international call for websites and internet users to unite for an “Internet Slowdown” to show the world what the web would be like if Team Cable gets their way and trashes net neutrality. Net neutrality is hard to explain, so our hope is that this action will help SHOW the world what’s really at stake if we lose the open Internet.If you’ve got a website, blog or tumblr, get the code to join the #InternetSlowdown here: else, here’s a quick list of things you can do to help spread the word about the slowdown: Get creative! Don’t let us tell you what to do. See you on the net September 10th!

via Battle For The Net.

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- Download Youtube Clips Easily

- Download Youtube Clips Easily.

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