Sunshine Math Rap

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Our Tomie dePaola Author Study

We have begun our author study of the wonderful, Tomie dePaola. He is the well known and loved author and illustrator of over 200 children's books! Some classic favorites include:

We are so excited to explore the worlds Tomie dePaola creates in his many books. We have already discovered that Tomie's books fall into a variety of genres including fantasy, realistic fiction, folktales, legends, and memoirs. We are anxious to discover the crafts Tomie utilizes as an author, and see if we can apply those crafts in our own writing!

To learn more about Tomie dePaola, you can visit his website.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Powers of Persuasion!!!

This month, our class explored the world of persuasive reading and writing. We began by studying and creating printed advertisements. Next came commercials. After thorough research in class and at home, we began crafting our own commercials. This activity fit in perfectly with our most recent Book of the Month, Big Chickens, by Leslie Helakoski.

Students worked in pairs to choose a persuasive topic based on the book. Topics ranged from persuading the audience to read the book, to persuading characters within the book to make certain choices. We are pleased to present a few of our commercials for your viewing pleasure, but we warn you, our powers of persuasion are strong!

Poffersons Persuade the Big Chickens from Lauren Morgan on Vimeo.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

America's Biggest Bedtime Story

Today we helped donate books to kids in need. We did it without even leaving our classroom. Would you like to know how? All we did was visit the Book It! homepage to read a bedtime story with John Lithgow. When we got there we saw that it was more than him just reading us a story. When you sign in, you tell the website how many people are in the room watching. If more than 60,000 people tune in, then First Book will donate $10,000 to kids who need books.

The story was really funny. We even got to sing along with him! That's right...sing! If you want to hear the story at home and sign a bedtime story contract with your parents, go ahead, but be sure to post a comment and tell us all about it. In fact, you can watch the story and sing along as much as you want...just be sure to do it before the 21st. That's the last day it will be available. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

TOMS Shoes...a chance to help those in need!

Once upon a time there was a guy named Blake who decided to try to make a difference. He had traveled all over the world, but could not forget about the children he saw in Argentina. They were sweet and kind but they had a big problem...they didn't have any shoes. Maybe you're thinking this is no big deal. Maybe you're thinking, "Gee, I would love it if I didn't have to worry about wearing time wasted tying those pesky laces...I could run around the yard and feel the grass between my toes...that sounds nice."

The thing is...these kids didn't have shoes at all. Ever. But they still had to walk miles to get water and food and do other chores. Sometimes they were walking on nice soft grass...but they also walked on mud and sticks and rocks. It hurt their feet and it even made them sick.

Now, this guy Blake just didn't like this. In fact, it bothered him so much that he decided to change all of that. He started a company called TOMS Shoes. He made a rule called "one for one." You're probably wondering what that means. It's like this...he designed some simple shoes in lots of colors and if you buy a pair, he gives a pair to a child in Argentina who doesn't have any. Then, they can go to school (you can't go barefoot) and do their chores and play, without getting sick.

And Blake doesn't just mail the shoes down or drop them from a plane and let the kids fight over them. He gathers up groups of his friends and other people who just want to do something nice, and they go down together and meet the kids in the villages. Then they help them find just the right size and put the new shoes on their feet.

So far, Blake has given away over 140,000 pairs of shoes, but he wants to give away a lot more. In fact, he made a goal to give away over 300,000 just this year! But he needs our help. Maybe you can't buy a pair, but you can do something. You can come to school with SOCKS and shoes on Thursday, April 16th...then slip your shoes off in the classroom for a day without shoes. We can support the cause by letting all our friends and family know about this special opportunity to make a difference in South America.