Science Sleepover

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We ended the year with a Science Sleepover…not so much sleep, though.  We had a lot of fun spending time with family and friends as we learned about vibration, pitch, and sound.  

Check out what we did!

What a great way to end the year!  We learned so much about vibration, pitch, and sound using the experiments from The Museum of Science, Art, and Human Perception.   We made three different instruments that used vibrations to make sound.

Do you play a musical instrument?

Poetry Cafe

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Everyone knows the cool cats hang out at the Poetry Cafe!  Well, the coolest of the cool cats were at our Poetry Cafe in Room 15.  They were able to hear some great poems written by the third graders in our class, as well as read famous poems from Edgar Allen Poe, Robert Frost, and Georgia Heard.

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What are some of your favorite poems? 

Bristle Bots: An Electric Beginning

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So, we all know electricity is everywhere and we would have a hard time living without it, But do you know what electricity is and how it works?  No?  Well, sit back and enjoy!

Electricity is the flow of electrons that have moved out of its path.  The electrons normally just kind of hangout around tightly packed protons and neutrons.  The magic of electricity doesn’t happen until you give it a pathway to flow called a current.

Learn more by visiting Kid’s Corner: Electricity

Unfortunately, our body can be a pathway for electricity to travels.

Unfortunately, our body can be a pathway for electricity to travels.

Our class has been learning about electricity so we can understand how bristle bots work.  Basically, a bristle bot uses a closed electrical circuit to power the motor that causes the bristle bot to work. 

Using a pager motor, two wires (the current), and a double A battery (the electrical source) we made an electrical circuit.  We hot glued this to two toothbrushes.  Then we had to put our personal stamp on it and added pipe cleaners and google eyes.  Wah-la!  The birth of a bristle bot.  Take a look:

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Ready to see what one looks like?

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Ahhh, cute, right?  So, what do we plan on doing with them?  Well, we are going to race them!  Stay tuned for the races…you won’t want to miss them.

What do you think would happen if we didn’t have electricity?  

What would be some ways we would have to adapt?


Holiday Card Exchange 2014

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One popular holiday tradition is to send cards to friends and families.  Our class was able to participate in this tradition through Projects by Jen’s Holiday Card Exchange.  We created our own cards with this year’s theme being “Lights” and then sent them to more than 20 different states and provinces in United States and Canada.

Opening a card from Canada.

Once we addressed all of our cards and mailed them, we sat backed and waited for our cards to arrive.  It was so exciting each day to have three or four arrive in the mail.  We eagerly awaited the opening and reading of the cards.  One interesting detail that was included in each card was the average temperature in December for the school the card came from.  Our lowest average temperature was 5 degrees Fahrenheit from a city in North Dakota and the highest average temperature was from a school in Florida with 70 degrees Fahrenheit.  Our average temperature for our city was 67 degrees Fahrenheit.   Mrs. Fraher was so glad we didn’t have the 5 degrees!  Take a look at our process from creating the cards to receiving them.

Holiday Card Exchange

Did you send holiday cards this year?  If so, what type of card was it?  Take our poll below.

Fairy Tales with a Twist-Part One

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Our class has been studying fairy tales and other folktales.  Take a look at the project Emma has done using Story Jumper.  This project is part of our Fairy Tales with a Twist performance.  We will perform for parents and students during our Family Follies Day.

 Book titled 'Sleeping Beauty'
Stay tuned for more exciting pictures and information on our Fairy Tales With a Twist class performance.

Community Cares

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Our school, Desert Vista Elementary, is fortunate to have many community members that support the learning in our school by volunteering time and resources.  Below is just a few instances that show how much people in our community care about students and their learning.  Thank you to all of those who show their caring and dedication to our school.

Read to Me

Mayor Insalaco, the Mayor of Apache Junction, came to our class to read to us.  We happened to be digging into folktales and fables, so he read to us Pecos Bill, a tale about a boy who was raised by coyotes.  The mayor often volunteers his time to read to the students that attend an Apache Junction school.

He then spent some time letting us ask questions.  We found out something very interesting.  He was once bit by a rattlesnake.  He even showed us the two fang marks that was left as a scar.

The Rotary Club of superstition mountain

Each year the Rotary Club of superstition mountain provides our school with dictionaries.  Every child in third grade gets one.  They take time out of their busy schedule to spend some time with us talking about the dictionary and doing some fun activities using the dictionary.  Mrs. Fraher is so thankful that we have these.  The cool thing about these dictionaries is that they have other interesting things in the back.  Some of those things are: the world’s longest word, facts about states and countries, math information, and maps.  We can use these dictionaries for more than just looking up words!

Digging into Dictionaries – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

 Bunny and Nell


There are two very kind women who have donated money to several of the classes at our school.  These women aren’t wealthy, they just care and want to help where they can.  There names are Bunny and Nell.  This year, Bunny and Nell donated $100 to our class for a project.  Mrs. Fraher was so excited.  She had just the project for us to do.  You will have to stay tuned to this blog to find out what the project is.  The suspense is killing us!

Project Hummer watch


we have a garden outside our classroom that attracts hummingbirds and other birds using feeders and plants that draw hummingbirds.  This garden would not have been possible without the help of so many community members and businesses.  A wonderful parent,  Heather Harter, worked hard to get The plants donated by local nurseries.    below is a list of those businesses.

Target                   Shady Way Nursery                      Home Depot
BEST Hardware     Apache Landscape                         Moon Valley
ACE Hardware

Have you had someone do something kind or generous for you?  If so, what was it?


Constitution Week 2014

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It is so important for children to understand the sacrifices our ancestors gave toward making our country a free and amazing place to live.  So, each September we learn about the birth of America and some of the important places that symbolize our freedoms.  This year we observed Constitution Day with our family and friends.

Take a look…

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What do you like most about America?

Worm is the Word

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Worm, worm…worm is the word!  


Worms are so cool and very important to our world, but these silent creatures don’t get the props they deserve!  Without earthworms, the soil our plants grow in would not be as rich in nutrients.  Our class decided to practice the Scientific method while learning about the worm.

First, what is the scientific method?  steps to follow when you want to ask and answer questions in a science experiment.

Using the scientific method to learn about worms.

Using the scientific method to learn about worms.

Recording our observations

Recording our observations

Next, what we learn about the earthworm?  Earthworms can get up to 14 inches long.  they can’t live where it gets permafrost.  they have segments called annuli.  an earthworms makes our soil better.  they can eat up to a third of its way each day.  Some people didn’t want to touch the worm!  they’re so cute!

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Last, what did we  do with the earthworms when we were done observing them?  Our class has a hummingbird garden.  we released the worms to help the plants grow better.  the plants are important because the hummingbirds drink the nectar from the blooms.

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What do you know about earthworms?

Welcome Back to School

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What an exciting first week we had in third grade.  Not only did we learn about what it takes to be a successful third grader, we also had the opportunity to spend some time with our family members at our first Family Follies Day on Friday.  I hope that all students in my class enjoy third grade, make some great memories, and learn a ton!  

Take a look at our first week!

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What are your hopes and wishes for third grade?












PAWS 4 LIfe Visit

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After reading about Rosie in Rosie, A Visiting Dog’s Story, we wanted to learn more about service dogs and therapy dogs.  So, Mrs. Fraher invited PAWS 4 Life to talk to us.  They are an organization that rescues dogs from the pound and shelter.  They then train the dogs along with their owners to become service dogs.  

Check out their visit.

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Service dogs save people’s lives.  Therapy dogs make people happy.  Dogs are very important in our lives.

Do you own a dog?  What does your dog do for you?