The Show Must Go On!

Today the students performed their final play of the year: Nursery Rhyme Improvements! I am so proud of this class. I don't think I have ever had a more artistic class than this one. It has been so fun doing acting, singing, and art projects with them!

Kansas Underground Salt Museum

School is almost over, but we are still learning. Today we went to Strataca, the Kansas Underground Salt Museum!

Healthy Kids!

We have been finishing the year in science learning about the amazing, crazy bodies God has made for us! Gwen Hageman, an occupational therapist, came to answer all the questions the students were still wanting to learn about. They asked about belly buttons, heart transplants, chicken pox, and why your leg sometimes falls asleep. We also have been learning about nutrition. We had our Final Cooking Club, where we made fruit kabobs. Mrs. Weninger got a special grant that allowed the students to sample mango, kumquats, raspberries, blueberries, papaya, pineapple, plums, and many more delicious fruits! Andrea Wood also came from the Extension Office to help the students learn more about the grains group when they made Bread in a Bag!

Pilgrimage to the Cathedral

pilgrimage [pil-gruh-mij] –noun
1. a journey, especially a long one, made to some sacred place as an act of religious devotion; see pictures below.

 

Farm Tour Field Trip with Holy Savior

We had a GREAT field trip this week! 3rd grade students from Holy Savior Catholic Academy in Wichita joined us for a tour of several different farms. We were able to see horses, sheep, cattle, and chickens. The students learned about the equipment used on farms and even got to climb aboard! They got to see plants growing in a garden and learn about honeybees. They had an enjoyable time meeting new friends and sharing experiences with them.

Thank you to Holy Savior for joining us for the day!

Thank you to the Tetrick, Clouse, and Hayes families for hosting us!

Thank you to all our parents and grandparents who volunteered to be drivers!

Urban/Rural 2017

This is our ninth year with the students participating in the learning project URBAN/RURAL. This year they named their community Small Town, USA. The students are experiencing many important life skills, including budgeting, voting, taking care of their health, and stewardship. I love seeing the fifth and third graders work together!

The Last Supper

 

I hope everyone has been having a holy and renewing Lent. Soon we will begin Holy Week. The students will be learning about Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday with a special craft. But this week they made a great art project that has been on display in our cafeteria. I am very proud of the students' work and I know they are too.

Stewardship Way of Life

We had a great discussion about stewardship after watching these videos!

 

Area and Perimeter Story Problems

The costume box came out again while the students wrote their own story problems about area and perimeter. This is one of the important math standards third graders learn, and every year, there are always a few students that are confused about it. But hopefully, with these videos, and with the help of parents reviewing at home, everyone in this class will go on to 4th grade as area and perimeter experts!

Saints Alive 2017

The students did a great job teaching about their saints! I am excited to teach them about even more saints this Lent!

Miracles and Parables 2017

For years, the third graders and first graders have worked together on a project, making videos of Jesus' parables and miracles. And this year, we crossed the last one off our list and began repeating! They did a great job! You can check these out or go to the class links to see all the videos from the past years.

 

20+C+M+B+17

Happy 2017 everyone! I am looking forward to all that this new year holds! I remember Fr. John Reinkemeyer coming around to our classrooms on the feast of the Epiphany and blessing our doors with CMB, symbolic of the names of the 3 magi (Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar) and also an abbreviation for the Latin blessing Christus Mansionem Benedicat (Christ Bless this House). I think it is a great Catholic tradition that deserves a comeback. If your family is interested in this blessing, you can read more about it here. Today we blessed our classroom door! May all who enter receive "health, purity, the strength of victory, humility, goodness and mercy" and many other blessings!

Merry Christmas!

Another year, another new song, to help us learn the weird complexities of English grammar. This time it's all those confusing rules for making nouns plural. We hope you enjoy this carol, even though the sun was a little bright in the students' eyes!

 

Merry Christmas to you and your family! I hope you have a great Christmas break! I am looking forward to 2017!

Buzz the Beard

My students betrayed me just before Christmas. I challenged them to read, read, read in December. Every year, this is the month where students read the least, but if they could earn 100 points as a class, they could shave my beard however they wanted. At first, I didn't know if they could do it, but they read, they read, and they read some more. And they earned the reward. They read 177 points, double what they read in November! Every single student met their goal! I suppose they deserve some congratulations for that. But I got a little nervous when they clicked on the buzzer. Ok, I'll admit it, I was scared. And then my students made me look ridiculous. Well, I hope they're happy. And I hope they'll continue to read, read, read some great books the rest of the year.

They took pictures of my humiliation.  grumble grumble grumble.

 

Compound Machines 2016

Wow! The compound machines arrived this week! And they can do so much work!!! Have you ever needed help hitting snooze on your alarm clock? popping pesky balloons? dunking a cookie? Well, these machines have got you covered! For the last month the students have been brainstorming, sketching, designing, planning, adjusting, tinkering and creating! For many of them, their machine became an intergenerational family project, where parents and even grandparents offered sage advice and shared their years of experience. I hope it was a memorable experience for everyone! In addition to learning about pulleys, inclined planes, wheels and axles, wedges, screws and levers, I hope that the students gained wisdom about organizing time, setting goals, and working hard! Congrats to the students! They should be very proud of their contraptions.

 

A Midsummer Night's Dream

I am so proud of these students! They did a wonderful job performing Shakespeare's comedy, A Midsummer Night's Dream. They performed it for our Family Reading Night, for the residents at Wheatlands, and finally so we could have it on video. They were ready to adapt and learned that "the show must go on!"

 

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Last week, we walked to Wheatlands to perform our play for the residents there. As we walked along under the bright autumn trees, with the morning light shining through the leaves, the kids broke out into a spontaneous rendition of the Old Testament song. The moment was so joyful and so beautiful, I knew I needed to record it and share it with all the parents.

I hope that you have a wonderful holiday with your family, remembering all your blessings! I am thankful for a class of such bright, creative, and kindhearted students. Have a great break! Have fun outside! Read, read, read! And put the finishing touches on your compound machines! Can't wait to see those!

Pray It Forward Rosary

October is also the month of the Rosary!. The third grade class has a special green Rosary that was made by my students several years ago. Each family will get an opportunity over the next few weeks to take this Rosary home.

A while back, our diocesan paper, the Catholic Advance, published an article. It suggested the idea of taking one Rosary and "Praying it Forward." First, think of a person and then pray a Rosary for that's person's intentions. Lastly, pass the Rosary on to them and encourage them to pray for another person and keep passing on the graces. And so, one by one, the students will bring the Rosary home, pray for another student in class and then pass it on to them. By praying for each other we will join our school community even closer together. This is the ninth year our students have been praying it forward, with over 100 students using it to pray! To see a complete list of how the Rosary has been passed on, click on Pray It Forward Rosary History in the Documents section. This is one of my favorite projects, and looking over that long list of students joined together by the power of prayer makes me feel like a very blest man.

Respect Life

 

October is Respect Life month. Here in the classroom we will be  learning about the wonderful creation of our human bodies and how life is a gift from God. The students viewed a Power Point on the miraculous development of a baby in the womb. This Power Point can be viewed under Documents. We also read some great books like Angel in the Waters. In Horton Hears a Who we were reminded that "a person's a person, no matter how small!" In Horton Hatches the Egg we learned that even though other people might make fun of us for defending the defenseless, it's still the right thing to do.

Sunday was the Life Chain where people from our church witnessed for life. Our St. Pat's students made their own signs that they proudly held. We also made baby blankets that we have donated to A Better Choice pregnancy center in Wichita, which will distribute them to expecting mothers! Most importantly, we will continue to pray for a greater respect for all life.

 

 

Telescope Night

The students got to see four different planets tonight! Steve Higgins brought his high-powered telescope so that the students could see Saturn's rings and galaxies millions of light years away! The kids also spotted Venus and Mars, as well as Arcturus and Vega, two of the night's brightest stars. They heard the myths of Cassiopeia and Cygnus, identified the Big Dipper and Scorpius constellations, and even played a game of flashlight tag! Thank you to Mr. Higgins! Thank you to all the families who brought their children to enjoy the night! I hope it will be a great memory for the kids!

We had such a fun time, I almost forgot to take a picture until it was too late. We had 30 St. Pats come for Telescope Night!! My apologies to the students who had already left when I remembered to take a group picture!