Friday, December 31, 2010

Tumble Books-A Digital Book Resource

Reading digital books is another option in the reading lives of our children.  We recently discovered another digital book website called Tumble Books.  This site has a collection of picture books and early chapter books that appeal to a variety of readers.  The site currently focuses on picture books by our favorite authors and publishers, so we hope that you take time and explore this site.  I was able to use Tumble Books on the computer, but not on an iPod or iPhone.  If you have an iPad, there is a Tumble Books app for iPad readers to use;  let us know how the Tumble Books works for you on your iPad.
Here is the information that you will need:
username:  smith_andrea
password:  trial

We have a trial membership through January and hope to add a membership in the future. Let me know what you think of this website and if it enhances reading at home.  Happy Reading!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Celebrate The Season With Your Backyard Friends

Snowy days are filled with sledding, skating, and building snowforts; when the kids finally come inside and your family is looking for an indoor activity, think about decorating your backyard with edible ornaments for your local wildlife.  Here is a quick article about the history of winter gifts for wildlife and edible decoration ideas to help celebrate the season with your backyard friends. Follow the link to E-Nature and read about ways that you can surprise your furry and feathered friends with some holiday cheer.
Celebrate the season together!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Owl Adventures

December is a great time to remember that life goes on outside even when we are closing our doors earlier and spending more time indoors during the colder months.  

Consider taking a winter night-hike and discover how many creatures are out and about during the colder months.  If you are lucky, you might get to observe a local owl traveling though his or her territory looking for a night-time meal.  

If a cold night hike is not in your plans, you can always read Owl Moon, by Jane Yolen. 

We highly recommend a trip to a favorite owl website called Kidwings.  Visit Kidwings to learn more about owl pellets and to experience a virtual owl pellet dissection.

Keep us posted on your adventures!

How Do Birds Survive the Cold Weather of Winter?

 December has certainly been a month of warm coats, fuzzy mittens, and thoughts of hot cocoa!  When we were hiking this weekend, we noticed some of the birds taking advantage of the sunshine breaking through on the cold day.  It made me wonder how our year-round birds deal with severe weather such as blizzards, cold snaps and the snowy days throughout winter.  Behavioral and physical adaptations are important to our feathered friends, so take a minute to read and discover some new ideas when the snowflakes have you wondering: How do birds survive snowstorms?

Monday, December 13, 2010


IMA students share a Monday ritual called, "Expedition Monday."  As we launch each busy week, the IMA kids take time during Reading Workshop to explore new nonfiction resources.  If you visit our room on a Monday, you might find us sharing new or undiscovered books and magazines.  We might be exploring a new website or digital resource. The weekly ritual introduces or reminds children of the many nonfiction resources that we have waiting to be shared and explored at school and home. 

Due to the 2 hour snow delay, Expedition Monday will carry over to Tuesday this week.  The kids will be exploring a great new website called "Wonderopolis."  This dynamic website was created by Verizon and Thinkfinity.  Explore this site with your child and enjoy its many resources.  New wonder questions and answers are posted each day. 

You can visit Wonderopolis at this link:

You can watch an informational video at this link:

Enjoy the learning adventures!

Reindeer? Caribou?

Have you been thinking about reindeer lately?  Here is a link to a great article at ENature, a science and nature website that provides short nonfiction articles that children and their families find interesting and useful.  You can find out more about those magical mammals at:  ENature Update: Reindeer

Enjoy the article and let me know if you explore this great free resource!

Friday, December 10, 2010

What is Big Universe?

 Big Universe is a new digital book site we are piloting in IMA.  It is a place to discover a wide variety of fiction and nonfiction books for readers of all ages.  Please visit the site and let me know what you think about the books, the format, and if you think it would be a useful resource for our families.

Here is the information that you need:
username:  smith_andrea
password:  chapmanima

Here is the web address and the link: Big

Monday, December 6, 2010

Glogster? What is Glogster?

On Friday, the IMA kids explored a digital poster-making site called Glogster.  They learned how to use Glogster's many applications for creating digital posters by working together, playing with the many tools, and experimenting with the creative process of digital poster-making.  We will be using this new tool in many different ways over the course of the school year.

Glogster has public and private membership options.  We are using the website's private option so that students can work and share their posters within the supervised IMA community.  Students were issued nicknames and passwords at school. Their nicknames are a random string of letters and/or numbers and their passwords are their lunch numbers. Children are encouraged to explore the site at home and to view the work of other IMA kids.  They can leave comments for one another as they view classmates' posters.

Explore the website at this address: or Glogster EDU

This site brings a whole new meaning to posters and displays for class projects!

The Winter Performance!

The third grade and IMA students will present their holiday program on Thursday, December 16, 2010.  There will be a dress rehearsal performance at 2:30 on the day of the performance. The evening performance begins at 7:00pm.  Children need to be in their homerooms at 6:30.

The chorus singers need to wear:
  • brown, black or tan pants or skirts
  • solid colored tops
  • safe shoes for walking on the risers

We will provide the rest of the costume accessories.

Stage singers, speakers, and dancers will wear the same clothes, but T shirts and other accessories will be provided. 

Optional:  Please bring in cookies to share the night of the performance if possible.  There will be a serving table in the gym.  You can deliver cookies in advance or the night of the show.

The children have been working so hard on the performance and look forward to sharing the special evening with you, extended family and friends.  See you then!