Saturday, 11 March 2017

Storytelling and Project Work

5 Card Photo Story

This week the students exercised their storytelling muscles with a round of 5 Card Photo Story.  Given the five images below (link) students were tasked with telling a story that included all of the images.  We talked about the elements of a good story and then the students had 5 minutes to plan their story.  Each student had a turn telling their story and the audience's job was to provide positive feedback.  The stories were wonderful and the feedback was excellent!



Project time

Students continued to work on their projects this week.  Ryan A, in the Wednesday morning class, has been showing his peers how to make really professional looking floor plans using the drawing pane in MS Word.  You can see some of these floor plans, as well as other student work, below (link).



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Saturday, 4 March 2017

What's Your Style?

Architectural Home Styles

This week students explored different architectural styles for homes.  We did a concept attainment lesson where students were shown images of homes.  Homes were grouped based on whether they belonged to a certain architectural style.  One group were the 'Yes' homes.   The 'No' homes were homes that came from a variety of different styles.  Students had to come up with hypotheses as to what made a home a 'Yes' home.  As we went through the images students shared and refined their hypotheses and tested them against the new images they were shown.  At the end, they were able to come up with the key architectural features of the 'Yes' home style.  Then we went to this website to find out what the name of the architectural style is.  The lesson slides are shown below (link).



Project Time

Every week for the next little while students will be working on their big projects.  They are making wonderful progress and learning new information and skills as they go.  Below are some photos of the students at work (link).



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Friday, 24 February 2017

Designing and Researching

This week students were all busy working on their projects.  Many students have decided to design a house or other building and spent their time on drawing up plans and searching for ideas on the internet.  Other students are gathering information on a specific architect or building.  It is exciting to see things taking shape!  The photos below are of students from the Wednesday afternoon class at our 'drafting' table.




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Sunday, 19 February 2017

The B I G Project

The  B I G  Project

Every year we do a major project related to our theme.  This year's theme is ArKIDtecture.  Students have the choice of designing a building or doing a research project on a famous architect or building. Each project is unique; students and teacher work together to decide what needs to be included in the project as well as what the final products will be.  This week was about exploring potential topics and brainstorming ideas.  Below are a few photos of what the Wednesday morning class was working on (link):



More updates on the projects all of the students are working on will follow in the weeks to come!

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Sunday, 12 February 2017

Architect Visit

Here are a few of the things we got up to... This Week in Gifted!

Architect Visit

The Penticton Thursday afternoon class was visited by Penticton architect Calvin Meiklejohn.  Mr. Meikeljohn spoke to the students about the work of an architect and answered their many excellent questions!  Students were able to look at blueprints and other architectural drawings.  Mr. Meiklejohn also brought samples of different building materials such tiles, wood veneers, and cutaways of windows as well as a cutaway of the flooring system of a gymnasium hardwood floor.  A highlight of the visit was when Mr. Meiklejohn drew a scale drawing of the front of our students' dream house.  He explained how scale drawings work and, as he drew, he took in suggestions from the students as to window placement, roof style, siding, colours etc.  Below are some photos from the visit (link).




Paper Table Challenge Continued

The Tuesday afternoon Summerland class and the Wednesday morning Penticton class continued to work on their paper tables.  Check out last week's post for some background on this design challenge.   It is amazing how strong some of these tables were considering they were made from no more than 8 sheets of newsprint, masking tape and a 8" x 11" piece of cardboard!  Students did a lot of testing and refining.  I was really impressed with the persistence of many of the students; getting their table to support one heavy text book wasn't enough--they wanted to alter their design and see if could hold more--a lot more!  Check out the photos below (link).



Travels with Stick People

The Wednesday classes continued to work on their photo editing skills--sending their stick people off to visit more architectural sites.  Here are more photos from this week (link).



Thanks for checking in to see what we've been up to this week!

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Saturday, 4 February 2017

Design Challenges

Design Challenges

This week we switched gears and all of the classes were given a design challenge to work on.  Before starting we talked about the design process.

The Design Process from the Design Squad Activity Guide (link

The Paper Table Design Challenge

The Summerland class and the Wednesday morning Penticton class were asked to build a table at least 20 cm tall that can support a heavy textbook.  The challenge?  The students were only allowed to use the following materials:
  • 8 sheets of newspaper
  • masking tape
  • one 8" x 10" piece of cardboard 
Below are some photos of the building process (link):


Students will continue to work on this challenge next week.

Straw Bridge Challenge

The Penticton Wednesday and Thursday afternoon classes were given the straw bridge challenge.  Check out the pics below to see what the challenge was and how they approached it (link).



More Guests

This week we had two visitors form the School Board Office.  Mrs. Thomson (she visited the Summerland group last week) visited the Thursday afternoon class.  Mr. Manuel visited the Summerland group as they worked on the Paper Table Challenge.  Thank you for checking out what the students are learning about!


Saturday, 28 January 2017

Journey Under the School

Journey Under the School

This week the Wednesday morning Penticton class got a rare tour under Wiltse School!  (I've been at Wiltse School as a teacher or parent since 2007 and I'd never been in the basement).  Vice Principal Mr. Holowaty was our tour guide and he showed us all the amazing nooks and crannies in the depths of the Wiltse basement.  We got a glimpse of the electrical system, geothermal heating system, heating ducts, hot water tank, water pipes and other mysterious mechanical systems.  Check out photos from our tour below (link).




Guest at Trout Creek

The Summerland gifted class hosted Mrs. Susan Thomson, SD 67 Director of Instruction for Student Services.  The Gifted Program is one of the programs she over sees.  Students did a great job of showing her some of the things we've been working on; programming the Sphero SPRK robot, Scratch Programming, and photo editing.

More Travels with Stick People

Students continued to hone their photo editing skills this week, sending their stick selves off to interesting architectural sites around the world.  Below are some photos from this week (link).  Check  past photos here and here.




Thank you for stopping by to see what we've been up to... This Week In Gifted!

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