Wednesday Math Problems – do you have any to solve?

numbersHere are this week’s problems to get your math mind working.  After you’ve given these a try, maybe you can make your own problem up for the rest of us to solve.  Leave your problem in a comment so we’ll have lots to do.  Happy “mathing!”

I had $1.00.  I went to the story to buy 2 pencils.  Each pencil cost 29 cents.  How much did the pencils cost in all?  How much change did I get back?  Show two possible combinations that I might have received as change.

Sam counts his marble collection.  When he round the number of marbles to the nearest hundred it is 500.  When he rounds the number to the nearest ten it is 470.  How many marbles might Sam have?   Explain your thinking.

You add a 3-digit number to 234 in your head without using pencil and paper.  What might the 3-digit number be?  WHat made it easy to do in your head?

It’s Monday – what are you reading?

I hope you had a terrific weekend.  Mr. Eaves came home from a week of canoeing and camping with a few of his friends.  We celebrated Eliza’s birthday and I worked a bit on the greenhouse.  You’ll be able to see our progress at the back – to – school cookout.  It’s pretty exciting.  In and around lots of online reading I finished a few books that I think you’d have fun reading.  I finished Wednesdays in the Tower and reviewed it on Kids’ Books 101, along with Chained.  I really came to love that story though I had to work hard to stick with it at the beginning.  It would be a great book to read with a friend.  There is so much to think and talk about.  It feels like it takes place a long time ago, but it is now.  The characters are different and interesting.  I kept wondering why some of them made the choices they made and what would have happened if they’d made different ones.

Wednesdays in the Tower










Captain Awesome to the Rescue is fun and funny.  It’s the first in a series that is still growing.  The good thing about Eugene  is that he loves comic books and super heroes.  The bad thing is that he just moved and has to start making friends in a new school.  Because of this his super secret super hero alter-ego comes to the rescue.  It’s pretty funny how Captain Awesome saves the day and rescues the class pet.  It also great how Captain Awesome teams up with Nacho Cheese Man – it is good to have a friend.  This is a quick and easy book to read – but the fun story made me want to know more.  I am on the look out for the rest of the series – they’ll be in 3E whenever you’d like to find out more about CAPTAIN AWESOME!  Come borrow them.

It had been a while since I’d read a Clementine book and I was glad that Clementine and the Spring Trip came to the top of my “to-read” pile.  I like her!  In this book the 3rd and 4th grades are going on a field trip to Plimoth Plantation.  She and Margaret have it all worked out – they’ll be partners and then Margaret won’t have to worry about any of the “dirty” stuff becasue Clementine won’t mind doing it at all.  Then Olive joins Clementine’s class and everything gets upset – it works out in the end of course, but it’ll surprise you.  Let me know what you think.  I would love to have Clementine walk out of her book and join our class – she had great ideas and a great attitude.  We’d have a lot of fun with her in our school.

Leave a comment and let us know what great books you’ve been reading!

Captain Awesome to the Rescue!Clementine and the Spring Trip

Friday Fun – hope your day is great

It’s starting out a little rainy, but maybe that’s not so bad.  It might mean I get a couple more books read to share with you on Monday.

rounding first This week I got to see Joe play in two different baseball games.  It was fun to watch him play because he was having so much fun.  Tonight he is playing in the final game for the championship.  Let’s send him great winning vibes!

One of things I have been working to learn more about this summer are ways to reach out to other classes in our country and across the world so we can learn together.  I have been using our blog, twitter and other digital tools more and more.   And because I love books and reading (you may have noticed) most of the teachers I have been learning about and with do to.  That is how I found Jarrett Krosoczka’s, The JJK Blog and on it there is a link to a lunch lady video game where you get to use the fish stick nunchucks and catch the bad guys up in your hair net, among other things.  I gave it a try – but was defeated in about 5 seconds.  I know that won’t happen to you.


If you have a chance to check it out, let me know.  In the meantime have fun playing, building, creating, imagining and enjoying SUMMER!

Wednesday Math Problems – do you have any to solve?

numbersHere are some different ways to think about numbers and amounts.  Try these and make sone of your own.  If you post them in a comment then we’ll all have lots more fun with math.

How many different 3-digit numbers can you make using the digits 1, 6, and 9?  Order the numbers.  What is the difference between the smallest and largest number?

I added the three-digit numbers and got a correct answer of 748.  What might the two numbers be?

Choose one of these numbers: 2, 3, 5, or 6.  Double the number you choose and then double the sum.  Keep doubling until you get a sum that is greater than 1,000.  How close to 1,000 is the number you reached?


Have fun with math – problems to solve are everywhere.

It’s Monday – what are you reading?

It has been a fun week with lots of family and friend gatherings at our house.  That means lots of cooking and cleaning and the kind of work cuts into my reading time!  Hey – how can that happen?  It does.

Fantastic Mr. DahlI thought I would try to read some nonfiction this week.  I read The Fantastic Mr. Dahl by Michael Rosen reviewed here and Spiders by Nic Bishop along with Stronger than Steel by Bridget Heos.  I know lots of you may think spiders are creepy.  I’m pretty sure that walking into cobwebs freaks you out, but have you ever stopped to wonder how spiders make their silk and spin their webs.  Have you ever paused to consider how many different types of spiders you’ve seen?  They run, they jump, they drop and spin.  They are large and small, hairy and delicate.  They are never beautiful until you take time to consider how miraculous they really are.  After you read Spiders go for a walk and notice – what types to do you see?  Where do they life?  Stronger than Steel is from the Scientists in the Field series.  It is a very challenging book to read.  If you’re interested in spiders it is something you could read in bits a pieces as you learn how scientist are experimenting with spider silk and its possible uses.  You might be grossed out, but I think you’ll be totally amazed as you think about all the things that scientists wonder, question and do.

Stronger Than Steel: Spider Silk DNA and the Quest for Better Bulletproof Vests, Sutures, and Parachute Rope


Wednesdays in the TowerI’m also reading Wednesdays in the Tower by Jessica Day George.  (It’s the second in a series – you can read about Tuesdays at the Castle here.)  Celie and Castle Glower are connected in a special way.  Celie loves her castle.  She is interested in seeing how it changes and grows.  She cares for it and it cares for her.  Castle gives her special and important things to do.  This time Castle asks Celie to hatch and raise a griffin while uncovering the mystery of Castle’s past and the disappearance of griffins from the sky.  Every page will have you wondering right up to the very end.

Next on my pile are Captain Awesome, Chained and the 4th in The N.E.R.D.S. series.  Joe told me he enjoyed reading Tim Green’s Deep Zone.  That part of a series about football.  The author has written about baseball too.  Joe said it was great and he has pretty great taste in books and lots of experience with that genre.  What are you reading?  Let us know when you leave a comment.

Friday Fun – hope your day is awesome!

Happy 95th Birthday to Nelson Mandela.  If you don’t know who he is yet make sure you check our Kadir Nelson’s picture book biography.  He is an inspiring person.

Martha Stewart's Favorite Crafts for Kids: 175 Projects for Kids of All Ages to Create, Build, Design, Explore, and ShareI discovered this craft book this week.  It has some simple and creative ideas.  Pipe cleaner pals are great.  Click on the link to learn how to make them.  The origami finger puppets are fun too.  Here’s a picture of some of the ideas.  I bet you have figure out more of your own too.  (remember origami paper always starts with a square)origami finger puppet

There’s sewing, building, folding and painting with paper, recyclables, stones and leaves.

When you need a break from the sand and the sun – I’m sure there’s something in here that you’ll enjoy.

painted stones

Wednesday Math Problems – do you have any to solve?

numbersHave you noticed any problems around your yard?  Things like, “If every daisy has 8 petals and there are 12 daisies blooming in the garden, how many petals would that be?” would make great multiplication practice.  If you all wrote one in you comments for the rest of the class to solve – think of the practice we’d have.

Here are a few to get you started:

Using the numbers 3, 6 and 18 write a multiplication story and a related division story.  How would you solve each of your number stories?

There are 16 cherry tomatoes to put into some bowls.  Each bowl must have the same number of tomatoes.  How many different ways can the cherry tomatoes be put into bowls?

I solved a multiplication number story and got an answer of 12.  What might the number story have been? 

Leave a comment to let us know if you worked on these problems or if you have a different one for us to solve too.

Have fun with math!  It counts.  (Get it?  ha ha ha)


It’s Monday – what are you reading?

Hi Everyone,

Red-eyed Vireo PhotoHow’s your summer going?  I am hoping that it is fun and relaxing, busy and creative.  When vacation started I thought I would write 3 posts a week:  once for reading, once for math and once for fun.  That’s been challenging – my fun isn’t 4th grade exciting.  It’s calm and mostly related to nature, some to art.  This summer I’ve seen a pair of red-eyed vireos in our yard.  For two weeks they chased and terrorized any blue jay that flew into the open.  They chittered up behind the jay, snapping their wings like whips and swooping in around their heads until the jays fled back into the woods.  Now both types of birds can be in the yard together.  I am guessing that means the vireo babies have fledged.

Adult maleI saw a red-bellied woodpecker for the first time Friday.  Wow, do they have red heads and black and white checkerboard backs.  I didn’t see its belly so I don’t know what color that is, but what an amazingly beautiful bird.  When I was little a story in one of my mom’s books told of a lady making poppy seeds cakes.  She didn’t want to share them with hungry travelers.  Each time someone asked for one, she would make it even smaller than the cake before.  Eventually her stingy nature caused her to turn into a woodpecker dressed in the colors of the clothes she had worn – a red cap, a white shawl, a black skirt and white apron.  The final picture showed the woodpecker.  That picture always bothered me I because it wasn’t real.   It didn’t look like the woodpeckers I had seen  – that is until Friday.  Finally after all these years I understand. ( I copied both of the bird pictures from from Cornell Lab of Ornithology.)

I have begun a mini-inquiry about dragonflies.  I am trying to keep track of the types I see and I am hoping to discover if there will be more of them now that there are less bats since they both eat mosquitos.  I’ll let you know what I discover.  So you can see my “fun” is not very exciting, but it’s just right for me.

The Sasquatch Escape Reading though – of course I can share some of what I am reading.  Here’s my stack so far.from June 19 to July 14  The new ones that I think you all might like are at the top:  The Sasquatch Escape by Suzanne Selfors and The Truth of Me by Patricia MacLachlan.   I bet you can imagine what encouraged me to buy The Sasquatch Escape!  It is the first in The Imaginary Veterinary series.  It takes place in Buttonville.  There is nothing much happening there since the factory closed.  Ben is staying the summer with his grandfather and he can’t think of anything worse.  On the way from the airport Ben looks up and sees a bird (?) as big as a helicopter (?) with a tail (?) and suddenly Buttonville doesn’t seem too dull.  Pearl, from the Dollar Store, saw it too and she thinks it landed at the abandoned factory.  Before they can go to check it out, Barnaby, Grandpa Abe’s cat drops a bat on Ben’s bed.  “Grreeaaatt,” he thinks, except it’s not a bat.  It’s a baby dragon.  And that’s when the adventure begins where the Imaginary World and the Real World meet.  Yes, there is a Sasquatch along with the dragon – well, rightly called a wyvern -which makes this a perfect book for lots of readers from our class.  You’ll have fun with it.

The Truth of MeThe Truth of Me is a gentle story.  I was thinking about how all Patricia MacLachlan books make me feel calm.  I like how they just make me stop and think.  Robert is going to stay with his grandmother while his musician parents are on tour.  That’s great with Robert because it means he’ll be spending each day with his two summer best friends; Ellie, his dog and Maddy, his grandma.  She is special.

Maddy has powers all her own.  Powers that other people don’t have.

Jack and Lizzie (Robert’s school time best friends) know this, too.  They have met Maddy.

“Maddy had gifts,” says Lizzie.

“Do you mean magic?” I ask.

“No. Gifts,” says Lizzie.  “That’s different.  Remember when she was here and the birds came down from the trees to see her?”

“And a fox came?” says Jack.  “It came right up to her?  The animals seem to know that she is safe.”

“They want to be close to her,” says Lizzie.  “That’s her gift.  They trust her.”

During the summer, Robbie (what Maddy calls him) discovers a bit about his gifts and a bit about the truths that make him who he is.  It’s nice to know what makes you a special person in the world.  I wonder what your small truths are.

I hope every thing is great – I’m thinking about you and hoping you are doing everything that’s fun.

It’s Wednesday – here are some problems to play with

numbersHi everyone,

How are you doing?

I thought you might have some fun playing with different number combinations to keep your math mind up an working.

If you try any of them, leave a comment to let us know what you figured out and how.

1.)  Choose one of these numbers: 2, 3, 5, or 6.  Double the number you choose and then double the sum.  Keep doubling until you get a sum that is greater than 1,000.  How close to 1,000 is the number you reached?

2.) How many different 3-digit numbers can you make using the digits 1, 6 and 9?  Order the numbers.  What is the difference between the smallest and the largest number?

 3.)  I added two three-digit numbers and got a correct answer of 748.  What might the two numbers be?

Maybe you have another idea for a problem that we could solve.  Let us know what your idea is.  It would be fun to give it a try.

It’s Monday – what are you reading?

Hunter Moran Saves the UniverseHunter Moran Saves the Universe by Patricia Riley Giff ended up being pretty funny.  Hunter is a twin.  He and Zack are the middle kids with two older and two younger sisters and brothers.  They pretty much do everything together and while they don’t mean it, pretty much everything goes wrong.  There are a lot of mishaps along the way to a happy ending.

When I read White Fur Flying by Patricia MacLachlan I immediately thought of Caroline.  It’s a perfect story for a dog lover.  At the opening of the book Zoe and her family watch a family moving into the house next door. Zoe’s dad is a vet and her mom rescues Great Pyrenees and finds new home for them.  Animals are a big part of their life.  They always have a least one that is coming and one that is going.  The new family next door doesn’t seem to be an animal kind of family.   There is an aunt and uncle and Philip – who has chosen not to talk.  The families are very different – but the dogs don’t care and of course make all the difference in the world.  White Fur Flying feels good to read.

White Fur Flying

Because of Shoe and Other Dog StoriesAnd because I was on a dog roll, I read Because of Shoe, a collection of short stories by different authors all about dogs.  My favorite is about a science fair project where a boy becomes a dog.  Read it and let us know what your favorite story is.





If you want to read something longer try In Search of Goliathus Hercules reviewed here or Vengekeep Prophecies.  It’s one of this year’s Great Stone Face books and I’ll be reviewing it on Kids’ Books 101 next.  Hope you’re finding some great things to read – let us know what they are.  Happy Reading!

In Search of Goliathus HerculesThe Vengekeep Prophecies