Paper Circuits

Our final unit was on Paper Circuits. The students learned about:

  • Simple Circuits
  • Parallel Circuits
  • Switches
  • Blinking Switches
  • Pressure Sensors
  • Troubleshooting

The students had the opportunity to make a Mother’s Day card showing their skills with the simple circuits.





TAG Fair 2016

We spent most of second semester working on TAG fair. We researched for two months using resources from the AEA and the school library. After the students had their notecards, they organized their information into paragraphs. They added the info and pictures to their tri-fold. We used the Cricut to cut out the titles. Then the students organized their paragraphs into a speech. The students spent time memorizing their speeches, and we attended the Fair at PAC HS. Matthew Hardy, Airplanes, and Adlen Wheelock and Case Korleski, 9/11, tied for Best in Show for 3rd grade. They each won a medal with their name on it. Great job everyone!






TAG Fair – Newspaper Edition

SCC Talented and Gifted students showcase speech skills

Matthew Hardy talks about why planes crash during a practice of his speech before a speech competition at Pocahontas High School last week. GRAPHIC-ADVOCATE PHOTO/ERIN SOMMERS

Adlen Wheelock wasn’t even born when airplanes crashed into the Twin Towers in New York City.

But on a recent weekday morning, Wheelock and fellow South Central Calhoun Elementary School third-grader Case Korleski spoke knowledgably about the terrorist attack, as part of their informative speech they would give later that day at Pocahontas Middle and High School. Members of the SCC Talented and Gifted program, the students were the youngest competitors at the event, going up against fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade students, teacher Marleta Smith said.

The students began working on their speech projects in January, first writing down a few topics they were interested in researching and talking about.

Read more in the May 4 edition.

Engineering Box – Dyson Vacuum

SCC students test engineering skills

South Central Calhoun Elementary School students examine a vacuum they rebuilt. GRAPHIC-ADVOCATE PHOTO/ERIN SOMMERS

A group of South Central Calhoun Elementary School students tried their hands at engineering before the holiday break.

Marleta Smith, the school’s technology and talented and gifted teacher, saw an online posting offering schools the chance to teach some engineering concepts by taking apart and reassembling a Dyson vacuum. She requested a kit and received a vacuum with eight heads that the children could work with, as well as some instructions about how the parts fit together.

“On Tuesday, we had our instructions,” she told the group on a December morning not long before the holiday break. “We dismantled it. Today, we do not have our instructions. We’ll see if we can put it back together.”

Students took turns, with each trying to place the next part. One bit stumped them for several minutes, but after a few tries and testing new ideas, they found the right way to put the parts together.

Read more in the Jan. 6 edition.

Unit 1: Robotics and Coding

We are going to start the year with some robotics and coding. We will receive the materials below for two weeks (four Sphero balls, one hummingbird robotics kit, one Recon 6.0 Programmable Rover Robot, one Pro-Bot kit, and three lego mindstorm EV3). Watch the videos on each piece of technology and write a post about your top two choices you would like to work on. We will work in groups of two or three. You will get to spend one week working on each choice. We will start our plans this week.









We are beginning research and projects on heroes. Last week, we talked about what makes a hero: kindness, generosity, forgiveness, joy and peace. The students wrote their thoughts on the question: Do you think that the character of a hero is as important as the heroic deed itself? To help explain what that meant, I gave the students this situation.

A man is robbing a bank. As he exits the building, he sees a car accident and drops the money bags to help the person in the car and saves her life. Is his character (being a robber) as important as the heroic deed (saving a life)?

This week, the students will compare and contrast heroes, and soon will begin researching their own.


Boom, Splat, Kablooey!

We discussed and learned about a variety of booms, splats, and kablooeys. We tested our own splats. Here is an example of a kablooey we made with a 2 liter bottle, water, vinegar, and baking soda.


Prepping the experiment.

Prepping the experiment.


Practicing ways to roll the paper towels.

Practicing ways to roll the paper towels.

Students working in groups to see who can make the greatest height.

Students working in groups to see who can make the greatest height.

One test. Limited height.

One test. Limited height.

Final test. Greater height.

Final test. Greater height.