Bridge Building

Our videos have been uploaded, so take a look at the link in the previous post to see what we discovered!

This week we designed blueprints individually, then combined all the ideas into a master plan.  There was a lot of discussion and debate, and many good reasons supporting each person’s opinions.  We have come up with a list of materials that we need.  Please take a look at home to see if you can help by donating/lending any of the following materials.

Necessary Supplies

thin plywood sheets (2-3 cm thick and 80-100 cm and around 70 cm long)

rope (3 pieces, at least 3.5 m long each)

nuts and bolts

wooden cylinders/dowelling (the thicker the better, at least 70 cm tall)


Back up materials

other scraps of wood


wood glue






adjustable wrench

Science Experimenting

This week Division 7 has been abuzz with science experimenting!  We have been hard at work conducting experiments to help us discover more about structures before we build our bridge for Max the dog to walk across.  You can see some brainstorming on our class blog.

Students worked in pairs to plan and carry out an experiment.  We documented our process using the iPads, and created videos to share what we discovered.  Unfortunately we had some technical difficulties with the exporting, so we will look into on Monday.  In the meanwhile you can check out our big questions and notes sharing the results.

Next week we will use our collective knowledge to draw blueprints for the bridge!

Fibonacci Sequence

Every month I do a different pattern on our calendar, and the students enjoy guessing the rule.  This month the pattern was a stumper: 1 bug, 1 bee, 2 bugs, 3 bees, 5 bugs, 8 bees, and as of today 5 bugs.  They figured out fairly quickly that it was an increasing pattern, but no one could figure out quite what the rule was.  After I wrote it up on the board as 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 and let everyone think about it for a couple days, Ethan discovered the rule on Friday.  If you add 1+1 you get 2, if you add 1+2 you get 3, and so on.  Anik also realized that I can’t complete the pattern because the next number is 13 and there are only 5 days left in April.

This sequence of numbers is the Fibonacci Sequence, named after Leonard Fibonacci, an Italian mathematician who wrote about it in a paper in the 13th century.  He did not discover the sequence–it was first written about in Indian mathematics–but Fibonacci did introduce it to Europe which is why the sequence of numbers bears his name.

I’ve always thought the Fibonacci Sequence is cool (I may be a math geek in addition to loving books!) and Inspiration Green shows some amazing patterns in nature, although I’m doubtful that the population distribution in Africa is a result of the Fibonacci sequence.  The Khan Academy also has an interesting video about Fibonacci spirals.  The narrator speaks really quickly so pay attention!  In case this hasn’t quenched your thirst for math, head on over to the Math Awareness Month site (did you know April was math awareness month?)  The theme this year is magic and mystery, and there are some fun videos to watch.

Getting to Know Rudyard Kipling

As you know, Division 7 has been reading the original Jungle Book as well as singing and dancing in our musical production.  A couple weeks ago the students all wrote questions to Mr. Kipling, and as luck would have it he wrote back!  There were some very thoughtful questions about his life and writing.


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