Wednesday, November 16, 2011

More Time Chilling With Nanuq!

Today was one of those days that remind me why I love being a teacher.

We tuned in to Edmodo and Polar Bear International's webcast live from Churchill hosted by our new friend Andy McKiel. You could have heard a pin drop in this room if it weren't for the scratching of pencils on paper as the students madly wrote their facts and reflections about what they were learning. Everyone was totally engaged in the webcast and the learning that happened, the discussions that were sparked, was priceless. I have included some snaps of our reflections and discoveries that were recorded during the webcast in the animoto below. I wish I could post them all! Some kids even filled the back side of their paper, it was like their little minds were exploding with new information! This week we will be starting inquiry projects about severe weather and climate change, I am guessing there will be a lot of inquiring around our fresh interest in the Greenhouse Effect!
After watching the webcast, we read some of Andy's blog posts from his experience (awesome) and talked about his question, "If polar bears could talk, what would they say?" We also read "Winston of Churchill" which shares a lot of "polar bear opinion" to get our minds working. We had some great ideas about what polar bears would say and extended that to explain WHY they would say it. We posted our ideas as comments on Andy's blog and he replied to all of our questions! Check out our ideas and his responses.

Here are some of our facts, reflections, thoughts and sketches from what we learned today:

The topic of the webcast today was "Polar Detectives: Living In A Sustainable World" which talked a lot about climate change, fitting perfectly into the end of our weather exploration in Science! Below is the recording from today's webcast. Skip ahead to 9:25 for the beginning of the webcast. All of the webcasts from this week are embedded in the video page of Andy's blog if you would like to take a look.

The song that plays as you wait for the webcast to start is "The Polar Bear Song/Bjorn's Song":

Webcast (skip ahead to 9:25):
Watch live streaming video from tundraconnections at
It was a great day in grade 5!
-Mrs. Dent Scarcello :)


Janet said...

It was a great day in grade 5, and coincidentally, in my family room; where I watched the live cast "with you". I was so impressed with how well the doctors answered their questions in kid language - I could also understand - and it kept me captivated. Thank you for sharing this experience with me and I look forward to seeing more of what you are learning.

Andy McKiel said...

I'd like to personally thank you & each and every one of the students in your classroom, Mrs. Dent Scarcello :-)

Thank you for sharing your responses with me and with everyone who's stopping by Chilling With Nanuq to learn more about how we can help our provincial polar bear population - wow, that's a lot of P's...

And thank you for asking me such great questions :-)

Brian Metcalfe said...

Hi Mrs. Dent Scarcello ...

I just wanted to say that I think that Bird’s Hill School students are AWESOME! Your friend, Andy McKiel, invited me to participate in the “Digital We” kickoff celebration at the Manitoba Museum. It was there that I was first introduced to some amazing Bird Hill School students who were part of your school’s “Me to We” club. I was very impressed with the messages presented in their video that showed their commitment to the “Free the Children” initiative and how they are using digital media to make the world a better place.

A few days later, I noticed that Bird’s Hill students were again actively engaged in learning. This time it was about polar bears. Like you, I followed and shared the information in Andy McKiel’s blog “Chilling with Nanuq” and faithfully watched the three noon-hour webcasts that informed so many students and teachers about Canada’s Arctic and the polar bear. However, it was your intelligent questions, thoughts and reflections (that were shared in your Animoto video) that showed that you were engaged in learning and wanting to improve life for our polar bears.

I know that you impressed your teacher because she began her blog post on Wednesday, Nov 16, 2011with this very powerful statement … “Today was one of those days that remind me why I love being a teacher.” I want to thank all the girls and boys in her class because you not only impressed Mrs. Dent Scarcello, … you also impressed many other educators world-wide!!

Keep up your EXCELLENT work and continue to make the world a better place.

Take care & keep smiling … Brian