Third Graders Climb to New Heights!

group_w_kimWe’ve spent 180 school days for three years learning and growing together…as teachers and students.  Last week we spent an evening relaxing, playing, and eating together.

MAC third graders headed off to Vertical Hold, a climbing gym in Miramar, to do some rock climbing as a leadership group.  It was such fun for us, as their teachers, to watch our students test their physical and mental skills as they navigated nerves, heights, and hand holds to reach higher and higher levels.  They cheered each other on, offering encouragement and advice, as Vertical Hold volunteers (including Ms. Boyesen) manned the belay ropes.

Afterwards we headed off to Woody’s Burgers for some dinner and conversation.  Many thanks to the third grade parents who carpooled the students and treated us to dinner!  We all had tons of fun!!

Our MAC Musical: A Splashing Success!

FBIFrom the ocean through the lagoon, the forest, and to the desert, our class sang songs from this year’s study of ecosystems. In this photo, we’re posing at the end of the “FBI” song–the popular favorite!

Another favorite was “Give Plants a Chance,” a song about how we have a symbiotic relationship with plants–plants need humans and humans need plants to survive.

Mrs. Bretall is an amazing woman who works in our school office. She made an astonishing display of cookies for our MAC musical. It included each of the ecosystems we studied this year: the ocean, the lagoon, forests, and deserts. She even made a giant Earth cookie and spelled MAC using chocolate dough! We want to thank Mrs. Bretall for making our musical beautiful and delicious!


The One and Only Ivan, a Book Review

The One and Only Ivan

By Katherine Applegate

A Book Review by First, Second, and Third Grade Students in the MAC Class

at Cardiff School

IvanHave you ever wondered what it is like to be an animal?  A gorilla?  What would it be like to hear their thoughts, their feelings?  The One and Only Ivan brings you into the creative mind of the mighty silverback gorilla, Ivan.  Ivan is a special gorilla with a special talent that he puts to use in an unexpected way.  Ivan lives in his glass-enclosed cage, which he calls his domain, in the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade.  When he was young he was treated like a human, but now he has been isolated in his domain for twenty-something years.  He has many friends, two of which are animal friends. Stella is an elephant and Bob is a small free-spirited dog who likes to sleep on Ivan’s furry belly.  Ivan also has three human friends:  Mack, the owner of the mall, George the man who cleans the mall, and Julia, George’s daughter—the artist. When the Big Top Mall starts to run out of money, Mack gets a new animal…a curious baby elephant, and the troubles soon begin. But when tragedy hits, can Ivan keep his promise?  There are a few tragic parts and a few happy parts in this story…you’ll want to read it to find out what happens.

The One and Only Ivan is based on a true story of a gorilla named Ivan and his life in captivity.  This is a fascinating book that you and your family will love!  You will not want to put the book down.  Beginning readers will like it as a read aloud; advanced readers will enjoy reading it themselves.  We recommend this book to adults and children who are interested in animals and their welfare.  It is a pleasing story to your ears and your heart.  If you like fun, long, and exciting chapter books told from an animal’s point of view, get the The One and Only Ivan today!