Wednesday, September 21, 2016

So Long Summer :: Hello Fall!

FACT: Seasons change as we orbit the sun.


Twice a year, around March 20 or 21 and Sept. 22 or 23, our sun shines directly over the equator. That event marks the beginning of spring or fall. What is the equator?

Public Domain photo

  1. an imaginary line drawn around the earth equally distant from both poles, dividing the earth into northern and southern hemispheres and constituting the parallel of latitude 0°.

In March when the sun shines directly over the equator, the event is called the spring or vernal equinox. In September when the sun shines directly over the equator, the event is called the fall or autumnal equinox

The Autumnal Equinox will occur in Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. on Thursday, September 22, 2016. at 7:21 A.M.

Things to look for in fall:

1. Deciduous (di•si•jo͞o•əs) trees will change color and drop all their leaves. Evergreen trees will not. Evergreen trees will stay forever green. :-) Why do the leaves of deciduous trees change color? Use World Book Online to research. Remember, do NOT copy sentences. That is plagiarism, and it is against the law! Take notes, and then turn your notes into your own sentences. 

Photo by Grandma Barb

2. On the equinox, there are exactly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of night. The day and night hours are equal. However, as we continue into fall, the days will get shorter and the night hours will get longer. This pattern will continue until we reach the winter solstice. That is the longest night of the year and marks a new season, winter.

3.  Because the northern hemisphere is now tilted away from the sun, the days will start to become cooler. People will change their behavior. What sorts of behavioral changes will your family make as the days get shorter and cooler?  (In southern California, we have mild climate. We don't get too cold in our community.)

There are many fall festivals or holidays. Watch the BrainPop video about fall to learn about the many harvest festivals celebrated. Do you celebrate any of these autumn holidays? If so, please share so we can learn from you! 

Check out the FREE BrainPop video about Fall. 

4. Some animals in the northern hemisphere will change their behavior. As fall leads to winter, some animals migrate, or move, to a warmer area. Others try to fatten up for the winter they know is coming. 

Again, BrainPop Jr. has a FREE video about fall. 


Share some fun facts about fall!
Did you use BrainPop or World Book Online as a reference? 

If you are in the southern hemisphere, tell us what season you are enjoying! How are you changing your behavior? 

Monday, September 12, 2016

Super Subjects and Plentiful Predicates!

Mrs. Yollis' class has been working on learning about 

what it takes to create a 

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

We have learned that it takes two parts: 

The subject tells the person or thing the sentence is about.

The predicate tells what the subject is or does.
The predicate always includes a verb!

Why don't you try creating a special sentence or two of your own?

Here are some possible subjects:

Mrs. Yollis' students...
Panda and Beverly...
On her first day at school, Ramona...
Last Tuesday, our buddies...

Here are some possible predicates:

...took a tour of our classroom. 
...chased a duck across the pond.
...are positive people who persevere!
...worked together to learn how to create compatible numbers
...thought Mrs. Binney would give her a present.

After creating your sentence and typing it into your comment, tell us what the subject is and what the predicate is, or if you want to give us a challenge...Ask us to tell you what the subject and predicate are!

This grammar task is due by Friday! 

subject: This grammar task
predicate: is due by Friday! 

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Back to School Night ~ 2016

Normally, Mrs. Yollis' class looks like this.

Photo by Mrs. Yollis

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

Tonight, the classroom looked like this!

Photo by Mrs. Yollis

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

It was Back to School Night!
Parents came to hear about third grade!
Lots of information was shared about classroom expectations, curriculum, and resources. 

The centerpiece of the classroom is the blog. Mrs. Yollis shared a video she made about the value of blogging. Here is that video.


She also showed a wonderful video about supervising and guiding children on the web. It is a great video that really drives the point home. Thank you, Bill Genereux, for the fabulous movie. 

Parents left thoughtful notes for their child. With Dry Erase pens, you can write right on the desk! Everyone loved it!

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What are you excited to learn about this year?

Parents, how is third grade different from when you were in school?

Friday, August 26, 2016

Welcome Back! 2016-2017

Welcome back to a new school year! 

Wednesday was our first day of school!

Like my dog Buck near a body of water, we jumped right in and started our third grade adventure! 

Photo by Mr. Yollis 

First, we gathered together as a school and got a big welcome from our principal. 

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

When we got to the classroom, Mrs. Yollis introduced herself. She explained that she has been teaching for one score and one decade. How many years has Mrs. Yollis been teaching? 

Here is a photo of Mrs. Yollis on her very first day of teaching back in 1987!

Here's Mrs. Yollis today with our classroom friends Barnaby Bones, Beverly the brown bear, and Puffy Panda. Together they help third graders become the best they can be.

Photo by Mrs. Minicozzi

The classroom is set up with flexible seating options. Students can work alone or in groups.  There is a long, rectangular table for project work.

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

There are several circular tables.

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

A popular place is Tall Town. This is a special table that is higher than the other tables and seats four. Of course, Panda is always available to lean on as we learn. 

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

If you like to work independently, you can go old school and work at this vintage desk from long ago! 

Here we are reading the Cub Corner! This paper magazine was filled with events, time tables, and photos of parents and staff members who help lead our school. Keep the Cub Corner for reference throughout the year! 

Photo by Mrs. Yollis

Many students couldn't wait to read in our class tent! 
Classroom camping at its finest!

Several times we took a break to play a fun game of Silent Speed Ball! 

Mrs. Yollis got everyone a beautiful, acrylic name tag holder. We wrote our names in large print so they can be seen from across the room. In addition, the acrylic name tag holders are mobile.  That means when we move to a new area, we can easily move with our acrylic name tag! 

A highlight of the week was meeting our Reading Buddies. They are in the Journeys class and are only four years old! We will be role models for them and help them be the best learners and friends that they can be! 

Here we are showing our young friends the way to the office. There they found the nurse's office, so they would know where to go if they are ever sick. 

It is going to be a fabulous year!

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 Here are some links for you to peruse as we start our year of learning together:

A. This educational blog is the centerpiece of our classroom community. It is a wonderful space for sharing and learning together. Here is a link to an article I wrote about the benefits of classroom blogging. I hope you'll have a chance to read it before our Back to School Night.

B. We also have a class Photo-of-the-Day blog! Anyone is welcome to contribute a photo or comment throughout the year. Join our 365 Photo-of-the-day project! :-)

☼     ☼     ☼     ☼     ☼

Like Buck off a dock, let's jump right into blogging!

Students, please leave a comment telling us about yourself. What did you do over your summer break? What adventures and experiences did you enjoy?

If you are one of our blogging buddies, please introduce yourself to my new class. Where are you from? What have you been up to?

Remember to proofread your comment with a parent before you publish! 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Independence Day, America!

This post was first published on July 4, 2010.

By Mrs. Yolli

July 4th is Independence Day in America!

On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This document announced America's independence from Britain.

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Six years ago I was with my family on the Fourth of July, and we had a special event planned for the day.

My family had three old, tattered flags that needed to be retired. So on July 4th, we had a retirement ceremony.

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The United States Flag Code states: "The Flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning."

*     *     *     *     *

First, we sang some patriotic songs!

Then, my cousin Jon gave a short speech. Finally, we retired the old flags to the fire.

Click here to learn how to fold an American flag

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How will you spend the Fourth of July?

Friday, June 24, 2016

New Third Grade Bloggers!

Terrific third grade bloggers! These are GAFE Blogger accounts. Parents are the administrators as am I. 

My new bloggers would welcome a comment or a ClustrMap dot!

What advice do you have to help my blogger connect with other classes?

What do you like about blogging? 

Monday, June 20, 2016

The Summer Solstice is Today!

According to, this year's Summer Solstice will occur at 3:34 P.M. today in Los Angeles! Today is Monday, June 20, 2016. 

Click to Enlarge

What is a summer solstice? 

sum·mer sol·stice

noun: the solstice that marks the onset of summer, at the time of the longest day, about June 21 in the northern hemisphere and December 22 in the southern hemisphere.

Here is a fabulous BrainPop video explaining the seasons. 

Solstice Fun Facts:

  • The summer solstice is the longest day of the year.
  • Bonus: Tonight there is a full moon!
  • The full moon is called a strawberry moon.  


Summertime is a fun time! 

For one thing, school is out and will not resume until August 24. Students and teachers have time off to pursue some relaxation and person learning.  

Photo by Abby's mom

Many people gather together for summer parties. The air temperature is lovely, and people enjoy being outside!

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

People and pooches love to get in the water to cool off. Go, Buck, go! Swimming pools, the beach, lakes, rivers, and even sprinklers provide a welcome reprieve from the heat. 

Speaking of the heat. Sometimes summers bring heat waves. A heat wave is a period of excessive heat. Here is Los Angeles, we are in the middle of a heat wave. It was 111 ˚ F (44 ˚C) at 9:30 this morning. That's hot!

Photo by Mrs. Yollis

Student bloggers are still publishing! Keep your writing strong via quality commenting. My Trip to Monterey Bay and My Mini Robots are two new student posts.  


What are some things you enjoy about summer? 

What is a strawberry moon?

What are some summer foods you enjoy?