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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Goodbye Coffey's Corner

Thank you all for your dedication to this blog and to your children over the past couple of years.  I am now a special education teacher, teaching in several different classrooms instead of being able to blog about my own class.  I was thinking, however, that I might leave this blog hanging around the internet for awhile, so that maybe when a relative visits or when you want to reflect on that 4th grade year you can come visit it again!
Since I loved doing it so much, I have proposed to lead a school-wide blog instead!  So I invite you to please go check out!  Here I will be posting about every class!  Also, I will invite teachers to add their own posts as well!

*This is a picture of the blog.  Clicking the picture will only enlarge it; click on the blog link in the paragraph above to actually go to the blogsite.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Last Day : (

Many times today I heard, "I'm kinda glad it's the last day because I'm excited for summer/happy to sleep in/usually don't like school/etc, but I'm also sad because I don't want to leave our class and I'll miss you!" I'm glad I teach 4th and not 5th because I get one more year to see you guys in the hallways and have a little reunion!
Thank you all for such a great year! Each one of you are very special people with your own unique talents. These are the things I'm going to miss:
Niskua: You are a unique girl with a good head on your shoulders. I love your self-confidence!
Sam: What a great kid! You've been a great role model to the class, a hard worker, and a great student.
Julia: You remind me of myself as a student! Appreciative, inquisitive, curious, kind.
Silas: Your sense of humor is well over your age and you cracked me up many times this year!
Allyssa: Your generosity always struck me. You're a very sweet girl and a very smart girl!
Tobey: Like I've said before, I loved having you in class. I was always excited to hear or read anything you said or wrote! A very creative boy!
Ariel: Sweetest girl in the world. Hands down. I'll never forget how you took notes for another student who was out of the room during a story. How incredibly thoughtful and kind you are toward others!
John: Your energy to learn and be a better student is a gift for any teacher, and your smile is the cherry on top. You'll do great in 5th grade!
Talia: What a bright girl! Your smiles and bounces always energized us and you were a great friend to all!
Eli: A very smart, mature student who never ceased to amaze me with your knowledge on reptiles! (Okay okay and you beat me in arm wrestling. 3 times.)
Bailey: Your quiet intellect always inspired me. You were a great part of our class this year!
Andy: What's up, y'all? We'll miss you tons if you don't come back next year buddy! You were a friend to all and we loved that you came to us in January!
Ilana: A strong girl with a sweetside... and always willing to clean!!!! (Don't tell your parents!)
Josh: We got through the good times, and the bad, and now you're a 5th grader! Have confidence in yourself and your decision making skills! You have a good head on your shoulders and a supportive family behind you! You're a lucky boy!
Tieana: Girl I want you to look in the mirror every day and say "I am confident, I am smart, and I am a good person" because you ARE!!! No need to be so nervous!
Mikey: Mikey... thank you for being an angel on the last day of school. You alone did half of that "To Do" list today! I'm glad I'll be seeing you in the hallways next year!
Natalie: You're a cool girl who can stand up for herself and not worry what others think! Way to go!
Matt: That dance you made up (I think it was you) always cracked me up when you did it! (The arm circle one) You'll do great in 5th grade, especially if you DO YOUR HOMEWORK!!!
You're the first student I met at Caroline when I substituted there when you were in 2nd grade... it's so cool that now you were in my class! You did SO awesome this year in everything! Keep up the great work!
Max: You did so well this year academically and socially! Your compliments during our final "Give or Get" game were incredibly thoughtful and specific. You should be proud of your 4th grade year!!!
Michael: What an organized student, always getting your homework in and keeping things neat. You were such a good friend to all and everyone envies your soccer skills!!!
Tommy: I watched you grow in confidence and make some great friends this year! I'm glad Ill get to see you around school next year!
Rosa: You are an extremely smart girl! Just remember to bring your homework home and then back to school again and you'll be golden!!!
Liam: You have such a beautiful mind: always thinking of situations and facts. Share your knowledge with others! Thank you for being such a nice helper this year! It was VERY beneficial to me!
Fernando: You were an enjoyable part of our class and got along with all of the kids! They love you!
Ms. Jones: What a dedicated woman you were to our class, bringing in snacks and supplies! We all really appreciate you!

Parents and guardians: I have truly enjoyed working with you! What a great bunch of generous and caring people. It was fun interacting with you. Thank you for sharing your child with me!


Monday, June 21, 2010

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Sweet Caroline

Picnic and Slide Show

Today we had a nice picnic and slide show to close the school year and to honor those who are retiring (Mrs. Troisi, Mrs. Clark, Mrs. Faben, Mrs. Wallitt, and Mrs. Ferraro.) Unfortunately, the outdoor picnic got rained out but we got to eat all of the yummy food together in our classroom!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Flag Day

This morning the entire school met around the flag to sing songs and recognize Flag Day.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Vitamin L Concert

Love Knows No Bounds

Love Knows No Bounds: Renewing New Orleans

Today Pastor Bruce and his wife visited us to show some clips of how New Orleans is still seeing devastation from Hurricane Katrina and to thank Caroline for sending cards, food, toys, and even people to help build them back up again. In the end, Pastor Bruce asked the kids if they like group hugs:

Monday, June 7, 2010

Colonization WebQuest!

First, watch this movie on the History of the Colonization of America:

Next, search the following links to fill out your role in studying the colonization of America after Europeans realized there was land there!

Colonization Web Links

A History of Jamestown
More history on Jamestown
Jamestown History
Great historical information

Journey back in time

Journey back to the colonial days

Plymouth, MA - Its history and people
Good information on the Pilgrims and their settlement

Thirteen Colonies

Information on the thirteen colonies

USA: Outline of American History
Specific information about the colonial period

Thursday, June 3, 2010


A video on all three:

And here is a fun paint game using rotational symmetry:

Saturday, May 29, 2010


Friday was our final day with our trout! What a journey it's been! We've studied them since they looked like this:

Now they are all 3-4 inches long and are ready to be released into the Cayuga Lake watershed. Luckily, 6-Mile Creek is right in our backyard! We put our trout in buckets,
and hiked out to the creek behind Caroline.
Bill did some exercises with us, like examining the plant growth, insects, temperature, and pH of the stream environment we were to be releasing our trout into.

Finally, it was time to release the 40-50 trout we had! (We used to have around 80-90 but had a horrible low pH problem last Monday which caused us to lose half the fish).
Goodbye fishies! Good luck in nature!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

8 Square School House

We had a blast at the 8 Square Schoolhouse today! Here are some of our experiences:
(click on any photo to get a closer look)

As soon as we got there, the teacher had the students form a semi-circle around the flag to raise it and pledge allegiance to it.

Once inside, the boys were instructed to sit on one side of the room and the girls on the other. "Backs against the back of the chair and both feet flat on the floor. Gentlemen, if you cross your legs, you will sit with the girls."

Later, on this HOT day, the students learned how to pump water from the well. Here, Ilana pumps for Bailey.

The teacher thought the boys deserved to have the bucket of 42 degree water poured on them. They actually loved it!

The teacher also warned that this was their bathroom break. Here, Rosa and Tieana check out the outhouse:

After recess with one swing, stilts, ball and cup games, and the nature around us, we went back into the schoolhouse to work on our "penmanship," with real bottles of ink!

Here's a group photo in front of the school: 1892.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Fun Drum Assembly!

Finding Volume

Volume= the amount of 3-dimensional space an object occupies
Meniscus= the curved upper surface of a liquid standing in a tube, produced by the surface tension

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


In science today we studied another metric measurement: mass! Using balance scales, we calculaed the mass of six different objects by balancing the scales and then counting the grams on one side.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Scientific Method

Today we studied the scientific method with the experiment "Sink or Float"
We learned that the 5 steps of the scientific method are:
1) Pose a question.
2) Make a hypothesis (an educated guess that can be tested).
3) Test the hypothesis.
4) Analyze the results.
5) Make a conclusion.

We wondered whether certain balls would sink or float. Given a tennis ball, golf ball, ping pong ball, marble, wooden ball, rubber ball, styrofoam ball, ball bearing, and a clay ball, we hypothesized about each ball's outcome. Then we tested them in a container of water! After taking data on a chart, we analyzed the results, finding that the tennis ball, ping pong ball, wooden ball, and styrofoam ball floated while the golf ball, marble, rubber ball, ball bearing, and clay ball sank. Lastly, we concluded that objects that were light, hollow, or had air pockets floated while objects that were solid, dense, and heavy sank.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to the women of our lives. In class months ago we decorated flower pots and planted zinnias in them and watched them grow. Unfortunately, the paint (even though sprayed with a sealer) peeled off and some students' flowers didn't make it. But it's the thought that counts, right? We love you moms!!!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Artwork at the Mall!

Go to the Ithaca Mall to check out Ithaca's talented artists! Artwork from all of the schools in the Ithaca City School District (elementary through high school) are posted outside of Old Navy and AC Moore. I checked it out last night and found Niskua, Bailey, and Natalie's work!

Beetle Pull!

Today we found the mass of our beetles. On average, each beetle was a gram or two. We were surprised to find out, however, that they could pull up to 30 times their weight in our experiment today! In a safe, humane way, we looped dental floss around the strongest part of the beetle and one by one attached paper clips (about a gram each) to the loop to see the maximum number the beetle could pull. Check out one group below!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

New York State Math Test

For the next 3 mornings we will be taking the New York State 4th grade math test.

Students need to:

1) Go to bed early.

2) Eat breakfast.

3) Bring several sharpened #2 pencils to school.

4) Get to school before 8:00am.

The Grade 4 Test is divided into three books: Book 1, Book 2, and Book 3.

Book 1: May 5th, 50 minutes

-contains 30 multiple-choice questions; students will record their answers on a bubble sheet

Book 2: May 6th, 50 minutes

-short-answer response and extended response questions; students will show their work and write their answers directly into the test book

Book 3: May 7th, 50 minutes

-the same as Book 2

Monday, May 3, 2010


Simple Machines are devices that make work easier!
Click on this link to read all about and view each of the 6 simple machines.

Then fill out the packet.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Bess Beetles!

Did you know that 1 out of every 4 animals in this world is a beetle? Today we met our bess beetles! We observed them in many ways: we noticed that they have 2 eyes, a mouth, a small horn on its head, 2 antennae, 2 strong jaws (called mandibles), 3 body parts (a head, thorax, and abdomen), 2 pairs of wings (1 pair are the hard, black outer wings called elytra) and 6 legs. We noticed that they liked to crawl under tunnels, and didn't like their antennae touched. They didn't bite us when we held them, they just tickled our hands as they walked around. A few groups realized that if their bess beetle got scared, it might poop on them!

This nice close-up shot is on Niskua's kitty folder : )

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Bess Beetles

After school today our bess beetles arrived in the mail! I had to quickly make them a home and get them out of the little carton they came in. Mikey was in CASP so he and I went in the woods to gather mud, rotting wood, and sticks!