Classroom name: Christina Swinn
Grade level: First

Contact's email: cswinn@gettysburg.k12.pa.us

Date you joined: February 16, 2012

What happened with your weather in the past week or so?
It has been a relatively warm winter in Gettysburg, PA this year. We were surprised by a 5 inch snowstorm in our area at Halloween! Since then we have had mild temperatures and an occasional storm with a few inches of snow. They are calling for a possible storm on the weekend. I know many children are hoping for at least one deep snow to build snowmen, sled, ski and throw a few snowballs. We have not missed any school days yet due to snow. We did, however, have one "flood" make-up day. Our area has been seeing an increase in heavy rain storms.

March Comes in "like a lamb" in Gettysburg, Pa!

Residents of Gettysburg, PA woke up to 40 degree Fahrenheit temperatures and a dense fog alert on March 1. The low clouds, fog and poor visability conditions improved by 8 am. Temperatures rose to the mid 50s. We checked the temperature at 3:00 PM and it was 53 degrees Fahrenheit and the weather was sunny and mild. Sunrise was at 6:45 am and sunset occurred at 6:01 pm. There was no precipitation on this date. We felt very lucky with our weather conditions on this first day in March when so many people in the country suffered with violent weather storms!

Spring Arrives--March 20, 2012

Spring arrives in Gettysburg! Temperatures were a warm, balmy 59 degrees this morning. We had some light rain during the night and students reported foggy conditions and cloudy skies when they arrived at school. Even though today is the "true" first day of spring, warm weather arrived in Gettysburg weeks ago. Crocuses, daffodils and forsythia bushes are in full bloom. Fruit trees in the surrounding areas are blossoming. The early blossoms could prove to be a problem if our area experiences extremely cold weather. This is certainly possible since it is only March 20. We have experienced mild winter conditions and now an "early" spring! We skyped with a first grade classroom in Michigan today and at 11:00 am, it was already 86 degrees Fahrenheit! Very warm for the first day of spring! After hearing the temperature in their area, we thought 59 degrees with a possible high of 72 was much more spring like! The chance of precipitation today was 20%. We discussed the vocabulary word "precipitation" and then talked about what our chances were of getting "it" at 20%. We watched an overcast sky all day, with the sun breaking out as we took some class photos on campus. At dismissal time, we were greeted with a heavy downpour of rain. We have had a particularly dry past couple of months.Sunrise today was at 7:11am and sunset was at 7:22pm. We had .19 inches of rain reported in the area.

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Students Celebrate the First Day of Spring
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We enjoy the flowers and trees on campus!


March 21, 2012

Today we anxiously waited to skype with fourth graders in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada! On the first day of spring, we received a delightful ecard from them wishing us a "Happy Spring!" During the day, we prepared for our skype call. We looked for Regina on Google Earth. We checked out our classroom maps too! We checked and recorded temperatures from Gettysburg and Regina. We recorded the temperatures in Fahrenheit and Celcius. We found that our day was slightly warmer than theirs. We talked about time differences and learned that they are two hours behind our Eastern Standard Time. We revisited the book On the Same Day in March and located the page of the city that is closest to us. It was New York City! We prepared to read that page to the fourth graders. We are great readers! We prepared fun facts to tell the fourth graders about life in Gettysburg, PA. We had our own questions prepared that we wanted to ask them about life in Regina. At last, the call came through at 2:45PM. We had so much fun meeting and collaborating with students completing the same project that we were! We shared information about our town/city. We discussed the weather we were having that day and recent weather trends. We found that students in Regina often visit the United States and travel to some of the same places we do. They even like to do the same activities that we do! They even spoke some French for us! Both classes came to the conclusion that "we are always more alike than different!" Thank you Mrs. McMurtry's class from Regina, Canada! We had an awesome experience!


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Getting Ready to Skype!
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We make some new friends!


We take a look at March 2012 weather patterns in Gettysburg, Pa.

Date- High(F)- Low(F) -Precipitation
March 1- 57- 38- 0.08
March 2- 50- 30- Trace
March 3- 57- 44- 0.01
March 4- 43- 31- 0.00
March 5- 41- 28- 0.08
March 6- 47- 22- 0.00
March 7- 65- 34- 0.00
March 8- 69- 50- 0.00
March 9- 53- 38- 0.00
March 10- 45- 27- 0.00
March 11- 63- 31- 0.00
March 12- 68- 39- 0.00
March 13- 78- 57- 0.00
March 14- 78- 54- 0.06
March 15- 80- 50- 0.01
March 16- 69- 48- 0.00
March 17- 75- 50- 0.00
March 18- 64- 50- 0.00
March 19- 70- 54- 0.57
March 20- 72- 59- 0.12
March 21- 66- 55- 0.00
March 22- 75- 59- 0.00
March 23- 80- 54- 0.00
March 24- 68- 57- 0.62
March 25- 61- 47- 0.02
March 26- 58- 48- 0.00
March 27- 53- 27- 0.00
March 28- 71- 44- 0.13
March 29- 61- 48- 0.00
March 30- 44- 36- 0.00
March 31- 47- 43- 0.00

Reflections:
This year in Gettysburg, March came in like a lamb and went out like a lamb. We had an unusually warm month with very little precipitation. Any precipitation in our town came in the form of rain. Flowers and flowering shrubs and trees bloomed early. The surrounding farms in the Gettysburg area are known for their fruit production. The early blossoms can cause problems if a deadly frost occurs. This can certainly happen since we are now just ending the month of March and heading into April. Early April temperatures are starting out more seasonable. The early warm weather has many people eager to start planting their gardens. Local meteorologists warn us that the best planting times for the planting of most flowers and vegetables is after May 15. The early planting of cold weather vegetables such as cabbage, lettuce, onions, broccoli and cauliflower should be fine now for the Gettysburg area.