Reading – We are continuing our Book Club work which is further supported by our new “Literary Essay” writing unit. Students are closely analyzing characters, author’s purpose, and theme in their Book Club books and in the short stories we will be using in writing.
Writing – We are launching a new unit called “Literary Essay”. This unit will combine students’ prior knowledge of essay writing with an in depth focus on closely reading and analyzing literary texts. This week we are reading the short story, “Fox”, as a class and analyzing the characters. We are writing entries to grow our thinking about the story and will eventually use this material to create strong thesis statements about the text.
Math – We have begun “Module 4: Angles and Plane Figures”. This week we have been learning about points, lines, line segments, rays, and angles. We are also learning about kinds of angles (right, acute, obtuse) and lines (parallel, perpendicular, and intersecting).
Science – Students are continuing their study of “Soils, Rocks, and Landforms” by investigating the concepts of erosion and deposition. We are modeling these phenomena by using stream tables to observe how the erosion of earth materials by water helps to create landforms. Students will be able to observe these processes in the real world on Friday when we go on our geology fieldtrip up Nanshan.
Word Study – We have returned to focus on Spelling, specifically trying to master the spelling words on the Grade 4 Dolch List.
After meeting with many parents during our winter conferences, I have compiled this list of links based on some frequently asked questions.
Click here for a list of suggested books for fourth graders. There are many genres.
Important Events this Week:
Parent Conferences – Thursday, February 1st.
Writing and Reading – We will begin reading book club books this week. In Read Aloud, we are reading historical fiction books and noticing the details that reveal the time period in which our books take place. This week students are creating story arcs with their group and then independently drafting their own historical fiction pieces from their group story arc. They are reviewing what we learned in our Realistic Fiction unit by incorporating “show not tell” techniques such as dialogue, action, internal thought, onomatopoeia, details, and “juicy” words. Once finished with their drafts, students will read their stories to each other and choose one within their group that they would like to storyboard for their Historical Fiction green screen.
Math – We are looking at math this week with a renewed focus on problem-solving and using manipulatives to develop concrete and visual understanding of the concepts of multiplication and division.
Social Studies – We completed our unit on Migration with our SIS Immigration Checkpoint activity on Level 5. Students were placed in mixed class groups, each of which was a “family” that was trying to migrate to a mythical, perfect country called Utopia. Students needed to pass through a variety of checkpoints (passport control, security, health check, and visa check) to be allowed to enter Utopia. All “families” had to be ready to answer questions in regard to their country of origin, occupation, health, criminal background, and standard of living. Afterwards, we had the students reflect on their experiences as an “immigrant” in an effort to help them develop a sense of empathy towards others. Be sure to watch the reflection video when you come for your conference on Thursday.
Science – We will begin our unit on Soil, Rocks, and Landforms this week with a review of the scientific process. Later in the week, we will be examining different types of soil.