4th Grade Newsletter

October 20, 2016

Important Dates

  • Tuesday, October 25 - Barksdale Color Run
  • October 24-28 - Red Ribbon Week
  • October 25 - Barksdale PTA Color Run
  • October 27 - Reflections Projects Due
  • October 28 - Red Ribbon Rally

What are we learning?

Language Arts and Social Studies

This week in Language Arts we began reading Poppy by Avi. The students are enjoying this tale about a mouse and how she finds the courage to stand up to her enemy. We have been focusing on how authors convey the theme (or message) of stories. The students are also exploring character traits and how our understanding of characters changes throughout the story. We have continued the wonderful Socratic Circles the students began using in 3rd grade. The level of questioning, discussion, and engagement in these circles demonstrates the thinking each student is doing while they read.

In Social Studies we finished up our study of the Native Americans. We were so impressed by the creative artifacts the students displayed in our Tejas Museum last week. Thank you for your help with that! Next we are going to be learning about the early European explorers that came to this land.


In math this week we are learning how to multiply. The students have learned a few different strategies to multiply a 4-digit factor by a 1-digit factor. We have learned how to break numbers apart using the distributive property, and we have used arrays to multiply, but we are spending most of our energy learning the standard algorithm. We are also deciphering word problems together which can be tricky. On Tuesday, October 25, your child will take the Topic 4 assessment. The study guide was sent home on Monday and will be due tomorrow.


We are wrapping up our unit on circuits and will be moving into a study of matter. We know the students learned a lot about matter in 3rd grade and hope to build on that understanding by exploring the following ideas:

· Matter can be described, organized, and classified for understanding the world.

· Matter has physical properties that can be measured and observed using tools.

· Characteristics of objects make them useful.

· Different factors affect changes in matter.

· Matter can be changed/manipulated but cannot be created or destroyed.

· Force, motion, and energy are related.

· Motion and force are evident in everyday situations.

Author Visit

The students had such a great time with our author visit earlier this week! They loved reading about William Hoy, hearing from a real author about the writing process, and even learning a little sign language. If you would still like to purchase an autographed copy of the book, please visit the PTA website and click on My Account. You can order the book through Friday. www.barksdalepta.org

Red Ribbon Week

October 24-28
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46th Annual Collin County Poetry Contest

Sponsored by the Mockingbird Chapter of the Poetry Society of Texas

No Entry Fee – Categories for:

Students: Open to all Collin County public, private, and home school students (K-12).

Winners are chosen from each grade level.

Adults: Open to all adults residing in Collin County.

Mockingbird Chapter Members: Open to all members regardless of residence.

Winners (1st, 2nd, and 3rd place) receive certificates.

Winning poems may be published in a 2017 anthology. If so, winners get one free copy.

Accepting entries now through

February 1st 2017 (Postmark Date)

Contest Rules

1. Each contestant may enter one poem, written in any style and on any subject.

2. Poem must be the original work of the contestant.

3. Poem is not to exceed 28 lines (title and white space between lines or stanzas are not counted).

4. A poem is not eligible that has been published (school publications acceptable).

5. Contestants must retain a copy of their poems. Submitted copies will not be returned.

Winners will be announced at the 46th Collin County Poetry Awards in the Spring of 2017.

Preparation of Entries

1. Submit two (2) typed copies of the poem.

2. In the top left corner of BOTH COPIES, write category:

Student with grade level - - - Adult - - - or - - - Mockingbird Member.

3. In the top right corner of ONE COPY, write your identification information. STUDENT winners will be contacted through their school so please share Student’s Name, School Name, School address, Teacher’s name and email address. ADULTS, please share Name, Address, and Email Address.

4. TEACHERS may submit student entries in one envelope. Please stack each student's set with the identification copy on top, second copy beneath. Please do not use paper clips. Please do notstaple the two copies.

Mail to: Mockingbird Poetry Society – 8117 Alderwood Pl. – Plano, TX 75025

Please direct any questions to Beth Ayers (972-747-1297) beth.ayers55@gmail.com

All student poets are also encouraged to enter the Poetry Society of Texas Student contest. Deadline for this contest is March 1, 2017. See the PST website for information: http://www.poetrysocietyoftexas.org

See our website: www.mockingbirdpoetry.org
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Ready-Rosie: A Literacy and Math Resource for Parents


Parents have free access to a wonderful literacy and math resource called Ready-Rosie: Ready for School. Ready for the World. Families may access for babies or for pre-K through first grade aged students.


Click on Resources for Partners

Click on Awareness Materials

· Parents and caregivers receive daily texts, emails, or app notifications in English and Spanish.

· Everyday activities are modeled in brief videos by real families.

· Parents and caregivers are equipped to have more meaningful interactions and turn everyday situations into learning opportunities.


Our first Barksdale Triathlon event is coming up soon! PTA Reflections projects are due on October 27. Science Fair projects are due January 11 and Bronco Press is due April 26.

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Color Run Incentives!

The fabulous Color Run is coming up on October 25. This year we have added some fun incentives!

-Top Class for Donations-Free Dillas catering for their class

-Top Grade for Participation-Extra Recess

-Top Grade for Donations-Extra Recess