The Ritenour Review
2017 - 2018 Fourth Grade Weekly News
Testing Season is Here
I hope you all have read my previous (long) e-mail and know about next week's testing schedule. We will hit the ground running tomorrow - happy Monday. We spent moments here and there over the three-day week preparing our minds and focusing on test taking strategies. We looked at scoring guides from the test makers and we reassured ourselves that we had the skills they were looking for throughout these tests. They are smart and wonderful children. Now, they have an opportunity to show their fabulous skills, work on improving last year's score and allow their future teachers to see some information to help them formulate the best plan of action to encourage their learning growth. As many of you may have seen at home, the nerves are present. Continue breathing confidence and reassurance into your children, as you all do so well!
Last week's three days flew by! Man, where does time go?! We thankfully managed to fit in all of our requirements and had a little bit of fun a long the way, too.
This past week:
In math, we finalized our sixth unit and the class took their unit assessment on Friday. Although, I did not love the idea of testing right before the state tests, it was perfect timing for them to conclude their understanding on division strategies and fraction computations. I know the level of math confidence has grown a lot in the last few weeks.
In reading, we are still working within our historical fiction unit. As you hopefully saw for homework one night, we spent a lot of time working on symbolism throughout texts and even our own lives. We've talked about the symbolism and theme throughout our class read aloud, Number the Stars, so I wanted to take it into another direction and look at a simple children's picture book and a well known band's song lyrics. In class we read Fly Away Home and we compared the somber storyline and meaning to the lyrics from Blackbird by the Beatles. Not only did the class pick up on the symbolism through the bird in both examples they were wonderful adding textual evidence to support their claim. To push them even further, I told them the song was written in 1968 and I asked them to use their understanding of that time period to build a stronger understanding of WHY the Beatles wrote their song. The conversations were beautiful and it was one of those magical moments when previous lessons piece together so beautifully without much pushing on my end. This is one of those teaching moments when you get to sit back and truly absorb the conversations and relish in their joy for learning.
In science, we finished our erosion and deposition lessons. The class conversations led to a lot of 'speed' conversations, so we pushed back our plans a bit and we explored with a bit of speed and velocity testing. We used our data for this activity and calculated the speed from our erosion tables and we will work on graphing that data next. On Friday, they had an open notes/open book assessment on erosion and deposition. At this point, I am not as concerned with a summative assessment, I am mostly looking for them to understand those concepts and use them in different scenarios. We will move into the natural resources section of this science unit and those concepts will come back.
Coming up next!
Math: We will work on a 3 Acts Math problem over the week. Due to ISTEP, we will not move into a new unit, but I still wanted to keep our skills fresh. 3 Acts Math problems are high energy and fun topics. I think they will enjoy this style of math.
Reading: We will continue reading Number the Stars and create a story problem and solution poster. My goal is to allow the students to determine this list and find solutions beyond the text. On Friday, they will try to build/construct their solutions. I will send more information on this tomorrow once I have addressed the class.
Science: We will revisit natural resources.
Writing: We will build our thesis for our essays and look for supporting details from the stories.
Jump Rope for Heart
For the month of March, Boone Meadow Wellness classes will be participating in the Jump Rope and Hoops for Heart fundraiser! Students will be learning about heart health, jump roping skills, and hula hoop activities. Students also have the opportunity to help the American Heart Association and raise money that goes towards new Wellness equipment!
Each student received a take-home letter and donation envelope from their homeroom teacher that informs them about the fundraising process. It is completely voluntary. Students can earn prizes based on the money they raise, and any donations are due by Friday March 23rd. There will be a concluding jump rope and hula hoop station, as well as a heart obstacle course at Boone Meadow’s Wellness night on Thurs. March 22nd to end the event.
BME Online Donation Link: http://www2.heart.org/goto/boonemeadow
Questions or concerns:
Garrett Stephens – Wellness Teacher
February 26th - March 3rd - ISTEP+ Testing window (Part 1) - 3rd/4th grades
March 8th - PTO Meeting 6:00pm
March 14th - Quarter 3 Ends
March 15th - 4th/5th Transition Day to ZWEST
March 16th - Spirit Day: Wear your Pajama's
March 22nd - Wellness Night 6:00-7:30pm
March 28th - Kindergarten Round-Up @ BME (More information will be shared in coming weeks)
March 30th - April 6th - Spring Break (No school)
April 16th - May 4th - ISTEP+ Testing window (Part 2) - 3rd/4th grades
PLEASE mark your calendars for May 25th as our make-up day due to the 1/12/18 inclement weather cancellation.