4J + 4Kr
STEM is Here!!!
We have just completed our first read aloud, The Kid Who Ran for President. It was a great way to study our democratic process, and it was full of great character traits that we analyzed ...using evidence from the text, of course! Our first reading test will be next week. The students will be applying what we have learned about summarizing, providing evidence, and distinguishing between character emotions and character traits to a reading passage.
In the upcoming month, students will be going on a roller coaster ride! Students will be studying the plot structure of a story and relating it to a ride on a coaster. On our next read aloud, students will apply their knowledge of plot and characters as they begin to distinguish between the advantages of first and third person point of view.
Our authors have been working on creating solid paragraphs... ones good enough to eat! As we compare the organization of a paragraph to a chef building a good hamburger, the students are understanding that a topic sentence (top bun) and conclusion sentence (bottom bun) are crucial to holding the entire paragraph together! You should be looking for this structure each week when you read their Learning Logs that come home in their Friday Folders!
We have recently completed a two paragraph essay in which they compared and contrasted two characters in our novel. Our focus was on using key words that indicate similarities and differences, while still designing solid topic and conclusion sentences.
These tasks are the building blocks for future fourth grade writing. In the upcoming month we will continue to work on their stamina as writers as we are gearing them up to write longer essays!
Our government unit has come to a close. Thank you so much for talking with your students about our government. It has been fun to see students bring in replicas of the Constitution, write petitions to initiate change, and thoroughly discuss the three branches and the balance of power throughout this unit of study. Students will have the opportunity to register to vote for our upcoming presidential election. On Election Day, the students of IHES will vote for their candidate of choice. I truly think knowing about our government will add to the excitement of the election.
Next on our social studies journey will be distinguishing between primary and secondary sources. This will lead us into Ohio's first people... the Prehistoric Indians! We will learn about this group solely through the artifacts that were found in Ohio, as they did not have any type of writing during this early time period. We will learn how this group arrived, what they ate, what tools they used, and what they used for shelter. Students will probably be surprised that Ohio once was VERY COLD, cold enough to have a glacier on part of it!
Key Vocabulary Words this month… primary source, secondary source, prehistoric, artifacts, Paleo-Indians, Archaic Indians, Woodland Indians, and Late-Prehistoric Indians.
Our mathematicians are currently learning to multiply large numbers up to four digits by a one digit number using different strategies. Students have learned to break apart large numbers using the distributive property to make multiplying large numbers easier. This helps to reinforce students’ understanding of the role place value plays in multiplication. Students have also learned how to use the strategy of partial products to multiply large numbers.
Our next focus will be multiplying large numbers using the traditional method with regrouping. We will also work on solving single and multi-step word problems. The Chapter 2 Assessment is scheduled for Friday, October 7th. Students received their study guide today and it is due on Thursday, October 6th. We will review together on Thursday.
Please continue to encourage your child to practice the math facts. Instant recall of the facts will help your child to be successful in math as we are learning to multiply large numbers. Students' Math Fact Log is due on October 12th.
This month students will be coming home with a Math Challenge Packet. The Challenge Packet is intended to stretch students’ problem solving skills so that they can apply math to the real world. This is an optional packet that will add bonus points to their homework grade in math. It is due no later than Monday, October 31.
Our fourth grade scientists have begun a study of Earth’s surface. Currently, we are investigating the composition of soils from four different locations. In our lab, we have compared the different soils and their components. Students learned that soil is composed of gravel, pebbles, sand, clay, silt and humus. The amount of these components in the soil depends on the location from where the soil was collected.
As we continue to study Earth’s surface, we will focus on how Earth’s surface changes over time. During our next lab, students will investigate the processes of physical and chemical weathering of rocks and minerals. Our classes will be visiting Green Acres during the month of October to observe changes in the Earth’s surface in a real-life setting.
Some vocabulary that you can review with your child at home includes: soil, humus, physical weathering and chemical weathering. Ask your child to look for signs of physical and chemical weathering in their outdoor environments.