Fourth Grade News

September 30, 2014


We began learning about multiplication in math! We reviewed that an array is a group of objects arranged in neat, equal rows. Students will be increasing their multiplication fact fluency during the beginning of this unit. Below is a link to Math Magician, a website that will help your child learn his or her multiplication facts. Knowing these facts automatically will be a tremendous asset to your child as we multiply larger numbers, as well as when we learn division, fractions, and decimals later this year. There is also a link to, another website students use to hone their problem solving skills and maintain proficiency in skills already learned. Students received usernames last week and some have practiced logging on. If they need help remembering, please contact your child's homeroom teacher.

Language Arts

Vocabulary development is essential to improving oral and written communication, as well as reading comprehension. As we seek to enhance our students' vocabulary, we will be defining and finding synonyms for chosen words pulled from read aloud books, as well as examining prefixes and suffixes to understand how they can change the meaning of a word.

Students also continue to read and write daily. They have books of their own choosing and books given to them by their teachers. As we write, students are focusing on word choice: precise nouns, powerful verbs, and fresh adjectives. We look forward to seeing how students use their increased vocabulary to improve their own writing.

Students will not receive word study words this week. Word study instruction will resume next week.

Science & Social Studies

Fourth grade wrapped up ecosystems last week and began discussing geography this week. We are reviewing mapping skills, the seven continents, and five oceans. Students should be able to identify all seven continents and five oceans on a world map. In the coming weeks, we will be taking a close look at the geography of Virginia, including the five regions, major rivers, and cities. Next time you have a chance, you and your child can think of all the different ways to answer the question, WHERE ARE YOU?

Field Trip Friday!

We are headed to the Fralin Art Museum and the Harrison Institute and Small Collections Library on Friday. Students should wear comfortable shoes and bring a lunch. We will be eating lunch on the Lawn near the Rotunda around 12:15. If you are in the area, please feel free to join us for lunch! We will be back to school by 2:00 on Friday afternoon.

Grading in Fourth Grade

Students begin earning letter grades this year! You should have already seen some of their papers or assessments coming home with letter grades on them. Every paper will not be graded, however. Quarterly grades are determined not only by assessments, but also by student projects and performance in class. Our focus continues to be on the learning process and student progress.

Important Dates

October 3 - Field Trip to Fralin Art Museum and UVa

October 17 - Picture Day

October 23 - End of first quarter

October 24 - Teacher workday - No school for students

November 7 - PTO Harvest Festival