Spotlight on Specials

Fourth Grade

Exploratory Team

The teachers of these exploratory classes are committed to inspire the creative genius in all students through art, technology, library media, music, counselor and physical education.


In our library classes this quarter students practiced ordering nonfiction call numbers and then worked in pairs or independently to locate books in the nonfiction section using call numbers. We talked about encyclopedias and their usefulness when researching a topic. We watched a preview of some of the exciting books that were coming to the Scholastic Book Fair during Spring Parent-Teacher Conferences. We discussed the use of a thesaurus to enhance word choice in our creative writing. Students practiced using a thesaurus by looking up a word and finding both synonyms and antonyms for that word. Just a reminder for students who chose to participate in the William Allen White Reading Program this year. The deadline to submit reading logs is April 22nd. No reading logs will be accepted after that date. A copy can be found on the William Allen White Reading Program tab of my website at We will be voting for our favorite in April.


The time is flying by! Third quarter was filled with scooters, throwing games, climbing, and basketball. We began the quarter with scooter hockey. The students seemed to really enjoy it and quickly picked up the skills needed to play the game. They learned how to dribble (with a whiffle ball instead of a puck), how to pass to a teammate, and how to shoot and score a goal. The students were great at all the skills and did a great job at putting them all together in actual scooter hockey games. Many students got to be goalies and try to stop the other team from scoring. It was a great unit! We were able to play some throwing games for fun, such as Sink the Ship and Star Wars 2. We then began our climbing unit. The students climbed both the rock wall and the cargo net. They were all a spotter at one point, where they made sure their partner was staying safe, following the rules, and were there to help their climber when they needed it. I loved hearing from the students that were afraid to climb the rock wall or cargo net, but tried anyways, and ended up getting over their fears! I love their courage and perseverance. They showed great strength and balance during that unit! We ended the quarter with basketball. Just like many other sports, it is helpful to learn the skills first. It was fun to see what some students already knew, and what they learned by the end of the unit. We learned how to properly dribble (with finger pads, eyes up, dribble low), pass, and shoot. The students learned the acronym B.E.E.F. (Balance, Eyes, Elbow, Follow through), which helps them with their shooting form. We played many basketball related games such as Hot Shot, Knockout, Dribble Knockout, and Hot Spot. The words we focused on this quarter were maneuver, fundamentals, leader, balance, flexibility, hustle, foul (basketball term), and trustworthiness.


I’m Mr. Relf, and I was the student teacher in music for 3rd quarter. I had a great time at Riverview Elementary teaching music. Every student was a delight to see in class during the quarter. We had lots of fun learning about music together. I wish the best for every student in 4th quarter and in their future years of making music! Here’s a little about what we did in third quarter:

3rd quarter for 4th grade brought a lot of excitement. The students learned several different folk songs and dances. They also began playing recorders again. 4th graders learn to play many more notes and learn more about reading music with Recorder Karate. Students earn different colored belts after each song that they pass in class. The songs are progressively harder and use more skills that will be learned in class. Students are expected to practice at home so they are prepared for questions and for passing off songs in class. Grades will reflect whether students are moving quickly, on track, or are behind in their belt earning. The last couple weeks of the quarter, the students also worked on a composition project where they made their own recorder piece with a group and eventually performed their group song for the class. It was a fun quarter for 4th grade.


In Guidance with Ms. Munsey this quarter, we finished our unit on the Zones of Regulation. We also started a unit with our new curriculum, “Too Good for Drugs”. Our first lessons covered goal-setting and decision-making. Students worked on identifying goals in given situations, then applying the skills to form their own goals. Several students have already worked hard and accomplished their goal. I am also very excited to have a fabulous intern, Natalie Arbaugh, working with me from February through April. She has been a great addition and works so well with all grade levels teaching guidance lessons and working with students.


Fourth graders worked diligently to create their presentations in Prezi for Parent Teacher Conferences. Students reviewed: how to set formatting options, create varied text options, added additional points in the path, edited the path, how to find, save and insert an appropriate picture pulling from various drives, hide a slide within a picture or text, create different types of movement within the presentation, add symbols and in program clip art selections and present their Prezi to an audience. I was impressed with the amount of effort they put into making their presentations pop! A few of the classes were able to touch a bit on Weebly in an effort to introduce them to the program. Currently, we are learning the basics of Excel. We will continue using Excel into next quarter and hopefully end with a little stop action photography.


During the third quarter, fourth grade students have been very busy in the art room. At the beginning of the third quarter, fourth graders learned about a Pop artist named Romero Britto. After watching a video about the artist and analyzing his work, student’s created an image inspired by his work. Students were encouraged to draw an image that conveyed a message about peace and happiness and use colorful patterns and designs like Britto. Next, fourth graders listened to a story called The Pot that Juan Built. This books told a true story about a man in Mexico that taught his community how to create clay coil pots and as a result the community has risen out of poverty and become well-known for their artistic talents. Students created their own clay coil pots and painted them with watercolors. Our final project of the third quarter connected art and math together. Students read an article and analyzed M.C. Escher’s tessellation drawings. Students learned how to create their own tessellations. Later in the year, students will integrate what they learned about tessellations in art in their regular classrooms.

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