Update February 26, 2017

Dear Fourth Grade Families,

Another super busy week at school!  Here is a run-down of our accomplishments:

  • Read non-fiction texts about changes to the Earth and completed mini essays,
  • Read non-fiction texts, answered question sets, and completed mini essays,
  • Continued to work on analogies for vocabulary development,
  • Studied adjectives and articles,
  • Completed personal essays and persuasive essays
  • Practiced multiplying fractions with several types of models,
  • Generated ideas to support our local wild bee population,
  • Investigated erosion and deposition in stream bed trays,
  • Completed a final assessment in our Soil, Rock, and Landform unit
  • Visited the Waukegan Library to meet our book buddies

Housekeeping:  We know that the weather has been very changeable over the past few weeks.  Please check the weather each day since it is changing rapidly.  Send your child prepared for the day.

Academics this week:

ELA:  This week we are beginning our immersion unit in SS and ELA in Pioneer lifestyles.  In reading all students will read Little House on the Prairie.  I will meet in small groups to be sure that all students understand the historical background of this book.  Students will be responsible for daily assignments in vocabulary, comprehension, and elements of literature.  We will use this book as our text for the next few weeks.  If your child doesn’t complete the day’s assignment, he or she will need to finish it at home and return it the next day.  Please check your child’s notebook for the core and content spelling words this week.  For grammar study, we will continue to work on adjectives all week.  Some of the work will be written and some will be done interactively on slates.  In Writers’ Workshop, students will begin a new unit on informational writing.  They will be drafting a mini book about Illinois history from about 1800 to 1820.  Students will use our Illinois Our Home book for ideas, then they will need to find additional information from outside sources; books and internet resources will both work.  Look for homework on Monday and Wednesday nights in writing.

Math:  This week we will look at story problems that involve multiplying fractions.  Students will use a strategy called “interpreting set models” to find fractions of groups (sets) rather than fractions of a whole.  They will use the website, Visual Fractions, to practice multiplying fractions using lines.  There is also an area model that I am going to introduce if there is time.  On Friday we will be “back in the kitchen” with fractions to use multiplication of fractions to alter taco recipes.  Keep up the Rocket Math practice, soon everyone will have passed the division section!

Science:  We will welcome Ms. Naomi to our classroom on Tuesday for a fossil lesson.

SS:  This week marks the beginning of the Bulgarian cultural holiday, Martenitsa.  Mr. Freeman and his team have put together a cultural experience for students on Wednesday.  Martenitsa is a celebration to welcome the return of spring.  Later in the week we are going to use a simulation curriculum called Interact for our pioneer unit.  Students will be broken into teams and will embark on a journey west to settle land in the American frontier.  Many hardships will befall them in their goal to stake out their homestead in the mid-1800’s.  This simulation is akin to the Lewis and Clark simulation from last year.  It should be a lot of fun!

Specials:  See each teacher’s individual page for more information.

SURPRISE:  The students have earned a celebration from earning Hawk’s tickets!  In celebration of taco math on Friday, we are planning to provide a taco lunch.  We will have taco meat (probably turkey), vegetarian beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sliced olives, sour cream, and soft tortillas.  Students should still bring in a snack and anything else that they would like to have for lunch.

Dates to Remember:

2/27:  Link for Student Led Conferences sent

2/28:  School board meeting, 7 pm

3/1:  Martenitsa celebration,

3/3:  Taco Lunch, report cards sent home electronically

3/4:  Film Festival (see PCCS news)

3/7:  Green Assembly

3/9:  ER, Student led conferences, Book Fair

3/10: ER, Additional conferences, Book Fair

3/13:  PARCC window opens…full testing schedule to come…

If you feel that I have missed anything, let me know!

Cynthia McGovern