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Hi 4th Grade Families!

It has been a great start to the school year, and today was an important day full of firsts! Besides having our first fire drill, we also presented our job application and presentations, prepared our homework/resource binders to help us with our weekly homework, received the first homework packet (due next Tuesday, as Monday is Labor Day), started our new reading and writing curriculum, and began our social studies and science/STEM rotations.


Homework Binder

Students organized their homework/resource binders this afternoon with some of their “to do” homework in the inside front sleeve, their planners in the front of the rings, and a few helpful sheets behind that in plastic sleeves they may use alongside home and classwork. We divided sections to prepare for resource sheets in all subjects by using sticky notes for now (you might want to get a set of dividers for your child if their stickies fall out). Remember, students should work for about 40 minutes a night on homework (5 nights a week), and 20 of them should be focused on reading. They can continue another night, once they hit the 40 minute mark.


Class Jobs

Students presented their amazing presentations this morning for their class job applications. There were many very well done, colorful, and well-prepared presentations. The competition for some of the jobs was intense. The good news is that all the jobs are great and help the class run smoothly, so we appreciate your support in positively encouraging your child, no matter what job they won. Based on the points students received on their rubric, the completion of answers on their application, attitude in class, and their strengths shown the last couple weeks, they have received a class job tailored just for them (that they will learn about in the morning). Each student will be responsible for completing these jobs each day in order to help the room run smoothly and to receive their class allowance of Darting Dollars to exchange for prizes on the days of the SOAR store.


Back to School Night

Back to School/Curriculum Night is this Wednesday at 6pm or 6:40pm. Come at 6pm for the classroom presentation and then see the school presentation in the gym at 6:40 or vice versa. We will be starting together as a 4th grade team in our classroom, and then we will be breaking into our individual classrooms to finish the presentations with just our homeroom families. The school presentation will be in the gym and led by our principal, Mrs. Burch. She will introduce the Energy Bus program and provide some other important school information.

Energy Bus

Get on the bus! We have started our learning and goal setting for the year with the program “The Energy Bus.” We look forward to sharing more about this at the school presentation in the gym Wednesday night.


Social Studies/Science/STEM Rotations

After our first “Fuel Up” weekly reward recess today, we began our rotations for social studies, science, and STEM (Soc. St./Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)! Students will be rotating between each of the 4th grade rooms from 2:10 and 3:25 everyday to receive social studies and science instruction from each of the 4th grade teachers. STEM will be a mix of social studies and science 4th grade curriculum, but with added real-life extension projects, coding, robotics, and mathematics. We are excited to be able to provide this type of unique learning structure this year to encourage your 4th grader to go deeper with their learning and to prepare them for the jobs and opportunities of the future.


Writing and Reading Units of Study

Our Writing and Reading Units of Study curriculum by Lucy Calkins officially began today as well! In these two programs, students will be immersed in great literature, critical thinking, and good writing and reading strategies to enhance their own writing and reading abilities. We began last week by participating in pre-assessments for characters in realistic fiction for reading and for personal narratives in writing, using a rubric to grade ourselves and analyze the 4th grade expectations. Next, we will be creating specific goals to achieve by the next MAP test in December that we plan to communicate with you at our first student-led parent/teacher conference in the beginning of October. The Units of Study have been a fun, new adventure, and we look forward to delving deep into each unit.


Thanks for all your help from the “homefront.” The 4th grade team appreciates all you do to support us and your child each and everyday. We couldn’t do this without you!


Have a wonderful week and hope to see you Wednesday night at 6pm or 6:40pm!


Mrs. Vallory Darting, M.Ed.

4th Grade Teacher

Blue Heron Elementary School

Littleton, CO