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9-26-18


 

Dear 4th Grade Families,


It is hard to believe September is already almost over. We are finishing up most of our current units and are looking forward to moving onto new units of study this next month in many subjects. As October starts, it brings with it lots of exciting events!


Math

Unit 1 Summative Assessments came home in Friday Folders last week. We have started Unit 2: Whole Number Multiplication this week. Please continue to have students practice their math facts at home. It is important that each student becomes proficient and quick with their multiplication and division math facts in 4th grade so that 5th grade can build upon that knowledge with equivalent fractions and operations.


Writing

We are finishing publishing our narrative, realistic fiction writing this week! Woohoo! The students have written some incredible stories that we are excited to share with you at conferences. We will be sharing them with each other in class the next two days and with buddies next Wednesday. Next week, we will begin Unit 2: Persuasive Writing.


Reading

This week, we also finished the realistic fiction reading unit on characters by taking an summative assessment and having a celebration day to reflect on our learning. We have learned a lot about what makes a story come to life, characters seem real, and how to look deep into author’s meaning. We finished the read aloud book, Tiger Rising, today and wow. The complication of characters, depth of meaning, relatable emotions, and change/growth over time was simply amazing. When the main character finally overcame his fears and opened his proverbial “suitcase,” we all cheered, and then cried a little as we felt his hurt, his longing for his mother, the joy of forming a new friendship, and the loss of the tiger. What an amazing book. This next week, we begin our unit on nonfiction (using weather and the world to learn about text features and compare primary sources). It should be a fun one!


Science/STEM/Social Studies

Moon journals are due this week and the unit on the Solar System is coming to a close. Thanks again to all the parents who have supported us by purchasing materials through our 4th grade Amazon wishlist. We were able to use ticker tape to predict the distances of planets from the sun to scale and have started to plan our next unit on energy (where students will be building mini cars to race in class). In social studies, students are learning to read atlases and beginning to discover different geographical regions around the world. In STEM this week, we have used Google My Maps to create interactive map locations with pins and pictures that represent the different regions around the world. This next month, students will continue to learn about geographical locations around the world and not only be learn the importance of using problem solving strategies through coding, but will also be using that knowledge to program Sphero robots and build our spider robots which we received as a donation through our class Amazon wishlist. It is going to be an amazing, interactive month of learning, and it will be exciting to see what students discover about themselves through the process! Thanks again for your donations that have made it possible.


Upcoming Events:

  • We have a new Blue Heron Aviator school logo! Check it out and buy new spirit wear (be sure to order the correct grade’s color) at https://bhe2018.itemorder.com/sale. All orders are due Thursday, October 4th, so order now!

  • Conferences are Tuesday and Wednesday, October 9th and 10th. Sign up links for each class will be coming out Friday in the school newsletter!

  • During the same week as conferences, our school will be hosting a Scholastic Book Fair! Please stop by the fair to see student and class wishlists.

  • Thursday, October 11th, is not only the last day of the Scholastic Book Fair in the Blue Heron Library, it is also the morning on the Grandparents Breakfast and the day of Read4Funds. The Grandparents Breakfast is only $6 per person but has limited seating, so be sure to sign up for it as soon as possible at https://my.cheddarup.com/c/grandparent-s-breakfast-2018. Information on Read4Funds came home in large, white envelopes today. Please have your child find sponsors for their reading minutes. Though students are to track their reading minutes on the Read4Funds reading log provided (even if they are not competing for funds) to compete for individual and class prizes, there will be a culminating “Read-a-thon” day on Thursday, October 11th. Students can wear PJs and come hear from local authors, listen to first responders, grandparents, and other community members read and celebrate reading. Orders are due Tuesday the 16th and prizes will be rewarded on the 19th. This is a school fundraiser for new library books, much needed/updated technology, and to replace worn out furniture for our 16 year old school. Thank you for supporting Blue Heron!

  • Friday, October 26th, is the day of our Halloween parade, parties, and the Harvest Festival! Look for more information to come soon in the school newsletter.

  • If you are still interested in supporting our classroom with needed STEM resources, library books, and more, please visit our class Amazon wishlist at http://a.co/iDm5RnZ. The Snap Circuits for science/STEM, a class copy of The Energy Bus for Kids, batteries for our Spider Robots and class clickers, Scratch Coding Cards, and the Code Hopper game are all top priorities on our 4th grade list (which I will need to personally purchase soon in order to have in time for students to use in class). Thank you to those who are, and have been, willing to help!


Thanks, once again, for all you do to support our students, staff, and school. We are so blessed to have such a generous and caring community. Have a wonderful week. I look forward to seeing you all soon for fall conferences.


Vallory Darting, M.Ed.

4th Grade Teacher

Blue Heron Elementary

Littleton, CO