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Welcome to 4th grade!
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April 2-6

Upcoming Events
Tuesday, April 10th: Writing STAAR Test. Please refer to my email for more information about the test. 
Wednesday, April 11th: Class Picture Day
Thursday, April 12th: Walk to School Day
Friday, April 13th: Early Release at 1pm. Carnival from 1-4.
If you would like your child to be released directly to the carnival, please email me and let me know.
This Week In...
Writing: We continued refining our revising and editing skills. I appreciate the support I received from you all on a few passages that were brought home for homework. The class also focused on capturing the reader's attention with strong introductions and not having excess information clouding reasons. Students also looked at making sure that supporting details were precise and directly related to the point they were writing about.
Reading: We began to read the book Wonder as a class and have used it to think about poetry and drama in a new way. We will continue our reading and learning for the next two weeks using this book!
Math: We finished our measurement unit this week and tested on Wednesday. The results of that test came home today and should be in the yellow communication folders. After measurement, we have jumped right into data analysis and will continue our work with that unit next week.
Science: The class performed an experiment that explored density. Thank you for sending the water bottles!
Social Studies: We will begin learning about the Texas Revolution next week.

March 19 - 23

Wow! What a week! I appreciate all the support the class received as we were able to experience a wide variety of activities from yoga, to WE Day, to a special speaker, PAWS, Open House, and Grandfriend's Day. 
Upcoming Events:
Thursday, March 29th: Student Holiday
Friday, March 30th: Student Holiday
This Week In...
Math: The class was focused on perimeter and area this week. I find that this can be a concept that breeds misconceptions if students are not given time to explore perimeter and area individually before teaching them with one another. As your student does their homework, please pay special attention to the labeling of units to make sure that when finding area, they are representing square units. Next week, we will be focused on problem-solving with measurement, time, and money.
Writing: We spent some time looking at poetry this week when writing the 'My Room' poems that you all were able to see yesterday and today. Next week, we will be continuing our writing prep unit and diving into the particulars of our expository essays. 
Reading: This week in reading, the class read a non-fiction book about mummies, focusing on text elements that are unique to non-fiction reading. Within groups, students worked with one another to take notes on their section keeping in mind the text structure and other elements. Next week, we will be focusing on paired passages.
Science: In lab, the class worked with different solutions and performed a viscosity test.

February 20-23

Upcoming Events:

Week of Feb 26th, 4th Grade Writing Camp. Fourth grade will be dedicating an entire week to expository writing! Please see the schedule emailed to you to know what the theme is for each day. Since we will only be working on writing next week students will not have reading or math homework, but they will be responsible for completing polished, final drafts.

Also, parents will have a little homework as well! Each evening students will be bringing home their piece of writing for the day and you will need to read over it with your child and give them “glows” and “grows”. This sheet will be attached to their essays for you to fill out. Please return this with your child’s writing the next day.

Week of Feb 26th, Dr Seuss Week. Please check your calendar to see if you have signed up to read to our class. If you have, please bring one Dr. Seuss book to share.

Tue, Feb 27th, Alice’s Garden Week B Schedule

Tue, Feb 27th, 9:00am New Student Roundup

This Week In...

Math: Students focused on customary units of measurement this week! They converted units and had some hands on experience working with various forms of measurement. They also completed a practice test on Friday to see how much they have learned and to help know how each student can still grow. Next week, we will not have any math instruction due to Writing Camp.

Writing: The class published some fabulous Literary Essays on Tuesday! I am so proud of the accomplishments they have made and the growth their writing has gone through. After they published their papers, we turned back to expository writing and the class had the opportunity to work through the entire expository process. Next week, Writing Camp begins and I am looking forward to the growth and challenges students will go through.

Reading: The class wrapped up their work on their historical fiction book clubs. There were so many deep connections to characters and I loved hearing how history and fiction were intertwined in each of the books. We have now begun reading Esperanza Rising as a class and will continue to do so for two days next week. 

Science: In lab, students focused on how weather is measured! 

February 12-16

Upcoming Events:

Monday, February 19th, Student Holiday

Wednesday, February 21st, 7:15am PAWS Meeting cafeteria

Thursday, February 22nd, TAG field trip to robotics lab

Friday, February 23rd, Change for Children’s collection drive

This Week In...

Math: The class began learning about measurement, beginning with customary units of length. Each student measured themselves and then represented themselves as an Olympian. We then moved onto customary units of capacity where the class was able to use manipulatives to truly understand what capacity is. Today, we focused on customary units of weight. Students were focused on making reasonable estimates that demonstrated that they understood what unit would be the best measurement choice for certain objects. We also worked on measurement conversions.

Reading: The class has been hard at work with their second book club book. Students focused on identifying theme in our read aloud and then their own books. We finished reading Number the Stars and will begin reading Esperanza Rising next week. 

Writing: Our class completed a published literary essay today! This week we had been working on introductions, conclusions, and revising/editing with the goal of creating a published piece. It has been impressive to see the meaningful connections each student has established about the characters in their books. The strong thesis statements have been supported by quotes, micro-stories, and other forms of text evidence. Next week we will begin writing another expository essay!

Science: This week in lab, the class did a fun activity that helped them learn all about glaciers and erosion that takes place on these landforms! 

February 5-9

Upcoming Events:

Tue, Feb 13th, Alice’s Garden Week B Schedule

Wed, Feb 14th, Class Parties (Ours will be 2:15-2:45).

Thu, Feb 15th, 8:15am Parents’ Coffee Talk with the Principal, Making Sense of Report Cards

Thu, Feb 15th, Science Fair

Reminder: Science Fair Projects are due on Thursday, February 15th

This Week In...

Math:The class focused on measuring angles using a protractor as well as adding and subtracting angles. The class began classifying triangles and identifying quadrilaterals. We ended the week with an exemplar and a wonderful quadrilateral blueprint project.

Writing: Students worked on gathering examples, meaningful lists, and micro-stories from their books to help them begin putting together their first draft of a literary essay. Students have focused on making strong claims and supporting their claims with strong evidence found in their books.

Reading: Book Clubs were in full swing this week as students worked to identify connections with their historical fiction characters as well as identify small moments and details that become meaningful throughout the book. Each book club finished their first book today and will be receiving new books next week! We have not had reading logs for the past couple of weeks because student reading is being tracked through their book club book. They also have their other historical fiction book that they should be reading once they have completed their book club reading for the day.

Penny Book Project Reminder!

The class has been hard at work on the Penny Book projects. Please remember that these are due this Monday, February 5th. I sent out an email this afternoon that provides you with a resource if you have any questions that may arise over the weekend.

Week 21

Upcoming Events:
Monday, January 29th: Science Fair Project forms due
Monday, February 5th: Penny Book Project due
Thursday, February 15th: Science Fair
This Week In...
Math: We have been working on improper fractions, mixed numbers, as well as adding and subtracting fractions. This wraps up our fraction unit and we will test on Monday. Next week, we will begin points, lines, planes, and angles. This will be a wonderful unit!
Reading: We began our historical fiction unit, which has been very exciting! I am sure you have heard all about our book clubs, which are well underway. Students are working with one another to look at their characters and they are taking time to understand the various timelines that are occurring. We have also begun to read our new read aloud, Number the Stars, which is always a class favorite.
Writing: This week in writing, the class focused on the foundation for writing a literary essay. Students worked with partners to make strong connections to the text and strong claims about characters. Yesterday, the class took their connections and created a thesis statement and reasons that can be supported by evidence found in the book.
Science: The class learned about elements and minerals in the lab!
Social Studies: We will continue learning about the explorers next week.

Week 18

Upcoming Events:
Monday, January 15: Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Holiday

Thursday, January 18, 3:30pm Auditorium, Armstrong Spelling Bee

Wednesday, Jan 24- 7:15am PAWS Meeting

Monday, Feb 5- Penny Book Project Due 

Please be aware that the Penny Book Project is due on Monday, February 5th. I have made sure that students are mindful that they are responsible for having their projects completed before that deadline.

Today I sent home the Science Fair forms. The science fair will take place on Thursday, February 15th. Each fourth grade student is required to participate. Students may choose to complete the project by themselves or with one partner. The form that was sent home today will be due on Monday, January 29th. The Science Fair falls a week and a half after the Penny Book Project is due. I have made the class aware of this, but want to make sure and communicate this with you all.

This week in...

Math: Our new unit is fractions and after beginning with the basics, we have moved on to simplifying, identifying equivalent fractions, and plotting fractions on a number line. We will continue working on fractions next week. 

Writing: After learning comma rules, the class completed an on-demand expository piece that they finished up today. Next week, our new literary essay unit will begin! Students will learn how to make connections to texts and how to write about their reading. This unit truly prepares them to reflect on their reading in meaningful ways. 

Reading: Along with Mrs. Jeter's class, the class researched and compiled a presentation about a new extreme weather topic and presented their findings to one another. This wraps up our non-fiction unit. We will take a post-test next week before moving to our Historical Fiction unit! I hope the students enjoy this next unit, it is truly one of my absolute favorites.

Science: This week in the lab, the students tested various soil samples.

Social Studies: We began learning about explorers this week. The class was able to experience what it was like to obtain funding, navigate through unchartered waters, and even get lost at sea! We will continue our learning next week.

Week 16

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, December 20th, 7:15 am: PAWS Meeting in Cafeteria

Friday, December 22nd, 11:15-11:45: Class Party

Book Exchange:

We will be doing a class book exchange during the party, so please have your child bring one wrapped book for the exchange.  We will do separate book exchanges for the boys and the girls; so girls should bring books that girls would be interested in and boys should bring books that boys would be interested in. Also, if you could label the wrapped book "boy" or "girl" that would be helpful as well. Please let me know if you need help with this!

This week in…

Math: This week, we focused on equations, patterns, and tables. We will be taking an assessment on this next week. Please continue to work on multiplication facts at home as there is still a need to refine those skills.

Writing: The students finished publishing their expository pieces about their favorite time of year. This week we focused on grammar, particularly comma usage and homophones. Next week, the class will have the opportunity to learn about letter writing and complete some meaningful activities surrounding that topic.

Reading: We continued our research project about specific natural disasters. Students compiled information from books, articles, and websites into cohesive notes. They then came together with their group and created slides based on their particular sub-topic. Today, the groups presented all of their learning.

Science/Social Studies: In science lab, students learned about moon and its phases.


Week 14

Upcoming Events:

Week of Dec 4th, Inclusive Schools Week, see email schedule from Mary Turner

Tue, Dec 5th, 11:00am Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center program for parents on Internet safety, auditorium

This Week In...

Math: Long division! This week the class was introduced to long division. This is a brand new and at times, difficult topic for students to master. Each student has done a wonderful job of continuing to have a growth mindset when conquering this new topic. Please encourage your student to keep practicing their skills. Before they know it, long division will become second nature! We will be taking a test on Wednesday.

Writing: This week we started a new expository essay topic, our favorite time of year. Introductions and conclusions were given more attention and students are mastering the 'hooking' of the reader. Next week we will take our ideas to a final draft. 

Reading: The class has learned how to write effective summaries about non-fiction text pieces. They have been practicing this with their own readings and using TFK articles. We will be starting our weather research project next week, pairing with Mrs. Jeter's class. 

Science: This week in science lab, the class finished their owl pellet skeletons. In class, we learned about natural resources and the differences between renewable and non-renewable resources.

Week 12

Upcoming Events:
Wed-Fri, Nov 22-24, Holiday

Tue, Nov 28, 4th grade field trip to wetlands

Fri, Dec 1, prepare for construction fence, begin no parking on Byron, no access to front door


This Week In...

Math: Students finished the multiplication unit with an assessment that was sent home today in each communication folder. The class has begun the division unit and today, we learned about remainders and how we work with them in our division. Next week, we will be participating in a wonderful 'menu math' activity. If you have any Thanksgiving recipes to share, please make sure to email them to me by Monday morning or send them with your child.

Writing: We continued working with our expository pieces and had a wonderful lesson about developing our introduction and conclusion. The class published their first piece today. We will continue working on expository writing in the next coming weeks.

Reading: Our class is learning how to become expert non-fiction readers! It has been fun as students have gained more knowledge about topics they are reading. We have been working on making sure that students understand how to combat tricky texts and have started making connections to texts. 

Science: In science lab, the class got to work and dissect owl pellets! This allowed the class to see how animals are made up and see first hand the predator/prey cycle. We have also been learning about soil properties and erosion/deposition.


Week 9

Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, October 31st, Alice’s Garden

Tuesday, October 31st, 8:15am Kindergarten Character Parade

Friday, November 3rd, 3:30pm Report Cards posted in Skyward

This Week In...

Math: This week, students worked on mastering single digit multiplied by two-, three-, and four-digit numbers. The class also worked with strip diagrams as they relate to multiplication. Next Monday, the class will be taking a test over their work before moving onto another topic within multiplication. 

Writing: The class spent the week diving deeper into expository writing focusing on creating credible reasons that support our thesis statement within our expository essays.


Week 8

Upcoming Events:

Week of October 23rd, Red Ribbon Week

Wednesday, October 25th, picture retake day

Friday, October 27th, Founders Day Picnic-Turn in Chick-Fil-A order forms!

Friday, October 27th, 1:00pm Early Release for Students

This Week In...

Math: Yesterday, the class took a test to see how they are doing on multiplication so far. You should see that test and their work in their Communication Folders that were sent home today. We will be continuing our multiplication unit next week, focusing on a variety of multiplication strategies. It is vital that students continue practicing their facts!

Writing: We continued our expository writing and started some wonderful essays. Students are learning how to formulate thesis statements and supporting reasons. We will continue developing our reasons through the use of facts, lists, and micro-stories next week.

Reading: We have some expert debaters in our midst! The class focused on addressing a position and supporting their position with reasons/details. Each book has debatable ideas lying within it, waiting to be discovered. Ask your child about their debates and how they are justifying their positions.

Science: This week, students studied the characteristics of decomposers, producers, and consumers.

Social Studies: We have wrapped up our regions unit with presentations and poems. The poems students produced are amazing! Next week, we will be studying Native Americans.

Week 7

Upcoming Events:

Monday, October 16, Student Holiday

Tuesday, October 17, Alice’s Garden Week B

Wednesday, October 18, 7:15am PAWS meeting

Thursday, October 19, 6:00-7:00pm Invention Convention

Saturday, October 21, Community Open House, Elementary #5

This Week In...

Math: This week in math, our learners continued their exploration of multiplication. The class discovered that the properties of addition are very similarly related to the properties of multiplication. We will continue with our study of multiplication next week and investigate various ways of computing two digit by two digit problems.

Writing: After finishing up our Personal Narrative unit, the class has begun to explore the elements of expository writing. In the next few weeks, you should see a great deal of development as students work on creating a strong claim and supporting that claim with reasons and evidence. Today, the class generated ideas for expository writing topics. I cannot wait to learn from each student as they write about ideas and activities that they are experts in.

Reading: We are still reading Tiger Rising and applying our reading lessons to the book. The big idea that we were wrestling with this week was making connections within our reading to form a theory about a character or plot event. This proved tricky, but through the use of precise language, the theories began to come more naturally. Next week, we will be focusing more on debates and how to form theories that are supported by evidence and then communicate our ideas to other people.

Science: The class participated in an activity in which they used objects that simulated bird beaks to pick up their 'food'. This interactive activity demonstrated inherited traits.  

Social Studies: The class has been finishing up their Texas regions presentation and poem. We hope to have these presented on Tuesday before moving on to learning about Native Americans. It has been a joy to see the creativity coming out of the presentations and poems.

Week Three

Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, September 19th, Picture Day

Tuesday, September 19th, Alice’s Garden Week B

Tuesday, September 19th, 11:30am Principal’s Brown Bag Lunch “That’s Not the Way They Taught it When I Was in School: Understanding the Student Centered Classroom to Help Your Student Learn Best”

Wednesday, September 20th, 7:15am PAWS Meeting (in Cafeteria)

Friday, September 22nd, 1:00pm Student Early Release. We will release at our regular location.

This week in...

Math: We utilized our money sense to aid us in learning about decimals. We will be working with decimals in the tenths place and the hundredths place. The class also learned how to plot decimals on a number line, which will help them next week as we compare decimals. On Friday, the class participated in the second exemplar of the year.

Writing: We have spent the week gathering more seed story ideas for personal narratives. Students learned the importance of short lists to spark ideas for stories and we created a blueprint of our homes/important places that hold many memories that are helpful for writing. Next week, we will focus on qualities of powerful personal narrative writing and how to "show, not tell".

Reading: This week we continued our novel study of The Tiger Rising, which encouraged readers to continue reading intensely, connecting ideas and asking questions while reading. The class also experienced what it means to envision the story. We acted out important scenes from our read aloud and then students were able to pick out an important moment from their books and complete an envisionment activity.

Social Studies: We have begun our study of the different regions of Texas. We will continue this work next week.