As the school year begins, we are setting the tone and foundation for Reading Workshop; we are practicing what it looks like to engage in sustained reading, to think about our reading, to share our thoughts in a clear manner while being active listeners as other share, and we are working on building our reading stamina. As the month progresses, we will learn how to annotate our reading by leaving tracks of our thinking in the text. We will ask question, identify important information, make connections, and share our annotations with one another. As always, I will model this strategy first, guide the kids through practice, and give them ample time to independently practice the strategy.
We begin fourth grade by studying the components of a paragraph; a topic sentence, detail sentences, and a concluding sentence. In addition, we will work to elaborate on the details and add more meat to the text. The kids had their first experience doing this as they chose a summer memory to write a few short paragraphs about. During this process, we touched on figurative language, appropriate use of punctuations, and transition words. As we move into September, we will begin our first writing unit. The genre is narrative writing. September's blog post will contain specific information regarding the crafting techniques taught in this upcoming unit.
Our first unit of study is on factors and arrays. So far, we have explored a large group of objects and used our background knowledge of multiplication and repeated addition to create a variety of arrays that represent that group of objects. We have used manipulatives when needed to assist in the creation of arrays. Throughout the month of August, we will continue to build the foundation for one-digit by one-digit and two-digit by one-digit multiplication through our creation of arrays.
The kids will soon receive their password and log-in information for Pearson Realize. They will then have digital access to the student math handbook. (Please note that the pages must be printed and can not be completed digitally.) This may be used in case homework is left at school. As mentioned at Back to School Night, I will post a few links to videos from Pearson Realize that will give you examples of what we are doing in class. Your child will have viewed/completed the majority of the videos/tasks in class. You may use them at home to keep yourself informed of what we are doing in class and/or to support your child at home if necessary.
Toward the end of August we will begin our study of ecosystems. We will start by investigating biotic and abiotic factors, studying the characteristics of all living things, as well as create food webs and food chains. Check out next month's blog post for further details.