Sunday, November 12, 2017

November 11, 2017

Our routine each day is coming together for Morning Meeting.
     November has us deep in our studies in 4th Grade! The students are in a good routine and we are going to make the best of the days of school we have in November. It seems we have a lot of days off! We continue to forge ahead in our study of the history of Oregon building on the knowledge gained from studying the Native Americans of Oregon to learning about the first explorers to come to our state. Our class was very lucky last week to welcome Mrs. Slavik back to the 4th grade classroom to share her knowledge of the early sea explorers this past week. Each 4th grader has chosen an explorer to research and write a biography paragraph about this coming week.  
Native American Narrative writing
Peer review of Native American Narrative

Peer review of Native American Narrative
Peer review of Native American Narrative

Mrs. Slavik visits 4th grade!

      The Global Read Aloud 2017 is officially over and we will wrap up the book The Wild Robot early this coming week. It was a great experience to connect with so many classrooms around the US in so many ways! We were able to meet 4th graders from Indiana, Illinois and New York via Google Hangout and Skype. We used the website Kahoot! to play a comprehension game with 2 classes and asked questions back and forth with the other. Our class also participated in a post card exchange across the country. Each week we checked in with the student teachers from University of South Dakota to do a comprehension assignment and share ideas about the book. Finally, we worked on a Padlet using adjectives to describe our favorite character from The Wild Robot. This experience is so valuable in showing the students how alike they are to other 4th graders around the country. 
Students use Google Earth to guide questions during Mystery Skype.

Students record questions and answers to guide new questions. 

Students take turns introducing themselves and asking questions. 
      In science this fall, the 4th grader have focused on Earth science and the process of how the Earth is formed through the lens of studying the rock cycle. The class has spent many weeks learning about the breaking down and making of rocks,including an in-depth study of a volcano of their choice. The students have observed and noted the changes Earth's landscapes make over time through erosion and weathering. This week, the 4th graders experimented with how sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous rocks are formed. What better way than with starbursts?! We will continue to study our Earth by looking at the impact of the Earth's natural process on humans and generate ideas for solutions. 

     The Halloween Party was loads of fun packed with spooky activities. Thank you so much to our room parents Joss, Julie and Elizabeth who made it happen! 

Friday, October 6, 2017

October 6th, 2017

     It is hard to believe it's October already! We are off to such a great start in 4th grade!

     The students have been learning about and researching the Native American tribes of Oregon these past couple of weeks. There are 6 regions divided by geography with over 200 tribes documented to have lived in Oregon. Each 4th grader has chosen a tribe to write a narrative about. In class we have read mentor texts modeling personal narrative with our book study of Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo and the classic Owl Moon by Jane Yolen. Students are currently working on their first draft. This morning, some students met with Ms. Savery, Mrs. Stephens or I to start first edits for revisions. Next week, I will meet with the students and their writing will go through a peer editing process as well. Then on to final draft and illustrations. I am impressed with the effort I have seen so far! The assignment is posted on Google Classroom and can be accessed at home with your child's login and password. Please take a look if you get the chance and ask your 4th grader to share his/her story with you. 

     Our math review continues in Chapter 2 with addition and subtraction strategies including the importance of estimating to check to see if your answer could be right. Thank you for your support of math homework! In the Friday Folder you will find the first math test of the year. This is always a tough test being the first of the year. Students who scored lower than 70% have the opportunity to retake the test to improve his/her grade. The retest will be next Thursday. Please encourage your 4th grader to find a moment to let me know he/she would like to take the test. This is the year to start planting the seed of advocating for themselves with me, their teacher. It is such an important skill and takes practice!

     In Science, the 4th graders are exploring the world of volcanoes. This coming week, we will research and experiment with the rock cycle. We have been lucky enough to have been invited to the science lab with Ms. Yuhas twice in the last couple of weeks. So much hands on fun going on in the science lab!

    Our class has joined over 2 million students around the world in the Global Read Aloud 2017. Read about it here. This week we started The Wild Robot by Peter Brown and we love it! Today we connected with a 4th grade class in Lincoln, MA (Google Hangout) and one in North Carolina (Skype). The students asked yes or no questions to determine what city and state our respective classes were in. Saint Isidore (patron saint of technology) was looking over us as we had no tech problems! This week we also connected with Professor Lisa Ortmann's class of student teachers at the University of South Dakota via Edmodo. Each 4th grader is in a book study group with a student teacher who will weekly post an assignment based on the week's reading of The Wild Robot. You could have heard a pin drop in here as the students worked on their iPads with their Edmodo group. I told them they are helping to make the teachers of the future awesome! Please check my email for how to check out the Edmodo groups.

     In Religion, we have been talking about the first of the Catholic Social Teachings, The life and dignity of the human person. This idea spills into our studies of the Native tribes of Oregon and the Global Read Aloud. Over the course of this school year, as we strive to fulfill our commitment to The Madeleine theme of Living as Missionary Disciples, the 4th graders will be exploring the Catholic Social Teachings with a focus on service. Please keep the folks who are served by St. Stephens this weekend by planning to bring a few extra lunches on Tuesday, October 10th. 4th grade is in charge of St. Stephens lunches Tuesday morning. Thanks!
    The Blessing of the Animals had a great turn out. Thanks for coming!

 Happy Weekend and God Bless,
Jenn Langhus

Sunday, September 24, 2017

September 22, 2017

          Each day in 4th grade, we are adding a new layer to our learning. Homework started last week with students writing in his/her planner each afternoon the homework for that evening. A quick reminder that homework will be give Monday-Thursday nights with the weekends off. Math homework should be completed the night it is assigned and ready to review the following morning. Please help your 4th grader develop a system of both completing homework and making sure the homework and planner gets packed up to bring back to class the next day. This is an important skill for academic success moving forward. Please initial or sign your 4th graders planner each night as a way to communicate to me that you have seen the current skills we are working on in class. I will be looking for your initials starting this week. 

     The 4th graders have begun our first book study this week with Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo. We will be reading this book in class, discussing and dissecting the text practicing the ways 4th graders need to comprehend text. One main focus this year will be finding the author's purpose through out the book and supporting our thoughts with evidence from the text. I love hearing each student's idea and interpretation of stories. Together we practice this skill a lot. If you are reading aloud at home with your 4th grader, please take time to discuss your ideas modeling how you support your opinion with examples from the text. 

     The 4th graders practiced for their first spelling test this week online at Spelling City. They can practice this way at home. You can access the site by clicking the link to the right of this screen! 

     Each morning the 4th graders have been practicing cursive handwriting for a few minutes to get back into using those small motor skills of neat and correct writing. It is amazing how good their writing looks in just 2 weeks!

     With each chapter in our Religion curriculum, there is a take home sheet so that you will be able to support what we are talking about at Religion time here at school. Chapter 2 take home sheet went home in Friday Folders. This coming week, the Madeleine School will be collecting non-perishable and canned foods for St. Vincent de Paul to be brought to the Thursday afternoon all school Mass. Please send in your donations to the classroom. Thank you for your generosity!

God Bless, 
Jenn Langhus

June 4th, 2018

          These final weeks of 4th grade have been busy with our final book study of Riding Freedom. Reading comprehension and writing sk...