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Math: (GoMath!) Students will continue their math knowledge by connecting numbers to their daily lives. They will learn how to multiply, divide small and large numbers, classify angles and geometric shapes, as well as use multiple ways to manipulate fractions. Students will get the opportunity to learn and practice these concepts in small groups. These small groups will be created based on prior knowledge and pretest scores. It is important to understand that groups can change throughout the chapter. During the chapter, students will complete various assignments connecting to previous lessons, as well as new concepts. These assignments are completed in class and will have specific due dates throughout the chapter. Simple Solutions will also guide the students through Math in a different way and will supplement what we are learning in our textbook throughout the year. Zearn is another math program that students will be expected to complete as a way of reinforcing what is taught in GoMath.
Reading: (ReadyGEN) Students will begin the year practicing how to work in literacy stations which include reading, word work, and writing. We are working toward independence this year. To reach this goal we will focus on reading strategies, what great readers do as they read and connect reading to writing. Our year will be filled with great fiction books accompanied by nonfiction as well. Throughout the year students will develop their skills in comprehension, analysis, and vocabulary. Help our fourth graders be lifelong readers by reading with them at home, listening to them read to you and seeing that they read each night.
Language Arts: (Spelling Connections and Shurley English) We are reviewing our parts of speech and moving to classifying sentences. Shurley English is a program that focuses on teaching students grammar and writing skills. The program uses rhythm, repetition, and student/teacher interaction. We will also work on spelling each week, using the lessons in the spelling connections book. Students will be provided with a list every two weeks, and in class assignments and lessons with correspond to this list. At the end of two weeks, students will take a test on spelling the words and answer multiple choice questions about their usage in sentences. Students will also be put into small groups for Language Arts to further work on concepts learned during whole group instruction. We will focus on Shurley English, Spelling and Writing in their daily stations. During the week, students will complete various assignments connecting to previous lessons, as well as new concepts. These assignments are completed in class and will be due at the end of the week (unless otherwise noted). We ask that you oversee your child’s work and help them to understand the spelling word patterns and sounds we are working on each week.
Writing: Students will learn about the Six Traits of Writing. The Six Traits focus on six different areas that writers use to create their pieces. Writing in 4th grade is cross-curricular; the students will learn about the different ways to use writing to show off what they know in all of their subjects. Student’s writing will be an ongoing exploration of how writing plays into what we understand as readers, how to plan out what we would like to write, how to use writing in different ways-from entertaining to explaining, and how to improve our writing by adding details, organizing our thoughts, and using interesting words, just to name a few. Students will also enhance their skills as we utilize the writing component of our ReadyGen program. As student authors, some of our writing explorations will simply be to investigate how expert authors use their craft while other times we will practice moving a piece of writing through the publishing phase. Don’t worry we will show off our skills multiple times throughout the year; look for our creative pieces in the hallway!
Science: (ScienceFusion) Our new science curriculum allows students to explore science in many ways: from hands on inquiry labs and S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) investigations, to online lessons and videos and write-in interactive textbooks. The students will begin by learning how scientists use the scientific method for science inquiry and how engineers use technology to design a solution to a problem. Both of these methods for exploring and solving problems in the world around us will be applied to each chapter we explore. After getting into how they too are scientists and engineers, the students will move into exploring physical science. They will investigate matter and its changes, figure out where energy comes from and manipulate electricity and motion. As they move into earth and space science students will observe weather and water, and take a look at the ways that the planets and moon affect us here on Earth. In spring we will take a look outside to explore plants, animals, ecosystems, and our impact on natural resources.
Religion: (We Believe) Our books focus on the ways that we believe, worship and live. We explore our faith by studying and learning from the Bible and we will continue to learn how God wants us to live by His word. We will also be learning about the Ten Commandments and how they help us love God, love others, and how we’re called to Holiness. We’ll look into the liturgical year and how we remember and celebrate Jesus Christ.
Social Studies: (Scott Foresman) In Social Studies, the students will focus on the five regions of the United States. Our year begins with map skills and exploring how to read a nonfiction text. As we learn about the regions and their people, students will work to develop skills in answering constructed response questions about what they have read and learned about. The students will learn and practice research skills while studying our state, Illinois. They will also have the opportunity to complete an in-depth region project.
HOMEWORK: For your child’s academic excellence, it is expected that your child read at least 20-30 minutes every night, in addition to any other assignments. Students are asked and encouraged to read a self-choice book, and will be using this book to practice the skills and strategies we are learning in class. They may also be reading in-class novels that connect to concepts learned from of our Reading textbook at the same time. Math homework will be sent home each week night, scores will vary based on the learning objective we are working on that week. There will be additional assignments in Spelling, English, Religion, Social Studies, and Science throughout the school year. No homework will be assigned over the weekend, however any long term projects may be completed during this time. It’s expected that homework is completed and turned in on the due date. If your student doesn’t turn in homework on time, they will immediately lose two points. If the homework is not turned in the following day, parents and guardians will be notified by email. Half-credit will be given to an assignment two days late, and an incomplete will be given if a student fails to turn in an assignment by the third day.
*If a student is absent we will send homework home with a sibling or friend. You will be given two days for every day you’re absent to complete the assignments.*
WEDNESDAY ENVELOPES: Please look out for our school’s White Envelope which will be sent home most Wednesdays to the oldest or only child in the family. In it, you will find important reminders or FSA papers about what’s currently going on here at St. Cletus!
FRIDAY FOLDERS: The Friday folder will come home every Friday, or the last day of the school week. The folder will contain assignments from the previous week. Please take out the completed assignments and keep these at home. Be sure to get a parent signature on tests and return them on Monday.
TEST CORRECTIONS: After tests are scored and recorded, tests will be sent home with your child. Tests should always be signed by the parent/guardian and returned within the next two days. Because we learn from our mistakes, students who receive a 76% or lower are STRONGLY encouraged to correct their mistakes on a separate sheet of paper, staple corrections to the original test. On your child’s test, there will be a stapled sheet informing you and your student when corrections should be returned by. Corrections will receive half credit back on corrected answers. Please leave answers on test intact to ensure students are receiving the accurate score.
DISCIPLINE: In our classrooms, we emphasize trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, and citizenship. We will be incorporating positive communication when dealing with disagreements and disruptive classroom behavior. We will be introducing a new behavior system for fourth graders at St. Cletus. Students will be put into teams (houses) to practice working together and achieving the same goal of becoming a good classroom citizen. Points will be distributed individually as well as a whole house team. Points can be rewarded or taken away depending on behaviors displayed throughout the day whether it be in or outside of the classroom. We will tally up team points at the end of each week. All students will have a spirit day at the end of each month where teams will come together and participate in a group activity (creating a skit, rap, poem, etc.) to perform for their class. At the end of each trimester, the houses from both 4th grade classes will tally up the total points (think Harry Potter). The house awarded with the highest amount of points will receive a prize. Students will brainstorm ideas together for what they would like to work towards.
In 4th grade we believe in logical consequences when a negative choice is made. Meaning, consequences should be respectful, relevant, and realistic, giving students a chance to learn from their mistakes. At class meetings, we will discuss appropriate behavior and strategies to limit disruptions during learning time.
SNACKS/BIRTHDAYS: Students will be allowed a snack that will be eaten sometime in the morning. We ask that the students bring in an easy-to-eat healthy snack, not a mini lunch. Birthday treats may be brought to school on a student’s special day. This will be shared with the class after lunch. Summer birthdays can be celebrated either on a student’s half birthday or any day near the end of the school year. Please notify the teacher at least two days in advance that your child will be bringing in birthday treats.
**There are multiple allergies this year, so if you have questions on what you can/can’t bring in as a treat, please contact us. This goes for all holidays and parties.**