The following briefly describes the texts and materials used for fourth grade instruction. All texts are California standards based:
In reading class, we teach literature and history through reading, using G.L.A.D. strategies, and depth and complexity and Notice and Note icons to increase motivation and achievement in the students. We will read Island of the Blue Dolphins in the first trimester and By the Great Horn Spoon in the third trimester. Reading instruction will take place mostly in the homeroom class this year. Students will be grouped as in previous years, with instruction at their personal levels, but done in the homeroom class.
40 Book Challenge:
All students in room 20 will participate in the 40 Book Challenge. This will be my third year of issuing this challenge to my students to read 40 books in 40 weeks of school, plus 4 weeks of vacation. They will attempt to read 40 books across several genres . The students will record books read, plans for future reading, and reading reflections in a reading notebook. Our classroom will be an environment where reading is discussed and encouraged everyday. I plan to create a reading culture, where students discuss and share about books and reading. If you are interested in learning more about this idea, check out The Book Whisperer by Donalynn Miller.
The students will practice writing several times a week between formal writing instruction and informal writing. The first trimester will focus on narrative writing, the second will be informational writing, and in the last trimester, opinion writing. I attended an excellent conference in New York in 2017, given by Lucy Calkins and hosted at the Columbia Teacher's College. I will be using what I learned to teach your children and pilot the Reading and Writing Workshop in our classroom.
Students should be able to form all letters in cursive independently by the start of fourth grade. They will continue to practice correct formation of cursive letters in fourth grade by reviewing the letters, and they will write much of their classwork in cursive as well. Please encourage them to do more of their homework in cursive when possible.
The district has recently adopted a new math program, Eureka Math, and we will be using that program this year. The rigor of this program is very high, and the work that they will produce this year will be impressive!
The following website should be very valuable in helping you to assist your child with their math homework . On this website, you will find parent letters and teaching videos for each homework lesson for the year.
Also, if you ever need assistance helping your child with concepts or homework, please use You Tube to locate teaching videos by Duane Habecker. On YouTube, simply type "Duane Habecker fourth grade" in the search bar. You will further need to locate the Module number and the lesson number that we are currently working on. You and your child should find these videos very useful.
In addition, the Oakdale link also has homework for every lesson! Just print out the homework from home if your child ever loses it or is unable to come to school.
The fourth grade classes will be rotating for science this year. They study environments, rocks and minerals, and magnetism and electricity. We will add in a cycle of technology awareness, as well. Mr. Ahn will teach digital citizenship to each fourth grade class.
The study of California is the major emphasis in history studies for fourth grade. Students will also enjoy two or three field trips that will allow them to go back in time in our state's history. We will also assign some home-school projects involving Native Americans and missions. In addition, we will have a wonderful assembly that takes place at school for the fourth graders only called Walk Through California. It is an excellent reenactment of the history of the state of California.
The students will participate in periodic art lessons, usually on Friday afternoons. In addition, the Art Vistas program, run by parents, will provide art appreciation and hands-on art creation six times a year. Thanks to the parent volunteers, we also have a clay program, where students create 2-3 projects a year.
In order to provide physical fitness and health instruction, the students will take part in P.E. several times a week. Our P.E. specialist will provide P.E. instruction once a week and we will out for PE as a grade level at least 2 times a week.