Monday, October 24, 2011

Parent Teacher Conferences

Parent Teacher Conferences are just around the corner.  The dates are  Tuesday Nov. 1 and Thursday Nov.  3.   We dismiss at 2:30 both of those days.  We have no school Friday Nov. 4.  If you have not had a chance to get signed up for a conference time, call Washington School and we'll get you set up.  Many of you signed up at our open house before school started.  Report cards will be given out at our fall conferences this year.  We have a new reporting system and the district thought it best to explain it at conferences.   I look forward to speaking with each of you about your child's progress.  I'll also have a stack of 1st quarter work to discuss. 

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Our Week in Review

     This past week was busy in our 4th grade class.  We finished up Chapter 2 in math.  This included measuring line segments in centimeters, working on harder adding and subtracting (3 digit + or - 3 digit numbers), place value in larger numbers up to hundred millions, and a geometry review.  Next up is starting to review basic multiplication/division facts.  Your child should be bringing home a math log each Monday.  (It's on the back of the reading log.)   I'll also be sending home multiplication flashcards to work on at home.  We'll be taking periodic timed tests over the basic multiplication facts, so it would really help to work on these facts at home.  Research supports the idea that children have a higher success in math if they know their basic multiplication facts.
     In social studies, we completed our study over the three branches of our United States Government.  We'll be moving on to the study of the Northeast region of the USA.  Your child will need to know the states and capitals over this region.  Perhaps you could begin working on them now.  We'll also be studying the geography, history, and climate of this region.
     In science, we finished up studying about invertebrates, animals without backbones.  Each student chose an invertebrate, researched it, and then wrote a report over it.  Some students researched slugs and cockroaches, while others learned about worms and jellyfish.  We also started sharing these reports with the class.  Over 90% of the world's animals are invertebrates! 

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Social Studies

     In social studies for the past couple of weeks we have been studying about our United States Government.  We've learned about our nation's three branches of government.  The Executive Branch is the President of the United States and is responsible for carrying out the laws.  The Legislative Branch includes our members of Congress.  This branch is responsible for writing the laws.  The Judicial Branch includes our nine Supreme Court Judges.  They make sure all laws are following the Constitution.  We also learned about our system of Checks and Balances.  We live in a Democracy, so no one branch has more power than another. 
     Friday, October 7 we will have a test over the 3 branches.  Your child will be bringing home a study guide to use in preparation for the test.  The district benchmark that covers this area of study states that students will   " Explain the functions of the three branches of government and how each branch protects the rights of individuals."