Room 300 has a new student?

Room 300 has a new student?

Today is our Read Across America Day!

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Who We Are

For the past two weeks our class has been investigating the idea of standing up for our beliefs and convictions. What better way to explore this than to read, write and role play the American Revolution?

The class discussions this past week revolved around how America became America, how we went from a small settlement to 13 colonies to 50 united states and just in time to go to Jamestown and Yorktown!

On March 8, the students will be heading down to Jamestown, the place our country started! In the afternoon, we will head over to Yorktown, the place where Gen. Washington accepted Gen. Cornwallis’ surrender. This was the last battle of the American Revolution and the start of our new nation. What a fabulous and fun way to end a rich unit!

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Colonialism

So far we have “Shared the Planet” and we have investigated “Where we are in place and time”, now we will be exploring “How We Organize Ourselves”.  This unit focuses on the colonial period during American History (Virginia to be exact) but we also focus on how other communities also organize themselves.

A rather exciting and large investigation culminates with the fourth grade Colonial Day. Our class just started doing research on colonial trades and crafts. We will continue research on Monday and Tuesday of next week. During our writing workshop periods, we will organize our research into oral presentations and create our research visuals (poster) for the big day. The areas of research include, what the tradesmen produced, how he produced it, who needed his services, what other trades people did he work with to create his products or conduct his service and other interesting facts that may help us understand this trade or craft better.

From colonial day, we will discuss the change our country went through during this colonial period, we will end this unit with the American Revolution and compare this war to other revolutions that have occurred around the world.

We can’t forget about the science part of How We Organize Ourselves! In science, we will finish our living systems unit and move into the Space unit. We will talk about how the universe is organized and explore the planets a bit more!

For a quick look at colonial trades, clothing, etc. you may check out Williamsburg’s website:

http://www.history.org/kids/parentsAndTeachers/index.cfm

 

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New Year brings new learning

At this time each year all of us reflect on the year we just completed, or almost completed (since it is only the end of December and the current year has not been completely finished) and we make adjustments for the year to come. It may be eating healthier or getting more exercise in our routines, but do many of us think about the new things we can learn in this new year? I do! At least I try to! This year I hope to learn more about the computer world, instructional technology to be exact. FCCPS has given their students and teachers new Macs to use and I’m finding I have a LOT to learn about these tools. I’m also looking forward to teaching my students some new things in the new year. More methods in math, continuing our exploration in Virginia History, science lessons in space, weather and force and motion. We will even be learning how to express ourselves in writing….poetry and expository writing.

What new things will YOU be learning this year?

Happy New Year!

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Hurricane Sandy and the perfect storm

It seems that the last couple of times my class (and the rest of the fourth grade) has something special planned for the classroom Mother Nature forces us to show how flexible we can be! Last year, or the year before, we  had to rearrange our Valentine Party because of a snow storm that actually kept us home. A few years before that we had to reschedule a field trip to Mt. Vernon, again because of snow! This year Sandy came to shore….a little too early to go “trick or treating” Sandy girl! 

A couple things I need to share with you:

1. We will be doing pumpkin math tomorrow. Anyone who brings in a pumpkin, that is! 

2. Fall Festival party will be on Friday.

3. Thursday we will have a guest speaker talking to us about Jamestown, kind of a preview before we get to that part of history in our class discussions.

4. Hurricane Sandy offered us a great “teachable moment” (we talk about hurricanes and erosion in fourth grade). Please talk to your child about these two things…how hurricanes start up and what effect they have on our land. Show your child the picture below of the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Stay dry, I hope you all had your electricity throughout the storm!

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Sharing Our Planet and digging it!

This week, after a long discussion about our 5 regions in Virginia, we started talking about the importance of water and our waterways in VA. We all agreed that water is an essential element to life. One thing the class would like to take action on is how we can protect and preserve our waterways in VA. This will be the focus of our next few lessons next week. How do we keep trash and other pollutants out of our streams and rivers? What does the phrase “We all live downstream” mean? Two key questions we hope to have answers to by the end of next week.

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Please feel free to share any knowledge you may have, or resources, about the Chesapeake Bay watershed or how we can take action to fight pollution in our precious bay!

 

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Welcome Back!

Welcome back students and parents to another exciting year at TJ! For anyone who is new to TJ and Falls Church, welcome, we are so glad you are here!

I’m looking forward to getting to know each of you in the coming months. We have a lot of fun and learning to accomplish this school year!

I will do my best to keep this blog rolling each week! On here you will find many different links for both parents and students to explore. There will also be some snippets of my life added along one of the sidebars!

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