This week in math, students were working on solving equations by determining the missing number in an equation. For example, 21 + ___ = 26. They reviewed what an equation was (“a mathematical sentence in which the value of the left side is the same as the value of the right side”), and then practiced solving equations with a missing variable in class. They also learned how to solve problems using equations and practiced this skill as well. Students were given a practice sheet on patterns to complete at home and return on Monday. We will review the answers in class in preparation for their test next Wednesday, November 29th on patterning concepts. In addition to our work around patterns, we also played a whole class game on Monday called "Bullseye" to keep practicing our addition facts, and went on the website Prodigy to work on assigned questions.
Earlier in the week, students were also introduced to the new “Maffiti” walls throughout the school. There are three areas set up for grade 4/5, grade 6/7 and grade 8/9, where students are challenged with math problems and are asked to show their thinking in the spaces provided. After reviewing the rules and expectations around this, we went for a walk to check out the spaces. Students are encouraged to regularly check out all the Maffiti walls during break times to share, communicate, and learn as NCS mathematicians!
In science, we continued work in our new unit “Light and Shadows." Students brainstormed light sources and separated them into the categories of natural and artificial light. We discussed what the term luminescence means and discussed different types of luminescence. Students also learned about what refraction was through experiments and visuals in class. In groups, students experimented with putting a pencil and penny in a glass of water and observing the results. Some of the observations discussed were: “the pencil looks broken”, “the penny looks bigger”, “it looks like there are three pennies instead of one”, etc. We discussed how light travels in straight lines until it hits a different medium like water or a solid, which causes light to slow down and bend causing this optical illusion to our eye. We compared it to us running in a field versus running in a swimming pool—water is denser so it will slow us down a lot when we try to run through water, just like light! We also observed the refraction process in action when students bent white light using prisms into the colours of the spectrum. Students learned that white light is really a mixture of colors. Each colour has a different wavelength and is bent by the prism at a slightly different angle, which separates the colours into a rainbow. We watched a fun video about how to remember the order of the colors, which I've included below. They also worked on a page in their visual journals to document their learning of this concept.
Enjoy your weekend—go Stamps go!!
It’s been a short but productive week as there was no school Thursday and Friday for Parent-Teacher Conferences. Ms. Clark and I enjoyed meeting with parents to discuss student progress and learning so far. Thank-you for attending on such cold and snowy days! A reminder that ski forms and payment for our upcoming field trip in December is due this Monday.
In math this week, we continued to practice extending patterns in tables and solving pattern problems. Students modelled an increasing pattern using various manipulatives in the classroom. They then drew a table to record their data and extended their pattern to shape ten before writing their pattern rule. We also learned and practiced how to use a chart to solve pattern problems. We started our “Mad Minute” booklets to practice our addition facts for mastery. Students have one minute to complete as many of the thirty facts as they can. They then input their score onto a bar graph with the intention that they’ll see an uphill trend of improvement over the weeks ahead. Keep practicing those basic facts at home—even 5 minutes a night will make a difference! See the information below about practicing your child's mental computation skills outside of school.
In science, students wrote their waste test on Monday. The test will be brought home next week in their assessment duo tang for a parent initial. We started our new unit on “Light and Shadows.” In this unit, students will learn about light by studying its effect on things within their environment. We watched the Bill Nye video “Light and Color” which introduced some key vocabulary and concepts we will be studying in the coming weeks. Through the video, students learned how we see colours and how white light contains the spectrum of colours. For example, the reason we see a carrot is orange is because when light hits the carrot all colours are absorbed except orange which is reflected to our eyes. Students also learned that white reflects all colours, and black absorbs all colours and converts the energy to heat. In the sidebar I've added a glossary of the key vocabulary for our new unit which can be reviewed at home, as well as some websites to explore. Next week we will be looking closer at different light sources and the concept of refraction.
Have a wonderful and restful weekend!
In math this week, students continued to investigate patterns during class. We focused on how to identify and extend patterns in tables, which we practiced in class. Students worked on the math journaling question: “How many 3-digit numbers can you make using 6, 5 and 8? You can use each digit more than once.” Students were encouraged to come up with a strategy and look for patterns to help them list all possible numbers without omitting or repeating any. Have your child explain the interesting patterns we discovered in the numbers! Today we played a selection of our favorite math games in class to continue practicing our mental math strategies and basic facts.
In science, students brought their waste project, question sheet and logbook to school on Monday. The majority of science this week was spent with students presenting their new and useful product made out of waste materials. I was very impressed with the creative and imaginative projects and the way they were put together! On Wednesday afternoon, the grade 4's participated in a gallery walk of all the projects made by students and it was exciting to see the inventive products that the students had created. Students then completed a self-assessment of their project based on the rubric before taking their projects home at the end of the week. Hopefully these projects can be used at home for years to come! Students received a study guide this week for our upcoming test on waste concepts next Monday (see below). We spent time in class reviewing the items and students were encouraged to take their science duo tang home for the weekend to review their information. We will start our new unit “Light and Shadows” next week!
Enjoy your Remembrance Day weekend and I look forward to meeting with parents next Thursday and Friday at conferences!
In math this week, students wrote their quiz on rounding, estimating and mental math strategies, which will be returned on Monday to go home for a parent signature. We continued our work in patterning concepts. We looked at patterns found in addition tables with students filling in missing numbers in different addition tables, and then looking at patterns found within them. They wrote a pattern rule for one row, one column and one diagonal that they observed in their tables. We had some fun on Halloween by participating in the "Smartie Math Challenge!" Students were given a box of Smarties and then challenged to complete math related activities using these chocolate treats. These skills involved estimating; counting, sorting & tallying; adding & subtracting; problem solving; writing fractions; and completing a bar graph. When done, students could eat their Smarties! Students also went on the website “Prodigy” to work on assigned pattern questions and word problems. Two games were taught in class, “Last Chance” and “Doubles Snap” (the game rules are shown below to play at home). These games help students practice their mental math strategies and learn their basic facts for mastery.
In science, we discussed the environmental issue of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Also known as the North Pacific Gyre, this is a swirling collection of plastic debris, or garbage, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. We read an article and watched two short videos about how it got there, where the trash comes from, how persistent plastic really is, the problems with the patch, and things we can do to help. Students then worked on a visual journal page and answered three questions: 1) Do you think the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a problem? Why or why not?, 2) What are some things that you can do to help with the problem?, and 3) Do you think plastic was a good or bad invention? Why? Ask your child what they think!
The waste project, question sheet and logbook are due this Monday, and time was spent in class yesterday to discuss good presentation skills. Students were encouraged to practice at least three times at home and to use their question sheet as their script (see the presentation prep sheet below). Presentations will start on Monday and there will be gallery walk next Wednesday so students can view all the grade 4 projects!
Stay warm this weekend and remember to turn your clocks back one hour this Sunday (an extra hour of sleep is always nice!).
If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me at:
Here's to a great year!
Need extra practice? Below are math printable e-books for extra practice at home:
Patterns and Algebra
Reading and Representing Whole Numbers
Addition and Subtraction
Multiplication and Division
Length, Perimeter & Area
“Math Makes Sense” Practice and Homework Book:
Can be found at the Virtual Learning Commons under “Student Links”:
Practice Problem Solving Questions
Multiplication Interactive Games
Hour of Code
Math Facts Games
Math Fact Fluency Activities & Games
Plant Growth & Changes:
Plant Growth and Changes Glossary of Important Terms
Plants for Kids
Easy Science for Kids
Plants Elementary Science
Wheels & Levers Resources:
Wheel and Levers Glossary of Important Terms
Simple Machine Facts
Simple Machines Interactive Sites
Light & Shadows Resources:
Light and Shadows Glossary of Important Terms
BBC Light & Shadows
How We See Things
Light & Shadow Activities
Waste & our World Resources:
Waste and our World Glossary of Important Terms
Recycle City Game