Weekly Objectives February 25-March 1

Did I really just type March 1st?  Where is the time going?!  This week is going to be filled with experimentation and learning.  We will be having an explosive time with our volcanic vocabulary words, discovering what makes our planet so “magnetsficant”, and using our new learning tools (iPad minis!) to ensure that we are excited and busy all week through.  On a sad note, I will be out one day this week due to a death in the family.  I’m not quite sure which day that will be.  Please review proper substitute behavior and remind your child that we have all agreed to our substitute behavior contract and don’t want to miss out on end of the year activities.

Here are our goals for this week:

Reading:   This week we will be reading about our 2nd inventor, Ben Franklin.  Our focus skills will include summarizing, multiple meaning words, and graphic organizers.  We will also be using our new iPad mini’s to read the novel, Who Was Ben Franklin? and answering embedded questions. 

Vocabulary: Our words this week are about volcanoes.  We will be learning about how they erupt throughout the week.  As a culminating activity on Thursday we will create and eruption!

Grammar:  On Monday we will be taking our unit 3 test on confusing words.  After that we will be starting Unit 4 focusing on subject and object pronouns.

Subject Pronouns: Used as the subject of the sentence- I, you , he, she, it, we, they

Object Pronouns: Pronouns that follow action verbs or prepositions (to, at, for, of, with)- me, you, him, , her, it, us, them

Writing:  We will be conferencing to begin the editing process on our latest portfolios piece about a hobby or activity that we enjoy.

Math: After our Topic 10 test on Monday, we will begin our work with fractions.  Our first step in that process will be to identify multiples and factors of numbers.  This will be our focus for this week. 

Factors- numbers that can be divided evenly into a number.  Example:  The factors of 18 are 1,2,3,6,9,18.  1×18=18 , 2×9=18, 3×6=18

Multiples- numbers that are answers when you multiple the given number.  Example:  The first 5 multiples  of 3 are- 3,6,9,12, and 15

Science: We will be wrapping up our unit on magnets this week.  Our culminating experiment is to discover the largest magnet- Earth!


Inspirational People Remind Us to Be Kind To All

Our current read aloud novel is a biography of the amazing Helen Keller.  She has inspired so many by overcoming odds stacked steeply against her to not only live life but live life well.  Helen Keller was born “normal.”  She was born a child with perfect vision and hearing.  Very early in life she became ill and a fever caused brain swelling that took away her sense of sight and hearing.  For a long time she was trapped in a dark, scary, tricky world.  Her parents were able to secure a teacher for her, Annie Sullivan, who unlocked the door to Helen’s world and the rest as they say is history.  Her story has so inspired a few of my students that they wrote the rest of my blog entry for me!  Meet our guest bloggers!

Julianna  is very intrigued by Helen Keller’s story and infact has begun reading her own Helen Keller book at home.

I like the book about Helen Keller because I like learning how she learned how to speak.  I like to see how Annie came up with ways to teach Helen.  I have read about 5 books about Helen Keller.  I have always loved learning about how she learned to do everything she could do.


Tykia shares Julianna’s admiration for Helen Keller and composed the following blog entry:

I like Helen Keller because she’s amazing!  She was deaf and blind.  I feel so bad for her.  Then she learned to speak.  Helen Keller is an awesome girl.  She was blind and deaf and couldn’t talk, but then she learned how to talk.  She is amazing!


Angelita agrees with the other ladies that Helen is simply amazing!

I like Helen Keller because she is interesting to me.  Helen amazes me how she learned to speak.  When she speaks it is not clear, but you can understand her.  She uses her hand to feel what the other person is talking about.  She smiles and makes feelings with her face.  Helen is a great and famous person to learn about. 


We watched the following clip today when we reached the part in her biography where she has learned to speak:


We have had many discussions in class about acceptance of others.  One of my cousins posted a link to an amazing video about the power our words have.  Please take a minute to watch it and speak to your kids about acceptance, bullying, and thoughtful words. 


100th Day, Valentine’s Day, and President’s Day (oh my!)

We were very busy little critters last week and it has taken me until today to recover!  Last week we celebrated our 100th day of school with a very special math lesson based on fractions using lots of fun (often edible) manipulatives.   In a ill timed twist of fate, the 100th day also fell on Valentine’s Day.  In order to do both holidays justice, we celebrated Valentine’s day on Friday to coinside with our Jump Rope for Heart fund raiser. 

In addition to all of this fun stuff, we learned about what it is like to be a president.  We spent a day envisioning ourselves in the oval office making some big changes.  Students made executive orders to ban smoking, repair roadways, end littering, end bullying, and create harsher laws for violent crimes.  They earned my votes!



This week’s objectives:

Reading: Students will work on summarizing informational texts.  Be on the lookout for our new book-bags.  This week they will be reading about Thomas Edison each night an completing a reading strategy worksheet.

Grammar: We will be wrapping up our unit on confusing words with the verbs throw and catch (appropriate since this is the start of Phillies preseason 🙂 ).  Test on Friday!

Vocabulary:   Students will be working with science words this week! 

Math: Students will be wrapping up long division this week.  We will be moving up to 4 digit numbers as well as multi-stop word problems.

Science:  We will be making predictions about magnets and testing them out throughout the week.

Social Studies: We will be continuing our work on economics and starting chapter 6 this week.

New Books for a New Year!

Scholastic Book Clubs gave our class an amazing gift to start off our new year- FREE BOOKS!  Every child in my class was able to choose a brand new, high interest level book courtesy of Scholastic Book Clubs!  Our new books arrived yesterday and we couldn’t wait to get our hands on them!  A huge thank you goes out to this amazing company that not only offers teachers a great way to fill their bookshelves monthly at low prices and with many incentives and freebies year round but also provides great titles and variety for student readers.  I recently downloaded their new Storia app onto our iPads at home and my kiddos love having books arranged on their own virtual bookshelves that provide them with opportunities to learn to love reading at their own levels!  I am a customer for life!


After we got over our new book excitement, we got a little crafty this afternoon.  We made stained glass suncatchers to encourage warmer weather to stick around!

Weekly Objectives February 11-15

We have a very busy week ahead of us!  If we work hard Monday-Thursday, Friday will be a lot of fun!  We will be participating in Jump Rope For Heart on Friday.  To participate each child must bring in a $5 donation.  Please think about donating to this worthy cause.  Those who are not able to donate fear not!  We will be getting our Yoga on in class to help keep our hearts healthy too.

Friday will also be our Valentine’s Party.  Please check your child’s homework folder on Monday for snack ideas and a list of classmate names.

Thursday is our 100th day of school.  We will be doing a special math lesson and I need your help!  Please fill the baggie that comes home Monday with 100 items that are different.  Examples of items are coins, fruit loops, M and M’s, confetti, etc.  These items will be used to make fractions.

Our learning goals for this week:

Reading:  We will be focusing on cause and effect this week.

Grammar:   We are still working with confusing words!  This week we are focusing on whose and who’s and also articles (a, an, the).

Vocabulary:   This week’s vocab list is VERY short!  There are 5 math terms we will be working with and that’s it!

Writing:  We will be working on beginning our research project on inventors this week.

Math:  We are continuing with division this week.

Science:   Magnets are on the agenda for science.  We will be testing items in the room to see what has magnetic properties.


The Hibschman’s Hedgehogs Visit!

Today we were host to a preschool class from our district who’s mascot happens to be a hedgehog.  They came to meet the other district famous hedgehog, Sophie and learn about how to care for her. 


We had so much fun with our pint-sized friends!  In honor of their visit we had hedgehog donut holes. (thanks Pinterest!)


We made hedgehog take away crafts with our new friends. 


Mrs. Hibschman also shared a hedgehog story with our class to help explain how they came to be known as the hedgehogs. 


Sophie enjoyed meeting her new little friends and was very cooperative.  She let everyone feel her spiky quills and her soft little belly.

My fourth graders did an awesome job helping their new little buddies get to know more about hedgehogs today!  I am so proud of them!


Weekly Objectives February 4-8

Wow!  What a game!  I’m sorry I did not post these objectives last night, but I was loving watching the football game and commercials with my family!  We will be talking about and working with the commercials throughout this week.  Our goal is to take a look at how the advertisers used their power of persuasion to make the ads both entertaining and sell their products at the same time. 

We will also be invaded by some little people on Thursday!  Our preschool names each classroom after an animal.  When I went to the board meeting to accept my Math and Science Mini Grant, the principal of the preschool asked if the hedgehog class could come meet Sophie our new class pet.  We are so looking forward to their visit!  We will be having special hedgehog snacks, working on a hedgehog craft, and of course playing with Sophie!

Reading:This week we are focusing on using information from the text to support our answers to questions.  This skill is difficult and requires a lot of practice.  Each night as your child reads the next chapter in their novel, they will need to answer an open ended question about that chapter.  Please encourage them to give details from the book to support their answers.  I am expecting 3-5 sentence answers for each questions.  The answer should restate the question and answer it, provide details supporting their answer, and relate it to themselves somehow.

Here is an example of a good answer for the question, make a prediction about the next chapter:

I predict that in the next chapter Molly will find her brother.  I think this will happen because in this chapter she learned 3 new clues about where he is hiding.  When she found the last clue, the author said that she heard giggling.  I think the giggling was her brother because when I play hide and seek with my sister, she giggles when I get close to finding her.

Vocabulary:   All of our words this week revolve around the root word care.  We will be looking at how adding prefixes and suffixes change the meaning of the word care.  Our definitions will all be pretty close this week, which means we will need to really study them to find the differences.

Grammar: This week we will be working with the confusing words good/well and doesn’t/don’t.  These words are very often used incorrectly.

Good is an adjective and describes nouns:  That was a good book.  (good describes the book)

Well is an adverb and describes verbs:  I am feeling well, thank you. (well describes how I feel)

Doesn’t is the contraction for does + not.  It is used with singular nouns:  The dog doesn’t know where its home is. (1 dog- use doesn’t)

Don’t is the contraction for do + not.  It is used for plural nouns.   The dogs don’t know how to get home.  (more than one dog- use don’t)

Writing: We will be working on writing figurative language and poetry this week.

Math: This week we will be wrapping up division with remainders.  We will have a test on Thursday.  Please review basic facts (multiplication and division) with your child each night.  There are plenty of free apps that can help with this or you can make your own flashcards!

Science: This week will be wrapping up research on hurricanes and working on our final projects.  We will be making power points, prezis, videos and websites in class based on our research.  We will be sharing our work with the Mr. Krakower’s class in North Jersey.

Social Studies:  We will be taking the week off of Social Studies to focus on our Hurricane project.