General Studies with Mike:
It’s hard to believe the school year is almost over!
We’ve finished the math curriculum for the year, completing the final chapter on tessellations last week. Students enjoyed creating their own tessellations using repeated patterns of shapes. We noticed that tessellations appear all over, from brick walls to tiled floors. We happened to notice that the foyer of the Tenement Museum contained tessellated hexagon floor tiles.
We spent this week creating math games in groups of two and three students. Each group focused their game on one specific math concept we covered this year – addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, factors, multiples, mean, median, mode, range… Wow! We’ve learned a lot! Next week, students will have the opportunity to play one another’s games.
This week, we wrapped up our final read aloud for the year, Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry. We discussed how this book uses mood and tone to create a believable historical setting. We also reviewed the concepts of point of view and theme. Students independently completed their own book club texts, enjoying wrap up discussions with their peers. Our year of historical fiction reading has come to a close.
In writing, we continued our poetry unit, beginning the week with stream of consciousness exercises. We discussed how to take these written thoughts and turn them into poems by including similes and using line breaks deliberately.
Our Oregon Trail outing on Tuesday and Wednesday was a hit! We pretended we were living during the 1840’s and hit the streets of Carroll Gardens with a wagon filled with supplies that real pioneers might have had on the Trail. We stopped at a trading post in Carroll Park, where parent volunteers traded with us so that we could obtain the supplies we needed cook hasty pudding and chocolate caramels in the classroom. Students enjoyed this authentic pioneer snack.
We are also wrapping up our final social studies unit, reading about the American Civil War. We’ve introduced new vocabulary words like, “secede,” “Union,” and “Confederacy.” We’ve discussed the implications and ramifications of the country splitting into two separate countries.
Thanks to everyone for a great year! I really enjoyed having the chance to get to know and work with this lively class. Thank you, families, for all of your support throughout the year, from the many compliments you’ve emailed in regards to classroom curriculum and activities, to the help you’ve provided on field trips and school events, to ensuring that your children were well rested and prepared for class throughout the year.
I hope everyone has a fantastic summer break! It’s time to move up to middle school!
Hebrew with Ilana S. and Tomer:
This week the fourth grade were rock on the stage with their performance America Israel. I was proud of the students. It was a amazing working with them on the Hebrew songs and creating the dances. I am so grateful for having this experience as well as so much more fun activities with this grade. Next week we will have our last activity for the year – Yom Shokolad.
Judaics with Aliza:
This week in Judaics, fourth graders have been studying the holiday of Shavuot, its laws and customs, origin, significance in Ancient Israel, and its holiday text, Megillat Ruth. We have been reading the English translation of the Megillah in depth, and students have discovered a special connection between the story and the rest of our Ancient Israel unit. Have a Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach