This week, we'll do a vocabulary unit in language arts. Some third-grade teachers used Wordly Wise. All of fourth grade uses it. I'll introduce it Monday, and we'll complete a portion each day at school and home. Students should also be reviewing all the words at home as they'll be tested on the words Friday. Eventually we'll cover all the material in class on Mondays, and students will set their own pace for completing the packet. This is a great opportunity for them to develop time-management skills.
The amount of math homework should also begin increasing now that we've familiarized ourselves with the new text. We are continuing to work on place value skills from the 1,000,000,000 to the hundredths and have begun strengthening and building problem-solving skills.
Speaking of math, former fourth-grade teacher and current assistant principal Anna Balthazar will be working with students during math and writing. She will be working in a variety of ways, including: working with small groups of students in and out of the classroom, helping to co-teach classroom lessons, and just being an extra set of hands to help out. The times that Mrs. Balthazar pulls small groups will be pretty fluid (they may change daily or weekly even), but the assignments will be exactly what we are doing in class with the benefit of more one on one attention.
In science, we've been examining the foundations of science inquiry and have begun hands-on labs to practice those skills, including safety and tools, observing, hypothosising, experimenting with variables, gathering data and communicating.
In social studies, we've almost finished our introduction to social studies and will begin exploring the land of Texas.
In language arts, we're working through an introduction to genres in reading and writing, the writing process and writers workshop, and, very soon, an expand look at the parts of speech.