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Fourth Grade Newsletter

Our Mission:  At Shrine Catholic Grade School we try to exemplify Christ by praying, learning, and growing together.

Week of March 2, 2015


Religion-The students finished Think First Stay Safe last Thursday.  Their packet went home with them.  I encourage you to read through it with your child and discuss ideas like a family emergency plan and listening to their instincts.

We begin a major component of fourth grade and our faith--the Ten Commandments.  Students will read and discuss how Moses led the Israelites through the desert to escape slavery in Egypt.  It's most incredible and of great interest to fourth graders to learn about the plagues God sent upon Egypt in order for Pharaoh to release them! 

Science-Did you feel that? Me either! Michigan isn't terribly seismically active, but there are so many other places that are! On the links page, take a look under Science at the USGS earthquake map.  There's real time seismic activity around the world! Change the settings to show the fault lines--then look in southern California at the San Andreas fault!  Not only will we explore earthquakes, but an event that goes hand in hand with an oceanic earthquake-the tsunami.

Reading- We're reading Sailing Home: A Story of a Childhood at Sea this week.  This is historical fiction selection from our reading text.  We will talk about the difference between "thick" vs. "thin" questions and answers when you are trying to comprehend a story or a piece of text.  Thick questions involve critical thinking and details, while thin questions can usually be answered with a "yes" or "no" or a very short answer.   

English-   We continue studying the use of pronouns.  On Tuesday students will watch a few short clips on the smartboard for a review of pronouns.  I hear a little song about pronouns to the tune of "BINGO!", so be ready!  We'll be creating a pronoun "anchor chart", which is something the students can use to reference later on.   

Math- Ahhhh...the best laid plans.  Well our "cold day" puts us behind again, but we'll manage!  We'll wrap up Chapter 20 with a test on Thursday.  Our next move is the study of fractions.  While lots of us "older" people cringe at the very thought, fractions are actually a lot of fun and we see fractions everywhere in the world....cooking and foods (like pizza), measurement, music, telling time, money, data, etc.  This is a KEY concept that children really need to grasp as they prepare for 5th grade.  You can help at home by helping your child recognize and understand examples of commonly-used fractions in the real-world (i.e. HALF HOUR, QUARTER NOTES, etc).

Social Studies-With the unanticipated "cold" day last week, we never even started our study of the Underground Railroad as originally planned.....that's what we'll be doing this week.  Michigan's role in the Underground Railroad is significant and we'll explore some of the local stops along the path to freedom.  It's very important that the children are making progress on their Thomas Edison historical fiction stories.  The final copies are due on March 6th......no exceptions.  Please remind the children that this is NOT a report!  It's a story, it's fiction, but they need to use real facts and a real setting in their stories!  We have gathered lots of information, so you should expect to see their social studies notebooks at home to help during the writing process.  This story will need to be edited/revised/typed/etc. at home.  As always, if you have a printer issue, feel free to email the finished copy to me and I'll handle it at this end.  Thanks!

ยท        Mrs. Gmeiner, Mrs. Morrison, Mrs. Frechette






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Shrine Catholic Grade School
1621 Linwood
Royal Oak, MI 48067