Visual Arts: Stand Alone Patterns

For this unit in visual arts, year 4 students are inquiring into patterns. Their central idea is: noticing patterns helps us interpret, explain, and respond to our environment. Their key concepts are connection and form and their related concepts are liquid watercolors and pattern.

Students began by identifying and analyzing patterns around school. They walked around campus and sketched the patterns they saw.

 

Students modified and added to these patterns. After getting peer feedback, students chose their most intricate two patterns and these patterns were added to a sheet that included all patterns from 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3.

Students used their pattern resource sheet as a tool to create a zentangle/zendoodle drawing.

Students are inquiring into liquid watercolor and sculpture. They are currently learning and using various liquid watercolor techniques including the wet on dry technique, wet on wet technique, and adding rubbing alcohol to the paint.

Students are now adding patterns on top of their liquid watercolor backgrounds.

Next week, students will conclude this unit by creating zentangle sculptures.

Reminder: GLOBAL PLAY DAY – 7 February 2018

At LIS we highly value the development of both academic and social skills, along with a range of other competencies that prepare students for success in adulthood. Research is indicating that children have increasingly less opportunities for self-regulated play. On the GDoP, we hope to promote play and provide and an opportunity for students to further develop self regulation, an understanding of boundaries, opportunities for safe risk taking, collaboration and creativity; as well as exploring new ways  to interact with others in a playful setting.

The large proportion of time, many children now spend in front of screens, and the lack of physical activity and self- initiated play, is increasingly becoming a highlighted area of concern. As mentioned in our email, through GDoP, we are promoting physical play, that does not use screens, as we want to encourage more active opportunities for play between children with the hope that this to become a part of every child’s daily life.

There is now growing research that indicates the significance and importance of enabling childrens’ play opportunities which helps them become balanced and successful adults.  We encourage you to watch the following TEDex and TED talks which share some insightful information about the importance of play, and the ongoing and essential benefits it provides for both adults and children.

 The decline of play – Peter Gray

A manifesto for play, for Bulgaria and beyond – Steve Keil

 Play is more than fun – Stuart Brown

You can learn more about the benefits play by visiting the official GSPD website: www.globalschoolplayday.com.

This week in Year 4

 It is our second week back and the majority of our students and families have now safely returned to school and are settling back into class and school routines.
The children seem well rested, refreshed and happy to see each other and their teachers again. We have revisited the on-going Year 4 expectations of responsibility, commitment and independence and discussed the importance of supporting each other as we learn and grow together.  Sharing time with our younger year level buddies this week also added to our gratitude to our return to our LIS community.  
For our How We Organize Ourselves unit we had more guest-speakers, Ms Avin who spoke of the work being done by the FOLSCO organization (Friends of Luanda Street Children and Orphans) and Ms Georgina who shared her volunteer work experience with the Lighthouse Relief Organization, which helps refugee/resident communities in Greece prepare for taking up residence in countries throughout Europe.  Our students have been making connections to our lines of inquiry as well as developing their listening and questioning skills and extending their vocabulary knowledge to find out the definitions for key words relevant to their inquiry.
For Math we are continuing to look at multiplication and division strategies.  With students building their understanding of how these operations work, how they are connected to each other (inverse operation, fact families, equal groupings) and how they can be used to find the answer to unknown facts and every day related number word problems.
In Language we have reviewed the structure of a narrative text in both reading and writing lessons, looking at text features of characters, setting, plot development, problem and solution, sequencing and vocabulary choice.  Using the writing process students are developing narrative and persuasive texts to share and read aloud.

How We Organise Ourselves

Happy new year and welcome back!

This week year 4 students began inquiring into our fourth unit for the year.  You will find the learning outcomes for this unit here: HOW WE ORGANISE OURSELVES.

We are working on finding definitions and examples of some key vocabulary – organization, service, impact, cooperation, respect and responsibility.  We have also invited guest speakers to talk  to the classes about the organizations that they work with to tune students in to the unit.

For Math, within the unit, we will revisit data handling – more specifically writing survey questions.  In the standalone unit, we are introducing the concept of multiplication and its inverse operation of division.  Later we will  move on to various strategies to understand and solve multiplication and division problems.

For language within this unit, we will learn about persuasive writing – students will look at exemplars of this text type and analyze the language features and the structure of persuasive writing and write their own pieces.  More about this in a later blog post.

 

 

Visual Arts: Using the Design Cycle

For their current HTWW unit in their homeroom class, students are inquiring into the central idea: people apply their understanding of scientific principles to innovate and create. In visual arts class, students are specifically looking at the line of inquiry: how the design cycle is used to innovate and create and the related concept: innovation.

Over the last few weeks, students have been learning about logos and inquiring into logos. They have looked for logos around the school and analyzed these logos to discover hidden meanings. Students have found that every part of a successful logo has a purpose.

After recreating the google logo as a provocation, students did a test run using the design cycle to create a logo for the art room (4.2), for the music room (4.3), or for LIS (4.1). Each student began by investigating (a step in the design cycle) and then used different parts of the design cycle at different times while creating their logos.

Currently, students are designing a logo that represents themselves. This week, they are presenting their best logo to the class to evaluate and to receive peer feedback. Next class they will create their final version using the material(s) of their choice. These logos will be digitalized and used as the icon on their edublog and eventually as the icon in their seesaw blogs.

What are we busy with in Year 4?

Students are learning how to acquire, comprehend and synthesize knowledge (thinking skills – one of the approaches to learning).  They are practicing  these through learning about the six simple machines and how they make work easier.  The students completed their research, made posters and then the rest of the class  used their  (the expert group’s) research to deepen their own understandings of pulleys, levers, wedges, wheels and axels, screws and  inclined planes.  Using the design cycle , students are  applying their understanding of scientific principles to create and innovate various machines. Students showed their work in progress to our Buddies when they visited us.

In Math students have been solving a range of problems as well learning and using the jump and split strategy for subtraction.   

Students continue the writing process with their realistic fiction stories….most are busy publishing their work.

Realistic Fiction

Year 4  students are learning how to write realistic fiction; it’s a standalone unit that will run for several weeks.  Students are exploring  story elements –  characters, problems, and settings.  In addition they will learn more about  punctuation and various literary devices  such as similes and alliteration. The videos below  further explains the text type.

 

In class students have been reading and analyzing a range of mentor texts (examples of realistic fiction that will help them write their own stories). They used this prompt, “what do you notice the writers doing?” while exploring various realist fiction picture books.  Students worked in groups to  come up with a list of real life problems and realistic solutions.  They are using these  ideas in their own writing as they plan and draft their  stories.