Busy times in 4.3

Students have been developing their thinking skills (one of the approaches to learning) how to acquire, comprehend and synthesize knowledge.  They have been 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. 

 In writing sessions , our young authors are  drafting, revising, editing and publishing their realistic fiction stories, which they look forward to sharing with their classmates and buddies.

 In Math students have been working on the jump and split strategy for subtraction and solving a variety of single step word problems for both subtraction and addition problems.

 

 

Making work easier.

Simple Machines are tools used to make work easier. In science, work is defined as a force acting on an object to move it across a distance. Pushing, pulling, and lifting are common forms of work. A force is any push or pull that causes an object to change its position (movement), direction, or shape.

This week students explored new vocabulary connected to the unit (e.g. friction, force, pulleys, work etc.).  We also discussed the concepts:

Form – what is it like?

Function – how does it work?

Students have formed groups to explore simple machines – they will research to become “experts”  about one of the following –  wheels/axles, pulleys, levers, wedges, inclined planes or screws.

They are using books and various websites to complete their research.   Students will share their learning with the whole class and in the next few weeks they will use the scientific understandings gained to create their own inventions to move and lift objects.

Here are photos from learning engagements this week:

 

 

 

How the world works

This week year 4 students began inquiring into our third unit for the year.   You will find the learning outcomes for this unit here: HOW THE WORLD WORKS

As a provocation to spark wonderings and curiosity amongst the students, we watched the video below:

 

Here are some of our introduction and tuning-in learning engagements for this unit –

 

Students will develop their knowledge and understandings of scientific principles through exploring simple machines and how they make work easier. We have planned in collaboration with Ms. Hannah, in Art, to ensure the students develop an understanding of the Design cycle which they will use when they create and innovate.

Next week we will start a stand-alone unit on realistic fiction. Our next blog post will explain more about this. For this unit we will consolidate students’ understanding of the explanation text type.

In mathematics, all year 4 classes have been introduced to the split strategy and tidy numbers for addition. Building on their understanding of place value, students are making connections on how to use these strategies to solve addition problems.

 

Sharing learning processes in Year 4

It’s been a short but intensely busy fortnight back! Students reflected on their approaches to learning and set SMART goals, which they shared in their 3 way conferences. It was a challenging and in-depth process but the students persevered and were very principled about how they see themselves as learners and where they needed to improve. Thank you for attending the conferences and being a part of the support to help the students achieve their goals.

The students spent time planning, drafting, revising, editing and posting on our  student class blog.  They also responded to posts from their classmates. This was part of the How We Express Ourselves summative assessment task (making quality posts and responding appropriately to another post). Please spend some time looking at the students’ posts.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=UDVSw54VU1A (link youtube clip)

 

Students have been busy planning which learning engagements to share for their walk through assembly. They practiced and spoke confidently to a broad audience consisting of peers and adults.  Students were engaged in explaining the process of their learning

 

In Math we started to look at addition and subtraction strategies. Students completed a pre-assessment task showing their prior knowledge.   In the weeks coming we will learn and practice the following – compensating, split and jump strategy. More about these strategies in another blogpost.

 

Digital citizenship and Poetry

We are learning about our roles and responsibilities in a virtual environment – we looked at ways in which we can have a positive digital footprint. We also discussed the similarities and differences between a physical and virtual environment, using venn diagrams to organize our thinking.

As part of our new unit, How We Express Ourselves unit, year 4 students have started exploring different poetry genres this week. We started the week looking at a senses poem. We chose an emotion and compared this emotion to the five senses. First we examined the language features and the structure of an example of a senses poem and made a checklist. Then we planned, drafted, revised, edited and published our own senses poem. Some examples of our poems can be found HERE

Students also analysed simile poems and noticed that the poems described something or someone by comparing it to another thing using like or as (as noisy as a monkey, it had teeth like daggers). Together we started a plan and started a draft of a simile poem about 4.3, which the children were invited to finish on their own.

As we continue our learning in this unit the students will be exposed to more genres of poetry including cinquain and kenning poems.

Please feel free to share some of your favourite poems when talking with your children or commenting on this post.

How we express ourselves.

This week year 4 students began inquiring into our second unit of inquiry for the year. You will find the learning outcomes for this unit here – HWEO

Here are some of our introduction and tuning-in engagements for this unit –

Students will develop their knowledge and understandings of digital communication tools and their roles and responsibilities as digital citizens.

We have planned in collaboration with Ms Hannah to ensure the students develop an understanding of responsible and safe digital communication and expression through the Arts.

We collaborated with our information technology specialists, Mr Oscar and Mr Brian and introduced our students to setting up their own student blogs. With our students we will develop a class checklist for purposeful, appropriate and responsible use of blogs.

Our language links will include gaining knowledge of writing different types of poetry. Students will develop their knowledge of the elements of poetry, the use of figurative language and poetic devices.

In mathematics, all year 4 classes have been introduced to the online Mathletics program in class lessons. Students have their passwords and are able to work on tasks at home.

We have started to tune into and develop the student’s conceptual understanding of place value, (see details in our place value blog post). This week we also used data collected from surveys about communication tools and represented our findings on bar graphs, which we then interpreted and used to further our thinking.

We look forward to hearing about any action the children may take as a result of the learning in this unit.

Who We Are – summative assessment task and reflections.

During the past 6 weeks year 4 have been inquiring into the transdisciplinary theme of Who We Arelearning about how our body systems work together to keep us healthy.

This week we finished our Who We Are unit by first unpacking our summative assessment task.  All expert research teams used a checklist to guide them in presenting their learning and understanding of a chosen body system. 

Expert teams collaborated to ensure their presentations:    

 1.) Identified the parts/organs of their chosen body system (what it looks like).                                                  

2.) Explained the function of the system (how it works).                                                                                        

3.) Described how the system is connected to other body systems (how it connects to other things).        

4.) Detailed the responsibilities we can take to keep the system healthy (what is our responsibilities).    

5.) Listed the sources used by the team to inform their learning and understanding e.g.  Bill Nye and Magic school bus video clips, non-fiction texts, guest-speakers and websites (BrainPop jr).

Teams were encouraged to work cooperatively and commit to having a balanced approach to sharing and completing their tasks.  Expectations were for teams to be caring and principled in their support of each other throughout their work processes, they also needed to be constructive in their feedback to each other and in their reflections of their own work.

Here are some student learning statements and reflections shared –

I learned that the skeletal system protects the organs and helps us to move around.

There are 3 kinds of muscles, voluntary, involuntary and cardiac muscles.

I found out that the heart beat is the sound of two valves opening and shutting in the heart.

In the small intestine the villi takes the nutrients out of the food and into the blood.

When you breathe in the big muscle diaphragm goes down when the lungs fill up.

I found out that all the systems in the body are connected and each system has an important job.

Muscles are controlled by the nervous system.

In bone marrow the blood cells are made.

The trachea is the pipe that we breathe air down to and then the air goes to the bronchi and into the lungs.

I learned about the circulatory system and how the heart pumps the blood around to all the systems in the body.

Bright red blood carries oxygen, dark red blood takes used oxygen.

I found it interesting that the left lung is smaller than the right lung.

Muscles are in twos, when one muscle is working its other muscle is resting.

Our small intestine is 7 meters long!

A baby has more than 300 bones.

There are 3 types of blood cells. Red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.