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Clasroom Update 6/17/12

posted Jun 17, 2012, 2:08 PM by Craig Yen   [ updated Jun 17, 2012, 2:11 PM ]

It's hard to believe another year has passed.  Thank you again for all your continued support through the year.

Please continue to read over the summer.  You may wish to participate in the Contra Costa County Library's Summer Reading Festival.  More information can be found at the following link:

Summer Reading Festival

Scholastic also has a summer reading challenge where students read, log minutes, and earn prizes.

Summer Reading Challenge

Barnes and Nobles is offering a free book for reading any 8 books and recording them in the reading journal.

Barnes and Noble Offer


Half Priced Books is offering a $5 gift certificate for those that read 300 minutes.

Half Priced Books Offer

Happy reading, and see you next year.

Classroom Update 5/29/12

posted May 29, 2012, 1:47 AM by Craig Yen   [ updated May 29, 2012, 5:00 AM ]

Our hard work will be on display at Open House which will be from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. Be sure to visit the art fair as well where two pieces of work will be on display. (opens at 6:00 PM in the MUR and will be open during Open House as well) Please do not take home either books, your child's original book and the memory book. You are free to take home any other work that is set up on your child's desk.
 
Math
We continue to review concepts learned this year and will be working on the looking forward activities to connect what we have learned this year to what we will learn in fifth grade. This past week, we took the curriculum associates practice #4. Some commonly missed problems were reviewed with students as well as appropriate strategies to approach these problems. Results were sent home with students this past week.
 
Language Arts
We also took the Curriculum Associates language arts practice #4 this past week. Results were also sent home with students on Friday. We have been reading the story Wildfires. There are only three stories within this theme.
 
Writing
We have been reviewing the summarizing strategy the past few weeks. In doing so,students summarized Salmon Summer from the HM anthology. This summary was scored, reviewed,and returned to students. We also wrote a summary about a read aloud where school children recounted their journey back home through a blizzard. This sumary of the read aloud will be returned in the coming week.  On it will be two scores, W1.10 (editing and revising) and W 2.2 (writing summaries).
 
Science
Vocabulary and outline sheets were distributed to students this past week. Everyone is responsible for completing these. Students should continue to study the final chapter even if they are not responsible for taking the test. Test is scheduled for June 12. Those that did not score highly enough on the other two chapter tests will be responsible for taking this test.
 
Social Studies
We have completed each of the lessons within this chapter. Students should be continuing to work on their Social Studies choice menus activities. They were asked to complete at least one of their actitvities to have it on display for Open House. Be on the look out for it. Social Studies chapter test will be on June 7.  Extension menu activities are due by 6/6.

Classroom Update 5/18/12

posted May 18, 2012, 4:05 PM by Craig Yen   [ updated May 18, 2012, 4:06 PM ]

We have completed our STAR testing. Be on the lookout for results in August or September.

In the next weeks, we will be taking the fourth curriculum associates test.  Results will be sent home as the tests are given. The results are used to help determine grades. Continue to monitor your child's weekly work as it goes home on Fridays as there will be a number of assessments that come on home.

Open House is on Tuesday, May 29 from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. The Art fair will be in the MUR on the same night and will open at 6:00 PM. Please be sure to visit our class' work which is on display there.

Language Arts

We continue with theme 6, Nature: Friend and Foe within our language arts textbook. We read Salmon Summer this past week and did take the AR test for this. The grammar within this theme deals with adverbs.

Please do make sure that your child continues to read towards the AR test.

Math
For the last few weeks, we have been going over some of those skills learned this year including perimeter and area. One of the ones to continually look at is the perimeter and area of complex figures.

In math, we have been working with solid figures. Students are responsible not only for identifying these figures, but in fourth grade, they must figure out how volume and surface areas.

Labels are the areas that do cause some students difficulty.

Science

Students took the Science test this past week. It was returned to them along with their vocabulary and outline sheets that are worth 10% of their grade.  For those students that scored well enough, they will only be responsible for the Vocabulary/Outline sheets for chapter 5.  Otherwise, you will be responsible for taking the science test on Tuesday, June 12.

Social Studies
Study outlines were handed out to students on Friday.  We also gave students a gold rush choice menu activities sheet.  (see attached). Chapter 6 social studies test is scheduled for Thursday, June 7.  We will continue to learn about the gold rush leading up to California's admittance into the United States.

Classroom Update 4/23

posted Apr 23, 2012, 4:01 PM by Craig Yen   [ updated Apr 23, 2012, 4:05 PM ]

For the next few weeks, we will be working in class on STAR released questions for math first and then english language arts.  Results as well as the questions will be sent home on Friday of each week.  Within class, we will review commonly missed problems as we review a few items prior to testing.

Do note that STAR testing will be in the morning time on 5/8, 5/9, 5/15, and 5/16.  Please be sure that your child arrives to school on time, had a good night's rest, and eats a good breakfast.

We have picked out parts for our next class play, Gelogy Rocks!. The play will be performed on May 17 and May 18.

Original Book
Do note that two copies of the original book are due by Wednesday, May 2. We will talk soon about the "extra pages of the book" including the about the author, dedication, cover page, etc. These are not due on May 2, but will be due in the subsequent days.

Planning a short story sheet
Original Book Assignment
Original Book Schedule

Original Book Formatting

Math

We are currently working on area and perimeter of rectangles, squares, and complex figures. students have been reminded of the importance of properly labeling their work. Following this chapter, we will work more with measurements.

Language Arts
Theme skills test results were sent home this past week. We will start our final theme, Nature: Friend and Foe in the coming weeks. The emphasis with the grammar component of the language arts program for this past theme was the use of pronouns.  Please note that we are about half way through the final trimester. Students should be at about 10 Accelerated Reader Points.  A student record will be attached to the next weekly update.

Science
The next science chapter test is scheduled for Friday, May 18.

Social Studies
Do note that the social studies test will be on Thursday, April 26.  We have been doing a historical fiction read aloud, By the Great Horn Spoon. It is a great way for the students to learn even more about the gold rush period of California's history which will be in the next chapter.

Classroom Update 4/6/12

posted Apr 6, 2012, 9:42 PM by Craig Yen

Thank you to all the parents who have offered to chaperone the Sonoma field trip. When we return to school, I will send an email that will include a schedule as well as who else as a list of the other chaperones attending the trip should you wish to arrange to carpool.  Again, the students will be riding in buses and the parents will need to drive.

STAR testing will be on 5/8, 5/9, 5/15, and 5/16 in the morning times. We will be doing some practice work when we return from break. Be on the look out for results from STAR released sample questions on 4/20 (math) and 4/27 (language arts). 

Enjoy the Spring Recess!

Math

Chapter 25 tests were returned this past week.  We learned more about circles (radii and diameters), triangles, angles, and more!  Chapter 26 has dealt with line symmetry, rotational symmetry, and congruence. Here is a link from the publisher (also available on the class website) which offers more help with the current chapter.  These four chapters have much vocabulary in them that the students are responsible for continuing to know and learn.

Writing
We have finished up our mission reports. Feedback and scores will be attached to next week's update. Please continue to work on your Original Book project. Formatting instructions were sent home attached to this week's update.

Planning a short story sheet
Original Book Assignment
Original Book Schedule

Original Book Formatting

Language Arts
We have finished reading the final story within this theme, Lou Gherig.  We will reread the story the next school week as well as continuing to go over some grammar skills.  Recently, we have been continuing to work on both subject pronouns and object pronouns and their use.  Of particular difficulty for some students was the use of  when to use "I" and when to use "me".  We have started to read another core literature book, By the Great Horn Spoon, a work of historical fiction set during the period of the gold rush.

Science
Science vocabulary/outlines and tests were returned to students this week.  Next we will be working in chapters 4 and 5 which will deal will slow changes and fast changes on earth.

Social Studies
Social studies outlines were given to students this week.  The test will be on April 26.

Classroom Update 3/30

posted Mar 30, 2012, 3:31 PM by Craig Yen

Report of student progress went home with students on 3/30.  Thank you for taking the time to review this with your child.  Please sign the envelope and return to acknowledge receipt.

An explanation of some of the markings follows:

In ELA

Highest marks available in all areas are 2 for this trimester except for writing applications where students may receive a 3.

In Math

For those standards where the student had demonstrated end of the year proficiency in the 1st trimester and we have not readdressed enough this trimester, there will be a N/A.  N/A will also be in Statistics/Data Analysis & Probability as we had not fully covered this by the end of the trimester.  (There is a unit test on this within student box this past week)

 For all standards where there is not a N/A, the highest mark available is 3, except for Measurement & Geometry (highest 2) and for Mathematical Reasoning (highest 2)

Math
Within math, these past weeks, we have been working on statistics, probability, and data analysis.  A unit test was taken this past week and sent home.

Language Arts
We continue to read within our HM series.  This theme has to do with Heroes.  We read about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and we're currently reading about Gloria Estefan.  For the final story in the theme, we will learn more about Lou Gherig.  Last week, we worked on a summary which was returned to students in their boxes with comments and scores of 3, 2, and 1.

Social Studies
We are wrapping up our mission report.  Social Studies chapter 5 study guides will be given to the students prior to break.  The test will be on Thursday, April 26 when we return from Spring Recess.  We continue to learn more about the period of time leading up to California's statehood.

Science
Within lab and class today, some students were able to visit the "Rock Hound" website to reveiw more about how rocks are formed and to learn more about the different types of rocks.  Within science lab, we started with mock rocks and proceeded to minerals and rocks conducting different tests that geologists conduct including the scratch test and calcite test.  We carefully observed rocks and made observations within our notebooks.

Classroom Update 3/17

posted Mar 17, 2012, 5:31 PM by Craig Yen   [ updated Mar 22, 2012, 4:17 PM ]

Report of student progress for the 2nd trimester will be sent home with students on 3/30.  There will be a place for a parent signature on the envelope that contains the report.  Please return the envelope.  The report will be for you to keep. 

Please note that the Original Book planning a short story sheet is due by Wednesday, 3/21.  Please follow the guidelines given on the assignment page.  There are additional links below for those that have misplaced the forms.

Within language arts, we completed theme 4 this past week.  Results were sent home with students.  We continue to work on writing.  We stressed the importance of placing commas after introductory phrases to start sentences.  Another conept worked on this theme was identifying and fixing sentence fragments.

Writing
We continue or work within writing.  We will be stressing the importance of editing and revising as we finish up our mission reports.  Students should be turning in their planning sheet for their original book by Wednesday of this coming week.  Please help students adhere to the schedule as we continue this project.  Formatting instructions will go home with students in a few weeks.

Math
Within math, we have wrapped up our chapter on statistics.  In our next chapter, we will go ahead work on probability.  We have continued to review different concepts that we have learned through the year.

Science
Within science, we have started our final unit, rocks and minerals.  This unit has 3 chapters.  Should your child do well enough, they will not need to take the final chapter 5 test.  The test for Chapter 3 will be on Thursday, April 5. Science outlines and vocabulary sheets will be due within class this coming week.  

Social Studies
Social studies tests were returned this past week.  WIth the study guides, students are to complete all parts including information for the people / time / place.  This was stated within class multiple times.  Tests were returned with students this week.  This next unit explains California's road to statehood.

Classroom Update 3/12

posted Mar 12, 2012, 1:50 PM by Craig Yen

Each student will write their own original book.  Thanks in advance for your assistance in making this project possible.  Again, you may wish to type some of the chapters prior to the actual due date.  Formatting instructions will be sent home in a few weeks and will be posted here soon.  Instructions for the project follow.  The first due date is 3/21 where the planning sheet is due.  We did spend sometime on Monday discussing the project and answering questions.

Original Book Assignment
Original Book Schedule


Classroom Update 3/3

posted Mar 3, 2012, 7:05 PM by Craig Yen   [ updated Mar 3, 2012, 7:13 PM ]

Do note that the STAR writing test is on Tuesday, 3/6.  Please arrive to school on time, have a good night's sleep, and enjoy a good breakfast.

The end of the trimester is on 3/16.  

Math
Within math, for the past few weeks, we have been working with coordinate planes. In doing this, we have been plotting functions as well.  Within stations lately, we have been working with adding and subtracting negative numbers. For our next unit, we will work with statistics.  There will be a few quizzes to close out the trimester reviewing some of those items review this school year.

Science
Science tests were returned this week. Our final unit for science will be rocks and minerals. 

Social Studies
Social Studies chapter 4 test will be on Tuesday, March 13.  Thanks in advance for all the help to make 49er Day possible.

Language Arts
We are wrapping up theme 4 in our language arts series. Theme skills tests will be given this coming week.

Classroom Update 2/14

posted Feb 14, 2012, 3:34 PM by Craig Yen

Please note that our class play date has changed to next Thursday and Friday, 2/23 and 2/24.

Science Fair is at 6:30 PM in the MUR on Tuesday, February 14.  What great projects!  We hope to see you there.

Math
We continue to work with decimals including the stimation of decimals to help check our work. Curriculum Associates Math was given this past week and results will be sent home this coming week attached to the weekly updates. Remember that this end of the year benchmark testing.  Our areas of strength as a class were in number sense and algebra & functions (two areas that we have worked on through Houghton Mifflin).

Writing
We have continued our weekly writing practice with narratives and with summaries. Within class, we have worked on stronger introductory paragraphs to really set the tones with summaries.  The transitions that we continued to work with really emphasize that we are summarizing a piece... i.e. the author continues by... the article concludes with.  The final writing practice that we will do prior to the STAR writing test on March 6 is with response to literature.

Science
Science vocabulary and outline sheets will be given to the students this week.

Social Studies
We are continuing to work on our mission project within class.  We are getting close to completing our note taking where some students have begun to work on the activities or other parts of the project. In class, we worked on how to write our reference page for the report and recorded the information that we will need.


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