What’s Happening in Year 4

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The Year 4 students have come back from the Christmas holiday rested and ready to learn!  We have been really pleased with the level of engagement, the interest shown in our current unit and how enthusiastic everyone is, in general.

Thank you to all the parents who were able to attend and take part in the Three Way Conferences yesterday.  We had a great time and hope you not only enjoyed yourself but also learned a lot about your child.

 

What else has been happening?

We have started our fractions unit in earnest now.  Students have been using a variety of equipment to grow their understanding of fractions, and to investigate about improper fractions, mixed numbers and equivalent fractions.

Aside from that, we are primarily  focussed on our unit of inquiry and getting ready for the Celebration of Learning which will take place on Thursday 8 February.  Students have been researching about ailments, learning to determine importance when  researching, and practicing for their final written report.  They have also been unpacking science experiments and how to ensure they are kept ‘fair’.

Please keep Thursday 8 February free so you are able to attend our celebration of learning.  We should be starting at approximately 10.40am, but  we will confirm the exact time at a later date.


 

What’s Happening in Term 2

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It has been a wonderful term for all of Year 4, and the students definitely deserve a break.  When we return in January, we will be continuing with our focus on the Body Systems in preparation for our Celebration of Learning on Thursday 8 February.  That is when all parents will be invited in to see our learning from this unit.

As well as the body systems, we will be focussed on collecting and displaying data, researching for information using a variety of sources, and writing an information report.  We will also be starting our unit on Fractions.  Below are the outcomes we will be focussed on:

Have a wonderful holiday.  See you in January!

 

From

Kris Stanhope .    Sarah McDavid .    Mark Steed .    Anna Sherriff

 

 

Year 4 Science Stations

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This morning Year 4 students took part in a variety of activities aimed at provoking their interest in our new unit, and to get them wondering about the systems of the body.  They measured their heart rate, counted taste buds, looked in microscopes and completed a number of different experiments dealing with their bodies.  The students had a great time and are now very excited for the upcoming unit.

A special thank you to all those parents who were able to come in and help us out.

Take a look at some of the action from today:

Year 4 Body Systems Unit

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The Year 4 students are working hard this week to prepare their food system presentations and finish their explanations.  It has been a great unit with lots of learning happening.  In particular, students have done a great job in their first unit of the year that required them to research.  Next week we will begin our new unit focussed on the systems of our body.

The Unit

Central Idea: Our bodies are made up of interdependent systems, which need to be maintained for healthy functioning.

Lines of Inquiry: 

  • The systems of the body and how they function 
  • Ways in which these body systems are interdependent 
  • How to maintain healthy body systems 

Concepts: Function, Connection, Responsibility

Math: Throughout this new unit students will be completing a number of experiments connected to the body.  From these experiments they will be collecting data and learning to interpret it.  They will be inquiring into the best ways to represent the data which will include bar graphs, line graphs, tally charts, pie charts and pictographs.

Language:  Students will continue with their focus on research as they inquire into the systems of the body, how the systems are connected, and how they can be responsible for maintaining them.  Students will be using teacher-selected websites and non-fiction books for their research, while learning to ask effective questions and determine importance while they are researching.   This research will culminate in action as students aim to educate others about how to maintain healthy body systems.  This action will require them to write an information report.

Celebration of Learning

At the end of this unit parents will get the opportunity to come in and see all that their children have been doing.  You can look forward to taking part in science experiments, learning about body ailments and how they are connected to the body systems, and participating in physical exercises designed by the students to support healthy body systems.

This celebration of learning has been tentatively booked for Thursday 8 February from 10.30am – 12.30pm.  More information will be provided in January.

Y4 Sports Day

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On Tuesday the Discovery College Year 4 students competed against students from DBIS and Renaissance College in a variety of enjoyable activities. The weather was beautiful and fun was had by everyone involved.  Thank you to those parents who were able to come along and cheer on our students.  For those who were not able to make it, you can check out some photos from the day below.

 

Our Next Unit

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Time is flying by, and we are ready to move into our second unit of inquiry for the year.  The students have done a great job throughout our first unit learning about strategies for resolving conflict and devising ways to make DC a more peaceful community.  Our next unit begins their journey into research.

In this unit students will be inquiring into the process it takes to get food from the farm to our dinner tables.  Throughout this inquiry, they will be reflecting on the affect this process might have on how they choose the food they eat.

Central Idea: Communities have systems for production and distribution which affect the choices people make.

Lines of Inquiry:

  1.  The systems for producing and distributing food.
  2. The reasons for different production and distribution methods.
  3. How we choose the food we eat.

Language

In writing, students will be learning about explanation texts.  They will inquire into the features needed for this type of writing and have many opportunities to ‘explain’ different systems.  They will focus on the structure and organisation of their writing as well continue to focus on writing grammatically correct sentences and paragraphs.

Students will be reading a lot of non-fiction texts and learning a process for researching.  They will explore the features of non-fiction texts and begin to use those features to help them gather the information they need.

Near the the end of the unit, students will work in a group to create a visual presentation using Google Slides to demonstrate their understanding of the food process.  They will be thinking about the visual impact of their slides for this presentation, as well as how they can give a successful oral presentation.

Mathematics

Students will continue with the addition and subtraction unit which they have recently begun.  They will focus on the following:

Throughout this unit, students will spend time practicing the different mental strategies to add and subtract.  They will also have the opportunity to apply these strategies when solving open-ended problems.

Camp is Coming

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As hard as it is to believe…Y4 camp is just around the corner.  Everyone should’ve received an e-notice this week about camp as well as a request for parent volunteers.  This year we are hoping to have eight parents attend camp with is, so please fill in the form if you are interested and available to attend.

You might have noticed that we have a camp page here on our website.  Click on the ‘Camp‘ tab at the top of the website (or click here) and you will see the kit list for students as well as a schedule for our three days.  This will also be where you will find regularly updated pictures of camp when we are away.

Y4 camp is an amazing time for students and we are really looking forward to it.  If you have any questions about camp, or about being a parent volunteer, please contact Kris Stanhope (kris.stanhope@dc.edu.hk).

Homework and Email in Year 4

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Each week students get their homework emailed to them.  Although we always review the homework in class before it goes home, our expectation is that students open their email at home to remind themselves and ensure they are completing all activities.  Please also remember that the homework is always available on our Year 4 website under the ‘Homework’ tab –  blogs.discovery.edu.hk/year-4/homework

Logging into email has been difficult for some students who, although they know how to access their email on our computers at school, are unsure how to get to their email on a home computer.  Therefore, we wanted to provide you with a little information so you are able to help them.

Basically each student at DC has a Google email account. So, in order to sign into their email they will need to go to google.com.  Once there, no matter the type of computer or browser, they can proceed to sign into their account in the top right corner.
If you were unaware that your child has their own email or have some concerns about that, we suggest you discuss internet safety with your children and regularly check their emails with them.  Please also take a few minutes to look at the presentation from the Parent information Evening regarding email that was provided by Mr Leithhead last year.  Click here to see the presentation.
If you have any further questions or concerns please feel free to your class teacher.

Parent Fair

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Thank you to those parents who were able to join us for the Parent Fair.   We hope you enjoyed it and learned a lot about Year 4 at DC.

If you weren’t able to join us please find the slideshow below as well as a video of the Year 4 students making plans to be ‘Better Than Before’.

 

Reading at Home in Year 4

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In Year 4, students are still expected to read at home each night, but there are a few differences from last year.  First of all, students will need to record their home reading in their diary.  Each evening they should note the title of the book as well as the pages they have read.  Afterwards, students will need an adult or older sibling to sign their diary to confirm the reading took place.  We encourage  all families to allow students to take responsibility for this themselves.

This is what it should look like in the diaries:

Another difference this year is that students are able to choose which books they want to read, rather than selecting from levelled tubs of books like last year.  So they could choose library books, books from home, or books from school.

We believe strongly that being a strong reader and enjoying reading is an essential part of learning.  We ask for your support in encouraging your child to read and helping them remember to record their reading in the diaries each night. If you wanted to be involved further than that, you could read to your child or have regular discussions with them about the books they are reading.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your class teacher..