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Fourth Grade Post-a-thon!
Old 09-17-2016, 02:32 AM
 
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Hi Fourth Grade teachers!

Tell us: What is something you teach every year in fourth grade that you particularly look forward to and why?

I'll start.

In the fall, usually October or so we go on a nature hike behind our school where there is a field and wooded trail. We call it a "haiku hike" based on the Scholastic fourth graders Haiku Hike. My students take clipboards, pencil and paper. The goal is to get outdoors and observe mother nature! We return and brainstorm ideas for a class poem. Then students write their own using the haiku formula. We type them up and display them in the hall. Sometimes I compile them into a class book too.
So motivating!

Another of my favorite traditions is a biography project at the end of year. Students read, research, complete a timeline, tri-fold display and become the person by dressing up and delivering a speech to the class. It's a great way to keep up the motivation at the end of a school year



Last edited by Linda/OH; 09-17-2016 at 12:25 PM..
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4th grade is the best!
Old 09-17-2016, 05:58 AM
 
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I really like the science unit we do on electricity and magnetism. I also love the word clouds I do for the end of the year. I have all the kids write something positive about each classmate. I use abcya's site to make the word clouds. I put the kids picture on the same page as the cloud and hang them in the hall. They love looking at them
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New to 4th
Old 09-17-2016, 10:23 AM
 
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I'm new to 4th grade this year but have done a vocabulary project with my previous classes (5th grade) that I am planning to use with my 4th graders. The project covers the Graeme Base ABC book Animalia. The illustrations in the book are amazing and I love having my kids research the different pictures to figure out exactly what it is. An example from the A page is - there is a snake on the page but the kids know it has to be a type of snake that starts with an A so they have to research what type of snake it could be. I think so far the most A things on the A page found have been 169.
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Crayfish
Old 09-17-2016, 11:00 AM
 
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4th Graders love those little critters. I think they are slimy but after a few days my students make me change my mind.
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Great Question
Old 09-17-2016, 11:58 AM
 
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After 32 years, mostly in fourth grade, this is my final year before retirement. I'm planning on having it be a "Best of..." year. I'm going to do all of my "favorites," especially the ones that I haven't done because of ridiculous demands placed on us!

I love doing a class musical from Bad Wolf Press. I will certainly do one in May/June.

I have also enjoyed doing a biography project whereby students read a biography, then get together in groups of 5 or so to write and produce a "talk show" with each of the famous people represented. (Each student writes the questions and answers to their questions).

I love to spoil my class, but have always felt self conscious about it as I don't want other teachers to feel threatened. I do not have children of my own, so these are my kids. I have a beautiful class this year and will spoil them rotten. Ha ha!


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Old 09-17-2016, 01:38 PM
 
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I always look forward to doing our Number the Stars novel unit. I really enjoy sharing this story with my students. Watching students discuss story events and themes is like seeing them grow up before my eyes. I am always inspired by their compassion and insight.

I also love sharing my love of sentence diagramming. (Yes, I am a proud nerd!) Some (most?) of my students couldn't be bothered, but some seem to catch my enthusiasm!

The thing I look forward to it in Math every year is creating our geometric cities. I always hated Geometry when I was in school, so I guess I have worked harder to find fun activities and make it something that I enjoy teaching.
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Old 09-17-2016, 02:58 PM
 
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Not teaching currently, but when I taught 4th, I always enjoyed our Colonial Days we did at the end of the social studies unit on colonial times. I planned different activities that kids would have done then and we did stations. Good way to bring in parent volunteers and was a fun was to celebrate.
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Local History
Old 09-17-2016, 03:14 PM
 
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I always enjoy teaching our local history unit, and walking to the local museum.
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Old 09-17-2016, 04:58 PM
 
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In part of the 4th grade Social Studies in TX, the students learn about TX history. My favorite activity involved choosing a character that would have been at the Battle of the Alamo during the TX Revolution w/Mexico. Each student researched and learned about that character. On the assigned day, each student came to school dressed as that character and able to tell 3 important facts about that character. To help them feel comfortable dressed as an 1860's character, I, too, chosed a character and dressed accordingly.

Our school would have all these Davy Crockets, Jim Bowies, Santa Anas, etc. at school all day. When they would express feeling silly on the bus dressed in costume, I would remind them that those people died at the Alamo in order for them to have the freedom to dress in their characters clothes.

My classes told me that was their favorite part of 4th grade.
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Old 09-17-2016, 05:39 PM
 
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I teach ELA and I love teaching poetry! We are currently writing BioPoems, but one of my favorites is the preposition poems they write each year. I love to see their creativity!


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Old 09-17-2016, 05:58 PM
 
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Our students take a drown-proofing class at a local pool. We use it as a springboard for journaling. I am amazed at the enthusiasm the writing project generates.

I teach at a Catholic school. Every year the fourth grade students research a saint and produce a poster project. They also dress as the saint and share a bit of information in front of the church congregation on All Saints day. Nerve-wracking for all but so cool to see their hard work come together.
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Teaching
Old 09-17-2016, 06:21 PM
 
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Tell us: What is something you teach every year in fourth grade that you particularly look forward to and why?

Hmm...Nothing really comes to mind as a favorite. I do like to teach writing, and wish I could teach it all day long...
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Recipe for Cybercitizenship
Old 09-17-2016, 06:27 PM
 
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I enjoy teaching students about being a good citizen on the internet. We usually do a Recipe for Cybercitizenship where students write out what ingredients are needed to be a good cyber citizen, like 3 cups of common sense and 2 tablespoons of good manners.
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Iditarod
Old 09-17-2016, 06:32 PM
 
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I look forward to our Iditarod study each year. My students each choose a musher to follow throughout the race. We check their progress daily and students move their musher along the race route. We also take time to do research on our mushers.
Former students love to see the race route in the hallway and reminisce
about the musher they followed in 4th grade.
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New York State project
Old 09-17-2016, 07:37 PM
 
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Every year we teach the students about the different regions of NYS. We then assign groups of students a region. They research the region for tourism, farming any specific landforms etc. Then as a group they get design their region and create a tourist brochure. It's always great to see the enthusiasm of the students as they put the project together.
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Old 09-18-2016, 02:37 AM
 
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Wow! This is an incredible response. I am taking notes and will return to this list as the year goes on.

Fourth graders are the best and so are fourth grade teachers!!
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Talk Like a Pirate Day!
Old 09-18-2016, 06:02 AM
 
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Yes indeed! I love the silly little holidays and would do the whole day's lessons based around the 'holiday'!

This particular day I dressed in full pirate costume--the students all wore pirate hats for the day (they even wore them to lunch and pull-outs), which I provided. Gave every student a brand new Pirate pencil to start the day! Every subject was taught according to the standards but totally theme based. Examples: First we used technology to find our Pirate names and made new name tags for our desks--had to use the new names for the whole day. All math word problems and math stations around pirate adventures, I had Language Arts stations that day, again pirate themed--some I have designed and some purchased from TPT. Always read Melinda Long's Pirate stories and had appropriate activities following the story. History was easy--reading about real pirates and then combining LA skills in writing their own Pirate stories, have to admit, science was my weakest subject but always managed to come up with a lesson, usually involving water! I played a cd of Pirate songs while doing our lessons. I made a couple of 'pirate' snacks to enjoy during the day (have to love Pinterest!) and ended the day with this cake that I made every year.

OH! Almost forgot--I would start the day dressed in my full Captain Morgan costume in the wee hours driving 45 minutes to Krispy Kreme, and back again, to get my free dozen donuts to give to all the teachers, to start their day!! ARRR!
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American Revolution
Old 09-18-2016, 07:46 AM
 
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We teach NYS history, which I enjoy regardless, but the favorite unit is always the American Revolution. The kids get so interested in it and there are so many fun activities that you can do with it. My favorites are reading novels based in the time period and researching a topic and creating a poster teaching about it.
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State history is a favorite for me as well.
Old 09-18-2016, 08:46 AM
 
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I used to really love teaching NYS history since NYC was started by the Dutch. I loved being able to make connections to how NYC is today.

I still enjoy teaching state history, although it is not as interesting as New York's.

I also enjoy most of the topics we have in Science, but I really enjoy teaching physical science the most.
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McCaw School of Mines
Old 09-18-2016, 11:11 AM
 
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We study Nevada History in fourth grade and culminate one unit of study by going to the McCaw School of Mines. The students love the vicarious experience of going in a mock mine as a miner and panning for gold. They even get to take home some real gold flakes.
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Favorite 4th grade unit
Old 09-18-2016, 12:05 PM
 
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I really enjoy teaching mythological allusions. My students really love reading myths and discussing Greek and Roman gods. At the end, we try to create our on allusion. It's usually a lot of fun!
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State History
Old 09-18-2016, 12:56 PM
 
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In my state, 4th grade is State History year! All of our social studies lessons are about our state - geology, geography, natural resources, early explorers, early settlement, Native Americans, government, agriculture, business, culture, etc. We do many projects while we study each aspect of our great state. At the end if the year we open the '4th Grade State Museum' to friends and family. The students dress up as tour guides and give guided tours to all who attend.
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If I Were Trapped in a Snow Globe
Old 09-18-2016, 02:26 PM
 
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I do this opinion writing bulletin board in January.
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Suessisms
Old 09-18-2016, 02:36 PM
 
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Last year was the first time I did this, but I will be doing it again. The students read a Dr. Seuss book and change the title to match its theme. The lesson came from here http://www.teachinginroom6.com/2014/...-dr-seuss.html
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game
Old 09-18-2016, 03:55 PM
 
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One of the ways we build community and positive collaboration is to work together to build the tallest tower with spaghetti and marshmallows. I forgot what it's called but it was very popular 3 years ago and we have continued this activity. The kids love it and everyone is engaged at all times.
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Electricity
Old 09-18-2016, 05:14 PM
 
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I especially enjoy teaching our science unit on electricity. It is always a pleasure to see my students' faces "light up" (sorry, couldn't resist) with fascination.
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History
Old 09-18-2016, 07:10 PM
 
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I enjoy teaching state history. The first people and the Gold Rush.
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Animals
Old 09-19-2016, 06:48 AM
 
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We create units on animals- incorporating all content areas! The students love animals in the Elementary grades so it is very enjoyable for them and it creates lots of discussion!!
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Awesomeness!
Old 09-19-2016, 09:44 AM
 
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That is so so so cool! I hope to do some serious spoiling my 32nd year, too! Your kids are lucky!
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Iditarod
Old 09-19-2016, 09:54 AM
 
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We followed the Iditarod for the first time last year, it was so cool! Do you pay for the teacher resources? I follow Dallas on facebook (at least I think that's who I follow).
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:46 PM
 
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I like teaching about Native Americans in Social Studies, particularly when we get into looking into each tribe.

I like teaching fractions even though some of the kiddos really have difficulties as we get into the more complex areas.

I love doing the read aloud Wonder. It's embedded in our curriculum, so I enjoy doing characterization and inferring with it.
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Old 09-19-2016, 03:06 PM
 
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I loved teaching science units and my favorite was on force and motion. Students designed and built cars, then conducted several investigations related to Newton's Laws of Motion.
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Old 09-19-2016, 03:31 PM
 
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I love teaching figurative language, especially idioms. It's such a fun unit, and there are so many fun things you can do. I also enjoy poetry.
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Old 09-19-2016, 06:11 PM
 
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I love to read and to instill a lover for reading with my class. At the end of the year, we do a "How-to" book report. I love the variety of projects the kids do.

I've also enjoyed teaching Virginia state history and doing a notebook with it.

This is my ninth year teaching, but my eighth year in the fourth grade.
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Iditarod too!
Old 09-19-2016, 07:01 PM
 
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We have a great time following the mushers each year!
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Very Inspirational
Old 09-20-2016, 03:34 AM
 
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Love all these wonderful ideas!

My new challenge this year is incorporating one-on-one technology into the classroom. I have started using Digital Readworks, as well as Epic. It's amazing to see how excited the students become about reading, simply by adding the technology component. I think it just proves that no matter how long you've been teaching (for me, it's over 30 years), there are still new and wonderful strategies and lessons to introduce into your classroom. (Looking forward to creating Power Points with the students later in the year!)
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Plays
Old 09-21-2016, 12:35 AM
 
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I agree with the biography project and any type of play. The kids love it!
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Maryland History
Old 09-21-2016, 10:13 AM
 
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I love teaching 4th grade social studies! With all of the emphasis on "core" subjects, I love being able to have fun and be a little creative with our Maryland History units.
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Owls in the Family
Old 09-21-2016, 04:28 PM
 
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Love reading this book with my class. We dissect owl pellets. Almost
every 4th grader loves it……also can dissect online which is pretty cool too.
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My unit
Old 09-22-2016, 04:12 PM
 
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On the Oregon Trail is a hit. We have a simulation/game that is fun and creative. Each year my students say that was their favorite thing!
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My favorites...
Old 09-23-2016, 08:50 PM
 
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---I love teaching the math. I enjoy building their previous knowledge and setting the stage for 5th grade.

---One of my favorite units was an engineering lesson. The students had to design a "flying" object using a CD and a balloon. It was a tie in lesson to a Growth Mindset unit. The students had a blast! Many of them designed other flying objects from home using other materials.
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Old 09-26-2016, 06:33 AM
 
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Oregon Trail is still around? Where is it?
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Old 10-15-2016, 07:26 AM
 
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To Katiuv:
could you share your game ideas? I know our social studies teacher is reading this book...I would love to incorporate it in with her kids in my reading class...
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Enjoy this year!
Old 11-02-2016, 07:57 PM
 
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Good for you! Enjoy the year, clean out your cupboards early, and get ready for never ending weekends! Retirement is awesome! I taught 40 years with 10 in fourth grade!
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Old 11-24-2016, 04:57 AM
 
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For MANY years, I've had a monthly class breakfast. We vote on a day -usually the last week of a month- menu driven, of course, and make a note in our agendas-for parents. We eat a school breakfast together, as a class.
We made simple (well, some are pretty fancy, with sport themes, or whatever the current trend has been)placemats during the first week of the school year, and I laminated them. The kids found all kinds of breakfast pictures to make into signs - also laminated.
The afternoon before the breakfast I lay out the placemats in the school cafeteria and post a sign on our classroom door (in case someone needs us).
The kids always comment on being lucky to eat with their classmates. Not everyone eats a school breakfast, but those who forgot (ate at home) still sit with us.
It's a good time to get to know my students.
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Fourth Grade
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