This Week in 4A…
Writing: Working on completing our first drafts of our persuasive writing pieces. Focussing on jazzing up introductory paragraphs and using a variety of techniques such as BOLD statements, facts and questions.
Reading: checking out how professional authors make their introductory paragraphs exciting so that the reader is curious to continue reading.
How We Express Ourselves: Unit wrap up! Finishing our commercials and public service announcements. Next week we will watch our commercials and enjoy some popcorn to celebrate everyone’s hard work and collaboration!
Sharing the Planet: explored biomes and ecosystems, building knowledge and creating student questions to drive our unit forward. Next week we will build on our understanding of ‘balance’ and ‘connection’ and explore the scientific side of ecosystems by looking at interdependence, food chains and webs and symbiosis.
As some of you know, I had to have a small surgery at the end of February. I am recovering well, but it is much slower than I had hoped! I am so happy to be back with 4A and I really have missed their positive energy and excitement. We have another teacher, Mr. Michael Jack supporting us next week as I may be only in for half days. He was with 4A last week (which they were thrilled about! He is great with the G4s!) and did a fabulous job wrapping up some the main learning engagements from our last unit. I was happy to see all that the Animals accomplished last week and we have many exciting things on the go this week, getting into our new unit, Sharing the Planet. Thank you always for your continued support!
PLASTIC FREE SEAS is coming to work with Grade 4 about microbeads! We will be learning more about how these affect ecosystems (and us!) and what we can do to help.
Digital Literacy: learned more about editing and collaborated with Ms. Makky Fung to hone our skills on iMovie!
Design project: students are at all different stages with their calculations. Some have needed more one on one support to wrap their minds around the concepts of perimeter and area. For those who are ready, they have moved on to volume calculations and some are further along, creating word problems based on their building floor plan/blue print design.
CISPA Guest Speaker!
Dear Lower School Families,
Diane Frankenstein, US based author of Reading Together: Everything You Need to Know to Raise a Child Who Loves to Read, will be talking to parents about how to have meaningful conversations with children, helping them develop their capacity for empathy, compassion, and perspective. The workshop is on Monday, March 13th at 8:30am in the library pit.
More information can be found at: http://cispa.hk/2017/03/workshop-for-parents-g2-g6/
“Are you washing your face with plastic?”
Next week, Grade 4 will participate in a workshop by Plastic Free Seas, a Hong Kong based environmental charity. They will facilitate a science experiment with the grade 4s to remove the microbeads from the soaps. Microbeads are tiny pieces of plastic found in soaps and face scrubs that provide that exfoliating feeling. Unfortunately, when washed down the drain, they’re also extremely harmful to the environment. Students will be able to see how the use of these types of soaps damages ocean ecosystems, and with the removal of the microbeads to reuse the soap, experience a way we can have a positive impact on the balance of the ecosystem.
To do this, we need your help. If you have any of these soaps at home, we would appreciate if you could donate them. We are looking for products that contain microbeads. It should say this on the label or include polyethelene (see picture below). We will try to return the soap minus the microbeads.
Weekly Feature: Media Literacy & Awareness
Parents! I am always on the lookout for new ways to improve learning here in 4A and would like to share ways you can join in at home. I would like to have a ‘Weekly Feature’ in each of my posts with something interesting to share with you. Let me know what you think and if you have any feedback! Common Sense Media is an excellent resource for parents and teachers with findings from academic studies about an enormous range of 21st century learning skills, trends and technologies. Check out their latest research about the ‘fake news’ phenomenon below and how we can help our kids.
Common Sense Media: Kids & News? Fake News? Can Our Kids Tell?
Really worthwhile read about the phenomenon of ‘fake news’ and how our kids access the news today.
Our Latest Research: Kids and the News
Common Sense’s research explores kids’ relationship to the news and how adults can help kids thrive as 21st-century citizens. Learn more
Excerpt for parents & teachers:
“These findings speak to the importance of supporting tweens’ and teens’ media-literacy skills — the critical thinking needed to judge the value of information. In the short term, that means that when kids come across a suspicious news story on Facebook, they need to know how to interpret the information and whether it’s worth sharing. In the long term, that means teaching them to question what they see, hear, and interact with to become not only good citizens but good digital citizens. Common Sense has a number of resources to help families develop the tools they need to thrive as 21st-century citizens. And since the No. 1 place kids hear about news is from the adults in their lives, we need to model how to consume news, encourage kids to think critically about sources, and discuss the news with the children in our lives.” – Michael Robb, Common Sense Media
Excellent resources for teaching about ‘Fake News’ and being critical media consumers
4A became really awesome ‘critical consumers’ as a part of our last unit ‘People can create messages to target and influence specific audiences.’ I would like to continue to build on their ability to recognise ‘intended audience,’ ‘bias’ and to question what they are exposed to.
“Media literacy is critical for kids and teens whose exposure to fake news, political satire, and scary news is greater than ever. With Common Sense Media’s digital literacy resources, parents can help kids fact-check the news, determine reliable sources, and learn to separate fact from fiction. Learn the how’s and why’s of explaining the news to kids, the impact of social media on the news, and even how to decode online advertising. These information-literacy skills will help kids think critically, resist advertising pressure, and become smart consumers.”