Friday, January 25, 2013

Long Division Partial Quotients

We are starting Long Division and here is a video explaining Partial Quotients.  This helps children understand what long division really is...we will also learn the traditional algorithm and a shortcut. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

US Regions and Tall Tales

We have been very busy in fourth grade!  I am finally adjusting to our new curriculum and the Common Core.  It was hard letting go of our programs and transitioning into trade books.

We are working on the Regions of the US and Tall Tales.  I am really enjoying learning about tall tales and the integration into the regions.  Here is the list of characters that we are using:
  • Northeast- Old Stormalong
  • Southeast- John Henry
  • Midwest- Paul Bunyan
  • Southwest- Pecos Bill and Sluefoot Sue
  • West- Febold Feboldson
We are using Mary Pope Osborne's anthology of tall tales, Lynne Peppas' regions of the United States and My America Poetry Anthology by Lee Bennett Hopkins.  I also have printable short stories and reader's theater by Scholastic.  We have been comparing and contrasting the different versions of tall tales.  I spend two weeks covering prose(fiction and nonfiction), drama and poetry of each region.  We are creating scrapbooks like last year that include dialect speech bubbles of the tall tale characters, along with a trading card and book report form.
Whats in the Northeast?My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States

I just purchased the book below which fits in perfectly!  It is an abc book of idioms and proverbial phrases with a glossary that gives you the meanings and US origin.  The author's note refers to the development of these phrases due to tall tales and exaggerations.  It is one of my new fourth grade standards and I love how it fits into the tall tales!
I have added the tall tale characters to my post card bulletin board that continues to grow.  I divided my map into the five regions with a black sharpie and have marked the post cards with colored yarn.

Don't forget to send us a post card if you are traveling in the United States!!!!

Here are a few photos of my scrapbooks from my last year.  The children are doing a great job on them!  Only one more region to go!  The children will take these home at the end of the year.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Sensory Detail Poetry

I have been talking about sensory details to create visual images since the beginning of the school year. I wanted the kids to start including them in their narrative writing. 

I read "The Polar Express" and we created a list of sensory details including things that you see, hear, smell, taste and touch from the book.  I had the children create a chart of sensory details about winter.  They had to create a free verse poem using sensory details from their own charts.  Some of the children created more than one poem.  Some of my students focused on just one sense.   Here are a few examples of their final products: