Heads Up

Welcome to Heads Up, your one-stop source for news about your son’s upcoming activities and events.

Message from Year 4

We have had a wonderful start to the school year, jam-packed full of school trips, team sports, curriculum exploration and play.

The Year 4 boys had a fantastic time during their first Norval trip this year. We hiked around the property and did many different team-building activities. The Norval staff connected our trip with our current unit on Canada. The boys had a chance to explore different kinds of rocks during a group hike. We would like to acknowledge the Norval staff and thank them for ensuring that our trip was a special one.

Leading up to our trip, Dianne Jojic visited both Year 4 classes to talk about geology and lead some hands-on rock cycle experiments. There are now many “rock hounds” among us and we look forward to inviting Ms. Jojic to lead more curriculum enriching lessons in the units to come.

This week we wrapped up our unit on Canada. The boys have researched different regions of Canada and will create a short iMovie to highlight one of these regions. This unit sparked many interesting questions on topics ranging from our historical roots to global politics. Our upcoming Inquiry unit explores civilization and early societies.

In Language, we continue with our independent paragraph writing in our “Write Club.” Students have chosen writing topics and are creating a short paragraph describing their topic. We use our Write Club time to reinforce the paragraph-writing model. We have begun the guided reading groups where the boys will be working in small groups with a teacher to read a text aloud and explore various elements of literature. We’ve just finished our class novel, The Lost Sketch, and will continue to enforce independent reading time as a Year 4 focus. Please continue to encourage your son to read at home for at least 1.5 hours a week and continue to help him track his reading progress on his weekly “Skills Sheet.”

We’ve just concluded Unit 2 in Math, having investigated place value to the millions and multi-digit addition and subtraction. We explore different algorithms in Year 4, but we ask the boys to learn one well for each operation. If you are interested in learning more about the different algorithms, please click here.

As part of our Year 4 “Where we are in Place and Time” inquiry into ancient societies, we’re planning a trip to the Royal Ontario Museum. Forms 4B and 4O are scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 4. We’ll attend an exhibit lesson and a hands-on laboratory lesson based on the ROM’s collection of Egyptian artifacts and models. The focus of these lessons will be the political, religious and social structure of ancient Egypt, as well as its technology and trade. Permission forms will be sent home with the boys leading up to the date.

As the cooler weather has arrived, please remind your son to bring his jacket and outdoor shoes to school. Unless it’s clearly raining, the boys go outside for all recesses.

Have a wonderful week of focused learning.

Sarah Campbell