Merry Christmas from 4R!!

We had a great week in 4R, celebrating Christmas.  We spent much of our days preparing for our Christmas Concert this past Tuesday and also our church Christmas programs.

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On Friday, we were able to celebrate Christmas in our room with a party before break.  Here are a few pictures from our fun afternoon of celebrating.

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Our first game was very amusing to watch.  The students were given paper plates to draw a scene on, following step by step instructions.  The only problem was, they had to keep the plate on their head while they drew.  They received points at the end for certain parts of the drawing ending up correctly.  Hilarious.

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Then we split into groups and played another game.  For this game, each group had to make a snowman out of one of their classmates, using only the construction paper, masking tape, and toilet paper they were provided with.  Also amusing to watch.

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The last activity we did at our Christmas party was snacks.  Of COURSE we have to be sure to sugar everyone up before sending them home.  🙂  We decorated sugar cones to look like Christmas trees.  They were messy, sugary, and delicious.

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Finally, before leaving for break, I was able to give my gifts to the kids.  It seems I’ve started a tradition of making these gifts for my class, and I love how great they look!  🙂

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I pray that you all have a blessed, Merry Christmas with your family and friends.  Remember that Jesus is the reason for the season!  🙂

Greek Mythology Study

We have spent the last 3 weeks studying Greek mythology with both 4th grade classes.  The students got to study different topics, projects, and activities with both 4th grade teachers, and we ended the study this week with two whole-group activities as well.  So, what have we all studied, you ask?  Here’s a recap of the past 3 weeks:

The first week, 4R studied with me.  We read and discussed the myths of Echo & Narcissus, Arachne, Persephone & Demeter, and Pandora’s Box.  We also did a few projects.  Our first project was making Greek black-figure pottery.  The pots turned out great!  It was awesome to see the creativity with these.

Our other activity was a group project, where each group chose one of the myths just mentioned out of a hat and had to map out a series of scenes from the myth.  Then, making their own props and scenery, each group posed out the scenes from their myth that told the story-like illustrations-and we took a picture of each scene.  The following day, each student got one of the pictures and had to write that part of the story to go with the scene.  When all the pictures and paragraphs are put together, it tells the whole story!

Here are some of my favorite scenes:

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The second week of study, 4E did these same activities with me while our class studied Heracles (you may know him as Hercules), the Trojan War, and other assorted Greek items in the other classroom.

We had one extra day before our whole-group end of unit activities, so we had a short lesson on Medusa, one of the ugliest mythological creatures.  We talked a little bit about her, then did a small craft and played a game.  Since you can’t look at Medusa without turning into stone, our game of “Pin the Snakes on Medusa’s Head” had a bit of a twist to it:

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The last two days of our study were spent with an all 4th grade movie party (watching Disney’s Hercules, of course…we kept track of all the differences we spotted from the original myth-there are quite a few!!), and with our final project: the Guess Who Toga Party.

For the toga party, each student picked one of the major gods or goddesses out of a hat.  For the project, they had to bring in a prop or item that would allow their classmates to guess which god or goddess they had picked.  Lots of creativity went into these projects, and it was really fun guessing!  We also had some Mediterranean-inspired foods for our party: pita bread, hummus, grapes, cheese, and grape juice.  One of our room moms made us some amazing mythology cookies as well.  What a fun afternoon!

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Such a fun unit, I am sad to see it coming to an end.  All that’s left is to finish our computer projects about our god or goddess.  Hopefully our students have been inspired to read more about Greek mythology, as we barely scratched the surface in only 3 weeks!!  🙂

‘Tis the Season…

…for being busy!  My apologies for not updating in so long!  We have much to talk about!!

Let’s see, where to start…well, just before Thanksgiving break, a few weeks ago, we got to read through the slips in our Thankful Cups that we made at the beginning of November.  It was neat to see why our classmates were thankful for us, and it was a nice way to kick off Thanksgiving week.

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We also had some fun in Science class before break.  Students had the option of doing an extra credit project where they designed a vehicle that would carry a large amount of cargo.  There were quite a few different vehicles that came in, and each was able to carry the cargo along the course without losing any of the contents.  Once each vehicle completed the course, we discussed the best features of each vehicle, and helped give positive suggestions for improvement if the student were to redesign their vehicles.  It was a lot of fun to see all of the creativity that went into these designs.

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After Thanksgiving break, we promptly switched gears for the month of December.  Christmas program practices are underway, we are in the midst of a Greek Mythology study with the other class (stay tuned for a future update on that unit!), and, of course, we had to decorate the classroom!  The first Tuesday back after break we spent the afternoon making ornaments with the other 4th grade class.  Half of us were making ornaments while the other half had an additional Greek Mythology lesson.  Then, halfway through, we switched groups.  This worked out great for ornament stations, and the Greek activities were really interesting as well!!

Here are our classroom Christmas decorations, all ready for the season:

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The students also painted some gorgeous nativity scenes in Art class last week.  Jesus truly is the reason for the season!!

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