Tropical Rainforest Readers Theaters 2017

This past week we performed Readers Theaters of the story The Great Kapok Tree for the Kindergarten classes.  The 4th graders did an awesome job making their puppets to use for the performances and also did a great job with speaking clearly and using some fun voices for their animals.  Nice job, 4th grade!!  Enjoy the performances below!!


Can You Beat Miss R. at AR?? 2016 Outing

Today we celebrated the reading achievements of three students in our class.  Each year, I try to read books along with the students and take AR quizzes on them as well.  We keep track of the points earned, and on the last day of school, anyone with more points than me get a special prize.  This year we went on a bowling outing, where we bowled, played some arcade-style games, and ate lots of greasy bowling alley food.  It was a great time, and I’m so proud of these kids!!  (Oh, and in case anyone was wondering, they may have beat me with AR points, but I managed to beat them in bowling!)  Thanks for a great day.  🙂



Tropical Rainforest Study 2016

A favorite part of our almost month-long study of Tropical Rainforests is the puppet show reader’s theaters we do using the book “The Great Kapok Tree”.  It’s always so fun to see how the students create each animal, and also fun to hear how they use different voices for their characters.  I have included both productions of our reader’s theater for this year, as we performed in two different groups for the kindergarten classes.  Enjoy!!  🙂

For other Tropical Rainforest projects and exciting activities, be sure to follow my Instagram account to check them out!!  (@missrenzelmann)

1st Annual 4th Grade Pioneer Day

Since both 4th Grade classes read Little House in the Big Woods this year as a novel study, we thought it would be neat to have the kids experience a little hands-on taste of life in pioneer times.  This year we held our first ever Pioneer Day, and it was a hit!!

We split our day into two sessions.  During our morning session, students learned how to make butter, sew on buttons, dip candles, and peel potatoes and carrots for our venison stew.  They also got to watch portions of the first episode of the Little House on the Prairie TV series.  Classic.  🙂

We learned that making butter is an arm workout, sewing on buttons is harder than it looks, dipping candles is messy, and peeling potatoes is pretty fun!



During our afternoon session, the students learned how to make yarn dolls, bake biscuits, and make different pioneer toys.  At the end of the day, we got to enjoy our venison stew that had been cooking all day, the biscuits with homemade butter, and a delicious dessert made by one of our parent helpers.



Special thanks to our parent and grandparent helpers for this day!  We truly could not have done it without you.  We know the students appreciated learning all these new skills, and it was fun to watch them step outside their comfort zone with some of our activities during the day.


**To see “live” updates from our day, check out Mrs. Sorg’s class Instagram account.  Her students were posting pictures and videos throughout the day of their experiences.  Lots of great glimpses of our day!!  (@mrssorgs4thgrade)**

Are You Ready for Some Football!!??!

This past Wednesday, we had an entire day devoted to one of my favorite sports: football.  The students walked in to our classroom in the morning to find it set up like a football stadium.


Our first activity was a football-style review game for an upcoming Math test.  The questions were displayed on the SmartBoard, and students answered them on their own dry erase boards.  If they got the correct answer, they advanced one yard line.  If they did not get the correct answer, they stayed where they were.  Any penalties would result in being sent back a yard line.  (Thankfully, no flags were thrown in our game!)  Questions were timed to keep the game moving.

Students were on two teams, starting in opposite end zones.  Once you reach the other end zone, you scored a point for your team, then turned around and worked your way back toward the other end zone.





After our Math review game was finished, we did two sets of football-themed centers activities to round out our day, with roughly 20-22 minutes per station.  Students were put into three teams for these, and competed as a team to complete all activities.  These centers covered many different topics across various subject areas, some new material, some review.  We had centers in English (idioms, types of sentences, onomatopoeia poem/story writing), Reading (fact/opinion, vocabulary matching), Math (measurement in inches and feet), and Social Studies (map skills).  For early finishers, there were bonus Math word problems on the wall to solve for bonus points or additional long division practice for our upcoming test.  There was no time to be bored during this day, and the time limits kept everyone on their toes!!



This was a fast-paced, high-energy day, full of learning and full of FOOTBALL!!  And perfect timing, too, with the NFL playoffs getting into full swing this weekend.  🙂

Are YOU ready for some football??!

Greek Mythology Unit 2015

Right before Christmas break, we wrapped up our study of Greek Mythology.  This is always a fun unit, as both 4th grade classes are studying at the same time, and we get to switch classrooms for different weeks of the unit!  We learn about Heracles, the Trojan War, and other minor Greek myths. Also during this unit are various projects, both art-based and technology-based.  I would like to share with you some photos of the fun we had during this unit.  🙂


Pin the Snake on Medusa…hilarious game to watch and play!!  Remember…if you look directly at her, you turn to stone!!

Some pictures from our Greek scenes.  Students were put into groups, and each group picked a Greek myth we studied out of a hat.  They then had to pick the main scenes from their myth, map out how they wanted to “illustrate” each scene, and then do the illustrations using themselves as the characters.  All props, outfits, and accessories were created by the students with their groups.  It was a fun (and messy!) project.  Once we took pictures of all the illustrations, the next day each member of the group got to write a summary of what was happening in each scene.  These summaries and the pictures were then put in order to tell the story of their myth.  Summarizing skills, writing…and crazy messy fun!  Good times.



Thanksgiving and Other Fall Fun in 4R

We have been having lots of Thanksgiving fun lately, and even though it is officially December now, I thought it would be nice to share what we’ve been up to during the month of November.

One of my favorite traditions are our “Thankful Cups”.  Every year, the students decorate their turkey cup, and we hang it on the “Oh Give Thanks” bulletin board.  Then, each day in November, we hand out two thankful slips, each with the phrase “I am thankful for ______ because…” written at the top.  Each child has slips with their name on them, and everyone in the class gets to write a reason why they are thankful for their classmate!  At the end of the month, before Thanksgiving, everyone gets their cup back, and they all get to read their slips together in class.  It is always so neat to see the smiles on the students’ faces as they read what their classmates say about them, even if they aren’t signed.

We also did a Thanksgiving themed Main Idea & Details review.  Students read a fact card about Native Americans, then showed their knowledge of Main Idea & Details by writing the main idea on their turkey’s body, with the supporting details on the feathers.  Informative, and also SUPER cute!!

To review multiplication and division facts, we did a Thanksgiving color-by-number.


And for even more fall fun, in Art class this month we learned about Warm and Cool colors, which were displayed nicely on our fall leaves!

I’m sad to see Fall go, but am excited to enter into December and all of the Christmas fun that comes with it!!  (Not to mention some other exciting projects and units as well.  Stay tuned!!)