Monday, November 27, 2017

The Season of Giving

The Season of Giving

"Tis the season to share..."  Breck Lower School is collecting Warm Winter Wear for children experiencing homelessness.  Needed items include coats, jackets, snow pants, boots, gloves and mittens for ages 5-10.  Donations can be new or gently used.  Donations can be delivered to classrooms or to our "Service Shelf" located near the Middle/Lower School entrance through Dec. 13.  Thank you for sharing!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

We Love Skating!

  We love skating!

****Thanks to Jake's mom for venturing out on the ice to get these great pictures!

V.I.P. Oliver

V.I.P. Oliver!

Oliver loves to read, enjoys video games, and won't go near a brussel sprout!  We had a great week getting to know Oliver!

Monday, November 6, 2017

V.I.P. Will

V.I.P. this week - Will!

We learned that Will loves acting, calamari, and plans to be a pharmaceutical researcher!

Sunday, November 5, 2017



Our study of Energy continues as we move to an understanding of Electricity.  We visited the Bakken museum, learned about those who wondered and explored theories of electricity.  We toured the museum, had several hands-on activities, and even had some "hair-raising" experiences!

Back at school, we studied the components of the atom (nucleus, protons, neutrons, and electrons). We learned that all elements are made up of a combination of atoms.  We studied the Periodic Table and finally went out to the playground and made our own model.  Will explains it quite well in this video. 

We began our S.T.E.AM. semester on Friday! Our first task was to create a "Squishy Circuit".  We learned about open and closed circuits as well as conductors and insulators.

We are going to link our STEAM investigations with an online program called Science Buddies.  This website allows us to share content as well as assess student understanding through quizzes and open-ended questions and comments. Science Buddies is linked to our Google Classroom for seamless integration of our lab experiences and our classroom. 

Travel Diaries

Tracking Our Travel Diaries!

After decorating and addressing the envelopes for our Travel Diaries, we took them down to the Mail Station at Breck.  Mr. Blesi helped us weigh the packages and print the postage labels.  
We have already received four postcards from four different states! Several people have left comments on our Travel Diary Blog and the students are thanking them online for the postcards.  You can find a link to our Travel Diary Blog on the sidebar of this blog. 

V.I.P. Begins!

                                              V.I.P. Begins!

We have launched our V.I.P. project for the year.  Ms. Pape gave us the inaugural presentation.  We learned many new things about her and had a good chuckle at her fourth grade picture.  We learned the format of the V.I.P. letters as we wrote to her. After a friendly greeting,  it consists of three paragraphs. The first paragraph comments on the presentation itself, the second paragraph focuses our similarities and differences, and the last paragraph describes how the V.I.P. adds to our classroom community.  The letters are bound in a book for the student to keep.
I have included a schedule of the V.I.P. presentations for the year.  You can find it in the Digital File Cabinet on the sidebar of this blog.  

                            Our first V.I.P.  Vail!
We learned that Vail loves horses, potatoes, and her twin sister, London! 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

                Our Visit to the Minnesota State Capitol

We were so excited for our first field trip! A visit to the newly renovated state capitol building was a perfect kick-off to our year-long study of the United States.  We learned so much about the history of our state capitol as well as how government works both on a state and federal level.  Understanding the balance of power and the three branches of government is a key component of our curriculum.  Along with a tour, we also accepted the challenge of a scavenger hunt for some architectural features of the capitol.  As you can see, it was a beautiful day and the view from the quadriga (ask your student about it!) was breathtaking! 

            Our Science Investigations and Explorations

         The focus of our Fourth Grade Science Curriculum is ENERGY! 

In our Science Lab Notebooks, the students are learning to wonder, explore, research, and draw conclusions.  We have two sessions in our 6 Day Schedule devoted to Science.  Here are some pictures of our students and their explorations.

#1 Potential and Kinetic Energy

Students constructed marble runs to demonstrate potential and kinetic energy.  Their task was to use a steel or glass marble to move a wood block at the end of the run.  

#2  Elastic Energy

Students were challenged with shooting rubber bands using with variables and graphing the distances of each task.  The variables were the length of the ruler that was used as a shooter and two types of rubber bands.  We learned that elastic energy is a form of potential energy. 

#3 Simple Machines (The Lever)

Our task was to construct a model of a lever to launch a ping pong ball.  This diagram from a student notebook illustrates our mode.  
Here are some pictures of our investigations.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Ms. Pape's Fourth Grade

As Back to School Night approaches, it's time to welcome you to our 4th-grade class and our new class blog.  We are off to a great start with nineteen eager learners!  We have spent the first few weeks together sharing our hopes and dreams for fourth grade. I have been excited to see how much this group loves to read!  We have started our reading logs for the year and will soon embark on our exciting Book Bingo Project (stay tuned!)
I hope you notice our detailed U.S. maps hanging in the classroom.  It has been a great kick-start to our study of the U.S. regions.  As you will soon learn, we have a new and exciting project to enhance our study.  We are sending out U.S. travel diaries with the hope of hearing back from all 50 states. Our travel diaries even have their own blog!! You will find a link to it on the blog sidebar. 
How do you like the new blog format?  Hopefully, you will find all the important information you need about our class within this site.  
Thank you for all the support you give your students every day, from providing supplies to coaching through homework challenges.  Here's to a great year together!