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Multiplying and Dividing Math

Over the last little while in math we have been working on multiplication. We first worked on strategies for multiplying single digits by single digits (e.g. 7×9). Last week, we worked a lot on various strategies for multiplying a 2-digit number by a 1-digit number (e.g. 34 x 6).

Many students today have not mastered memorizing multiplication facts, so until they do, they need some strategies to help.

We learned about many strategies including, but not limited to:
Multiplying is really repeated addition (3×6 is 6+6+6)
Multiplying is skip counting (6, 12, 18)
Stacking (what most of our moms and dads do when multiplying)
Decomposing (34 can be 30 AND 4)
Friendly TENS numbers (take away the zero, add the zero when multiplying by numbers like 40)
NEAR friendly numbers (e.g. when multiplying 39 x 7, do 40 x 7, then subtract one group of 7)
Doubling (if multiplying by 4, you can multiply by 2 first, then double it)
Finger trick for multiplying by 9
Array model

Today we began talking about division. We looked at this picture first to help us understand WHAT division is and how it is connected to multiplication.

You can help your child at home by practicing their multiplication facts until they know them by heart.

Also, help them see that division is about equal groups. We have 20 pieces of potato for dinner. If we give each of our 4 family members an equal amount, how many pieces will each person get?

Habitat Projects

Today students brought their habitat projects home. Please look for the marking rubric that is attached to their report.

It took us many days to get through all 27 presentations and me many hours to mark them all, but we are finally done! It was well worth the effort. Many of our students clearly enjoyed the hands on learning opportunity; applying what they learned about their animals habitat. As well, we learned a lot from our first big research assignment. For example, the importance of giving credit to your sources, putting ideas into your own words, gathering lots of information from multiple sources, and putting your new knowledge together in well written and organized paragraphs. Here are a few highlights:

Both Manar and Ayan did a great job taking notes when researching. Pulling just the key ideas out of a text to make point form notes is an important skill.

Adnan wrote wonderful paragraphs on the positive and negative effects that humans have on the Timber Rattlesnake. I also thought it was a nice added touch that he gave his family credit when listing his sources.

Joel constructed some well informed paragraphs, did a good job incorporating our learning about eco passages from class, and had a nicely labeled food chain.

Elora showed us how easy oral presentations can be when you do your work on Google slides.

(Waiting for shared permission so I can share her work with you here…stayed tuned to edits on this post)

And of course, all of our many amazing dioramas…It was great to see how many students remembered to show all the parts of a habitat: space, water, shelter, and a relationship with specific other animals and plants. Well done everyone. I’m sorry if I missed any. I tried to get everyone’s. If I missed yours here, let me know or send me a picture and I’ll add it in.

Picture Post Catch Up

My apologies, I thought this was posted a long time ago and just saw that it never came out of draft form.

Taste Test Tuesday’s





Editing work and learning about vowel-with r words

Grade  4 CCAT testing – this is done for all grade 4 students across the province at the end of November. This test helps determine which students are deemed “gifted” and require alternate programming. We have not had the results returned to us yet.

Learning how to solve double sided equations. As well as reviewing that we don’t build both numbers when solving subtraction questions with manipulatives.

A concrete, hands-on review of why we regroup when subtracting.

Our ELL students showing courage at our monthly character traits assembly.

Our class award winners

A class shared writing activity.

Farewell Mr. Hazel! Enjoy Retirement!

Adding excitment to French lessons by looking for a coin in a cake!

Math Test Questions

Here are some sample answers from our most recent math test. Hopefully this will help shed some light on the various strategies your child might be trying to use. Please sign and return the test if you haven’t already. I will send it home again promptly so you can use it to practice further if your wish. There will be more opportunities this term for the children to demonstrate their subtracting and problem solving skills. Your child can let me know on Monday if they feel they need to do a retest

Classroom Happenings

We are continuing to have lots of fun in grade 4! The students have been commenting that they are noticing an increase in the work load and expectations now. Grade 4 is a big jump from grade 3, but they are coping well.

On September 28 everyone worked hard during our Terry Fox run. We fell a bit short of our school goal of $2000, so we will not be throwing tomatoes at Mr. Adams. However our schools top fundraisers will get to put a pie in the face of a few volunteering teachers. I’ll be one of them…bring me a towel please! All money raised will go to cancer research.

As many of you know we have been talking about growth mindset in class. Recently students were asked to recreate this without any upfront instruction:

Here’s some of the language I heard while they were working:

After some perseverance, encouragement, and clues from others, a few were able to complete the task. Many others were close and I’m sure with more time, they too would have been successful.

The lessons: Positive talk and believing in yourself get you further. Believing you “can’t” ensures you will not succeed. Mistakes help you get closer to the correct way…we call these “beautiful mistakes.”

Today, we also added a lesson to our growth mindset discussions about the power of “YET.” When we struggle with something, we will no longer be saying “I can’t do this” or “I don’t get this.” Rather, we will be saying “I can’t do this YET” or “I don’t get this YET.”

In reading, we have been working on improving our  fluency with some readers theatre. Here are a few of our performers:

Here we are playing math games to practice comparing and ordering numbers. The greatest number wins the round!


Image result for prime meridian

As an add on to our learning about Canada’s political and physical regions, we have been learning about maps.

Students have read about the equator, the prime meridian, the northern and southern hemisphere’s, and western and eastern hemisphere’s. We have also been looking at the cardinal directions (North, South, East, West) and the intermediate directions (NE, NW, SE, SW).

Talk to your child about which part of your house faces North, South, East, or West. Play “hot and cold” or “I spy”  like games by asking them to find something using the cardinal and intermediate directions. e.g. “I spy something North East of us that is purple.”  or “Stand in front of the fridge. Walk South. Stop. Now walk West. Stop. Now walk North East. What object are you standing at now?”

I grew up remembering the cardinal directions as “Never Eat Shredded Wheat.” The students informed me that they like to use, “Never Enter Stinky Washrooms.”

Image result for Canada and cardinal directions