3rd & 4th Grades
Third grade began the Living on Earth block with a study of primitive homes. Students explored what kind of house could be made from the natural materials in the environment. We thought about what other environments are like and how houses would be different depending on the climate, weather, and flora. Some students shared experiences visiting or hearing about other parts of the world.
Soon each student will create a model house that they will share with the school community. Each will represent how humans find and make shelter from what the earth offers.
4th Grade – Human & Animal Study
Fourth grade began a much anticipated study of animals and how they relate to humanity physically and behaviorally. We began with head-like animals such as the cuttlefish, illustrated, and the octopus, in watercolor.
Soon we will explore torso animals, and finally those that primarily use their limbs.
3rd & 4th Grades – The Story of Moses
The classes together continued to hear the stories of Moses, here shown painted as an infant, and the saga of the Hebrews who were in search of an identity a and a homeland.
3rd & 4th Grades – Handwork
The third and fourth graders tried their hands at carding wool last week. Wool carding involves separating and straightening sheep’s wool using two brushes (carders) so that the fibers can be used to make fiber art or for spinning yarn. The carding brushes resemble large pet brushes but are made specifically for preparing wool fibers. The students will use these fibers in future classes to drop spin their own yarn!
3rd Grade – Old Testament Stories
Old Testament stories describe how early people created tribes and affiliations based on familial loyalty. They also frequently show human beings on a quest to unite with their spiritual path. Third graders can relate well to being tribal as well as to the search for purpose in one’s life. The curriculum addresses both the development of the students’ character and ambition, as well as the practical language arts skill of identifying and using parts of speech.
4th Grade – Norse Mythology
Fourth grade has returned to the exploration of Norse Mythology. Stories about complex characters living together in a fractured world offer a reflection of how ten-year-olds see their lives; not quite a little kid, and not ready for adolescence. Friendships and interests are deepening at this age, along with their thoughts about love and hate, innocence and guilt.
Illustrated here is the servant Skinir who is riding the magical creature Gullinbursti into the realm of Jotunheim. He is on a mission to fulfill his master Freyr’s desire to win the heart of the ice-giant Gerd.
3rd Grade – Handwork
Third graders have learned a new skill in Handwork with Mrs. Griffith. They have crocheted flute cases and have created a round, flat mat to display their treasures.
3rd and 4th Grades – A Special Visitor
We welcomed Mr. William Buchholtz, a Native American flute player, on Friday, November 8th. Mr. Buchholtz is a descendant of the Canadian Kichesipirini (Great River) Band of the Algonquin/Algonkin nation.
During his visit he gave a short presentation to the grades students during weekly assembly, then spent most of his visit with the third and fourth graders as part of their exploration of our regional native culture. This block’s focus is on primitive homes, animal habitats, and the way of life of the Great Lakes Region before westward colonial expansion. Cultural aspects include hunting, canoe building, spiritual practices, and legends and stories.
Mr. Buchholtz has released his own CD “The Journey Home,” on which he plays both Native American flute and piano, and which features his original songs, and has also appeared on a “Yo Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble” CD.
Learn more about him here.
3rd and 4th Grades – Trip to The Grove
Third and Fourth graders strengthened their experience of Native People’s culture on their visit to The Grove’s replica of a Potawatomi long house. They learned about native ways of building, hunting and gathering, and fire starting.
The class is reading Birchbark House; the story of young Omakayas and her family living in Wisconsin just before the time of European settlement.
3rd and 4th Grades – Painting
To illustrate the story “Turtle Island,“ students created the flood waters in which Nanaboozhoo, turtle, mink, duck, Loon, and finally badger search for the bottom.
Once badger reaches the bottom, his fistful of earth is placed on turtle’s back, upon which the new earth is formed.
Mandarin Glimpses in Grades 3 & 4
After learning about the Days of the Week, 3rd and 4th graders have been studying the Months of the Year and the Seasons. This has been their first introduction to identifying some Chinese characters and they have picked it up quickly!
To finish up the block, they enjoyed a puppet show based on the classic “Frog and Toad” story in which Frog tricks Toad into waking up from hibernation by ripping off several pages of his calendar early. The students were excited to be able to take turns performing the show afterwards.
4th Grade – 8-way Mirrored Cross Stitch
3rd and 4th Grades—Two Creation StoriesThe Norse world was discovered through stories by the fourth graders. It is a world of polar opposites- Niflheim’s icy mist above and fiery Muspelheim below. The adventures begin in the meeting of these forces.
Third graders began to see the emergence of a human home from the Genesis story of creation.
3rd Grade Measurement BlockDuring the Measurement Block, students in third grade put a ruler, tape measure, yard stick, or string to almost everything around school. We measured the height of all students and a few teachers, the length of our playground, and almost everything in our desk. Then we put our thinking to work and figured how many times we would have to run back and forth across the playground to make a mile, and how to convert these measurements to equivalents.
The Measurement Block also included weight, dry and liquid volume, time, and calendars.