Eureka! That means, “I found it!” The Forty-Niners used this word all during the Gold Rush of 1849. The Fourth Graders could be heard saying that as well numerous times during our trip to the Coloma Outdoor Discovery School, especially when they were panning for gold.
We spent two days and one night in Coloma immersed in all things Gold Rush. We learned how to make cornbread in a dutchoven over hot coals, how to build a structure, sew gold pouches, and square dance. We explored the city of Coloma, perused Sutter’s mill, visited James Marshall’s cabin, and much more. We would like to give a special thank-you to our chaperones. We couldn’t have done it without you! It was a great trip!
This week, we celebrated Earth Day with a series of activities at school that involved our Family Groups. The program included a presentation by Classroom Safari – an educational and entertaining adventure into the wild. The animal ambassadors shared interesting facts about the animals diets, enemies, and special adaptations that help them survive. The students were excited about learning conservation and seeing animals from around the world. After the presentation, the students in Family Groups discussed what the idea of Responsibility has to do with animals and Earth Day.
Earth Day was organized by our wonderful Science Teacher, Vickie Obenchain, and supports our program of environmental education to make Saklan students aware of the issues that are confronting our planet.
4th graders have been studying about electricity and currents in the Science Lab. In conclusion to that unit, the students got to work with our new STEM kits and collaborate to build their own inventions. They had a blast!
To demonstrate DoS/DoU (Depth of Study/Depth of Understanding) as well as embrace STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math), the students of the 4th Grade created, designed, and built three new California missions. The class worked in groups, and they used all of their knowledge of missions to make this happen.
The students were tasked to create their missions in a region other than the coast of this great state. They had to design everything from scratch, which included drawing the templates for the church façade and roofs, completing a composite map, building the model with sugar cubes (adobe bricks), and much more. In addition, the teams put together PowerPoints explaining the back story of their missions, showing the step-by-step process of building the models through a myriad of pictures, demonstrating fun math facts, and as an added bonus, they included animation.
And if that wasn’t enough, they also memorized and sang the California state song. Whew!! Their presentations were engaging, informative, and entertaining.
The Fourth Graders just finished studying California’s regions – coast, mountains, central valley, and desert. They were each assigned a region, which they then researched. After that, they wrote a research paper and created a collage using magazine pictures.
In addition, they were tasked as a group to take a song of their choice and rewrite the lyrics to tell a story about their region. Each group chose very unique songs and made them informative and entertaining. The Fourth Graders truly rocked the house!
At Friday Flag, the Hoot Owls and 4th Grade took a moment to honor all of our courageous and dedicated Veterans, by singing the military songs for all branches of the armed services: the Coast Guard, the Air Force, the Navy, the Marines, and the Army. We thank them for all that they do to keep our country safe.
The Hoot Owls spent some time this week with their buddies, the Fourth Grade, and created vibrantly colorful fall leaves. The end result of this paint-filled activity is loads of beautiful leaves that will be used to create our Gratitude Tree. They also brainstormed ideas for a Gratitude ABCs poem, which represents all of the things that we are thankful for. Hanging out with our Buddies is the best!!!
This past month, the students at Saklan have been learning about Self-Regulation. On Tuesday, our 8th graders led their first family group meeting of the year around this topic: helping the students to recognize or identify when they need to help themselves to achieve a goal, task, assignment and being able to get themselves back on track. The students watched a video staring cookie monster, where he must fight his urges to eat his cookie partner in order to save a princess. The students saw that sometimes not one solution is enough.
Each family group was then given one issue that might happen at school, and came up with tools that could help them overcome that, so they can get back to the task at hand. These included: when a child is stressed, when they can’t stop giggling, when they are angry or upset (at a friend or situation), or when they are having a hard time focusing. Each family group made a poster showing their tools on the cookies, surrounded by their own cookie monster! Come check these out in the breezeway!
The Fourth Graders did it again! They put on a tremendous performance of the melodrama, Villains in the Gold Field. For our dress rehearsals, we invited our buddies, the Hoot Owls, to come and see the play, as well as the First, Second, and Third Graders. It was especially fun to see our buddies participate in their first melodrama. For the final performance, the parents came, and we made a party of it. There was singing, acting, chanting, laughing, cheering, and of course eating. We had a great time! Well done, Fourth Grade!