Family Groups


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This month, Family Groups discussed collaboration: working as a team, taking turns, listening to ideas, doing your best, and encouraging others. Students read the book: The Dot, where a girl is encouraged to find out she is actually a great “dot” artist. She ends up encouraging others to find out what they are good and what they bring to the community. Students were then asked to create their own dot with something they are good at and bring to their community. Each family group worked together to build paper and sticky dot towers.

The Forty Book Club

Each year, the students of the Fourth Grade join The Forty Book Club and get the opportunity to read 40 or more books for the year. The books have to be chapter books and 150 pages or more. Although the ultimate goal is forty books, each student sets their own personal goal as well. It is fun to see how close they get to their goal. It is wonderful to see how many books each student reads and how reading becomes an even more important part of their lives. One student this year read 129 books, which is truly awe-inspiring! Several students read 40 books or more, and although some did not read 40 books they reached their personal goal.


This year the Fourth Graders read a grand total of 328 books, which is 48 books over the class goal. This is the first time in the history of The Forty Book Club that a class had met the goal, let alone exceeded it.

Congrats to the Fourth Grade for a job well done!!!

“Villains in the Gold Field”


The fourth graders put on a tremendous performance of the melodrama, Villains in the Gold Field. They each had a key role, which required learning lots of lines and actions. Some of them also had additional lines and parts. This kind of play allows for over-acting, which these students took to heart. They really hammed it up, and the show was fantastic!


It was the final Parent Presentation of the year, 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!

4th Grade – Coloma


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 dutch oven 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!

Earth Day

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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 Grade Scientists

Dashiell, Chloe, Spencer, Milo.cropped

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!


4th Grade California Missions

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.

California Regions

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!

Honoring Our Vets


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.

Fall Leaves & Gratitude Poem

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!!!