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Grade 4 - Mrs. Ternan

Claire TernanWelcome to Fourth Grade! Hands-on activities are an integral part of the program. I think the best part of teaching at St. Chris is the students; they are enthusiastic, curious, and eager to learn. If you have any questions or concerns, please This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


I have been teaching at St. Christopher School for over thirty years, mostly in the 4th grade. I am certified in elementary education and English. Although I have my Masters in Writing and Literature, my greatest love is the teaching of science. I have a grown son and daughter, both of whom graduated from St. Chris, and four grandchildren, one in Brookline, MA and three in Santiago, Chile.


February News

Here we go cruising along into the third quarter. We've been very busy with our curriculum and the exciting Catholic School Week activities, which the kids love. (the teachers, too) Bowling in pajamas was probably the favorite. Now back to academics.


In math we are finishing up division, order of operation, and finding the mean. There will be a test Friday, the 9th, and then on to fractions, a topic which is a little more hands on. Don't forget to work on IXL on Thursday night or whenever it fits into your schedule. Connor is our star who has logged on hours of practice. Kudos to him.


In English we just had a test on pronouns, and we'll be starting Unit 4, verbs, their correct usage and tenses. Our descriptive paragraphs have been kind of on the back burner with our snow days and delays, but we'll still be tackling them this week and next. Descriptions are a great way to build vocabulary. Teaching the thesaurus is part of the plan using books and online.


Reading and science have become symbiotic partners as we read "Kwame," a story about the Elephant Listening Project (ELP) in Ghana. We're working on our own acoustical activities for the STEM fair.


The most recent book report dioramas were awesome: Sam with Gulliver pinned down by the Lilliputians, Anthony with his expertly created castle, and Kayden with a house that really looked on fire with lights and red transparencies. Students talked about their selected scene with enthusiasm. I loved them all. The next report will be due in mid March. Directions will go home next week for a biography.


The fourth commandment was our focus in religion. Honor your father and mother. We've talked about respect and obedience.


I'm always available to answer questions, help solve a problem, or listen to a complaint. I'll be leaving on my yearly trip to Chile on February 16th. Mrs. Angela Labrecque, a seasoned teacher, will be substituting for me for the week before vacation. I'll be in contact with the school through e-mail.


Until next time...


Mrs. T



January MMVIII

Happy New Year! May you all be blessed with health and happiness, and may your children love learning. There's a lot going on in January. We're looking forward to Catholic Schools Week at the end of the month, and we'll be starting our STEM project.


The title of this page gives a clue to our topic this week in math: Roman numerals. These are fun and handy to know. This is really a mini lesson because our unit this month is dividing large numbers and interpreting  remainders. We've practiced a little in 2017, but now we hope to master this skill.


In reading the January book report has been assigned, and  maybe some of the students got a head start on it during the snow days. This month, students are to read a fantasy book and construct a diorama of an important scene. The "bottle people" in November were fantastic, so I'm expecting an equal amount of creativity and pizzazz. Also don't forget to have your child read at least five nights a week. I'm happy to report that most of the fourth graders are very faithful with their reading logs.


We're finishing Unit 4 and ecosystems in science and are reviewing facts together in class. The test is Tuesday, January 8th. Then we will begin a rather long unit on sound using a kit from the Boston Science Museum that has plenty of activities. This will lead into our STEM presentation on acoustical engineering.


In English we'll be working on descriptive paragraphs, and the students will be urged to use strong adjectives and verbs in their writing pieces. We'll be able to use thesauruses on the i-pads to give us some suggestions for word usage.  We always share our writing pieces in class with reading/writing circles which the kids seem to like.


In religion we're studying the parts of the Mass which will make it more meaningful for the students. We'll have a mini tour of the church, read next Sunday's gospel, study the liturgy of the word, and delve into the most sacred part of the Mass, the Eucharist.


Our poem this month will be "Jabberwocky" by Lewis Carroll, a little nonsense to get us through these frigid winter days.


Please note that I'm always available to you. I am grateful for your help and support.  Until next time...

Mrs. T



December News

...I have promises to keep

And miles to go before I sleep

And miles to go before I sleep.

( a quote by Robert Frost from our December poem)


We wish you a Merry Christmas! We wish you a Merry Christmas! 4T is in the Christmas spirit. We're preparing ourselves for the big event by talking about Advent, changing our bulletin boards recognizing Jesus' birth and practicing our songs for the Christmas pageant. Our classroom party will be on the 19th.


Of course, we're still working hard in our regular subjects. A peek at what we're doing: In math we're working on multiplying by two digits. There's still a quiz on times tables every Friday, and I've included division facts, so students need to master the "whole family".

Ecosystems is the topic in science. Students have illustrated relevant vocabulary words, showing the difference, for example, between a population and a community from a scientific point of view. Currently the kids are working on food webs with partners in class.


Possessive nouns is the challenge in English. Yikes! I've been seeing apostrophes everywhere, even for regular plurals. But pratice makes perfect.


The students did a stellar job with the November book reports in reading. I wish you could have all been here to listen to their monologues. The projects were excellent, also. Come and view these interesting characters in the display case in the lobby. The next book report will be due in January.


What a wonderful and busy time of year this is!  I'm wishing you and your family a grace filled new year with peace, love, and plenty of family time.  Your kids are amazing.


Until next time,

Mrs. T

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