Thursday, June 2, 2011

How to Survive the 4th Grade

This year, Principal Phillips challenged us to do a project with the students in which they"tinker" with technology. Mrs.Lopez-Sinclair and I decided to have the students do a functional piece to teach upcoming 3rd graders "How to survive 4th grade ELA". The students were introduced to two web 2.0 sites: and Very little direction was given, and the students had to "tinker" with the sites, and figure them out on their own. In groups, they created the following INCREDIBLE presentations:

Emily P, Cavin, Parker, Tekiyah


Olivia, Gabby, Franchesca

Camden, Noah, Amber, Ben

Nathan, Jaylon, Justin, Caleb

Morgan, Zane, Eder, Peyton

Will, Mackenzie, Veronica, Ben V.

Preston, Jayan, and Ben W.

Hayden, Ashley, Keyandra, Luke:

Chloe, Katelyn, Courtney, Aaliyah

Alex, Madison, Clay, Jordan, Andrew F.

Nathan, Romaria, Rida, Melina, Evan:

Blake, Mia, Katyeryn, Caitlyn:

Emily, Sophia, Heather, Andrew W.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Astonishing Adventure of Teddy Bodain

This book was recommended as a great read aloud by a colleague at Chets Creek Elementary School. She said that it was recommended to her by a teacher who taught in a different school where attendance was low. It was this read aloud that got her students wanting to come to school every day to hear the next letter entry. In our ELA classes, we have been reading this incredible story of Teddy Bodain set in 1892. Our students hang on to every word and never want us to stop reading. Personally, I cannot wait to read this book to my students every day!

A book review by M.O. Neill

“The Astonishing Journey of Teddy Bodain" is a story that will remain in your heart for months and months after you finish the book. Teddy Bodain is a character with whom all children, boy or girl, can connect. I teach 4th grade and I have witnessed just how much my students love and cherish this story. The story is written in a friendly letter format. I read one letter each day aloud to my students. Never have I read a book to a group of children who literally beg for more after the one letter has been read. When it is time for "Teddy Bodain" to be read aloud, my students clap! They cheer! Their faces light up! They sit on the edge of their seats anxiously waiting to hear what adventure Teddy will face that day. The students lose themselves in the story, allowing them to reflect back to how life was in the late 1800's. They are able to show character empathy to each and every character. My students wish they could be Teddy Bodain so they could have the chance to experience the same adventures that she does. The accountable talk that develops among the students after each letter is read is amazing. Teddy will become a best friend to anyone who reads this book. "The Astonishing Journey of Teddy Bodain" will touch your heart in more ways than you can imagine. Believe me. My heart is touched each time I read a letter. I know a group of 4th graders whose hearts have been touched as well. We have all found a treasure in this beautiful story.

The above book review expresses my thoughts perfectly. Now, we would love to hear the opinions from our 4th grade students. Tell the world what you think of "The Astonishing Journey of Teddy Bodain". What you have to say might be an inspiration for other readers!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Skills Test Help

This week's Write for Today is tough! My students were asking for some extra practice. Go to these sites for some extra help:

Capitalizing Rules:

Irregular Past Tense Verbs:

Proofreading Practice:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"Write 4 Today" Study Sites

Some of my students have been struggling with studying for our Write 4 Today quizes, and asked for some extra help. Here are some fun sites to practice with :

School House Rock Video:

The Predicate Coaster:

Sink or Swim:

Print out for extra practice:


Comma Cartoons:

Commas in a series BATTLESHIP:

Comma Confusion Space Game:

Lots of extra help:

Have fun studying!


Saturday, April 9, 2011


What a fun week to come to school at Chets. We saw many "new" sides to the students and teachers in 4 Corners as we varied our ususal looks and adorned farmer attire, mismatched clothing, silly socks and crazy hair. Many of us also transformed into awesome pop or rock stars on Friday! Enjoy the slideshow of pictures which highlight many of these fun new looks!

FCAT will be "NO SWEAT" next week!!!! Bring it on!
Be sure to leave a comment telling how you KNOW you are ready for next week's FCAT! Also, take our blog "poll" and vote for your favorite Spirit Day from this past week!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Mrs. O'Leary's Beautiful Wedding !!

Ms. Launey (now Mrs. O'Leary) was simply gorgeous and elegant at her wedding! The groom was very handsome! Together, they make a perfect couple! The wedding ceremony was just beautiful. The weather could not have been more pleasant. Dinner was absolutely delicious! The wedding cake was delectable! Post-dinner dancing was delightful! The entire evening was unforgettable. Enjoy the pictures of her most special day! Thank you, Mrs. O'Leary for allowing us to share in your most perfect day!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Ms. Launey's Pre-Wedding Reception

Thank you to all of the 4 Corners students and parents for making today so special for Ms. Launey. We had such a special time celebrating her upcoming marriage to Mr. O'Leary. We enjoyed popcorn and refreshments, watching Ms. Launey open her special gifts, and dancing to all of our favorite songs together. It was a beautiful day at the Chets Creek Pavilion! Enjoy the slideshow of today's celebration!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Grimms Fairy Tales

This week we started our fairy tales study. After reading a traditional version of Cinderella, we analyzed the characters. We learned about fairy tale archetypes, which are types of characters that tend to show up in many different fairy tales. The six archetypes we are studying are:

-the damsel in distress (Cinderella)
-the helper (Fairy God Mother)
-the villian (the stepmother)
-the other evils (the step sisters)
-the person with mixed loyalty (Cinderella's father)
-the rescuer (The prince)

We have begun to look for these characters while we explore other fairy tales.

The children have been very surprised when reading some of the original Grimms Fairy Tales, which originated in Germany in the 1800's. The tend to be quite different than the Disney Fairy Tales the students are familiar with.

As promised, here are some Grimms Brothers links:

1. All about the Grimms Brothers
2. Grimms Fairy Tales
3. Animated Grimms Tales