What we have been up to in 4C


This week we began our new unit. Inquiring into how the choices we make affect our bodies.

As a beginning to our unit many parents participated in an egg drop challenge, reflecting on how the body protects its vital organs and then designing a structure that would protect an egg.


Our class has been learning how to be good writers.  The focus for the first part of the year was how to write with good ideas and how to organize your writing.  Recently we have begun to focus on using effective word choice.

The students are all writing narrative stories. In the stories they demonstrate their understanding of our geology unit by describing the story of a rock.  Before each writing session we have a mini lesson on one aspect of word choice. Students then focus on including that in their rock stories. Below is an example of one of our word choice lessons this week.

Math: In addition to whole class learning engagements, 4C has four sessions a week of Math rotations.

Many of you had the chance to see the way that Math rotations work in 4C.   Rotations are broken up into 4 parts.

Number: The students will continue to develop number fluency throughout the year.  They will do this through choosing number games that fit their learning targets. At the moment students are working on building fluency with addition and subtraction. They will also continue to develop number fluency through whole class activities such as number talks.

Technology: Students will use technology to practice the skills learned in class. At the moment they are using Google Sketchup to build a classroom model.  They are using the skill of attending to precision.

Teacher Small Groups: I work with the students in small groups to either reinforce a concept they need extra support in or to introduce them to a new concept. This week I worked with groups on how to use what they know to figure out what they don’t know. How to find the missing measurement of a shape.

Problem Solving:  The students work on differentiated problems to practice their problem solving skills.

Our week in 4C

We have had a busy and fun week in 4C.  On Tuesday we took a trip out to Soc Soc  to experience what it is like to be a geologist. The students are all working on videos which explain their learning from the field trip.  They will all be posted on their individual blogs soon.  Take a look at Hung and Jonatan’s video.

Talya also made a great video which shows the fun we had while learning.

On Wednesday we participated in the Blue Dragon Walk-a-thon. It was another fantastic and successful fundraising event. Thank you to all of you who came out to support it.



Visiting Author:

Next week we will have the visiting author Marc Nobleman.  The students will participate in several sessions with Marc throughout the week. On Thursday they are encouraged to bring superhero capes or masks in support of Marc’s hero books.  Please see the Tin Tuc for details about community events with Marc in the evening.

UN Day:

UN day is a highlight of the year at UNIS. It will be celebrated next Friday.  We look forward to seeing you there.  Please remember Friday will be a half day.  Also please help us by donating used water bottles for our UN day art project. We are encouraging children to find recycle bottles instead of buying new bottles.


New Math Games

Currently, the students are working on problem solving multi step problems in class.  However, one thing that students will continue to practice all year is fluency with numbers. The students should be able to work with numbers flexibly and calculate automatically.

In order to help students practice this at home the class bloggers for the week (Talya, Hung and Lucas)  created a video of three Math games.  The materials for these games have been sent home. You can also use a deck of cards to play most games.

These games are intended to be adjusted based on your child’s needs.  For example if your child can easily add  two one digit numbers and tell you how many more to 20 then have them add two three digit numbers and tell you how many more to 1,000. Or if they find that hard have them tell you how many more to 100.  Remember the purpose is to become quick and automatic with the calculations and to be able to work with the numbers flexibly.


Thinking Like Scientists

I hope everyone had a lovely week away from school last week. The students are right back in the swing of things. This week the students have started a new class job.  They will take turns helping document the class’s learning for the blog.  This week Talya, Hung and Lucas created a video of Math games and helped to create several more videos of our learning. We hope you enjoy them.

Our learning intentions Oct 17-21:

Math:  Understand the steps to take in order to break apart problems and solve them.


UOI:  Begin to understand how scientists think and work.  Note: We are beginning a new unit.  Please click here for more information about the unit.

Literacy:  Revise our own narrative stories by first learning how to identify features of good narrative writing. img_0222

I Time: Use the design process to identify personal solutions to the UN Sustainable Development Goals  


Our Learning in 4C

News from Library:  As you know, Library is  being scheduled differently this year than in the past. Intead of having a fixed library day to return books, the library has a more flexible schedule. Our class goes to the library during our reading times in small groups.  Students therefore, can choose to go to the library on Monday, Thursday or Friday each week.  Starting this week they are required to bring a seperate bag to carry home the books.

News from PE:  Please check out the new grade 4 PE post to see what 4C has been up to in PE.

What we have been up to:

September 19-23 Learning Intentions :

UOI: Use blogs to express our identity and document our growing understanding of our identity.

Reading: Use a variety of strategies to improve our reading comprehension.

Math: Use the most effecient strategy to solve the problem. (Choose the right tool)

Writing: Structure a narrative correctly.

Use descriptive writing techniques (show not tell) to improve our writing.

Earlier in Sepetember the students celebrated Moon Festival. Not only did the students dress up in lovely looking Ao  Dai’s but they also enjoyed Moon Festival snacks and toy making.  The highlight of the day was the Moon Festival assembly, in which several of our class members starred in the show!


Math Games

As you may remember from back to school night, we are not sending home homework this year but we are encouraging your child to read at home for 20 minutes and to do a 10 minute Math game every night. In order to support this, our class created video explanations of some of the Math activities we have been doing at school that can easily be played at home. To see more games please look in our Grade 4 Learning Space.

Updates from 4C

We had a great time with our buddies this week completing tower building challenges. Our buddies are learning about working together and we are learning to use design thinking, therefore our grade 4 class came up with the idea of having design challenges.


We are practicing place value and number sense. The students are beginning to look at landmark numbers and how to visualize addition and subtraction problems to 1,000.


The students are working on the reading skills of questioning and connecting as they read.  In writing they were introduced to how to “fast forward” past the boring parts of a story and “slow down” to describe the interesting part of a story.


The students are continuing to learn about how we express ourselves in many ways.

It was wonderful to meet many of you this week at the back to school night. In case you missed the night or if you want to refer to the slideshow for any reason, I have embedded it below.


This Wednesday our class is the providing class for Snack sale

Here are some details from the SCO


As a Nut and Allergy Aware campus we require all snacks to include a list of ingredients. When it is your turn to be a contributing class, we encourage that each family supports the ES Snack Sale by providing:

  • 10 individually wrapped homemade healthy snacks (the value of each treat should be at least 10,000VND)
  • A labeled container/dish with your child’s class and name
  • On the morning of the snack sale, please deliver the snacks BEFORE 8.10amto the designated tables in the ECC or ES Courtyard


Both savory and sweet snacks are welcome (i.e. fresh fruit bowl, lightly salted/sweetened popcorn, rice balls, homemade muesli bars, muffins, samosas, etc.), below are a few example of snacks provided in previous snack sales.


If parents are interested in volunteering, they can just come by the Snack Sale table in the morning, we need as much help as possible to sell snacks to the students! There will be refreshments available to keep you warm while you help sell snacks.

If you have any questions about what snacks to bring, please contact the Snack Sale Coordinators and snacksale@unishanoi.org

Building a Learning Environment

Our focus in 4C this week was setting up an environment that is effective for learning.


In Math we participated in Stanford’s Week of Inspirational Math during which the students completed number challenges which reinforced the Eight Mathematical Practices 8-math-practices-sm


In Literacy we set the stage for our reading program. We identified the types of thinking  good readers do as we read and  wrote reading response letters in which students described their thinking.

In writing we are getting ready to write memoirs. This week we drew maps of our neighborhood and identified what stories we would be able to tell from our own life.


In UOI we are focusing on the Central Idea: “Identity is Expressed in many ways”  Students are working to describe their own identity in various ways.











Buddy Time:

This week we also began buddy time.  Our class is buddies with K2C. Throughout the year we will be working with our buddies every other week.  We will be reading together as well as sharing our learning with each other.

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Next week students will be participating in the NWEA Maps Assessment  This will take place next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

The start of something great


The first day back from school is always a mix of emotions for students and sometimes parents as well.  With that in mind, I am happy to report that the students had a great first day.  We spent our day getting to know each other and setting up classroom routines and expectations. Creating a positive and safe learning environment is always very important to helping students learn. The kids have already set the tone for such a class.  They have been helpful and positive with each other which is great to see on the first day.  Over the coming weeks we will continue to build the foundation for a positive learning community.  It is going to be a great year.

Where to find Information:

News and upcoming events- Grade 4 blog or  Tin Tuc

Bi-weekly updates on what is happening in class- 4C class blog

Portfolio of student work- Student blogs

Real time photos and updates of what is happening in class-Twitter #4C