J.L. Lyon Elementary School

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Jennifer Taylor » Jennifer Taylor - 4th Grade

Jennifer Taylor - 4th Grade

     

Mrs. Taylor's Math/Science/Social Studies Page

Conference Time:  M-F  9:15-10:05 a.m. / Room 202

jtaylor@magnoliaisd.org

Please click links to the right for important class information.

 

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Recent Posts

May 9

Parents,
 
Tomorrow is the Reading STAAR test. Students have made their own strategies charts and were told to take them home. It's a good idea if they look them over tonight to have the strategies fresh in their minds for tomorrow. Please make sure that your child gets a good dinner and breakfast and goes to bed on time tonight. Also make sure that they are on time to school tomorrow so that we can all begin on time.
 
There will be no lunch visitors this week due to STAAR testing.
 
I also wanted to thank all of you for the thoughtful gifts and letters that I received last week for Teacher Appreciation week. I have so enjoyed your children and you all made me feel very appreciated!
 
I sent home the last book order for the school year last Tuesday. It is due this Friday. Reading over the summer is a great way to keep up your child's progress in reading instead of them having a 'Summer Slide' (when students lose their learning over too long of a break). Teachers often see students lose one or two reading levels over the summer, often because no reading is done during this time. Please consider either buying them books to read or taking them to the library so they can keep up or increase their levels!
 
Here are a few upcoming events:
May 13 - Choir filed trip and Chess tournament
May 19 - Choir performance 6:00
May 20 - Field Day
May 25 - 3rd and 4th grade Awards 2:00
May 27 - Perfect Attendance Party

May 1

This week we will be reviewing for the Reading STAAR test. We will be reviewing our strategies that help us to be close readers. Ask your child to tell you about the strategies I have taught them to use when reading and answering questions. Your children have worked very hard this year and I know they will do their very best on the test next week. To celebrate their hard work, the students will be allowed to bring or wear something special each day this week. Tomorrow, students can bring a small stuffed animal to be their 'study buddy'. I'll email the other days tomorrow - I left the paper on my desk! We will end the week with a goal celebration for all students who have met their reading and math goals over the last few weeks.
 
Important dates:
Math STAAR test is Monday, May 9.
Reading STAAR test in Tuesday, May 10.

April 17

This week in Reading, we will be reviewing how to be close readers of nonfiction and biography. We will mark the text with either the main ideas or major life events, as well as learn to put all the ideas together to determine the author's message and purpose for the text. Students have set goals to help them be successful readers. The goals are focused around reading strategies.  Ask them to tell you their goals for reading and encourage them to keep working hard to meet their goals. We will have a goal celebration the week before STAAR, so if they keep working hard and meet their goals over the next three weeks, they will get to attend the celebration.
 
In writing, the students have been working on writing fiction stories. They have a main character that faces a problem and then works through a solution. They are still working on using correct capitalization, grammar, spelling, and punctuation to write effective sentences.

April 3

Hello Parents!
 
This week, the students have two benchmarks. They will take the test in the first four hours of the day. They will take their Math Benchmark on Monday and the Reading on Tuesday.
 
In Reading this week, we will be reading "A Bad Case of Stripes" and studying the author's message, use of figurative language, inferring character feelings and traits, and identifying character change. 
 
In Language Arts, we will be writing about our reading, using text evidence to support our thinking. We will be revising and editing our work to make sure it is correct for conventions and written clearly.
 
Don't forget that the school carnival is on Friday! I look forward to seeing you all there!

March 27

Parents,
 
Tomorrow in class, we will be reviewing how to write an effective expository essay, as well as the strategies that we've learned to use for the revising and editing test. Remember that the STAAR Writing test is Tuesday, March 28. We will be having nachos in class on Monday as a celebration of all of our hard work in writing. Please make sure that your child gets a good night's rest Monday night and eats a good breakfast Tuesday morning. Also encourage them and build them up for their big test! On Wednesday, we will be having a relaxing day of reading. Students can bring a towel and small stuffed animal (it should fit in their backpack) to read with.
 
We will be reviewing all of the genres we've studied in Reading over the next few weeks.
 
Have a good week!

March 20

Hi Parents! I hope everyone enjoyed time off with your kids for Spring Break. Here is what we will be learning about this week in Language Arts:
 
In Reading we will be learning to recognize when an author uses descriptive words and figurative language to help the reader visualize and infer. We will be transferring this to our writing and learning to use these techniques to make our writing more descriptive.
 
In Writing we will be focusing writing an expository essay that addresses the prompt and supporting our ideas with descriptive details. Most students are able to plan and write a descriptive expository essay quickly now, and are able to type it on Kidblog to share with the class!
 
In Grammar, we are reviewing all of our grammar rules, focusing on sentence structure of simple, compound, and complex sentences.
 
Important dates:
Friday, March 25 - no school for Good Friday
Tuesday, March 29 - 4th grade Writing STAAR test

Feb 28, 2016

This past week, I started a blog for our class where the students can share their writing as well as their thoughts about their reading. They are really enjoying sharing and commenting on their work. The students can access it from home with anything that has internet access. Just go to kidblog.org and search for our class by entering my email address - jtaylor@magnoliaisd.org. Then students can select their name and enter their password. Nothing goes on the blog that is not approved by me first, so you don't have to worry about strangers or inappropriate comments. I think you can read and comment of their work if you set up an account. The kids would really love to see parents comments on their work as well. Again, I have to approve everything before it will show up for the students to see.
 
In reading this week, we will continue learning about fables. We will learn that fables often have animals as characters, they are short stories, and they either have a moral or tell how something came to be. 
 
In writing, we will continue to write expository essays and use an effective lead, descriptive details, and an effective conclusion. For the homework, students are expected to make an x-factor about a game they like to play and explain why they like it. They do not need to write the essay, just practice making an x-factor to get ideas ready to write.
 
In grammar, we will continue reviewing grammar skills. Students will also review when to drop -e before adding an ending to words.
 
The book fair is this week! Please help support our school library by sending money with your student to purchase a book.

Feb 21, 2016

Here is what we will be learning in Language Arts this week:
 
In reading, we will continue our study of traditional literature as we read trickster tales. We will learn the story elements, the trickster's character flaws, and the motifs of a trickster tale. See if your child can summarize the tale and tell you about these elements.
 
In writing, we will be finishing up our essay about our favorite book. We will also begin a new expository essay. This will be a 'cold write' where the students will get the prompt page that explains to them what to write about, and they will have to plan, draft, and write with little teacher help. This will help them to be better prepared for their STAAR test coming up on March 29. 
 
In grammar, we will revisit different types of sentences including compound subjects, compound predicates, compound sentences, and complex sentences. Students have been practicing identifying these types, recognizing when a comma is needed or not. Ask your child to explain the differences to you.
 
Have a great week!

Feb 14, 2016

Parents,
 
I hope you are enjoying your Valentine's Day! Here is what we will be learning about this week in Language Arts:
 
Reading: We are learning about the elements of traditional literature such a fairy tales. We will learn that the problem is revealed at the beginning of the story, that there are common themes of fairy tales, and that there is usually a wise character that greatly effects the story. You can help your child be asking them how fairy tales are different from regular fiction stories.
 
Writing: We are learning to write an expository paper about our favorite book. We will be able to name two reasons why we like it and support those reasons with evidence and descriptions. Please have your child tell you about their book and explain how they are supporting their thinking and being descriptive in their writing.
 
Grammar: We will be learning the difference between sentences that are compound subjects/predicates, compound sentences, and complex sentences. Please ask your child to explain these sentence types to you.
 
Homework: Please make sure that your child is completing the Grammar homework and using the strategies. They should be writing each answer choice in the sentence and rereading the sentence to see if it makes sense. They should be identifying the subject and predicate, and looking for a comma and/or FANBOYS to see if it is used correctly. Reading homework will also go home this week.

Jan 31, 2016

Hello Parents! I hope you all had a great weekend. Here are a few updates for what we are learning in class.
 
In Reading, we will be looking a paired passages. These are two pieces of literature that have a common topic or theme. They could be any genre (fiction, nonfiction, drama, or poetry). We will be working on identify the common topics and/or themes.
 
In Writing, we will begin to learn to write a literary essay. We will be identifying themes in the books that we've read together as a class and using text evidence to support our ideas in writing.
 
In Grammar, we will be learning how to choose the right transition words or phrases to best connect ideas between sentences and paragraphs. These might include sequential transitions like first, next, then, finally. They will also include transitions to show opposing ideas like although, yet, but, while.
 
The Reading benchmark is next week, Tuesday, February 9. It will follow the same four hour testing period as the others have.

Jan 24, 2016

The students successfully completed their Writing Benchmark on Thursday. We will be using the test to let us know where we need to focus our instruction to better help your children. Students will be taking their Math Benchmark this Tuesday, January 26. It will be a four hour test in the morning.
 
In Reading, students will be learning to read and analyze drama/plays. We will also learn to recognize the characteristics of a play.
 
In Writing, we will be writing a composition about something we look forward to. This was the topic for the benchmark. We saw that many of the students struggled with coming up with a topic and then supporting it well, so we will spend more time this week modeling how to do that.
 
In Grammar, students will continue to recognize complex sentences that use an AAAWWUBBIS. Students will also see that a complex sentence can begin with a preposition.