Grade 4 theme, projects and outcome

In grade 4 at Lesedi we create, build, make, communicate, we help each other, we listen, we solve problems and we discuss solutions- this is how we learn.

Our typical Saturday consists of discussions, play, using technology, building and constructing ideas and opinions about the term’s theme.  We start each Saturday with some Gross Motor and movement activities.  This helps our focus and concentration and gets us ready for the day ahead.  In the classroom we begin by revising what we did the previous week.  We then begin our practical activities relating to the math concept of the week. So far we have worked on fractions, area and perimeter, addition, subtraction and graphing.  We use all kinds of materials to learn and experiment with these concepts. The more experiential and practical the better!  Our learning is continuous and applicable in many situations.

Our main theme this term has been the Ocean and Ocean Conservation.  We have focused on ways to preserve and protect the ocean and all the life it supports.  The grade 4’s have learnt about the Water Cycle, ecosystems, water and diffusion.  We have orientated our learning content on a broader theme and included activities and projects based on this.  This has helped us build our existing knowledge and given us a real life connection to the content we explore.  Our content is linked to Mathematics, English, Geography, Science and Life Skills.

The more chances and opportunities we have to explore within this knowledge the more concrete the content becomes.

Ignacio Estrada describes the teaching/learning relationship so appropriately: “if a child can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.”  This is what we practice and pursue each week in Grade 4 at Lesedi.

Learning outcomes and projects 2018

Theme: Learning about the ocean world

  • Exploring the ocean world of animals: their habitat and characteristics
  • Understanding the human impact on the environment with specific reference to plastic pollution
  • Learning about how we can conserve and protect the ocean
  • What recycling, reducing and reusing means
  • What we use water for i.e. washing, cooking, drinking
  • Understanding how the water cycle works and why it is important
  • Building an aquarium to see a visual aspect of the ocean
  • Experimenting with a bottle scuba diver
  • Seeing how waves form and behave in the sea
  • Watching diffusion happen with coloured water
  • Planning and creating an island shelter to protect us from the wind, rain and animals
  • Constructing a JOJO tank to learn about ways to collect and conserve water
  • Learning about the properties of 2D and 3D shapes by building them out of jelly tots and toothpicks
  • Practical investigation of measurement and metric conversions
  • Working with egg cartons to learn about fractions in a practical way

Additional learning tools we developed this year:

  • Gross motor skills: ball play, body awareness in space, warming up, stretching and building core strength
  • Fine motor skills: strengthening fingers and hands for handwriting, attention to details, pencil skills, construction, media manipulation
  • Learning how to interact in a group
  • Fostering respect and understanding for one another
  • Mindfulness EFT Tapping and understanding emotions
  • Whole body listening skills