Guest Post by Mrs Morris

Dear 4KJ and 4LB (4KM),

How are you all? I hope you are all enjoying your time with Miss Jordan and Mr Bao.

Your grade four year is quickly coming to an end. I bet you can’t believe you’ll be in grade five in a couple of months time!

I am enjoying my new role as a stay-at-home mum, however, I do miss all the students and teachers at Leopold Primary School.

Novalie was three months old yesterday. She is growing up quickly and changing all the time.

Novalie has learnt many new skills such as:

  • reaching for her toys
  • putting her hands in her mouth
  • rolling from her tummy to her back
  • holding her head and neck up strongly
  • smiling, and making lots of different noises and squeals

She enjoys doing many things such as:

  • going for walks in her pram
  • shaking her rattle
  • attending Rhyme Time at the library
  • kicking her legs in her bouncy chair
  • listening to stories and looking at books

It sounds like you’ve been doing some exciting things at school. You were lucky to have your wonderful student teachers back for a few weeks.

The topics you’ve been learning about in Inquiry, Maths and Literacy sound really interesting. I’d love to hear more about them.

I hope you’ll be able to leave a comment and tell me what I’m missing at school!

Your former teacher,

Mrs Morris

Leave Mrs Morris a comment and tell her what you’ve been learning about and what has been happening at Leopold Primary School.

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Mark Greenwood Author Visit

Today the Grade Four students had an incursion with West Australian author, Mark Greenwood.

Mark has written many award winning picture story books that focus on Australian history and legends. Some of our favourite stories by Mark are Jandamarra, The Legend of Lasseter’s Reef, Simpson and his Donkey and Our Big Island.

We have been reading Mark’s books in class, and it was great to meet him in person and listen to his stories. He told us lots of great tales from his adventures in outback Australia and abroad.


After the incursion, we wrote letters to Mark to thank him for visiting and to inform him of our highlights of the presentation. Miss Jordan will email the blog link to Mark so he can read the letters.


Thank you to Mark Greenwood for inspiring and motivating the grade four students to write, tell stories and follow your passions!


What did you enjoy about the presentation?

Do you have a favourite Mark Greenwood book?

What do you like to write stories about?

How did Mark inspire you to create and write stories?

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Haiku Poems

Today the students in 4KJ wrote haiku poems in our literacy block.

Haiku poems are a Japanese form of poetry, and they do not rhyme. They have three lines and each line has a specific number of syllables. The structure of a haiku poem is:

Line 1: Five syllables

Line 2: Seven syllables

Line 3: Five syllables


Here is a haiku poem Miss Jordan wrote about her parents’ labrador, Mocha.

Mocha is cheeky.

Always hungry and playful.

A beautiful dog.


Read our haiku poems below.


What do you think of our haiku poems?

Can you write a haiku poem in your comment?

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Life Education Visit

Yesterday the students in 4KJ enjoyed a visit to the Life Ed Van.

The focus for the ninety minute session was “Be Cyberwise”. Our instructor, Gaye, and her helper, Harold the giraffe, led us through some discussions and activities to practise being safe online.

We focussed on:

  • Being responsible and respectful online
  • Making strong passwords
  • Knowing how to to keep your personal information safe
  • Developing strategies for dealing with cybersafety issues.

We had some interesting conversations and participated in some interactive tasks to learn about being cyberwise. Here are some photos from our Life Ed session.

In 4KJ we regularly talk about being safe and responsible online. We always practise good “netiquette” in class, so it was great to focus on this important issue in the Life Ed van!


Do you have a tip for being safe and responsible online?

What does “Cyberwise” mean to you?

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The One and Only Ivan

In 4KJ we love to read. At the start of the term we began a class novel titled The One and Only Ivan, by Katherine Applegate.

About the book

Ivan is a gorilla who lives at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade with his animal companions. While he is very used to this existence in his domain, he makes a change in his life and the lives of others, with the help of his friends. The One and Only Ivan is a work of fiction that is based on a true story.

Mrs Hembree is a teacher librarian in Seattle, USA. She introduced The One and Only Ivan to Mrs Morris and Miss Jordan last year. She recommended it to us because the students at her school enjoyed it so much.

Mrs Hembree made a fabulous book trailer. We watched the book trailer before reading the story to tune us into the text.


Our reflections

We have been reading a bit of The One and Only Ivan every day this term and we enjoyed it very much. Here are our thoughts and reflections. Please be aware that our reflections contain spoilers!


What did you think about The One and Only Ivan? Do you have a reflection to add?

What did you think of the characters in this book?

Were there any special messages in The One and Only Ivan?

Can you recommend any other books that the students in 4KJ might enjoy?

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Learning About The First Australians

As we have previously blogged about, the grade four students at Leopold Primary School are currently learning about First Contacts.

Our student teacher, Miss Smith, has taught three great inquiry lessons this week.

Earlier in the we week focussed on the conditions of the land in Australia when the Aboriginals first arrived. We also explored family life for the first Aboriginal Australians before European settlement.

To demonstrate their learning, students created a story board to show a typical day for the first Australians.

We then started to think about what life was like for the first Australians and how different our lives are today. To compare how Aboriginal people live today compared to the first indigenous Australians, students made Venn diagrams.

Yesterday we read a dreamtime story titled Rainbow Bird by Eric Maddern and Adrienne Kennaway.

Students then enjoyed learing some interesting facts about Aboriginal art. We discovered the symbols that were used in indigenous desert art. Students created their own messages and stories for other people to interpret, using the symbols.


What was life like for the first Australians?

What did indigenous Australians have to do during a typical day?

How is your life different to the lives of the first Australians?

What message did you make with the indigenous symbols?

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New Inquiry Topic – First Contacts

Our inquiry topic for Term Four is called First Contacts.

In this history based unit, students will explore:

  • Indigenous history of the eighteenth century
  • The lives of the aborginal people at this time
  • Those who travelled to Australia on the First Fleet

First Contacts Australian History Series Book

Some of our focus questions this term will be:

  • Why did the great journeys of exploration occur?
  • What was life like for Aboriginal people before the arrival of the Europeans?
  • Why did the Europeans settle in Australia?
  • What were the early interactions like between the Aboriginal people and the European settlers?

The students have enjoyed the introductory lessons in this unit of work. We are all looking forward to learning more about Australia’s history.

What have you already learnt in our First Contacts unit of work?

What do you hope to learn this term?

Can you describe what life was like for the first australians?

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We have been learning about perimeter in class this week.

Perimeter is the distance around the outside of a shape.

For example, here is how you might calculate the perimeter of our current class novel, The One and Only Ivan.

 19cm + 19cm + 12cm + 12cm = 62cm


(19cm + 12cm) x 2 = 62cm


We have been focussing on:

  • Understanding what perimeter is
  • Identifying when you might need to know the perimeter of something
  • Measuring accurately
  • Deciding the appropriate unit of measurement to use
  • Using efficient addition skills to calculate the perimeter.


Yesterday in class students worked in pairs to calculate the perimeter of some objects in the classroom. We then shared our work to compare our results.

Today we calculated the perimeter of some outdoor objects, including the basketball court, sandpit, rock climbing wall boundary and the new downball court.


What have you learnt about perimeter?

When might you need to know the perimeter of something?

Challenge: Measure and calculate the perimeter of something and leave your answer in your comment. Don’t forget to include your working out!

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Term Four Begins

Today is the first day of Term Four, our final school term for 2013.

On the holidays, Miss Jordan bought a new camera and enjoyed experimenting and learning about the features.

It will be a very busy eleven weeks in 4KJ. Some of the things we have planned include:

  • Miss Smith is back in our classroom for the first three weeks of the term to complete her final teaching placement.
  • Our inquiry topic is a history based unit, titled First Contacts.
  • Australian author, Mark Greenwood, is visiting the grade fours to discuss his books.
  • An incursion presented by Indigenous Infusion.
  • A celebration of learning afternoon for family members.

In Maths we will learn about:

  • Area and perimeter
  • Volume and capacity
  • Shape and symmetry
  • Problem solving
  • Number revision

In Literacy we will be focussing on:

  • Information reports
  • Poetry
  • Narratives
  • A variety of CAFE and metacognitive reading strategies

What are you looking forward to in Term Four?

What do you hope to learn in your final term of Grade Four?

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End Of Term Three

Today is the last day of Term Three.

It has been a very busy term, with lots of learning goals achieved and fun activities experienced by the students.

These tagxedos, made by Olivia and Jessica, show some of the activities and learning topics we covered this term.


Happy holidays!

We return to school on Monday 7th October.

What did you enjoy about term three?

What learning goals did you achieve?

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