• Unit 5 Adventures by Land, Air and Water, Week 2
  • week’s big question: “What surprises can happen on an expedition?”
  • comprehension strategy: compare and contrast, visualize
  • grammar: adverbs
  • vocabulary lesson: Greek and Latin roots
  • vocabulary words: curiosity, glorious, granite, ruins, terraced, thickets, torrent
  • spelling: words with double consonants
  • Readers & Writers Notebook (blue workbook): pages 327-337
  • Let’s Practice It handouts: pages 254-263


Fourth Quarter Social Studies Famous Hoosier Wax Museum
GIS 4th grade teachers are excited to introduce to our students the Famous Hoosier Wax Museum project. This is a project that all fourth graders will be working on throughout Q4. Much of the work will be done at school in reading/ELA classes. However, some work will be expected to be completed at home. Additionally, if you child tends to work more slowly or happens to fall behind, it will be necessary to spend more time working at home. Students were provided a packet of materials along with a schedule to take us through the end of the year. Posted is a copy of the schedule. Students find out Monday, 4/4, who their famous Hoosier is. They also receive the packet outlining the research necessary for the famous Hoosier. Your child should have printed copies of these important documents. MATERIALS ARE ATTACHED BELOW, INCLUDING THE SCHEDULE OF IMPORTANT DUE DATES. Additionally, you can visit the “Classroom Calendar” site which also includes the calendar with due dates identified.

Students will conduct research on their “Famous Hoosier” then prepare a report. Each student will also memorize a short speech to be spoken during the museum presentation. Students will be responsible for a costume to be worn at the museum and props. This is not intended to be elaborate or expensive. Think Goodwill, mom or dad’s closet, grandma or grandpa’s closet, etc. Also, each student will need a poster board. WE INTEND TO PROVIDE THE POSTER BOARD TO ALL STUDENTS AT A NOMINAL FEE. Purchasing the poster board in bulk allows for cheaper prices than what you can get at a retail store and insures a quality board. Additional details will be forwarded. And of course, we will be presenting the Wax Museum for family. Visits to the museum will be available in the afternoon and during the evening hours. Look forward to receiving your invitation.

This project is coordinated as a part of our Q4 social studies curriculum. Your child’s reading/ELA teacher will be the primary instructor. Please do not hesitate to contact any of us. Students are already demonstrating genuine interest in the project. Several of us have participated in the experience at various schools and every year has been a success. The variety of facets of the project appeal to all types of learners!


You and your children have absolutely blown me away with your generosity! You and your children (many put in their own birthday money!) raised $700.00 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in our K-Kids Pennies for Patients donation drive!!!!! Wow! The 5th grade class we were competing with and “Trash talking to” were just a few dollars behind us. They have 3 less students so officially they beat us per capita. Both classes will be having pizza parties and all should feel very proud of the contribution a bunch of fourth and fifth graders were able to make with some great support from great homes! I am very humbled to have been a part of this!

I also want to say thank you so much for the flowers, chocolate, candy, hand soaps and lotions that are literally covering my desk! Again, I am overwhelmed and humbled!

ISTEP Applied Skills will be on March 1- 4 in the mornings.   The kids have asked for a snack before the test. I will be happy to supply a couple of days. If anyone else would like to contribute a healthy snack…granola bars, Gold Fish, cereal, fruit gummies…. and/or small water bottles I know they would be happy! In the past I set out a variety and they let them choose what they would like.

I have asked the kids to simply give their best! I ask that everyday. We will be sending out more on ISTEP. I think Mr. Bever is going to ask parents to write an I BELIEVE IN YOU letter to be opened by the kids on day one. We have a little pep rally planned on Monday morning the 29th and you will be invited to that.

Whether we think ISTEP is the way to go or not, Indiana says we will be taking it this year. I don’t want to stress the kids or you. I have been giving tips and working with the kids on testing strategies. I have not taught to the test nor do I plan to ever do that. Our day to day work should prepare them.

Keep up the great work with the Reading in the Wild! I am so proud of so many of these kids who are reading everyday! They get a paper chain loop for every 50 pages they read. Some of the kid’s chains are so heavy they are falling from the ceiling. Some have not embraced the program quite as enthusiastically but everyone is reading!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Rhonda Fada



Week of 1/4-1/8

We will be covering one story per week from the Reading Street textbook.  The attachments below include this week’s spelling list, the Let’s Practice It worksheets (LPI handouts) that accompany the story, and scanned pages from the student blue Readers and Writers

  • story: Unit 3, Week 5, “Paul Bunyan” pages 436-449  week’s big question: “What causes changes in nature?”
  • comprehension strategy: Generalizing 
  • grammar:  Irregular Verbs
  • vocabulary lesson:  Affixes: Suffixes
  • vocabulary words: announcement, feature, harness, lumberjacks,  requirements, thaw, unnatural, untamed
  • Readers & Writers Notebook
  • Student WB 3.5 Paul Bunyan
  • spelling: possessives
  • U3W5-Paul Bunyan Spelling
  • Let’s Practice It
  • 3.5 Paul Bunyan Student

Week of 12/14-12/18

  • story: Unit 3, Week 4, “Eye of the Storm” pages 408-419  week’s big question: “How do weather patterns  affect our lives?”
  • comprehension strategy: Cause and Effect
  • grammar:  Past, Present and Future Tenses
  • vocabulary lesson: domain –specific words
  • vocabulary words: destruction, expected, forecasts, inland, shatter, surge
  • Readers & Writers Notebook
  •  Readers and Writers g4u3w4
  • spelling: compound words U3W4 Eye of Storm Spelling
  • Let’s Practice It
  • Student LPI 3.4


Week of 12/7-12/11

      • story: Unit 3, Week 3, “How Night Came from the Sea,” pages 378-391.
      • week’s big question: “How have people explained the pattern of day and night?”
      • comprehension strategy: generalize, visualize
      • grammar: subject-verb agreement
      • vocabulary lesson: unfamiliar words
      • vocabulary words: brilliant, chorus, coward, gleamed, shimmering
      • spelling: vowel sound in shout U3W3 How Night Came Spelling
      • Readers & Writers Notebook  Unit 3 Week 3
      • Let’s Practice It Unit 3 Week 3

Quarter 2 independent projects are due this Thursday, 12/10.  Students were provided a menu of 14 project options.  Projects will need to be worked on at home.  Students will present projects.   The project menu is posted below.

Notebook.Week of 11/30-12/4

    • We will be covering one story per week from the Reading Street textbook.  The attachments below include this week’s spelling list, the Let’s Practice It worksheets (LPI handouts) that accompany the story, and scanned pages from the student blue Readers and Writers Notebook.

      • Story: Unit 3, Week 2, “Adelina’s Whales,” pages 350-361.
      • This week’s big question: “What patterns in nature guide the lives of animals?”
      • Comprehension strategy: fact and opinion, text structure
      • Grammar: main and helping verbs
      • Vocabulary lesson: multiple-meaning words
      • Vocabulary words: biologist, lagoon, rumbling, bluff, massive, tropical
      • Spelling: homophones
      • Unit 3 week 2 Spelling
      • Readers & Writers Notebook (blue workbook): pages 189-199
      • Unit 3 Week 2
      • Let’s Practice It handouts: pages 132-140
      • Unit 3 Week 2

      Am Revol C3, L2 NV.pptx     


       Quarter 2 Independent Projects:

Students were provided a menu of 14 project options.  Projects will need to be worked on at home.  Students will present projects.  Projects are due Thursday, December 11. The project menu is posted below.


  • Our focus for this short week will be social studies.  We will be wrapping up the discussion on the American Revolution and how we became an independent country.  We will also have a special Covered Wagon program.  Volunteers from HCPL will be visiting to teach students more about the early settlers in Indiana. The props are fantastic!  Every year, the kiddos love it.
    We are also kicking out the Quarter 2 independent projects.  Students were provided a menu of 14 project options.  Projects will need to be worked on at home.  Students will present projects.  Projects are due Thursday, December 11. The project menu is posted below.
  • American Revolution C3, L1 Pt1 WS
  • American Revolution C3, L1 Pt 2 WP
  • Q2 IN History Projects
Overview of Scott Foresman Reading Street Curriculum:

We will be using the Scott Foresman Reading Street series for reading, writing, grammar and vocabulary.  The 2013 edition is a new curriculum adopted by our school corporation for grades K-sixth.  It is based on both common core and Indiana State standards.  Each student will be provided a Reading Street textbook and Reader’s and Writer’s Notebook (workbook).  Additionally, you can view online materials and test results.

Each student will be provided a parent information page with directions for logging on to their student’s information.  On the website,  www.pearsonrealize.com, you can access the Reading Street textbook online and the Sleuth booklet, used for small group work.  To view test and assignment progress, click the Parents tab in the upper left corner.

We will cover one story each week.  The specifics for the story are detailed above.  Each week will follow a similar pattern.  Monday:  Teachers will introduce the focus skills, strategies, vocabulary, etc. for the week.  Tuesday and Wednesday:  Using the Read for Understanding Routine, students read the main selection.  Close Reading notes guide students to use higher order thinking skills to draw more knowledge from the text.  Thursday:  Higher-order questions return students to the paired selection to analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and make inferences.  Students cite evidence from the text and practice writing.  Friday:  Students will take either an online assessment with a focus on vocabulary and comprehension or complete a Fresh Reads leveled passage with a focus on fluency and application of the weekly skill.

For forty minutes daily, students work  in small reading groups and at stations.  These instructional approaches will be used in addition to whole class instruction.  Students are grouped based on performance.  Progress will be monitored approximately every six weeks (per unit of study).  Every student will have the opportunity to meet with a teacher in a small group for differentiated instruction.  When students are not in small groups, they will be working independently at stations identified to practice and enhance the previous week’s focus skills and strategies.


Overview of Scott Foresman Reading Street Assessments:

This past summer Greenfield-Central Schools adopted a new reading program that serves students from Kindergarten to Sixth Grade. Scott Foresman Reading Street is a highly researched core program that we are excited to have in both our Tier 1 and Tier 2 schools. Some of you are already familiar with Scott Foresman Reading Street since our 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students used an older version in previous years. Since we have adopted the updated version of Reading Street some things have changed from the prior version, one of those being the assessments.

The selection tests are an important part of the wide array of formal tests and classrooms assessments that support instruction in Scott Foresman Reading Street. These tests are designed to measure student progress based on the skills of  vocabulary, word analysis, comprehension and writing skills taught each week. Progress on the Weekly Tests is critical for determining whether the student is moving towards mastery with the weekly target skills.

Each selection test contains 4 skill subtests:
* Vocabulary: 5 -7 multiple choice questions that assess the week’s selection vocabulary words.
* Word Analysis: 5 -7 multiple choice questions that assess the week’s word analysis skill.
* Comprehension: A reading passage (different from the weekly story) with 5 questions to assess the week’s target comprehension skill, and 1-3 questions that assess review comprehension skills.
Writing: a writing prompt that asks a student to respond to the main selection that they read that week.

In previous years these assessments have tested the students’ knowledge of the story  they are reading that week in class. These tests have now been updated to better assess and identify a student’s mastery of vocabulary, word analysis, comprehension and writing skills taught each week.

As a parent know that you have access through  www.pearsonrealize.com to view the results of your child’s reading tests and their individualized areas of strength and need. Due to some issues with computer set-up, students took weekly tests for Unit 1 paper/pencil. Online results are available beginning with the Unit 1 benchmark. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact your child’s ELA teacher or Amanda Bradford, the GIS reading coach.



Students will have social studies on blue days as part of the ELA block.  Rather than a textbook, we utilize Indiana Studies Weekly, a weekly newspaper correlated to the Indiana fourth grade social studies standards.  Students will be provided a copy of the newspaper during class.  Additionally, each issue will be posted below for your personal reference.

Each issue will include a current event on the first page.  This is an account of something happening or a place you’ll enjoy visiting in our state right now.  The feature article will give you a head start on this week’s history lesson on the inside pages.  Wildlife examines some of the flora and fauna native to our state; Indiana Regions highlights our seven recreational areas; Indiana Legends will tell you stories true and not-so-true; Heartland Values will help you develop your all-important character; Arts and Crafts gives you instructions to make cool things; and the crossword puzzles will help you learn new words.


4th Grade Schedule 2015-16  This is the daily schedule for all 4th graders, including blue and gold days.

Blue-Gold Schedule for 2015-2016  Identifies which school days are blue and which days are gold (related arts).

G4 ELA Grading System 2015-16  This document identifies a breakdown of skills for ELA, reading and social studies.

GIS Grading Scale  This grading scale is used by all 4th grade teachers for grading assignments and for report cards.

Effort Matrix  This rubric is used by all 4th grade teachers to evaluate student effort in each class.


Links These may be helpful as you are working with your child and his/her homework.

https://www.pearsonsuccessnet.com  Fourth grade Reading Street resources (Reading Street is our reading series)

http://www.greatsource.com/iwrite/index.html  GreatSource writing processes (WriteSource is our writing reference text)

http://www.momswhothink.com/reading/list-of-pronouns.html   Parts of speech

http://www.globalclassroom.org/2005/inservice/reading.html  Interactive reading and language arts websites

http://www.readinga-z.com/  Reading A-Z.com:  though a membership gets you the greatest access, there are free samples available.

http://www.readingrockets.org/  Reading Rockets:  reading strategies and topics

www.readtheory.org  Read Theory:  create student account for online reading comprehension

http://www.k12reader.com/4th-grade-reading-comprehension-worksheets/   K12Reader:  Reading instruction resources for teachers and parents

http://dictionary.reference.com/  Dictionary.com

My name is Rhonda Fada.  I will be teaching Reading / Language Arts and Social Studies.  Greenfield School Corporation adopted the Scott Foresman Reading Street program 2 years ago.    This is a comprehensive curriculum based on Common Core and Indiana State Standards.

I have a pretty diverse teaching background.  I taught Kindergarten in Houston Texas for 12 years.  I worked at Maxwell for several years  as their building substitute.  I have taught math and science in 4th and 5th grade  as well as 4th grade ELA here at GIS.

On a personal note, I have three children. My oldest son, Alex graduated from Greenfield Central in 2007.  He is papa to my amazing granddaughter, Aliyah who will be a first grader this year.  My second oldest, Gabe  graduated from Indiana University and is traveling back and forth to Ukraine working with his grandpa in the family wood business.  My baby, Delaney, will be a sophomore at IU.  I live in an old farm house north of Greenfield with whichever kids are home.

I am big on communicating and hope to really partner with you to make school a place where your child can be successful. Miss Lewis and I will be teaching partners, she will be teaching math and science while I teach Reading/ELA and Social Studies.   I am excited about the year ahead!

The best way to reach me with specific questions or concerns is through email.  I try to respond to email a.s.a.p. but certainly within 24 hours.  It is not always possible to check my email during school hours but I always check before and after school.  My email address is rfada@gcsc.k12.in.us.  It is almost impossible for me to speak to you over the phone during school hours but if you would like to speak to me by phone send an email with a phone number or leave a voice message and I will call you after school.

I am looking forward to a GREAT year,


Rhonda Fada