And the winner is….Mads – Purple Party!!

This week, our class synthesized the American presidential election experience in select our Fitness Friday policy supported by candidates. At the beginning of the week, students became familiar with their designated parties : Purple Party and Orange Party. Purple Party candidates were meant to value creativity, competition, and liberty. Orange Party candidates were meant to value equality and cooperation. Students ran for a primary election and voted for their favorite party candidate according to the values and policy they supported most. In the running for the Purple Party was Haylie Chong. The candidate selected for Orange Party was Mads Vikkelsoe. Students then created campaign materials such as press releases, tweets, bumper stickers, and t-shirts as seen below. 

Today, students reviewed and selected voting rules. They then cast their ballots with the freedom to choose whichever candidate represented them best. It was a tie vote, in the end, which was settled by a coin toss. Mads Vikkelsoe for Orange Party was declared the winner. Our new Fitness Friday policy will be a bit more democratic. Students will get to vote for their favorite of three options and then everyone will be required to participate. Not all were satisfied with the results, but I think they learned a valuable lesson on the value of democracy and also some of its pitfalls.

Next week, students will get a better idea of how the Vietnamese governments fits into what we’ve been learning.

In math, students will wrap up Unit 6. Please encourage your child to continue reviewing and practicing strategies for long division and angle measuring skills learned in this unit before the test on Thursday.

In ELA, students will continue researching for their informative text presentation/poster. Ask your child about their chosen topic. They have been asked to continue and supplement their in-class research with online research at home. I’ve also let students know that if they choose to make a poster rather than a powerpoint, they will need to supply their own paper. I’m hoping students can have an opportunity to work online for this assignment. If you have any issues or questions about this activity, please ask me.

Finally, in science, we will be solving another science mystery and learning how engineers decide on where and how to add hills to roller coasters.

Please be reminded that Friday the 24th of next week will be a teacher in-service day and there will be no  classes. We hope everyone enjoys a little break after working so hard these last few weeks.

Until next week! – Ms. Corie

Courage Assembly – Week 23

Welcome to the weekend! Before we begin another busy week, let me update you on all we did this past week in Class 4A


In ELA, students spent time developing pre-writing for an informational report on a topic of their expertise. This report allows them practice building a cohesive, non-fiction piece. We’re looking at it as a stepping stone to a more complex, research-based report on a topic of their choice beginning next week. We’re also working on proofreading for and preventing fragment and run-on sentences. With this, students have also had some practice working with conjunctions.

In Math, students completed, reviewed, and tested on Unit 5: Big Numbers and Estimation. Students also began working with multi-digit multiplication in this unit, and it’s clear that we have a lot more work to do in that skill area.

In Social Studies, our class finished up a timeline project that had been set aside for a while, and they also practiced for our monthly assembly on the ESLR of “Courage”. Two groups in our class were chosen by popular vote to perform their skit for a video recording that was then shown at our assembly on Friday morning. I’ve attached the Youtube links below. Please be assured that the videos are unlisted and will not come up in a public search.  The students were thrilled to watch their classmates on the big screen with the whole school as their audience. We’re very proud of their hard work and creativity!

Ryan, Mads, Jeremy, and Adrian’s Video – Click Here

Marry, Jenny, Haylie, and Linh’s Video – Click Here


Also announced at our February Assembly on Courage was our Student of the Month for 4A, Jenny Vuong. Jenny joined us in September of 2016 after returning to Vietnam from studying in the USA. Jenny has proven herself to be a model student for effort and behavior, but she also shows courage by sharing her ideas, even when she’s not sure. She also demonstrated courage by refusing to take part in a bullying incident at school. CONGRATULATIONS, JENNY!


Finally, in Science, students are plugging away at their Science Fair projects. The TAS Science Fair will be held on Friday, March 10th. An official invitation will be sent to parents before the event, but save the date for that morning if you’d like to see the results of the hard work our students have put into their experiments. Also, please be aware that students may be asking parents about obtaining materials from home. I apologize if any of this is confusing or raises questions. If you’re not sure about any aspect of these science projects, please contact me.

Until next week….. Ms. Corie


Science Fair Request

Good afternoon, parents! I’m happy to announce that TAS will be holding its annual science fair on March 10th. In our classroom, I’ve asked students to pair up and come up with a scientific question and experiment that they can accomplish here in the classroom. I mentioned that they might also find it advantageous to work together after hours in my classroom or at their partners’ houses if they need to do extra work. Therefore, do not be surprised if your child asks you for permission to go to their partner’s house.  In the end, however, we should have sufficient time to complete the tasks for each project if each group uses its time wisely.

The goal of the science fair is to encourage students to come up with a scientific question or problem about our current unit topic (energy) that they can then test using the scientific method.

Last night, I asked students to research experiments that they might try and be ready to share their ideas with their teammates today in class. However, only two students forwarded me the links to their projects. I told them that they can write down the name of the experiment or the URL, but none of them did.

The homework for tomorrow is to come with a proposal for an experiment and to have formulated a question for that experiment that will be the title and goal of their science fair project.

If your child is still confused with what to do, I’m hoping you can help them with this.

They should know which form of energy their team has chosen (thermal, sound, light, electrical, or potential/kinetic) and that their experiment must ask some question dealing with one of those types of energy.

For example, the one group that did this successfully in class asked, “Can you run a fan without batteries?”


These links could be helpful:


Thank you for any help you might offer to your child!


Holy canoli! It’s been a long time since I’ve updated our class blog. Far too long. The holidays certainly muddied up the works, but that’s not to say that we didn’t get up to a lot of exciting and interesting things over the two weeks of class between Christmas and Tet New Year.

During that period, we continued working as usual in math with Unit 5 dealing with larger number estimation and multiplication. Students are learning different strategies for multiplying larger numbers. However, because the ability to do this is built upon a strong ability with basic facts, it’s important that students continue to drill and practice these using IXL or other online tools.

January 21st was our Annual International Day, and our students spent most of our science and social studies blocks working on researching information and learning about Denmark. Students chose 4 cultural aspects of Denmark to research, including: daily life, language, history, and art. They then worked in groups to find information, design a display, and create it for the school-wide event.

Mads and Jeremy work on constructing a model of a Viking ship made from recycled materials.

The Daily Life group prepare their display board. The teamwork was exceptional.

One representative from each group stayed to man the presentation for 30 minute increments. The rest of the time was theirs to fill their passports with stamps from all the other classes’ countries.


We’ve now just completed our first week back after the long holiday season, and we’ve definitely jumped right back in to a serious study routine. This week, we continued with Math Unit 5, and also began our next unit in ELA where students will be reading and writing non-fiction informational texts based on their research.

Starting next week, we will begin planning for our Science Fair scheduled for March 10th. Students in 4A will be assigned the task of evaluating or designing a device or machine that transfers energy.

We’ve got a lot of work ahead of us this second term, so stay tuned for more (and more frequent) updates on the tasks at hand and daily activities in the classroom!

Signing off,

Ms. Corie

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Greetings 4A friends and families! Before I begin, I’d like to apologize for being slow to update this blog. We’re in the midst of the busiest time of year for teachers and non-teachers alike, but that is surely no excuse for keeping you in the dark about all the great stuff that’s been going on in 4A.


A quick re-cap of last week:

Despite my planned absence on Tuesday, students worked hard through the week to put the final touches on their traditional tales. They spent a day with our substitute Ms. Alina typing up the final drafts of their stories and sharing them with myself and their fellow classmates for peer review and commenting on Office 365.  Students got extra practice with proofreading for writing errors, and then we wrapped up the week with leveled reading groups to examine different traditional tales from around the world.


In math, students worked hard to review for the Unit 4 Assessment on Friday. They filled out individual self-assessments to identify their strengths and weaknesses, then they paired up with fellow classmates to teach each other. I’m happy to report that the results for this test are the best we’ve had this year. We’re now done with math content for the year. We’ll have a few practice games with the smartboard, but when students return from break, we’ll bust in to Unit 5 which deals with estimation and multiplying large numbers.


In social studies, students investigated the job of a historian. They participated in an activity where they recorded the events of an incident in the hallway and found out exactly what a primary source and a secondary source is. We look forward to investigating history from a Vietnamese perspective when we visit the Vietnamese History Museum on the Saigon Zoo grounds this coming Wednesday.


In science, students are beginning to look at fossils as records. One of our teachers was kind enough to lend us his real fossil collection, and students will be discovering even more about the significance of these historical records on our field trip.


We wrapped up the week Friday with a visit to the TAS/Phuong Nam book fair. Students were able to browse or buy English language books and stationery. Students who didn’t bring money to shop were busy creating their reading wish list.

That about wraps up last week. Now I’d like to clue in parents to some special announcements for this week:

Monday – Class as usual

Tuesday – Class as usual

Wednesday – field trip to Saigon History Museum – Students have been told that they do not need their devices, so please be informed that they are not allowed to bring them on Wednesday.

Thursday – Students will rehash their field trip experience and in the afternoon, we will hold our own classroom Christmas party.   Students are free to bring treats or gifts for friends. I HAVE given them permission to bring devices for some free time as long as they use them in a social manner with friends.

Friday – Elementary Christmas Talent Show – Grade 4 students are asked to wear white in the form of a white shirt and jeans or a white dress for girls. Parents are invited to watch. Students will be dismissed at 11:30 am.



Christmas Concert (Non-TAS)

Hello 4A friends and families. Mr. Kiegan Page of the drama department at TAS has recently shared this Christmas choral and orchestral event with us teachers and I’d like to pass it on to you. It looks like a lovely evening!

Click the image below to link to the website for more information.