Urban Prairie Waldorf School
Miss Avellone's Class
Weekly Update - September 30, 2018

Dear Fourth Grade,

Thank you to everyone who volunteered on Friday and/or Saturday for our Festival of Courage. I hope you had a great time! The students did such a great job with the pageant.


  • Grade 4 Parent Evening, Oct 15, 7:00pm.
  • Guest Speaker – Monday, October 1. We have the honor of hosting Sophie Labelle at Urban Prairie this coming Monday. Sophie is an author and cartoonist of children’s books and comics. She is also known for some of her work in the area of transgender activism and rights, especially with youth. During Homeroom time, Sophie will be speaking with the fourth and fifth graders combined about the art of composing narrative (timely for us coming off of our language arts block), and also her path to becoming a comic artist.

CLASSROOM HIGHLIGHTS – Pronouns and Block Chats

Our first Language Arts block has come to a close. This week we learned one more part of speech, the pronoun. We focused on personal pronouns, though I’ve already made reference to the other types. The students played all kinds of games, like trying to tell the story of their morning routine without using any pronouns at all (hilarious!), or trying to do so using only pronouns (confusing!). We also learned about how to include your preferred pronouns when introducing yourself, and did some amusing role playing of this.

Now that the students are more mature, I’m starting to cultivate a new type of self-reflection and growth mindset. One major way this comes into play is the new practice of the Block Chat. These are short conversations with each individual student that review the block, their work, and how they want to move forward. They fill out a simple questionnaire ahead of time, and we talk about challenges, successes, and the like. I have completed these for the majority of the class for our first block. They have been enlightening so far. I’ve especially liked hearing their honesty and openness when talking about their struggles. Many of them observed that the thing they struggled the most with turned out to be the work they were most proud of.

We’re moving into an arithmetic block next, reviewing and deepening some of last year’s concepts and moving forward in the areas of multiplication and division.