What’s Rockin’ Fourth Grade?

By Brian Ramon-Miron

Look outside. What do you see on a sunny day? The sun shining, plants growing, and rocks on the ground. You keep walking until you feel something in your shoe. How did this rock get here? Well, if you really want to know, let’s ask the fourth grade class about their “Birth of Rocks” unit!

Ms. Krystopowicz, a fourth-grade teacher, told The Tides what her students have been learning. Students in Ms. Krystopowicz’s class and Ms. Goldsworthy’s class studied rock erosion, natural hazards, and engineering. IMG_4293IMG_4295IMG_4316 

At first, they learned about how volcanoes are formed and how they erupt. Then they turned to investigations of rocks breaking apart and how they create potential hazards, such as rockslides.

The project was a way for students to solve real-world problems, such as how to protect humans from rock dangers, Ms. K said. Students were asked to help a city mayor and urban planning team to design a barrier that would protect the city from a landslide. The fourth graders could work alone or with partners. Materials from their innovation center or from home could be used.

With the projects, the class had to answer questions to test their work like: What is the design’s function? Can the design be easily replicated? Is the design practical? Designs ranged from many houses on a board to a shoebox diorama of a wall.

Great job fourth grade!

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