Notre Dame Academy Elementary School Educating Today's Youth to be Tomorrow's Leaders

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Ms. Kinsella is excited to return to the Notre Dame community as she is a graduate of Notre Dame Academy High School. She has seven years of teaching experience at the upper elementary level and has a passion for guiding students successfully from elementary to middle school. Ms. Kinsella graduated from Loyola Marymount University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. She continued her education by receiving a Master of Science degree in Instructional Leadership from Mount St. Mary’s University and in addition, she cleared her credential. She completed her thesis work on math word problem solving and analyzed the effect of personalization during instruction. She recently became a Google Certified Educator and is in the process of completing her National Board Certification. When she is not in the classroom, she enjoys playing and coaching softball and traveling to new places.


Throughout fourth grade, students will be able to grow in their knowledge through different learning experiences and applying what they learn to the real world. Students will see math come to life as they will create “pizza fractions,” calculate the area and perimeter of the playground, and plan a place value party. Students will see math in action through analyzing the architecture at the Skirball Center. In reading, students will create interactive notebooks and explore themes, make inferences, and use content clues throughout different genres, including mythology. As scientists, students will build compasses, design a board game using circuits, and make connections about the interaction between the earth’s resources and living things. Students will analyze how California evolved during social studies and learn about its roots in Native Americans, the Missions, and the Gold Rush. Students will continue to explore their faith through revelations of God’s love and how God strengthens us with His love during religion. Throughout the fourth grade curriculum, students will analyze interactions in every content area and make cross-curricular connections.

The 4th grade visited San Juan Capistrano and experienced the life and culture of the missions.  They made adobe bricks and saw the importance of using resources wisely.

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The 4th graders participated in a class discussion about Heaven and used a butterfly metaphor to explain their understanding.  Students then reflected on the discussion during, "God's Time" in which they completed a reflection and colored a butterfly while praying independently.
To begin our California History experience this year, we made flip books detailing California's location within the greater world.
Students review their vocabulary and learn new vocabulary words by playing, "Roll a Word."  Based on the number they roll, they complete different activities such as creating an action for the word, making a list of synonyms, and making a personal connection to the word!
During math students complete Scoot activities in which they walk around to different task cards and answer the question on their recording sheet.  This allows for improvement of individual understanding, collaboration, and formative assessment.
To develop our understanding of place value, 4th Graders played Place Value Battleship and asked each other questions using math vocabulary to guess their partner's number!
4th Graders utilized the Scientific Method and observed the effects of placing gummy bears in water and watched them grow!