Activities & Lesson Plans - 3rd & 4th Grade Newsletter 4/23/10 - Making Change For $100

Grade: 3rd-4th

April 23, 2010 | Grades 3&4

In This Issue: $100 Facelift, Save the Earth, Name That Volcano

Cha-Ching! Change for $100
Benjamin Franklin is getting a facelift, kind of. The U.S. Treasury announced plans to redesign the $100 bill to include a 3-D security ribbon to keep criminals from counterfeiting it. In February 2011, Ben's face will share real estate with the security strip and its bells and digits, which appear to move and change when the bill is moved.

Learning Tips - Math

  • Discuss the difference between objects that are one-dimensional and three-dimensional.
  • Identify one-dimensional shapes within three-dimensional shapes: Square and Cube (A cube is three-dimensional, made up of six square faces or sides); Pyramid (Can be made up of triangular faces, or sides); Cone (base can be circular, flat)
  • Find and identify 3-D objects around the house (For example, ball, box)
Bonus: Make up a batch of dough or use Play-Doh to form different 3-D shapes. ASK: How might three-dimensional shapes on the new $100 bill prevent counterfeiting?
Learning Tips: Prisms, Pyramids and Other Solids; Cubes, Prisms and Other Objects 

People for the Planet

Forty years ago, nearly 20 million Americans celebrated the first Earth Day. Since then, the movement has grown worldwide, with thousands of events in more than 180 countries. 

Activity Ideas - Language Arts
  • Together with your child, discuss ways that you can conserve energy in daily living. 
  • Calculate your carbon footprint, if you dare.
  • Come up with an Earth Day Challenge for your family and friends; ideally one that you can do for at least 40 days in honor of the anniversary. (For even more motivation, participants could be divided into two groups, to compete and compare accomplishments.)
  • Name your team, write a mission statement, and identify goals to cut back on your energy usage and reduce waste. For example, Week 1: Go paperless - don't print material off of the computer, re-use scrap paper, forgo paper towels for washable hand towels; Week 2: Carpool, walk wherever you can, take public transportation.
  • After 40 days: Make a pledge to live more conscientiously.
Green Tips and MoreNew York Times, The Learning Network Blog - 'Ten Ways to Go Green'

VolcanoAn Alphabet Eruption

Eyjafjallajokull volcano blew its top on April 14, grounding flights and stranding millions of passengers for days. At its peak, the volcano disrupted travel for 1.2 million passengers a day. The volcano also left people struggling to pronounce its name. Reportedly, it sounds something like EY-ya-fyat-lah-YOH-kuht. No word yet on the number of people left tongue-tied by the event.

Activity Ideas - Language Arts

  • Eyjafjallajokull is made up of 16 letters, has six and a half syllables, and would amass 47 points in a game of Scrabble. 
  • One way to ease pronunciation is to break a word down into its distinct parts: "Eyja" is the Icelandic word for island; "fjalla" means mountain; and "jokull" is glacier. Another trick is to come up with a saying to remind you, such as "Hey, ya fergot La Yogurt," as suggested in the New York Times City Room Blog. 
  • Come up with a few extremely long words in the English language (i.e., Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, which means "a word that you say when you don't know what to say")
  • Stage a word challenge with a friend or family member - See how many individual words you can get out of a longer word by rearranging some of the letters. (For example, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious: super, fragile, dial, frail, expertise, etc.)
Learning Tips: Meaning of Words

Game of the Week

Game of Week

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