Mrs. Harrell's 4th Grade Blog

A site for lifelong learners

Friends & Family Luncheon


Dear Families-

In learning from past Friends and Families visits and from today’s luncheon, we wanted to pass along some important tips that could really benefit you and the school.  Our hope is to be helpful.

If you’re able to bring exact change to lunch ($3.75), that would really help the school and keep our lines moving smoothly.

We know parking is always difficult at The Jack, this is one reason we moved this event to three days versus two.  As you’re parking around campus, if you would please be very aware of handicap spaces, handicap ramps, our fire lanes, and the school’s entrance/exit.  We always want to make sure our emergency vehicles can access our school in case of an emergency.  We also have buses that pick up ½ day students and those ½ day students are picked up at the front of our building as handicap access is necessary.

Thank you all in advance for helping out and we look forward to seeing everyone soon!

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The book fair will begin on  Monday, 11/13 at 8:30 a.m.  The fair will be open throughout the school day and select hours after school – see schedule below – it will not be open before school (7:15-7:50).


Monday        8:30a.m. – 4:00p.m.

Tuesday       8:30a.m. – 5:00p.m.

Wednesday 8:30a.m. – 5:00p.m.

Thursday     8:30a.m. – 6:00p.m.

Friday          8:30a.m. – 12:00p.m.***


Gift Certificates for teachers will be on sale in the Learning Commons until next Wednesday.  Students with money to purchase a certificate may be sent to the Learning Commons and we will deliver the gift certificate to the teacher. Students will not be allowed to deliver gift certificates. We  will accept cash or a check.

Students that have a large amount of coins will need to count their money, place in an envelope and put the amount on the front of the envelope.  We will not count for them and we will not accept handfuls/bags of coins for payment.


  • We need your plastic grocery bags. Drop them off in the Learning Commons at any time or send them by your child.

Thank you and we look forward to seeing you and/or your student at the book fair!

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Happy Fall Yall!


Fall Festival Volunteers Needed

Parents –

The PTA is seeking volunteers for the Fall Festival (October 13). The Fall Festival is one of our largest events at NES and a lot of its success relies on having volunteers to assist in various capacities (set up, carnival games, food etc). Most of the volunteer opportunities are for 45 minutes. In addition those who volunteer will receive 5 FREE tickets (to be used towards games or pizza).


Sign-up genius link: http://www.signupgenius. com/go/30e0f45abaf2ea5fe3- 2ndannual

Nickajack Book Club

Our counselor, Mrs. Weber, will be offering a book club in support of parents who are raising boys. The first book will be The Mind of Boys. The book club will have 5 meeting dates starting on October 20, 2017 and ending on December 15, 2017. Please see the attached flyer for additional information about this great opportunity to learn more about our boys and how their minds work.

Book Club Flyer-wqtiee

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Week of 8/28/17


BACK THE JACK Campaign begins Monday, August 28th!

The Nickajack Elementary Foundation needs your help in raising the funds necessary to support our school’s commitment to technology, academic excellence and student success and to provide our kids with the most competitive education possible! Our BACK the JACK fundraising goal for the 2017-2018 school year is $75,000. It’s another large undertaking but we know that together, we can make it happen! The official campaign dates are August 28 – September 15, 2017.

Make a donation to BACK the JACK of $125 or more and you are entered to win an Nintendo Switch.

Please make your tax deductible donation by Friday, September 15th. Donations can be made via Paypal/credit card using the link below, OR we encourage  you to donate via check to save us the 3% Paypal service fee. To donate by check, fill out a BTJ Donation Form and include it with  a check made out to the Nickajack Elementary Foundation. Place them in an envelope in the black box at school. It takes ALL of us – Let’s BACK the JACK!

Back the jack color logoDONATE  ONLINE HERE!

This year, we are raising funds to continue to develop our school’s Learning Commons and fund STEAM initiatives and the teacher grant program. We will also be earmarking funds for student reading, math and enrichment programs. This is all very exciting!

Back to Football Friday!

Are you ready for some football? Nickajack is ready and in need of your help. Back to Football Friday will take place on Friday September 1, 2017 during the regular specials rotations. Please use the link below to volunteer to help us kick football season into full gear the right way! Thank you.


We have begun rounding and have found that the rounding rap is very useful when rounding multi-digit numbers to various places. Yo, let’s help our children be winners in the rounding game!

Science: The Water Cycle Song


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Open House



Below you will find information that will be shared tonight at Open House. Please feel free to contact me via email at [email protected] with any questions you may have.

Open House 2017

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Welcome to fourth grade!

My name is Dawn Harrell and I am one of your teachers the 2017-2018 school year. I hope you had a wonderful summer break! Don’t worry, the fun is not over as we are going to have an awesome time learning so many new and exciting things in 4th grade!


Please check my blog weekly as I will have important information about the topics we will be studying for the week, as well as any additional information you may need to know.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at [email protected] . Email or writing in your child’s daily agenda is the best way to reach me. If you prefer, you can call the school and leave a message for me and I will return your call. Our school number is 678-842-5814.

I am looking forward to an exciting ten months of learning with your child!


Dawn Harrell

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Check out this great Competition for Cobb County Students.



 March Madness: For the month of March we are going to focus on reviewing Math and language arts  skills in preparation for the Georgia Milestones.  This review will take place during our normal social studies and science times.  Therefore social studies and science will be suspended until after the test.  Please encourage your child to review math skills nightly on IXL, and continue reading on MYon for at least an hour each week.

Reading: This week in reading we will be completing our novel studies! The students have loved reading their novels and are making some great connections between the books they are reading and their own lives! We will continue working on reviewing skills for the Milestone this week. One huge topic is main idea and details. Here is a great resource on main ideas:

IXL is a great tool for students reinforce math skills or preview upcoming skills. Students are required to practice for an hour each week.

Login: Student [email protected]

Password: math

STUDY your multiplication facts.   Make sure you are practicing for 10 minutes a night with flash cards, websites or apps.


Spelling: Study spelling words weekly.  Tests will be given on Fridays.

Math: Students will be given a nightly math practice to reinforce the skill taught in class and IXL practice weekly.

Reading: MyOn for an hour a week.

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Week of January 9, 2017



We are wishing all of our parents and students a wonderful new year full of joy, happiness, good health, and success.  Thank you so much for your kindness and generosity this holiday season.  Your gifts and gestures were truly heartfelt and greatly appreciated.

It’s hard to believe that we are in the second half of our school year together!  These next two quarters will be spent strengthening skills in math computation and problem solving, reading comprehension and response to literature, and writing.  We will also be preparing students to become more independent learners through time management and accountability.  As a fourth grade team we will be making some changes to facilitate this independence.  Please be on the lookout for more detailed information in the Thursday folder.  With your continued support, I am confident that our students will soar to new heights this year.

Social Studies:

  • French and Indian War
  • Causes of the American Revolution
  • Revolutionary Battles


  • What causes day and night
  • Planets


  • State Research
  • Comparing/Contrasting


  • Irregular Verbs
  • Subject Verb Agreement


  • Novel Studies
  • Literature Circles

Read to Succeed!

It’s that time of the year again!  The Six Flags Read to Succeed program officially began January 5, 2017.  Your child has an opportunity to earn a FREE Six Flags ticket simply by reading for 360 minutes (6 hours) and logging their time read.  The children can read anything as long as it is not reading for homework or a class assignment: books, newspapers, magazines, comic books, or ebooks are all acceptable.  Why not use this opportunity to take advantage of the Foundation’s gift of MyON to get your child reading.  Every child in the school has access to MyON, as long as you have an internet connection, and should have their username and password for the site.

The reading log and a parent letter explaining the program were sent home in January 5th’s Thursday folder.  I’ve also included copies in this post just in case.  All reading logs are due to me by February 17, 2017.  A little extra time reading daily will quickly add up to the 360 minutes needed to earn the FREE Six Flags ticket.  Let’s get to reading!  Enjoy!

read-to-succeed-reading-log     read-to-succeed-parent-letter-2

IXL is here!

Our school has created an IXL account for each student. IXL provides an immersive learning experience with an unmatched breadth and depth of standards-aligned content. With IXL, every lesson taught will be reinforced by interactive questions, vivid visuals, and step-by-step explanations—all to engage and inspire our children!

Your child can start using IXL immediately! Be sure to have them sign in every time they practice so they can receive personalized content.  Your child’s IXL account offers unlimited access to IXL. This is a great website that we use in class and it is being presented to you, full access, no charge. Please encourage your child to use it.

As always, thank you very much for your support.

Log-in Information

username: [email protected]

password: math



Week of November 7, 2016


food-driveFOOD DRIVE IS NOVEMBER 10-17

Beginning November 10th, please send any food items that you would like to donate to school with your child.  There will be collection barrels located outside the main office.  Thank you for your generosity!  If you have any questions, please contact Nicole Weber at 678-842-5814, ext. 230.



Dates:                   November 15th – November 17th

Location:              Media Center

Hours:                   8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday

8:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Wednesday


Shop online at:

Online shopping is available until Saturday, November 19th.


Family and Friends Lunch is next Thursday, November 17, from 11:00-11:40.  Please join us.  The cost is $3.50 per person for all guests, including children. This event is cash only, no debit or credit cards. Tickets will be sold at the door to the cafeteria, not at the food line. Your student’s account may also be used for purchase. This would also be a great time to visit the Book Fair in the Media Center!

Topics of the Week:

Spelling: sort 14

Math: Division

Science: Roller Coaster Project and Light

Reading: Paired Texts and Summarizing

Web Sites:

Spelling:  Sort 14

Math: Division Models

Science: Roller Coasters

Grammar: Helping Verbs


Reading: Visit MyON User Name: Student number and Password is read

Language Arts:  Complete final drafts of persuasive writing pieces. Independent persuasive writing prompt.




Week of October 31, 2016


                                                     Parents please encourage your children to wear pink on Monday and bring a dollar to support Relay for Life .



Spelling: Don’t forget to complete spelling activities nightly.  Students are to complete one choice board activity nightly.

Math: Students will be given a nightly math practice to reinforce the skill taught in class. STUDY your multiplication facts.   Make sure you are practicing for 10 minutes a night with flash cards, websites or apps.  .

Reading: Students are expected to read nightly for 30 minutes and turn in a reading response log on Friday.

Language Arts: Opinion Writing

Five Paragraph Essay Model

Topics of the Week:

Spelling:sort 13

Math: Multiplication

We have a multiplication assessment next Friday

Social Studies:

European Explorers group

European Explorers

Marco Polo

Juan Ponce de Leon

John Cabot

Henry Hudson

Christopher Columbus

Vasco Nunez de Balboa

Jacques Cartier


Reading: Independent Novel Studies/summaries and paired texts

Web Sites:

Spelling:  Sort 13

Math: Area Models with Learn Zillion, Multiplication Practice

Social Studies: Explorers

Reading: Visit MyON User Name: Student number and Password is read



Week of August 29, 2016

PVUE  (parent vue)

Do you need your PVUE account information? You can come to the front office, during school hours, to obtain your account information. Please be prepared to show ID to receive your login information.

Back to Football Friday

LET”S GET READY TO RUMBLE!!!!!!  We are excited for our 8th annual Back to Football Friday!!!  This event is successful because of our wonderful parent volunteers!!!  Wear your favorite NFL gear and come spend some time with the Davis Dad’s and the students at Nickajack.  Thank you for all you do, we really appreciate all of our volunteers! Any questions please email Ms. Hill, [email protected]!

Please sign up at


Don’t forget to Back the Jack!  Your support helps your children. Our Foundation fundraising goal for the 2016-2017 school year is $72,000. This year’s Back The Jack (BTJ) Campaign will kickoff on August 22nd and conclude on September 16th. Please make your donation as early in the campaign as you can – no need to wait til the last week! This year, we are raising funds to upgrade our Media Center into a new “Learning Commons” resource center, and iPad Carts. This is very exciting! We will also be earmarking funds for student reading, math and enrichment programs, as well as teacher grants! Please donate and help us reach our goal!

Topics of the Week:

Spelling: sort 5

Math: Subtraction real world application

Science: Weather forecasting: clouds, weather instruments and reading a weather map

Social Studies: Economics

Language Arts: Personal Narrative; compound sentences

Reading: How to read informational text and Novel Studies

Web Sites:

Spelling: sort 5

Math: Subtraction practice

Science: Weather map

Social Studies: Economics

Language Arts :Narrative Powerpoint;


Spelling: Don’t forget to complete spelling activities nightly.  Students are to complete one choice board activity nightly.

Math: Students will be given a nightly math practice assignment to reinforce the skills taught in class.

Reading: Students are expected to read nightly for 30 minutes and turn in a reading response log on Friday.


Week of August 22

Don’t forget to Back the Jack!  Your support helps your children. It will allow us to purchase more iPad carts and supports educational programs.


  • paper towels
  • class snacks *we have peanut, soy, milk, and egg allergies*


Topics of the Week:

Spelling: sort 4

Math: Addition real world application

Reading: Using illustrations to understand text. Making text connections.

Social Studies: Using map tools

Language Arts: Identifying simple and complete subjects and predicates

Web Sites:

Spelling: Spelling City Sort 4

Language Arts: Subjects and Predicates

Math Addition Practice

Science: Water Cycle Review

Social Studies: Map Skills Practice

Reading: Making Connections (5)

Reading: Visit MyON User Name: Student number and Password is read


Welcome back to school.  I hope you all had an enjoyable and restful summer with your families.  I am looking forward to an amazing new year full of excitement and rigor.  We are off to a wonderful start and children are transitioning well into the new expectations fourth grade has to offer.  Please use this blog as a resource to gain knowledge about what we are learning in the classroom as well as any other pertinent information.

Open House for 4th grade is this Thursday, August 11, 2016 at 6 p.m. I would love to see all of the parents on Thursday night!

There will also be a Chick-fil-a Spirit Night Tuesday night at the South Cobb Chick-fil-a from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Topics of the Week:

Spelling: Sort 2Sort 2


Monday-Students complete weekly sort (this will be a handout I give to students until we get our spelling books)

Tuesday-Thursday-Students are to choose 1 activity each of these nights to complete from their Tic Tac Toe spelling boards (located in their spelling notebooks)  All work is to be done in the actual notebook with the name of the assignment and the date.

Math: Place Value

Science: States of Matter

Social Studies: Parts of a map

Physical Features of the United States:

Language Arts: Informational Writing/Generating Ideas for Writing

Strategy:  Think of a person or place that matters to you and list small moments with that person or in that place.



  • being chased by dogs                                            
  • jumping off the barn
  • skating across Long Island Sound            

Reading: How to be a reflective reader

  • Use the Five Finger Rule for choosing book
  • Practice building stamina by reading for longer periods of time
  • Think about reading…
    • before you read the text (take a picture walk, make predictions, ask questions)
    • during the reading of the text (What do you wonder about the characters, plot, or information?  Which words are new or confusing to you?)
    • after you have read the text (What did you learn from the text?  How did you feel about what was said in the text?  What type of connections can you make to the text?  What questions do you still have about the text?

Web Sites:

Spelling: Spelling City Sort 2

Math: Converting between place value

Science: Water Cycle Activity

Language Arts: Kinds of Sentences,  Subjects, and  Predicates

Reading: MyOn website



Week of May 16, 2016

Summer Reading Programs

The end of the year is almost here! That means it is time to get our students ready for the summer reading program!  There are 3 ways our students can participate in the summer reading program:


  1. Once again, CCSD Library Media department has teamed up with Scholastic, Marietta City Schools, Smyrna Public Library and Cobb County Public Libraries for our summer reading program: Be A Reading SuperHero.
  2. myOn (On Your Mark, Get Set, Read! for younger students and Get in the Game, Read! for older students) is also running a summer reading program that our students can participate in just by reading ebooks in myON.  Students are strongly encouraged to participate in both programs – time spent reading in myON may be logged into the Scholastic site.
  3. Cobb County Public Libraries and Smyrna Public Library will support the Scholastic program; have daily activities at their sites and award prizes. CCSD/Scholastic summer reading program:  5/9 – 9/2myOn summer reading program: 5/23 – 9/2  

    Student Summer Reading Resources:

    Recommended reading lists – coming soon!

    myON – ebooks – login: student ID, read

    Cobb Digital Library – login: student ID, read

    • Ebooks
    • Audiobooks
    • Tumblebooks – ebooks
    • Databases: Trueflix, Freedomflix, Scienceflix, PebbleGo, DK Find Out!, online encyclopedias, etc.
    • Links to: National Geographic website


    Cobb County Public Library

    • Free books, both print and electronic (with library card)
    • Checkout up to 50 books!
    • Print books will be delivered to library nearest you

  (  – grades 3-5, free current event articles for students.


    Lit2Go (  – free online collection of stories and poems in audiobook format.  Most are classics or those that are in the public domain.  Students can choose their grade level (K-12) to find an appropriate list of books (search under Readability).


Week of May 9, 2016


Hello All!

What an exciting month we have ahead. Field Day is Friday, May 13.  Students will get pretty wet, so they can bring a towel to dry off with at the end of the day.  Please remind your child to wear their field day shirts and  SNEAKERS.  If they do not have a field day shirt they can wear any royal blue shirt :)  Attached you will find the signup sheet if you would like to volunteer. . In addition, we have events planned for the following dates:

Character Awards: May 19th at 8:10am

Poetry Jam: May 23rd at 9:30am

End of Year Party: May 24th at 12:00pm

The last day of school is May 25th with the students being dismissed at 12:30pm on both May 24th and 25th. Students will not be allowed to bring home anything on the bus on the last day of school.

Registration forms for next year were sent home last week.  Please update all information and return as soon as possible.  Also, we will need four stamps placed on the outside of the large manila folder in order to mail home report cards and other important information at the end of the year.

Spelling: Sort #30

Language Arts: Poetry

Cursive writing

Math: Problem Solving/Review of previously learned skills

Social Studies: Ellis Island

Health: Safe at home and Away from home

Reading: Novels



Week of April 25, 2016

Topics of the Week:

Language Arts: Free Write/Writing prompts associated with the novel Lemonade Crime 

Lemonade Crime spelling words and homework:

*Fraud                                                               Amends

*Revenge                                                          Bona Fide

*Eyewitness                                                     Trial by Jury

*Hearsay                                                           Perjury

*Accused                                                           Amendment

*Impartial                                                        Circumstantial

*Due Diligence                                               Fighting Words

*Defense                                                           Balance








Cursive Writing

Math: Problem Solving

Social Studies: Multicultural Quilt and Oregon Trail

Science: HumptyDumptyEggDropDesignChallenge[1] project due May 6th

Health: Safe at home and Away from home

Reading: Novel-Lemonade Crime

Web Sites:

Math: Math Playground

Social Studies:  Oregon Trail

Reading: Visit MyON User Name: Student number and Password is read

Summer Camp

This summer, Walton High School will hold a Summer Camp for Logic and Puzzles for students in 4th and 5th grades during the month of June. The registration form is attached.

Summer Camp 2016


Week of February 8, 2016


Spelling: sort 23

Language Arts: Persuasive Writing

Grammar: Types of sentences/Adjectives

Math: Adding and Subtracting Fractions with Mixed Numbers

Social Studies: Events of the American Revolution

Science: Planets

Reading: Making Inferences/ Main Ideas and Details

Web Sites:

Spelling: Sort 23

Language Arts: Types of Sentences   Persuasive Essay-Adopting a Pet  Persuasive Letter-Letter to the Editor

Math:  Add and Subtract Mixed Numbers

Social Studies: American Revolution Time Line   Women in the Revolution   American Revolution Review

Science: Planets Simulation

Reading:Making inferences Game  Inference Riddle Game   Main Ideas and Details

Visit MyON User Name: Student number and Password is read

Safety Village

We will be visiting the Safety Village this Thursday the 11th of February.  Firefighters visited the 4th grade classrooms on February 4, 2016 to teach the children all about safety.  Here,  they will learn all about safety in a fun, interactive way. Please make sure your child wears pants, .sneakers, and a jacket, as our field trip will take place both in and outside.

Two permission slips were sent home in the Tuesday folder.  Each permission slip must be completed in order for your child to be able to attend the trip and participate in the activities.  Please complete and return both permission slip if you have not already done so.

Please feel free to email me if you have any questions about the trip.  Thank you.

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Chorus Performance



Greetings Nickajack Braves Chorus Parents,

The Nickajack Braves Chorus will be performing at the Smyrna Tree Lighting on Tuesday, November 29th, 2016 @ 6:15; students should arrive at 5:45 p.m. Please remember to wear the proper attire: red chorus polo, black, pants and shoes. The performance will be outdoors so remember to wear a black or white long sleeve t-shirt underneath the chorus polo.


AddressSmyrna Community CenterSmyrna Tree Lighting200 Village Green CircleSmyrna, GA 30008

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Nickajack Thanks for Giving Food Drive

Nickajack Thanks for Giving Food Drive

***November 10th – 17th***

Click here to see a list of needed items
Collection bins will be located outside the front office
Thank you for your generosity!

Amusement Park Physics project!!!

Image result for amusement parks

The students have been given a great opportunity to test out their engineering skills. They will create a miniature amusement park ride for marbles instead of people. Each student  will receive the information today. Please take the time to read the details with your child and sign the back of the sheet. This signature verifies that you understand the project and are committed to helping your child plan, build, and present their creation. I have included the project details along with the various due dates. Let’s get to work! Enjoy!

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