Grade 4 Inquiry Expo Term 3

Wow! The grade 4 student inquiry expo was an amazing finish to term 3’s inquiry unit. The students applied an enormous amount of thinking during the course of designing their Rube Goldberg machines. The main objective was to build a Rube Goldberg inspired machine that included the scientific forces learnt. This could include; incline plane, decline plane, push and pull, friction, pullies and levers. Iteration upon iteration of design changes was made over the days leading up to the expo. The students were amazed at how their thinking had changed from their initial designs made only a week or so ago.

During the building process, our core school values were on display as students demonstrated true grit and resilence when testing, failing and improving their machines. It was ‘hard fun’! There were tears and frustration at times but also joy as well when it worked.

The design and building process was also provided a platform for students to explore and improve on their learning assets. A key focus for many students was communication and collaboration. We commend the students for making wise choices when formulating their groups. We had numerous conversations where the students were able to articulate how they were able to make compromises by adopting and adapting the ideas of others into their designs.

See Below some videos of successful and not so successful runs of their fabulous machines.

Click here

and Here

Problem Solving in 3F

Today we read a book about a wise man in India who did the king a favour. The king wanted to repay him so the wiseman told him he should give him some rice, starting with one grain and doubling each day for each square on his chessboard. The king didn’t know how much rice this was but was too proud to ask. OOPS. We know this never goes well.

Turns out when you double numbers 64 times they get BIG!

We explored what would happen if the chess board had 25 squares. students used a mix of their own knowledge, addition strategies and calculators to find out that at the end of 25 days the king had given away 16 777 216 grains of rice.


Some of the students finished this easily so I challenged them to start exploring how much rice would be owed on the 64th day. One group got a little hooked… I don’t think they did much else today. We got really excited when they hit trillions, then it just kept going! I’m not ashamed to say i had to resort to Google after quadrillion!


3/4 Estimation Experts!

The Grade 3/4s cleaned up today, winning ALL four prizes from the Family Maths Night!

Well done Kate, Indi, Izzy and Ella for the most accurate estimates from the Guestimation Station, which included the size of a watermelon, the number of froot loops in a jar, the length of a ribbon and the age of all the teachers from the maths team!


Family Maths Night

Thanks to the Grade 3 and 4 families who came along to our first Bell Primary Family Maths Night on Wednesday! What a great opportunity it was to share some of the maths learning from our classrooms with families. We hope you had fun – the teachers who were there definitely enjoyed sharing our love of maths!

For those who missed out (or those who were there but want to try some of the games again), instructions for all the games played on the night can be found at this dedicated website:

On this website there is a link to give feedback about the event. We’d love to hear from those who attended on the night. 

HHD update

This week we completed our last Health and Human Development session in Grade 4.

Today we discussed ideas around body safety and students’ safety networks. A poster with the body safety rules we discussed can be found here: My body safety rules. The safety network refers to the trusted adults in the students’ lives who they can speak to if something is concerning them. Students have been given a homework task, where they need to discuss today’s session with one of their trusted adults.

Last week we learned about how babies are made. We spoke about the process of fertilization and the physical male and physical female reproductive systems. Students played ‘reproductive bingo’ where they needed to match descriptions to the names of different concepts related to reproduction.

Students have also had a chance to anonymously share questions after our sessions, and we have discussed many of these at the beginning of our sessions. The students have been highly engaged and shown an impressive level of mature and respect during the sessions.




Day 2 at Camp

Finally we have arrived at Butts Reserve, even after all those steep hills everyone was still bubbling with excitement to finally be at Butts Reserve, not just because of the name, though some people still found it funny. We got to make damper which, even though it took so long, it was extremely delicious and what made it even better was jam. We first had to find a stick about shoulder height though none of us knew why. We got given damper dough as it was pre-made. We had to soften the damper dough by rolling it in our hands. Then we had to squish it onto the stick and cook it onto the fire which the teachers set up while we were finding our sticks. So that’s what the purpose of the sticks were for, so our hands wouldn’t burn off from the fire as the stick would be too short. Once we finished cooking the damper we could put jam, butter or both inside the damper. When we left we got to ride mostly downhill which was thrilling riding down them with our hair rushing behind us.

When we got back to Blue Light camp, we had lunch and we were able to have some time in the games area. Then we got to do the Amazing Race where we were split into different groups, Andrew and Rod, Xenia and Ramzey and Lily. Xenia’s team won but Andrew and Rod and Ramzey and Lily’s team got to stop at the lolly shop! When we got back we went into our cabins. Half an hour before dinner the duty groups got called up. The duty groups had to set the tables and after dinner clean the tables and sweep the floor. After dinner we went back into our cabins until it was time for the disco!

Grade 3 HHD

Yesterday we had the second of our Health and Human development lessons.


Last week we focussed on naming body parts that Physical boys and physical girls have in common and those unique to each, As well as where we can safely learn about our bodies.

This week we looked at naming some of these unique parts and identifying them on a diagram. Students were far more relaxed this week.  We went back over our expectations of showing respect to each other, the fact that it’s ok to be embarrassed. Had a practice 5 second giggle and got into it!

We started by drawing a persons outline and adding in body parts, to many, many giggles. Students could choose to do this alone or in a small group, totally up to their comfort.

We explained the function of some of the key body parts and students labelled diagrams which were sent home with them last night. (Check the bottom of the bag or the bin.)

Enjoy these awesome labelled images. I’m super impressed with this person differentiating between the vagina and the vulva.




The hidden monastery book reviews

Spencer’s Review

The book was about a boy called Jax that finds a hidden monastery

Jax has a dog called ruby that dies. Jax later finds a monastery that he could not see from the outside he learns Gong fu and finds out that his birthmark was actually made by Peng, a legendary Chinese animal and together Jax and his friend Yuyu that he met at the monastery and Peng have to fight a storm

I think this book teaches people to keep on trying when things get hard because when we keep on trying then we can get Amazing at things like when Jax gets really good at gong fu in quite a short time

My favourite part was the end where Yu yu and Jax returns to Jax’s home and Yu yu gets to stay.

Boys and girls from 7 to 13 would like this book because it has emotional language and there was like two things that the book was talking about and at the end, it all came together 

I rate this book 4 out of five stars, not five because I think the Author could have told us a bit more about what was going on with the two different world sort of things.


Gus’ Review

This book was about a boy called Jax and a hidden monastery. 

Jax was sent a Dog called Ruby for a signal and she led him to the hidden monastery there he learned heaps of new gong fu fighting and mind games. He was helped by the Abbot and he was the old peng master and Jax was destined to be the new Peng master.

And Peng was growing but he was still young and couldn’t handle a lot of pressure. He also had a friend at the whispering cloud monastery called Yu Yu who fought alongside him against the evil fox spirit which could take any form and they were going to attempt to bring down a huge storm and they kept persisting and did it very well.

I think it teaches you that if you keep going and chasing your dreams you will have a better chance than if you don’t persist and you should always keep trying and don’t give up.

My favourite part was: The end when Jax and Yu Yu bring down the evil fox spirit so he couldn’t bring any more harm and took his energy source, gold and only left him a bit to survive on.

I think that the age would be  7 to 13 year olds because there is a little bit of fighting going on in the book.

I would give this book four stars out of five would be about right.   


Patricks Review

This book is about a boy who has a mark on his hand caused by a Chinese spirit called Peng. His dog Ruby gets sick. He steals Ma’s gold necklace and goes off to the vet to see if he can help Ruby but the vet says Ruby is very old. She ran off through the gate and onto the path and she dies there Jax’s catches up and hugs her and goes off to find a place to bury her. He finds a monastery it is called the whispering cloud monastery. There are monks there he learns Gong Fu off the Abbot. The Abbots helps him find his destiny. He leaves the monastery and a girl called Yu Yu comes with him she is his spirit watcher. Jax overcomes challenges, fights spirit foxes and a huge storm called the silver wind. He joins Peng a creature that was growing up all the time he was alive. He fulfils his destiny and becomes a true Peng master.

I think this book teaches you to never give up and keep on trying even when things are hard. Like when Jax feels he can’t do it but he has a go and does it.

My favourite was the end when Yu Yu comes with Jax to his house and when Jax got a puppy and Jax learnt that the necklace was actually his and the abbots dog was Ruby and the abbot came when Jax was small, he asked if he could see his hand and he left but gave Ma the necklace and said to keep it safe. 

I think this book would be good for 7-12  because the book is pretty easy to read and there is a bit of fighting but no blood.

I would give this book 4.5 because a think the author could do a bit more describing.


Luca.M’s Review

This book is about a boy who has to learn to help an incredibly strong being, that which they must combine to stop a force that could annihilate all the land and Earth. The boy goes through misery and glee but there are times when he must help others. He learns that most of his life has been set up by his teacher, who knows Gongfu, a fighting technique. The boy becomes a Peng Master to help the incredibly powerful being Peng.

I think that this book teaches to never give up no matter how many obstacles stand in your way. This book also teaches to always follow your gut.

My favourite part of this book is when the boy learns mounds of new things and has to undergo training and do bad things to lift the spirits of others.

I think that this book is aimed at 10-12 year olds because some don’t follow their gut but follow another.

I rate this book a four and a half out of five stars because there is plenty of action and enough parts that are slow and steady paced.

Izzy’s Review

This book is about a boy(Jax/Mingzi) who doesn’t realise that he’s actually a Peng Master, which is someone who gets to look after and control/fight with him.

When Mingzi is young, he gets a touch from Peng, in China. A couple of years later Mingzi migrated to Australia (Brisbane) where he changed his name to Jax. One day when he had to take his dog, Ruby to the vet, she Ruby runs out until she gets tired and sadly ends up dying. Jax takes her to a Whispering Cloud Park to bury her. It starts getting dark and he can’t find the way out. He notices some lights further away, so he decides to follow them. It ends up as it looks like a temple. He asks to enter. A girl called YuYu answers but doesn’t let him in as she thinks he’s a ghost. He stays until the next day where YuYu decides to let him in. He meets The Abbot. The Abbot trains him, along with Lao Bing and Lao Tan. One night Mingzi and YuYu hear noises from the gate, it looks like Buzzy. Mingzi persuades YuYu to let him in. In the morning they realise he’s behaving weirdly. It ends up being a fox spirit, YuYu uses hand signals to fight it off. In a couple of days time, The Abbot tells Mingzi that he’s ready to meet Peng. Peng and Mingzi meet, they talk via there thoughts. They fight a strong and dangerous storm. The fox spirit comes back and tries to take Mingzi or Peng or even both. But doesn’t succeed so Mingzi takes its gold that it stole to return it. YuYu meets Mingzi, so they end up going to Mingzi’s house and they say he’s only been gone for a week. In the end, it turns out that The Abbot planned everything including giving Ruby too Mingzi’s family through to YuYu to end up living with Mingzi.

I think this book is suited for ages 8-12 because the book is very dense with words and the story is kind of about friendship and accepting that in life there are things you don’t know about but accept them(e.g. Jax not knowing he was a Peng Master but ends up liking the fact). 

I rate this book a 3.5 out of 5 stars because at times it got annoying always going between Peng’s life and Mingzi’s life. But it had a hooking storyline.



The hidden monastery is about a boy named Mingzi/Jax who doesn’t realise but he’s a Peng Master which is someone who gets to fight with Peng. 

When Mingzi is a baby in China he got a touch from Peng. A few years later Mingzi has moved to Australia with his Ma, Ba and little sister Mai. Mingzi’s parents have got new jobs working in a factory and their boss says their Chinese names are too tricky to remember so he changed their names. Mingzi is now called Jax. At school Jax makes friends with a boy called Buzzy. One day after school, Buzzy finds a little dog and hands it to Jax. jax keeps the little dog and names it Ruby. one day, Jax takes Ruby to the vet.  Ruby uns off and gets tired, she sadly ends up dying. Jax runs off to a Whispering Cloud park to bury Ruby. It starts getting dark but he can’t find the way out. Jax notices some lights far away and heads towards them. It ends up looking like a temple. He asks to enter, and a girl called Yu Yu thinks he’s a ghost so refuses. He waits till the next day when Yu Yu decides to let him in. Mingzi meets the Abbot who trains him with Lao Tan and Lao Bing. One day Yu Yu and Jax hear a noise from the gate, it sounds like Buzzy. Mingzi perseids Yu Yu to let him in even though she thinks Buzzy is actually a fox spirit. They find out that Buzzy is actually not Buzzy and he’s a fox spirit like Yu Yu suspected. Yu Yu uses hand signals to fight the fox spirit. The Abbot tells Jax that it is time for Jax to meet Peng and that it is time for him to start his mission as a Peng master. The Abbot also tells Jax that he will have to leave tonight for if he waits any longer then the silver wind will takeover.

Jax and Yu Yu agree that Yu Yu will be coming with Jax but the Abbot doesn’t allow so Yu Yu sneaks out anyway. Jax and Yu Yu fight the fox spirit with Peng and they go home to Jax’s family where Yu Yu comes and lives with them.

I think this book would suit ages 9-12 because ages 8 and below might not be able to understand some of it and over the age of 12 might not be interested in it.

I would rate this book 3.5 stars because it’s sometimes a bit boring when it’s flicking from Mingzi/Jax’s life and Pengs.

And these are all our reviews we look forward to our next book


HHD Session 1

Dear Parent(s)/Carer(s),

The Grade 3s are undertaking a unit of sexuality education. 


Students will be learning about:

  • the parts of the body
  • the names of the reproductive systems and their functions
  • the qualities of good friends
  • gender stereotyping. 


Yesterday we had a chat about showing respect during these sessions, that it’s ok to be uncomfortable and that when we tell stories we use ‘someone I know.’

We brainstormed body parts that are found on Biological Males, Biological Females and Both. And discussed where we can learn about our bodies and where we shouldn’t learn.

It helps children to know that everyone who has been through puberty has probably felt curious, uncomfortable or excited. We also want them to know who they can go to if they have questions or want to talk about how they are feeling. 

For that reason, this letter provides some questions that you might like to discuss with your child. They are about having trusted people to talk to about puberty. 


Questions for discussion at home:

  • When you were a child, did you ever have any questions about your body or growing up?
  • If you did, did you have someone you were able to talk to?
  • Ask your child whom they think they could talk to if they had any questions.
  • Ask them if they have any questions now. 


Thank you for your help. 


The Grade 3 Team


Health and Human Development in Grade 4

On Tuesday the grade 4 students started their health and human development lessons.

In lesson 1 we explored all the different ways our bodies change as we continue to grow from birth to childhood then adulthood. The students came up with a wonderful list of ways we change like growing taller, growing hair under our arms, face and around the genitals.

We spoke about that these changes happen during puberty and people begin puberty at all different times and that changes happen to everyone at different stages.

We labelled all the parts of sex organs for physical males and physical females and spoke about some people are born a physical male or female but they may not feel like they belong to that gender and identify as transgender.

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