4th graders at Our Lady of the Lake focus on the environment by studying and monitoring a local watershed, learning about native and invasive species, becoming the caretakers of the Salmon in the Schools project, and engaging in stormwater awareness activities. Specifically, students monitor the health of Maple Creek and are part of the Thornton Creek Watershed Citizen Science Project. As our school gardeners, they plan and maintain our school garden, as well as nurture 200 western hemlock and Douglas fir saplings for salmon habitat restoration. Our diverse learners are supported by the strong and research-based Slingerland method for reading and The Wit and Wisdom curriculum for writing. 4th graders study units in religion, social studies, and science all integrated with Language Arts and reading. Students become proficient communicators through learning the writing process, craft, and use of voice. A highlight of the year is the 4th and 5th grade overnight camp on Vashon Island at Camp Sealth (May 4-6, 2022). Finally, they continue to foster a relationship with students in our parish sister school, Reverendo Miguel Ángel Vásquez School in Los Rodeitos, Nicaragua.
In years past, our fourth graders have raised money for our sister school, Reverendo Miguel Ángel Vásquez School in Los Rodietos, Nicaragua, and a local charity of their choice. During COVID restrictions, our class for 2020-2021 was not able to conduct our "Seed Sale" this year. The pictures you see here are from our March 2021 sale that occurred after COVID restrictions moved our students to remote learning.
I look forward to continuing the seed sale in the spring of 2022. Look for updates!
Ms. Margaret Portelance
I have been a teacher for over 30 years and have taught a range of subjects and age levels. I was a middle school science teacher, K-8 science mentor teacher and taught second grade. I am now in my sixth year of teaching fourth grade. I was raised on Vancouver Island, Canada and completed my BA and teacher certification at the University of Washington. In December 2020, I completed my Master’s in Teaching in the Biological Sciences at Miami University of Ohio and partnered with the Woodland Park Zoo. In 2019, I traveled to Brazil and worked with a local conservation group in Paraguay. I also have lived in France, Turkey and now reside here in Seattle with my family.