Building on students’ growing sense of academic and social autonomy cultivated in lower grades, particularly third, fourth graders are proud to take even more responsibility for themselves as individual students and members of a classroom community.
During the school day, students are guided to use classroom time well and to follow schedules for long-term assignments. During these projects, students are encouraged to use their resources, such as checklists and reference binders, to take accountability for their work. In addition, they begin to appreciate the value of folders, trays, and cubbies for keeping track of essential study materials.
These foundational organization skills allow fourth graders greater ease as they are challenged with curriculum that asks them to solve problems independently and in collaborative groups.
Just as independence is fostered in academics, it is also valued socially and emotionally as fourth graders exist and interact daily in a student-centered classroom. Respect for oneself and others is emphasized, as is the idea of having a growth mindset. Students are encouraged to help others, work collaboratively, and accomplish problem-solving through small group discussions, class meetings, and/or team building activities. Students develop self-confidence and pride as they share their work in the classroom and with other classes. Fourth grade utilizes MindUP and Second Step to emphasize mindfulness with brain-focused strategies for learning and living. The mindful classroom is a truly optimistic one that encourages individuals to be aware of their sense of themselves and others. Tolerance of differences and the capacity of each member of the community to grow as a human being and learner are valued in the fourth grade classroom.
In writing, students have the opportunity to practice skills as they write in different styles, including narrative and expository work. During formal writing assignments, students utilize the writing process: brainstorming (graphic organizers), drafting, revising, and editing before eventually publishing and sharing. Grammar, vocabulary, and spelling are taught in both mini-lessons and in context during writing conferences. In addition, students have differentiated spelling instruction and receive a new set of words to practice each week. Reading materials include trade books, fiction, non-fiction works, and poetry.
Students engage in literature circles with peers where they practice reading aloud fluently, discussing literature, leadership, time management skills, goal setting, and collaboration. Chapter books may be used for literature responses, book reports, book talks, and creative projects. In fourth grade, students also spend more time reading in the content areas such as science and social studies.
Students learn more about New York State in fourth grade. As a part of this year long exploration, fourth graders explore the history, cultural heritage, geography, economics, and the use of natural and human resources in the Empire State. Students continue to build on geography and cartography skills set in place in third grade. In this way, they become even more proficient in their use of maps and globes. Fourth graders use critical thinking and inferential skills as they work to understand different cultural perspectives.
Fourth grade uses the Eureka Math Curriculum focusing on helping students to develop a problem solving approach to mathematics based on everyday situations. Students also develop their skills through frequent practice that often involves games, lessons based on activities and discussions which are independent of a textbook, and mathematical content that goes beyond arithmetic. Topics covered include, place value, measurement, area and perimeter, multiplication and division, geometry, fractions, and decimals.
Students who require additional work in these areas will be guided and supported in setting IGNITE goals so that they work toward mastery.
The mind of the fourth grader is naturally inquisitive. Students at this age want to discover new concepts, make sense of them, and relate them to what they know already. Science class affords them the opportunity to give voice to this natural curiosity and pursue it through a myriad of experiments. Study will focus on energy, waves, plant and animal adaptations, and earth science. Students also engage in STEM challenges during which they collaborate with a team to plan strategies, complete tasks, record data, and review their work to make improvements.
Small class sizes that allow for more focused and tailored instruction with the support of the IGNITE program
Hands-on, enjoyable learning experiences that foster collaboration, respect and empathy
Highly qualified teachers and assistants that focus on social-emotional development
Active learning environment that instills curiosity and engagement
Physical education program which focuses on character, teamwork and sportsmanship
Exposure to special academic areas including music, library, and visual and performing arts
8:05 - Morning Meeting & Work
8:15 - Morning Work
8:30 - ELA
9:15 - Social Studies
10:00 - Snack & Read Aloud
10:15 - Math
11:30 - Recess
12:00 - Lunch
12:30 - Art
1:15 - Science
2:00 - Gym
2:45 - Pack Up
2:55 - Dismissal