Class and Activity Descriptions
Throughout fourth grade, students will see the Gospel displayed in the person and work of Christ and his ministry on earth. Through His parables, students are shown what it means to trust in the Lord. Throughout the year as the New Testament is explored in our text, Building Life Castles by Positive Action for Christ, Inc., students learn the power and work of the Holy Spirit and what it means to live a life filled by God’s Spirit as they seek to honor the Lord, serve their family, and engage their community.
Literacy (Includes reading, writing, language, and spelling instruction)
The goal of the literacy program in fourth grade is to develop a love for reading, language, and writing as students strive to be lifelong learners. Strong emphasis is given in learning to decode new words, develop critical thinking skills to build strong readers as well as become proficient writers. Into Reading by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Levels 4th as well as novels are used to engage students. Used together, this will help students to improve comprehension and develop the vocabulary and the decoding skills which are necessary to understand a wide variety of reading material. Novels/books chosen will be from an assortment of genres to help develop a diversity of reading interests. Books from our Accelerated Reader Reading List will be included as part of our program as students reach appropriate goals for their level of reading. Lessons are also differentiated to challenge all levels of our students.Language, writing, and spelling are integrated into the Literacy program. Emphasis on grammar skills, various writing forms, and decoding words is given in these areas. Expressive and reflective writing as well as writing in content areas is part of the literacy program. Students are expected to perform on unit and/or chapter tests to chart individual progress of each student. We also use IXL, Freckle, and Read Works to supplement our reading program.
The goal of mathematics' instruction in fourth grade is to develop the student’s ability to problem-solve, have strong computation skills, and utilize mathematics in their everyday world. Students utilize the Into Math by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt series as well as supplemental programs such as IXL and Freckle to challenge students at their level. Level 4 lessons will be covered daily and tests will be given throughout each unit of study. Lessons will be differentiated as to address students at their level of Math. Additional practice will be assigned as necessary for drill and practice. This will help develop remedial as well as accelerated practice for all levels.
The goal of science instruction in fourth grade is to develop an awareness of the physical world as it relates to a Biblical worldview. In our text, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, units of study may include but are not limited to the following areas: the scientific method, engineering, the study of living things, ecosystems, energy, light and sound, land and water, and earth and space. Tests will be given to insure understanding as new concepts are introduced. The students will complete a variety of hands-on laboratories to gain an understanding of the material presented. Emphasis on inquiry-based learning, recording data, reading graphs, and drawing conclusions are given in Science instruction. Challenging assignments and projects will be given at intervals throughout the year and students will take field trips as well as enjoy presentations given by special speakers to enhance the learning experience.
During the course of the year, fourth grade level U.S. history will be taught, from colonial times to the end of the Civil War. A unit on Tennessee history will also be integrated into weekly lessons along with exploring map and globe skills, as part of our social studies curriculum. Tennessee History for Kids texts, Upon a Pivot and Torn Union will be used in our studies.
Students in fourth grade participate in a variety of related arts programs such as Art, Music, Physical Education, Spanish, and Technology/Keyboarding. These programs help develop a more well-rounded student. Fourth grade teachers work with the related arts teachers to integrate their studies through this program which enriches and enhances overall learning for the students. Students participate in a Celebration of the Arts program in the spring to showcase their talents.
Formal keyboarding classes continue in fourth grade. Students review basic keyboarding skills and continue working through a self-paced program to increase speed and accuracy. The goal is for each student to achieve 15 WPM with 95% accuracy by the end of 4th grade. During technology classes the students refine research skills and the use of a presentation program. They learn how to use a movie-maker program, how to create a brochure using a template, how to create online graphs, and begin to learn about a word processing program. Fourth grade students write a formal research paper which includes a bibliography.
Special Activities and Events
Fourth grade field trips and special events include a Tennessee unit where students participate in a Walking tour of Nashville, Heritage Day, becoming Junior Docents at The Hermitage, and a visit to the 4-H Center in Dickson to enhance the Science curriculum.