4th Grade Overview

Each teacher in fourth and fifth grade teaches a specific academic content area. Therefore, fourth and fifth grade students attend academic departmentalized classes.

Vocabulary

Students will: Define prefixes, suffixes, and roots; Learn parts and use of Dictionary/Thesaurus; use metaphors and similes; evaluate poetry styles, and examine Word Choice.

Grammar/Written Expression

In both fourth and fifth grade Grammar, the following units are covered: The Sentence Structure, Nouns, Verbs, Adjectives, Capitalization and Punctuation, Pronouns, Adverbs, and Prepositions.

In Written Expression, students focus on writing that incorporates the 6+1 Traits of Writing, while using the steps of the Writing Process.

In the Trait of Ideas, students learn how to select a fresh and original idea about which to write. We discuss how to narrow the focus of a topic and choose specific details that support the main idea and paint a picture in the reader’s mind.

In the Trait of Organization, students learn about the structure of their writing. Students practice writing inviting introductions, satisfying conclusions, and original titles. They discuss using thoughtful transitions to connect their ideas and putting just the right amount of details in just the right places in an order that flows so smoothly that the reader hardly has to think about it.

In the Trait of Voice, students focus on adding interest to their writing appropriate for the purpose (Expository, Persuasive, Narrative, or Descriptive) of which they are writing and the audience for whom they are writing. This trait is about the writer taking a risk to reveal who he or she is so that the reader feels a strong interaction with him or her...

In the Trait of Word Choice, students look at selecting words and phrases that catch the reader’s eye and linger in the reader’s mind. Students focus on using specific nouns, verbs that add energy, and modifiers that add depth. We learn to find words that are powerful and engaging to help Students convey their message.

In the Trait of Sentence Fluency, students practice constructing sentences that vary in length and structure to invite expressive oral reading.

Fourth and fifth graders incorporate the Trait of Conventions throughout the course in their daily Grammar lessons. Students focus on using spelling, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and paragraphing effectively to enhance readability.

Science

Science as Inquiry—Students will be able to observe, measure, infer, predict using variables, hypothesize and make models, interpret data, experiment and problem solve, and define terms based on observations.

Microscopes and Magnification—Students will investigate: Lenses, Refraction, and Microscopes.

Chemistry, Matter, and Interactions—Students will investigate: Identifying Matter, Measuring Matter, Combining Matter, Changing Matter, and Matter and pH.

Forms of Energy—Students will investigate: Potential and Kinetic Energy, Energy of Sound, Electricity and Energy, Chemical energy and Heat, and Energy and Motion.

Ecosystems and Adaptation—Students will investigate: Food Webs, Adaptations, Environmental Changes, Environmental Pollutants, and Interactions in Nature.

Light and Optics—Students will investigate: How Light Interacts with Objects, Reflection, Observing Reflection, The Visible Spectrum, and Perception of Visible Light.

Examining Nutrition—Students will investigate: The Digestive System, Understanding Nutrition Labels, Exploring Carbohydrates, Exploring Fats, and Exploring Proteins.

Biomes—Classroom resources include text and workbooks, overhead projector, computers, ELMO board, classroom pets, expert visitors, projects, and hands on items. Out of classroom resources include field trips and field research on school grounds.

Spelling

Students will: Apply pattern rules to new words/Spelling Bees; identify prefixes, suffixes, and roots; identify syllabication; utilize resources; recognize commonly misspelled words; identify Homophones; and identify and use compound words.

Religion

Students will learn:
  • The Goodness of God—God’s goodness shines forth in his Creation and in his constant care. After he had led the Hebrew people out of Egypt, God gave them his law on Mount Sinai. In the Ten Commandments, we see God’s concern for his people.
  • Jesus is the Son of God—Through his life and teaching Jesus showed us what it means to be created in the image of God. Through his Death and Resurrection, he gave us a share in his divine life forever.
  • The Holy Spirit—The Holy Spirit gave the disciples the courage to preach about Jesus Christ and to build up the Church with new members. The Holy Spirit enables us to become witnesses to the same faith.
  • The Church—The Church grew rapidly in the first century, Disciples, such as Saint Paul, preached the Gospel and established the Church around the Mediterranean world that became centers of justice and worship.
  • Social Justice—Jesus taught that the way to holiness necessarily includes serving others. Today the Church is dedicated to serving the poor and disadvantaged throughout the world.
  • Saint of the Week, Church Feasts and Seasons, and Prayers.

Reading

Students will:
  • Communicate with a purpose.
  • Appreciate differences of opinion.
  • Interact with peers.
  • Participate in variety of speaking opportunities.
  • Focus on purpose to read.
  • Identify organizational patterns to assist comprehension.
  • Identify story elements.
  • Compare/contrast fiction and non-fiction works.
  • Apply reading strategies to variety of literature genres.
  • Engage in free reading of personal interest o Renaissance Learning Reading Program-Home Connect 
    • Web-based individual student web pages for parents to monitor reading progress
    • “Accelerated Reader” book finder o “Status of the Class” individual weekly interviews with teacher to monitor reading progress
  • Use critical thinking skills
  • Apply study skills
  • Evaluate information
  • Use relevant material for resources

Social Studies

Students will study the four regions of the country—East, South, Midwest, and West. Students will:

  • Geographically locate each region on a U.S. map.
  • Identify major rivers and landforms in each region.
  • Identify all fifty states and their capitals by region.
  • Identify the natural resources of each region.
Students will study Delaware history and will: 
  • Discuss the Native American tribes in Delaware/Maryland; their culture, and the reasons for their decline and relocation.
  • Follow the development of colonial life in Delaware/Maryland and distinguish between each settlement.
  • Identify the geographical regions in Delaware/Maryland where southern Europeans settled.
  • Identify state symbols, for example the state seal and the meaning of the images and words, the state bird, state tree, and state flower.
  • Explain how Delaware/Maryland got its name.
  • Identify the two kinds of government in our state and describe the purpose of each.
  • Identify the three branches of state government and their functions.
  • Understand how a bill becomes a law.
  • Explain how the Delaware/Maryland is represented in U.S. Congress.

Mathematics

  • Number Sense—Understand the place value of whole numbers and decimals to two decimal places and how whole numbers and decimals relate to simple fractions.
  • Computation—Solve problems involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of whole numbers and understand the relationships among these operations; extend their use and understanding of whole numbers to the addition and subtraction of simple fractions and decimals.
  • Algebra and Functions—Use and interpret variables, mathematical symbols, and properties to write and simplify numerical expressions and sentences; understand relationships among the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
  • Geometry—Show an understanding of plane and solid geometric objects and use this knowledge to show relationships and solve problems.
  • Measurement—Understand perimeter and area, as well as measuring volume, capacity, time, and money.
  • Data Analysis and Probability—Organize, represent, and interpret numerical and categorical data and clearly communicate their findings; show outcomes for simple probability situations.
  • Problem Solving—Make decisions about how to approach problems and communicate idea. Both fourth & fifth grades use the StarBoard daily to enhance mathematics lessons. We also use Responders on a daily basis to assess the students’ understanding of the lesson, and to take tests and quizzes. Students also practice Math Facts on the responders and can access Math Facts in a Flash through the Renaissance Place Home Connect (same as Accelerated Reader).