4th grade GRCES Curriculum Overview
We begin every morning with devotions from Jesús te llama para niños (Jesus Calling for Kids) by Sarah Young. Students will also participate in group, partner and individual prayer, worship songs and journaling during this time.
We use the curriculum from Christian Schools International called “Caminando con Dios y su Pueblo” (Walking with God and His people). In 4th grade, we kick off the year learning about the different books of the Bible and why we study them. Then we move into a brief review of Genesis through Joshua, Judges, Ruth and Samuel. We also learn about different kings that led God’s people, like King Saul, King David, and King Solomon. We wrap up the year with a study on Psalms and Proverbs.
Through Math Expressions, we start the year using place value drawings to help conceptualize numbers and understand the relative sizes of place values. We also learn various methods to add and subtract whole numbers through 1,000,000. We are sure to spend a lot of time working with multiplication and division with 1, 2, 3 and 4-digit numbers, and equations to represent problems with more than one step.
Second semester will focus on measurement (customary and metric units), fractions, decimals, and geometry. We will add and subtract fractions, mixed numbers, and decimals. In geometry, we will learn how to classify angles, triangles, and quadrilaterals.
The reading workshop model emphasizes the interaction between student and text. This model allows student independence and prepares them to become successful readers outside of the classroom! Reading workshop will consist of mini-lessons with focused reading strategies, independent reading time, and share time. Students will work with a variety of texts. Reading workshop time will be conducted in Spanish, but students will have other times to engage in English reading. An extra special way students will get to practice reading strategies in English is through Calvin Book Clubs for 5-6 weeks in both the fall and spring!
The writing workshop model is very similar to reading workshop. We will be following the Lucy Calkins curriculum to write in a variety of genres. Students will start out the year writing personal narrative pieces in Spanish during workshop. Later, they will move into English opinion, information and literary essay pieces. Grammar will be woven into writer’s workshop, taking special care to point out the non-transferrable skills between both languages.
Students and parents will also have the opportunity to participate in Parent Writing Journals. These journals are designed to reinforce English writing outside of workshop time, as well as give them another mentor writer! Students will be expected to write a weekly letter home.
Students will be explicitly taught phonics and phonemic awareness skills in English through this program.
This year in science, we are working closely with the Next Generation Science Standards to guide our units. Students will be rotating between all of the fourth grade teachers, alternating between social studies and science. The science units include energy, waves, earth’s systems and animal adaptations.
Students will continue building foundations in social studies by learning all about the United States. We will study human geography in the US, the US in spatial terms, economics, and the federal government. We will also talk about the rights and responsibilities of citizenship! Throughout second semester, students will work hard studying one state, in a project that crosses many content areas.
Handwriting without Tears allows students to practice cursive penmanship. Much of cursive is done independently in 4th grade. Students are expected to work in their handwriting books for a few minutes each day after their morning work is complete. This will help develop time management skills that will be essential in middle school and in life!