Grade 4 Curriculum
Student create writings based on Norse Mythology stories and other main lesson blocks. The will also study riddles, speech exercises, alliterative verses and longer narrative verse. Kalevala
Recitation will occur in groups and individuals, with a shift in drama to more individualized roles. Fountain pens are usually introduced in this grade, with dictation introduced as an additional method of lesson material write-ups. The art of letter writing, pen pals, thank you notes and invitations may also be introduced. Students will continue to practice writing in mechanics: 4 types of sentences; punctuation; paragraph indentation; capitalization etc. Grammar and spelling work is expanded and becomes more forma. Students will experience a scheduled reading class for both independent and class reading activities and also conduct a human and animal project, requiring independent research, reading and writing.
Mental math is in narrative and written form and students will carry out all four processes with numbers competently. They will read and understand numbers up to 6 figures and will know their times tables up to 12 out of sequence. Long multiplication with up to 3 digit multipliers will be encountered and they will find factors of a given number. Students will identify prime numbers less than 100 and start the study of measurement of temperature. Long division, including remainder and estimating answers, will continue and fractions will be introduced, including terminology, adding and subtracting.
In Grade 4 students begin a more formal study of science. The connections between the human and the animal kingdom are explored, beginning with the human being. The students undertake their first in-depth, individual project in the block entitled Human and Animal.
The formal study of history is introduced through the study of local history and geography. Emphasis is placed on how people came and settled on the land that was originally in the care of the First Nations People.
The fourth grader has now separated to some extent from his/her immediate environment and is now able to step back and engage with the larger world with an appreciation for past, present and future. We begin with the geography of the local surroundings – the rivers and hills, meadows and lakes – and from this, gain an understanding of the economic foundations of the areas such as how rivers are used for transport and the building of canals and railroads. We also study the indigenous culture in the area and how they used the land. Finally, we build on these concepts to understand the links between human beings and their natural environment. Simple map-making also begins in this grade as the children draw maps of their bedroom, classroom and their route from home to school.
French & German
As of Grade 4 the children are more aware of what they have learned and what has been collectively learned is now more individualized. Individual speaking and little dialogues are a new experience as is the introduction of reading and writing. Reading and writing is practiced by using poems and songs which they learned in previous years as well as new short stories. The students also learn to create their own little sentences and in this context study and practice the nouns and the conjugation of the verbs.
The Grade Four children continue with singing and playing recorder. They become proficient in the singing of rounds. Children now engage in learning written music notation beginning with the treble clef. Through this process, the children begin to understand harmonies created within rounds and two part singing and recorder playing.
The main Lesson teacher takes the class for one movement class per week, along with a nature walk for two periods a week. Starting in Grade 2 and continuing until Grade 4 the students participate in two 45 minute periods of ‘movement” classes a week with the Movement Teacher. The classes are held outside unless the weather is extreme then the classroom is used. Activities and games are chosen that strengthen the students sense of movement in space, their sense of balance and their sense of others around them. Consideration is given to activities that engage their gross motor muscles in a coordinated way, and balancing games that improve fine motor movements. Each class consists of bean bag or ball work, a running/tag game, then a group/circle game, and skipping. In addition, Audrey McAllister’s Zoo Exercises are incorporated into the lesson depending on the needs of the students.
The presentation of activities and games in these grades is made vivid and alive with appropriate images, poems or even a story. A ‘walk through’ of the game is completed before the real play begins. Weaving nature, the seasons, animals, and fairy-tale themes in this way into the activities engages the students’ imagination and helps to keep them involved.
Students have access to free drawing with coloured beeswax crayons and the teacher models reverence for the task which the children imitate. The children are given the three primary colours with which to paint, out of which they will also experience the secondary colours. Students have an art class once per week with their class teacher doing wet-on-wet painting and reflecting the subject matter of the main lesson. They will then create main lesson books with beeswax crayons and/or coloured pencil crayons, before form is gradually introduced.
Practical Arts: Handwork
Learn to cross stitch; develops precision, concentration and dexterity; create patterns and intricate woven forms – recognize symmetry and balance; students need to be more precise; strengthens individuality.
The students visit Black Creek Pioneer Village each day for a week. Some teachers may take the class on an overnight camping trip, while others might go to Saint Marie Among the Hurons to explore our local geography and history.