Fourth grade is the year of making connections and expanding students’ thinking from concrete to abstract.
Opening up to the more global world, students understand and apply the connections from one subject to another and between their individual lives and the complexities of the world. Critical thinking skills blossom, as students investigate and analyze how America was settled from the pre-Columbian Natives through exploration, and how it affected American colonization.
Again, study is integrated across the curriculum: students create puppets, then write and perform a show about colonization; they read books such as I Sailed with Columbus and Sign of the Beaver; and they visit a Native American archaeological site to discover how Native Americans used natural resources.
Students further their investigative skills and comprehension by reading historical fiction, literature, journals, and information from the web. They participate in large- and small-groups for completing projects and discussions. Writing skills are developed and expanded in all areas through journals, stories, and expository writing. Math is taught through a discovery and strategy-based approach, including journaling.
Fourth grade's geographic area of study is South America.