While exploring books and stories, fourth graders identify and describe the characteristics of differing genres of literature, discern main ideas and concepts presented in texts and make conclusions about information in a text. Fourth grade students write responses to literature-based questions and create a multi-paragraph narrative. They also utilize various reference materials to revise written work as they write for each class.
Place value and rounding to 1,000,000,000; rounding to the thousandths place; (+) and (-) within 10,000; finding quotients using compatible numbers; (–) with remainders; (x) powers of 10 mentally; simplifying equivalent fractions; (+) and (-) decimals; (–) to one decimal place; geometry (solids and shapes, volume, congruent figures, symmetry); two-step word problems; (+, -, x, –) measurements
Students begin with the questions: What is the engineering process? What is technology? They explore electricity (circuits/conductors/ insulators), motion, energy and astronomy. Their exploration of marine biology (fish classification, anatomy, dissection) and plants (structures/ reproduction/life cycles) are facilitated by classroom discussions and laboratory experiments.
After studying California history with an emphasis on geography, diversity and immigration, students embark on their first overnight experiential trip to Sacramento. They make connections by delving into cause and effect, natural resources, and colonization. Note taking, outlining and working with maps and symbols leads to creative projects and interpretation of historical information.
Fourth grade classes explore watercolor and brushwork including California landscapes and Asian brush painting. Three-dimensional modeling, sewing and other construction techniques are involved in the creation of a “doll,” (e.g. Chumash tribesmen, Father Serra, Shirley Temple) for the California Doll Museum. The focus is on how these figures symbolize important eras in the state’s history.
By fourth grade, the students have a strong foundation in technology that allows them the privilege of using Google accounts and email while creating, sharing and submitting assignments in the cloud. They type and submit some assignments digitally and begin writing their own code. Creating digital art, using and citing online sources, and the responsibility of digital citizenship are ongoing threads throughout the elementary technology program.
Fourth grade continues to nurture excitement for books and reading in each child and encourages a reading culture. An in-depth introduction to the Dewey Decimal Classification System and further development of research skills builds on skills acquired in previous grades. The focus is on inquiry over fact-finding.
Fourth grade students learn and put into action the fundamental skills and team strategies for the after school sports program in the San Fernando Valley Private School League. Each student gains confidence, learns sportsmanship, and how to win and lose with dignity. The Presidential Challenge, which measures strength, flexibility, endurance, and agility, is also introduced.
After school dance instruction begins in first grade and continues through sixth grade.
Fourth grade music includes advanced keyboarding, composing, and recording 8 measure pieces. The students learn more advanced African drumming techniques, play Jumbie Pans, sing in the chorus, and play song flutes fluently with intricate rhythms and good tone quality. Songs of the Gold Rush are highlighted in preparation for their Sacramento trip.