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Fourth Grade
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Mrs. Smith's 4th Grade Classroom

SUGGESTED 4th GRADE SUPPLY LIST

  1. two dozen wooden pencils (not mechanical) - personal shapener optional

  2. a box of 24 crayons or a box of colored pencils

  3. fine tip pack of dry erase markers (thick or thin)

  4. a few packs of post-it notes with lines if possible (3x3 or 4x4 size)

  5. 4 small Elmer’s glue sticks

  6. a 2-pocket folder for homework and notices

  7. a single subject spiral notebook for Spelling

  8. one package looseleaf notebook paper

  9. a zippered pencil pouch (not a box)

  10. headphones or earbuds in a zip bag with your name

  11. 2 colored pens

  12. 2 highlighters

  13. a pair of scissors

  14. an old sock (if you are in 4D or 4S)

READING A BOOK ON YOUR OWN FOR ENJOYMENT SHOULD BE DONE EACH NIGHT.  20 MINUTES OR MORE  IS RECOMMENDED!

This year the students will become immersed 'just right' books, which are books at their reading level. As always, the students will be required to read alone to build their stamina, both at school and at home. Using Lucy Calkins' Reading Units of Study, each child will be taught individually, in small groups, and through whole class instruction. 

Students will NOT recieve weekly reading tests, rather they will be given assessments individually depending on their specified reading level.  This is quite a shift in thinking and the students will NOT be able to study for a test.  They will be assessed constantly and graded on IMPROVEMENT.  Through constant reinforcement of fluency, stamina, and skill work in topics such as assessing characters, theme, and inferencing the students will gain measurable, higher order thinking skills which in turn will increase their overall reading ability. Studying character traits, sequence of events, main idea and theme, text features, and text structure in both fictional and informational reading will propel them into excellent readers.

Response journals will be used to help students write down their ideas in reading.  Writng about reading is a difficult skill that will be taught throughout grade 4. Students will learn how to answer a question using evidence to support ideas. Using 'Post It' Notes while reading will be helpful in assisting the students when they are asked to discuss their ideas with their reading partners.
Writing

Fourth grade writing is intense. On Demands are given, graded, and averaged into each child's grade. Writing workshop is taught daily using Lucy Calkins' Writing Units of Study. Students will be expected to brainstorm\prewrite many seed ideas before they are expected to publish.  Drafting, revision, editing, conferencing with the teacher and with a peer will be ongoing throughout the year. Students will learn how to write their stories using Ideas and Content, Organization, Voice, Conventions, Sentence Construction, and Word Choice.

We cover numerous types of writing. Genres include narrative, persuasive, and information writing.  To enhance their writing, the students will be taught to add vivid verbs, descriptive adjectives, and dialogue where appropriate. Students work as a class, in partnerships, and then individually when writing. They are also expected to edit their own pieces, thus showing complete understanding of the entire writing process, including spelling and language conventions.
Grammar / Spelling

This year the Grammar and Vocabulary program will be taught within the confines of Writing Workshop.  Lucy Calkins Units of Study in Writing suggests that teaching grammar rules as mini lessons during writing time is a more authentic way of learning.  Memorizing for a test and then forgetting the concept is no longer deemed useful.  Therefore, please understand that grading for these subjects may be more subjective and based upon individual student growth.  We will be using weekly spelling lists and tests will be given each Friday. Homework choice boards will be utilized.

Math

ALL FOURTH GRADERS ARE EXPECTED TO HAVE MASTERED THEIR BASIC MULTIPLICATION FACTS BEFORE ENTERING FOURTH GRADE.

PLEASE NOTE THAT HOMEWORK IN MATHEMATICS WILL BE GIVEN ALMOST NIGHTLY. THE ONLY EXCEPTIONS MAY BE ON TEST NIGHTS AND HOLIDAYS.

The comprehensive math program for fourth grade will utilize is Go Math. It is extensive and aligned with the NJ Student Learning Standards. Throughout our work with mathematical concepts, students will be working on fully understanding there are numerous ways for problems to be solved. Students will be writing about their mathematical thinking and sharing their ideas with others. There is more than one way to achieve an answer. Modeling and guided practice are whole class or small group processes. Individualized work will be given at the appropriate level of instruction. well as tests and quizzes are given regularly. Perhpas most importantly, games, songs, and centers are implemented to help enhance and recall skills whenever possible.

Generally, skills covered in fourth grade are basic and multiple step computation, place value, geometrric concepts, algebraic thinking, area and perimeter, problem solving, fractions and decimals. Homework, as
Science

We use many hands on activities /experiments and work in groups quite a bit in Science. Students are expected to employ the Scientific Method when working. Teaching NextGen Science Standards is an exploratory, questioning, problem solving method by which students become immersed in the STEAM model of learning. Many websites are utilized to enhance the learning process and the SmartBoard is also used to allow students interaction with concepts. Topics covered related to Earth Sceince, Life Science and Physical Science. We also be using Google Classroom and Mystery Science for extensive research based projects throughout the year. The ChromeBooks will helpful for research and creation of projects.

Social Studies

The Social Studies program touches upon Native Americans, New Jersey, American History, and Citizenship.  The Core Standards cover Language Arts Literacy within the Social Studies curriculum.  Many non fiction trade books will be used to help teach factual history.  Google Classroom will assist in giving students the independence needed to learn about our history through various media outlets.  Research and development of projects will be a fun, hands on way to learn.