Fourth Grade Curriculum

Language Arts

Core Resources

  • Teachers College Reading & Writing Project by Lucy Calkins
  • Units of Study for Teaching Reading, Grades 3-5
  • Units of Study for Teaching Writing, Grades 3-5 by Lucy Calkins and Marjorie Martinelli Sadlier
  • Making Meaning by Collaborative Classroom
  • Guiding Readers and Writers, Irene Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell
  • Spelling Connections
  • Grammar Workshop, Sadlier-Oxford
  • Handwriting Without Tears

Learning Goals For Reading

  • Maintain a reader’s notebook
  • Read from a variety of genres
  • Read actively: predict; mark text; react; make connections; question; envision; clarify
  • Summarize, draw conclusions and evaluate information
  • Understand basic elements of a novel: character; setting; plot; theme
  • Understand and use key elements of non-fiction: cause and effect; chronological order; compare and contrast; details; problem and solution; topic sentence; supporting details
  • Preview chapters
  • Make observations of captions, subtitles, and pictures
  • Read for information
  • Reflect on salient points and specific information
  • Read various forms of poetry
  • Recognize elements of poetry: alliterations; imagery; exaggeration; free verse; metaphor; mood; onomatopoeia; personification; rhyme and rhyme scheme; rhythm; simile; stanza
  • Understand how plays are organized
  • Read plays with expression
  • Build and develop vocabulary

Learning Goals For Writing

FORMS OF WRITING: Book Reviews; Letters; Non-Fiction Stories; Note-taking; Personal Narratives; Persuasive Pieces; Poetry; Story Writing Fiction; Research WritingMaintain a writer’s notebook

  • Use writing process: outline; first draft; revise; edit; proofread; publish
  • Write well-organized pieces
  • Write with a clear beginning, middle, and end
  • Write paragraphs with topic sentences
  • Begin to write multi-paragraph essays
  • Support with evidence
  • Write creatively and descriptively
  • Choose and use words that convey intended message effectively
  • Give and receive feedback from peers and teachers
  • Apply conventions of spelling, grammar, and mechanics

Learning Goals For Handwriting and Keyboarding

CORE RESOURCE:, Handwriting Without TearsKeyboarding Without Tears

  • Demonstrate cursive writing skills efficiently
  • Join letters using standard, efficient connections to form words
  • Write to express thoughts and opinions, using correct formatting conventions
  • Transition to writing in cursive after meeting with teacher
  • Use proper body and hand position needed for efficient keyboarding
  • Understand how to touch type
  • Use the working keys on a keyboard

Learning Goals For Speaking and Listening

  • Actively participate in class discussions
  • Speak clearly and with confidence
  • Articulate ideas effectively
  • Explain thinking
  • Deliver oral presentations
  • Deliver a speech

Social Studies

CORE RESOURCE: Texas, Our Texas


  • Native Americans
  • Europeans Come to the Americas
  • The Fight for Independence
  • The Journey to Statehood
  • Our Special State

Learning Goals For Social Studies

  • Develop an understanding of the reasons for studying history and of the relationships between the past and present
  • Develop an awareness of the ways we learn about the past and the methods and tools of the historian
  • Understand the meaning of time and chronology
  • Analyze the complex cause and effect relationships of ideas and events
  • Recognize the interrelatedness of geography, economics, culture, belief systems, and political systems within history
  • Develop an appreciation for the rich complexity of a society’s culture and an understanding of how parts of a culture interrelate
  • Understand Texas ideals, as expressed in historical documents, speeches, songs, art, and symbolic representations
  • Develop understanding of multiple perspectives
  • Develop locational skills
  • Understand movement of people, goods, and ideas
  • Locate, select, and collect information by interviewing/by using appropriate reference materials
  • Understand, use, and create graphic information (e.g., timelines, charts, tables, other graphic organizers, graphs, diagrams)
  • Interpret and respond to photographs, paintings, cartoons, and other illustrative materials
  • Organize information from reference sources
  • Present information convincingly in spoken or written forms
  • Review the 50 states, capitals, and locations and some highlights about each state
  • Understand some of the special geographic features of Texas and the United States
  • Review the oceans, continents, and bordering countries of the United States
  • Apply map and globe skills
  • Investigate the Great Depression in depth


CORE RESOURCE: Everyday Mathematics

Learning Goals For Mathematics

Number and Numeration

  • Read and write whole numbers up to 1,000,000,000 and decimals through thousandths
  • Translate between whole numbers and decimals
  • Read, write and model fractions
  • Solve problems involving fractional parts of a region or collection
  • Find multiple of whole numbers less than 10
  • Identify prime and composite numbers
  • Find equivalent names for whole numbers involving one or more operation
  • Find equivalent names for fractions, decimals, and percents
  • Analyze numerators and denominators to compare and order fractions


  • Demonstrate automaticity with addition and subtraction fact extensions
  • Solve problems involving the addition and subtraction of whole numbers and decimals
  • Demonstrate automaticity with multiplication and division facts
  • Use basic facts to compute fact extensions
  • Solve multi-digit multiplication problems by 2 digit numbers
  • Solve problems involving adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers
  • Use repeated addition, skip counting, and arrays to model multiplication and division


  • Collect and organize data into charts, tables, graphs and line plots
  • Use the maximum, minimum, range, median, mode and graphs to ask and answer questions, draw conclusions and make predictions
  • Describe events using probability terms (likely, less likely, 50-50)
  • Predict the outcome of experiments and test predictions


  • Estimate length with and without tools
  • Measure length to the nearest ¼ inch and ½ centimeter
  • Use tools to measure and draw angles
  • Describe and use strategies to measure the perimeter and area of polygons
  • Describe the relationships among U.S. customary units of measure and metric units of measure
  • Use ordered pairs of numbers to name, locate, and plot points in the first quadrant of a grid


  • Identify, draw, and describe points, intersecting and parallel line segments, lines, and rays
  • Identify and draw acute, right and obtuse angles
  • Describe, compare and classify plane and solid figures
  • Use appropriate geometric terms
  • Identify, describe and sketch examples of reflections
  • Identify and describe examples of translations, symmetry, and rotations


  • Extend, describe and create numeric patterns
  • Describe rules for patterns and use them to solve problems
  • Use conventional notation to write expressions and number sentences using the 4 operations
  • Determine whether number sentences are true or false
  • Solve open number sentences and explain the solutions
  • Write expressions and number sentences to model stories
  • Evaluate numeric expressions containing grouping symbols
  • Insert grouping symbols to make number sentences true
  • Describe and apply the Distributive Property of multiplication and addition

Science and Engineering

CORE RESOURCES: STEM Scopes; Engineering is Elementary

Learning Goals For Science

Nature of Science and Engineering

  • Collect data and record in tables
  • Begin to write testable questions
  • Write more questions after completing experiments
  • Discuss “what happened” in experiments and theorize “why”
  • Practice Scientific Method
  • Practice steps of Engineering Design Process
  • – Identify challenge, brainstorm, design, build, test, evaluate, redesign, share solution
  • Maintain an organized lab notebook
  • Write reflections and open-ended questions at the end of lessons
  • Take notes in lab notebooks
  • Deliver oral presentations
  • Begin to understand concept of “trial and error”
  • Read scientific literature
  • Understand mistakes as part of process
  • Begin to connect experiments and content
  • Use and apply technology


  • Illustrate that certain characteristics of an object remain constant
  • Observe and record changes in the states of matter caused by the addition or reduction of heat
  • Conduct tests, compare data and draw conclusions about physical properties
  • Identify and describe the role of organisms in living and non-living systems


  • Identify and observe effects of events that require time for changes (erosion, dissolving, weathering)
  • Draw conclusions about “what happened before” using fossils or charts and tables
  • Summarize the effects of the oceans on land
  • Identify the Sun as the major source of energy
  • Identify patterns in weather, metamorphosis, and objects in the sky


  • Use reflections to verify that a natural object has symmetry
  • Discover the types of animal adaptations
  • Compare adaptive characteristics of various species
  • Distinguish between inherited traits and learned characteristics