Lower & Intermediate Schools

Grade Four

Grade 4 begins the transition to the fully departmentalized programs and academic challenges of the Academy’s Middle School. A classroom still provides a home base, while students learn the responsibility of traveling to social studies, science, and world languages classes all while managing an increased workload.

A sophisticated curriculum and engaging instruction captures students’ imaginations, allowing them to produce beyond their expected capabilities.

Grade 4 Curriculum

LANGUAGE ARTS / READING / WRITING

Fourth grade students are immersed in the reading and analysis of literature. Chapter books and novels challenge students to interpret texts at ever-increasing levels of sophistication. The writing process becomes a major focus and students begin to develop a love of writing across genres.

  • 6+1 Traits of Writing and WriteSteps pushes students to develop writing skills and harness the power of the creative process
  • Paragraph development, punctuation and capitalization are studied as students learn to draft, revise, edit, publish and share their work
  • Wordly Wise vocabulary program targets words from class readings and spelling is strengthened through the Spelling Connections program

MATHEMATICS

Students to continue to progress in their understanding of mathematics through exciting classroom activities, peer interaction, and individual instruction. The Academy’s Learning Specialist supports and augments the program for all learners.

As part of the A-Frame, accelerated programs are offered to qualified students, giving a unique individual approach to student development.

  • Singapore Math curriculum implemented through concrete, pictorial and abstract steps
  • Spiral program structure in grades one through five allows students to gain a rich connection to process and procedure
  • New challenges in computation, the number system, geometry, data analysis, probability and problem solving.

SCIENCE

Science becomes a hands-on experience in Grade 4 through labs and simulations that show the scientific method in action. Students begin to use cooperation and collaboration to problem solve in pairs or small groups. The biennial Science Fair project is a favorite immersive and empowering experience. Each student begins with a problem based on their individual interests, forms a hypothesis, runs experiments, and collects and presents the data, before answering his or her question.

Curriculum includes:

  • Lego Robotics with Mindstorms EV3 robots
  • Ecosystems in the Garden Classroom
  • Intermediate School Science Fair
  • Force and motion
  • Plate tectonics and volcanoes
  • Electricity and circuits
  • The solar system

SOCIAL STUDIES

Through collaboration, simulations and guided readings, Grade 4 students deepen their understanding of history, cultures and the Americas. A deep exploration of early Americans’ experiences offers a rewarding global and social perspective.

Curriculum includes:

  • History of the United States
  • Native American history
  • Three day trip to Northern Michigan

FRENCH

  • Communication
  • Comparisons
  • Cross-curriculum connections
  • Cultures

TECHNOLOGY

Technology is used as a powerful tool in all curricula. By engaging students in meaningful ways, instructors empower each young learner to think critically and write effectively across media. .

TRAVELING

As part of the preparation for Middle School, students travel to other instructors for science, social studies, and foreign language. This unique feature not only develops independence but also allows the Academy’s instructors to specialize in science or social studies.

Specials

CHRISTIAN LIFE & CHARACTER EDUCATION

  • Old Testament study of Genesis and Exodus
  • Study of Jesus’ life

CREATIVE ARTS MOVEMENT

  • Awareness of body movement
  • Class presentation integrating science curriculum
  • Problem solving through choreographic studies
  • Varied movement vocabulary

LIBRARY AND MEDIA LITERACY

  • Book selection
  • Characteristics of books
  • Digital safety, citizenship and ethics
  • Information and media literacy
  • Research skills

MUSIC

  • Dramatic interpretations
  • Movement and choreography
  • Musical performance
  • Orff instruments

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

  • Develop strong cardio, respiratory, muscular endurance and flexibility
  • Participate in fun games, sport and lifelong physical activities
  • Tie health to total wellness

VISUAL ARTS

  • Artists and art styles
  • Art history
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Print making
  • Sculpture
  • Weaving and textiles

General Information

STANDARDIZED TESTING

Grade 4 uses the ERB comprehensive Testing Program 4, a rigorously designed series of assessments in verbal and quantitative ability, auditory comprehension, reading comprehension, writing mechanics and concepts, and mathematics.

MAJOR FIELD TRIPS

  • Northern Michigan trip
  • Planetarium at North High School
  • Provencal-Weir one-room school house

SPECIAL EXPERIENCES

  • Blue crew
  • Buddy program
  • Chapel assembly
  • Christmas chapel giving
  • Community service
  • Creative arts movement presentation
  • Extracurricular activities (Catholic Formation, Chess Club, Golf, Gourmet Cooking Class)
  • Field Day
  • Fourth grade musical
  • Garden Classroom
  • Grandparents’ and Special Friends’ Day
  • Halloween Parade
  • Intramurals (Soccer, Basketball, Floor Hockey, Rotating Sports)
  • Multi-age STEAM activities
  • Special assemblies and celebrations

SPECIAL RESOURCES

  • Full-time school nurse
  • Learning resource specialist
  • Technology and learning specialist