Fourth Grade Curriculum

  • Language Arts: Norse Mythology; grammar; writing (including the fountain pen); recitation of poetry
  • Social Studies: Festival celebrations; Nordic culture; local geography/history; Native American practical life; mapmaking
  • Science: "Human Being and Animal"; nature walks
  • Math: Fractions; long multiplication, long division; multiplication/division tables (1-12) solidified
  • Spanish: Grammar; vocabulary; songs; dances; poetry; conversation
  • Art: Wet-on-wet watercolor painting; clay modeling; crayon/colored pencil drawing, form drawingparticularly weaving patterns or Celtic knots
  • Practical Arts: Cross-stitch; gift-making
  • Drama: Re-enactment of stories; class play; assembly performances
  • Music: Diatonic flutes; singing rounds; strings ensemble
  • Movement: Two outdoor recesses a day; Eurythmy; traditional dance; physical education; daily rhythm/coordination exercises


Fourth Grade Highlights

Finding One's Place
The Norse Mythology sagas of creation, destruction, self-sacrifice and corruption, in which gods act like ordinary mortals, feed the students’ growing curiosity about human nature, as well as their increasingly sophisticated ability to discern moral from immoral behavior.

The study of Local Geography introduces a new, hypothetical perspective: the bird’s-eye view. Maps are drawn, first of the child’s bedroom, then the home, the classroom, the school, the town, and finally the state. Geography is experienced in new, unforgettable ways, such as a rafting trip down the Housatonic River or a sail down the Connecticut River.

Understanding the vast timelines involved in the history of Connecticut, beginning with the shaping of the land and the lives of Native Americans, helps students place themselves within the span of time as well as space. Drawing complex knot forms similarly develops capacities for spatial orientation, pre-planning, beauty, and form.

The Main Lesson block known as Human Being and Animal delights the students as it explores the differences between humans and our beloved companions, the animals. Each student chooses one animal found in the Northeast, studies it in depth, and creates a story or other artistic presentation about it.

Playing diatonic flutes and stringed instruments in separate parts, as well as singing multi-part songs and rounds, requires students to separate themselves from the comfortable unison of former years. Similarly, the study of Fractions introduces the splitting of wholes, just when the students are themselves becoming “fractious,” splitting hairs and asking potentially unsettling questions about the world they happily took for granted even a year ago.

Field Trips may include museums; aquarium/zoo; rafting/sailing trip; nature walks/hikes.

Fourth Grade Handwork: Cross-stitch

The project in fourth grade is cross-stitch with mirror picture design.
It helps the children to become more precise and inwardly awake and strengthens their individuality.

-David Mitchell and Patricia Livingston, Waldorf Educators

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