The Bronxville Elementary School staff welcomes your child to Fourth Grade. As children grow and become more independent there are several characteristics that emerge. Fourth graders tend to gravitate toward certain friends and their friendship preferences may become more pronounced. Typically at this age, children want close peers for bonding, giggling, secrets and commiseration. They also become more competitive and participate more frequently in team sports. The downside, of course, is that the need for close friendships can result in the formation of cliques, especially for girls; peer pressure; exclusion and teasing. Within fourth grade there are programs to make sure that the students work on their ability to recognize that they are part of a larger school community.
The Bronxville Elementary School’s Student Council is comprised of fourth and fifth grade representatives from each classroom and is responsible for assisting in the communication and support of school-wide activities. Fourth and Fifth graders also become members of the grade level band or orchestra and learn that their individual “instrument sound” helps to create one “voice” as the members perform together.
THE FOURTH GRADE PROGRAM
Fourth graders embark on simultaneous but opposite learning paths this year: working more independently and working in small groups. They are known to seek more "personal space" and also thrive on social interaction. Teachers focus assignments that require them to participate in group work, maintain focus, stay organized and prioritize -- all skills they will need as they continue to transition into upper grades, where the goals of responsibility and independent and collaborative work continues to be emphasized. It is important for fourth graders to have experiences that help them discover who they are and what they think about the world around them. Throughout the year, you will learn about calendar squares that help students to practice research and presentation skills as they share a personal, curent and historical events for an assigned date. This activity serves as a wonderful link to Social Studies where students study the history of New York and its relation to the nation as a whole.
Many assignments will require students to apply developing critical thinking and problem solving skills to understand complex issues through our Social Studies curriculum. As social studies classes begin to look more indepth at specific time periods, it is important for students to grasp how the issues that a society faces help shape what happens to a nation. Up until this stage, your child may not have been able to approach a problem and propose a solution or form a personal viewpoint without the help of an adult. In fourth grade, classroom conversations are held with the goal of understanding the different perspectives that demonstrate maturity and the ability to think more globally.
Student-led parent conferences are an integral part of students taking ownership of their learning. Students are active participants in the conference. They share their progress, as well as their strengths and weaknesses as learners, directly with their parents. Prior to the conference, each student completes a reflection with support from the classroom teacher. The student then uses that information as a basis for the conference discussion. The child primarily runs the meeting, fielding many of the questions raised by parents and teachers. The fourth grader and classroom teacher creates an action plan. The plan includes goals for the upcoming term that then becomes the basis for focused improvement for the period following the conference. It is a living document that is referenced between the teacher and student as a means of charting progress toward achieving goals.
In fourth grade, students will take the New York State assessments in ELA, Mathematics and Science. Please note the dates for these assessments in the school calendar. More information regarding these assessments will be distributed before the exam dates and information can also be obtained by visiting http://www.engageny.org/.
Throughout the year classroom teachers will keep families informed of important activities. Class parents are assigned to each classroom and assist with the coordination of important events.
For more detailed information about the Fourth Grade Program, please see the pacing guides and progress report.