At St. Paul, the Upper School begins in the fourth grade. Over the next three years, students will develop the independence needed to successfully navigate seventh grade in the schools to which they matriculate.
In the fourth grade, students begin rotating among teachers for their core academic classes (language arts, math, science, and geography). An overview of the fourth grade core curriculum follows. If you desire particulars of the entire curriculum, please click on the Curriculum Map.
Fourth grade students “connect the dots” in the Old Testament. This
means that they revisit Old Testament stories from first and second grades with
the intention of learning themes and common truths that reveal the character of
God. Lessons highlight the way that God’s grace continuously loves, leads, and
forgives his people through mistakes, hardships, and even rebellion. Students
begin to understand more of how God’s steady and patient love for his people
sets the stage for the coming of Christ.
Students develop reading comprehension skills through literature studies. Students gain a grasp of the major parts of speech and enhance vocabulary/spelling skills so as to communicate fluently and to convey ideas and feelings effectively. The writing process is taught using the ERB Writing Rubric coupled with ERB’s online writing practice program (WPP).
Students develop quantitative reasoning skills; interpret statistical measures; develop thorough understanding of estimation, place value, and magnitude of numbers; gain a basic
understanding of probability and chance; cultivate creative problem-solving and critical-thinking skills from a mathematical perspective; classify and manipulate geometrical shapes; develop competency with measurement tools; understand concepts of time; identify patterns and similarities across mathematical systems; discover and apply mathematical rules for a pattern or table; and organize data into presentable work.
Fourth grade science is a lab-based program that focuses on basic concepts and
principles in the Life, Earth, Physical, and Health sciences. Topics of study
include ecosystems, the solar system, weather, static electricity and magnetism, energy pathways, heat, matter, motion, and machines, and nutrition.
The focus in grade four is on world geography, which is introduced to prepare students for their study of world history in grades five and six. Students develop basic map skills, study geography terms related to the physical geography of the Earth, and participate in continent studies.