Sunday, January 16, 2011

Fourth Grade Social Studies: History of the Home State

Fourth Grade Social Studies: History of the Home State

For many public and private school students, fourth grade is the year they study their home state. Homeschool students do not necessarily learn about their home state in fourth grade, but is as good a year as any to begin that study. During the year your child will need to learn the most basic facts about the state, such as its location within the United States, the capital, and largest cities, population, and the date that it was admitted to the union. That information is pretty dry though, and really is just memorization of facts. Once they know the basics, your child may want to undergo a deeper and more exciting study of the state that she lives in. Here is where it can get very interesting and be a lot of fun. Do some research into historical sites, national parks and monuments within the state. Let your child do some research. Find the most interesting, or notorious or most recognized thing about your state. Take field trips to museums, and the state capital. See your state like a tourist would see it. Sometimes tourists know more about our own state than we do. Make studying their home state more than just a social studies lesson, make it fun, a project to undertake for a whole year. Make the whole thing a grand adventure and share in the enjoyment that that adventure creates. Have fun!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Fourth grade: Beginning the Adventure

Fourth grade: Beginning the Adventure
Fourth grade. Wow! Did you think when you first looked at your baby, that you would be thinking about what fourth grade would mean for him or her? I know that I didn’t think about fourth grade until, well, fourth grade. Every year, from now until they graduate from high school we are going to see amazing changes. Fourth grade is one of the years where you see big changes not just in your child, but in the curriculum. Physically, your child, at around 9 years of age, is entering a phase where they may be noticing the first hints of puberty. With these physical changes come some emotional changes as well. Your child may be becoming more independent. He or she may be making new friends, and different types of friendships. As for academics, well, expect for the work to become a bit harder in preparation for entering middle school. Your child will be expected to retain the information from previous years and to work more independently. In many states there is standardized testing near the end of fourth grade, and this will mean that in addition to the normal work load, there is the added time and attention spent on test preparation. Stay tuned for more information and discussion on the fourth grade year!