Fourth grade language arts: Research tools
Fourth graders, in general, have become decent readers. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, but at this point many children are enjoying chapter books and have begun to research their own interests. I have personally witnessed my own child search the internet, and look for books in the library that interest her. This is a trait that should be fostered in all fourth grade readers. As we ask more of them in their writing, they will need more information to have subject matter to write about. Fourth graders should be able to use numerous research tools such as encyclopedias, dictionaries, internet search engines, and library data bases in search of books on topics of interest. Make sure you child is familiar with the lay out of your local library, and help him figure out the process to look up a book title and then locate it within the library. Encyclopedias in book form are quickly going the way of the dodo bird, but replacing them are internet encyclopedias and the internet itself. There is so much more information available to our children than we had, and it is important that we insure that they know how to safely utilize this abundance of information and research material. A special note here, many fourth graders are not yet accomplished spellers, so you might want to double check their internet search terms. One misplaced letter in a search could expose your child to something inappropriate for their age and maturity level.