Fourth graders enjoy the study of the Ten Commandments and the Beatitudes. They also enjoy planning liturgies and prayer services for the entire school. In their classroom they celebrate the Church seasons of Advent and Lent in special ways. Each year they travel to the Mother Joseph Care Facility in Olympia to visit with the elderly and infirmed.
Social studies is all about Washington State! The geography of our state and its history are covered in depth. Salt and flour maps have been a longtime tradition for fourth graders at St. Michael.
A study of magnets and electricity give the 4th graders a real "jolt" in the first trimester. "Earth Materials" is the Foss kit taught in the spring. Students learn about rocks and minerals. Bones and skeletons plus muscles and joints equal the FOSS kit "Human Body."
A book report each trimester gives students a chance to share their favorites with other students. The anthology for reading class covers themes about Understanding Ourselves, Sharing the Earth, Transformations, Creative Solutions, The Stories We Tell, and Discovering Hidden Worlds. The Accelerated Reader program challenges fourth graders to read and comprehend.
In addition to the basic computation skills of adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing, 4th graders work with geometry, fractions, elapsed time, probability and lots of "real life" math problem solving.
Step Up To Writing is the program we use to teach writing skills. Fourth graders prepare for the WASL writing test by learning to write narrative pieces as well as expository. A dash of poetry adds creative flair to the portfolio. Grammar is also taught -- all parts of speech are introduced.
What would a school year be like without field trips? Fourth graders traditionally visit the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma and venture down to Pacific County in the spring to visit the Falkner Tree Farm. Our trip to Mother Joseph Care Center helps lighten the hearts of the patients there in the Christmas season.