About Our Grade 4 Program
Building upon the cognitive and social-emotional skills, knowledge and confidence gained in third grade, fourth graders take initiative, practice personal agency and hone their critical-thinking capabilities. They are eager to share their perspectives and express their ideas as they continue to explore their identities as individuals and members of a classroom community. Our thoughtfully-sequenced program and rigorous curriculum provides opportunities for developmentally-appropriate risk taking, which enables fourth graders to deepen their learning and expand their personal definitions of what’s possible.
At Brookwood, teachers lay the foundations for strong class communities: expectations are shared, routines are established and rules are created in order to help all kids be their best. We devote the beginning weeks of school to practicing the skills needed to create and maintain a cooperative and collaborative environment. Classroom communities are created anew every September—each one unique and distinct, molded by the personalities and passions of its students and teachers—with the overarching goal of honoring all individuals as members of our broader, vibrant Brookwood community.
Building Relationships Across Grades
Leadership opportunities abound in fourth grade. For example, as part of our Personal Growth and Development (PGD) program, fourth graders meet with PreK buddies throughout the year to foster a greater understanding of what it means to be an empathetic and responsible member of our school community. This marks an important milestone for fourth graders—having been paired with eighth graders in third grade, they are now the ones serving as role models and leaders to their younger PreK buddies.
Each May, fourth graders eagerly participate in the annual Recess Regatta, in which hand-carved miniature boats set sail on Cutler Pond in a race to the duck house. Through our fourth grade woodworking curriculum—based upon the principles of “sloyd” (originating in the 19th century as handcrafted)—students use chiseling techniques and belt sanders as well as physics theories and engineering principles to design and craft seaworthy (or rather, pond-worthy) vessels. Since 1989, the Recess Regatta tradition has been beloved by fourth graders, as well as our entire school community, and is an example of how cross-curricular, hands-on projects add depth and vibrancy to our academic program.