Sawyer will begin the fourth grade this year. I have already taught fourth grade using Waldorf Essentials, so I am excited to teach it again with a little more knowledge! Fourth grade has three main themes including NC history, Norse Myths and Man/Animal studies.
We will begin the year with a review of form drawings and then delve into NC! I plan to use David Sobel’s Mapmaking with Children as a guide to use mapping in order to study NC. Some of my plans include having her imagine to be a new settler to NC and landing on the NC shoreline. How would she draw a map or plan out where she will go? I also plan for her to work on a three dimensional map of NC. She will begin her vocabulary in this block with words pertaining to maps. I have several books that I am looking into for her for this block including: Swift River by Cornelia Meigs, Rescue on the Outerbanks, Celebrating North Carolina, Rascal, The Tale of Ole Green Eyes, and Legends of the Outer Banks. NC is also home to many pirate stories which I am sure that she will love.
Her second block is a man/animal block. In this block, we will look at the head, trunk and hands. We will start with self portraits and begin speaking about ourselves as humans. I plan to use both Waldorf Essentials and Charles Kovac’s book to look at the cuttlefish, the snail, the seal, the harvest mouse, the red deer, the hedgehog, the eagle and finally focusing on different types of limbs. Hopefully, we will get a field trip in there at some point to do some in person observing. For this block, I am looking at reading The Jungle Book- although, I am not positive on this.
The third block is a long one. We will work on the Norse Myths and fractions. With Sims, I used the D’Aulaires book of Norse Myths. I plan to use that again but I also plan to us Roger Lancelyn Green’s version of the Myths of the Norsemen. I like that Green’s book doesn’t give constant pictures. I hope this will help Sawyer use a little more of her imagination in her paintings and art. Sawyer loves mythology so I know she will love this block! I have found several books to read along with the myths including The Blackwell Pages, The Norse Code, and Odin’s Child: The Heroes of the North Live On. Hopefully, during the block we will get to some fractions as well! I would love for her to design her own idea for fractions. Sims used his arteries and veins to make a “fraction tree.”
Block four will be done together. We will look at trees, granite, volcanic rocks, different rocks, the water cycle, wind and glaciers.
In her second man/animal block, Sawyer will do more independent research on some bigger animals. Again, I am hoping these weeks will end in some terrific projects. The animals that I have planned include the elephant, the horse, the bear, the lion, and a dog. She will also pick her own animal to present on.
Her final block will be a group block on physics using the Earth, Wind, Fire and Air book recommended by the Christopherus curriculum. The spring is always a busy time filled with hiking and getting outdoors. I put this block here so that we could all enjoy doing some experiments on our adventures!
Again-this is our preliminary plan. I am sure it will change some, but this will definitely serve as our guide through the year!