Students in Grade 4 are often intrigued with science. They are able to use critical-thinking and problem-solving skills as well as scientific methods to plan and implement field and laboratory investigations. These students need to be involved in an active learning process that extends beyond the memorization of concepts to include application of knowledge and skills. Concrete experiences are important to students at this stage of development. Such experiences allow students to continue to build upon and strengthen skills learned in earlier grades as they progress to higher levels of cognitive reasoning.
The fourth-grade classroom includes an active learning environment that provides intellectually stimulating instruction and developmentally appropriate activities. Teachers incorporate activities that foster exploration and investigation, thus enabling students to communicate valid conclusions about their world.
As students in Grade 4 expand their conceptual understanding of science, they identify components and processes of the natural world. These include functions and uses of electricity; how light interacts with transparent, translucent, and opaque materials; the effects of friction; ways in which organisms grow and develop; and the appearance and movement of Earth and its moon.