During Class 4 the child turns 10 years old. At this age the child has crossed the Rubicon, and is now ready to enter the next phase of childhood. Children in Class 4 are eager to find their place however, this task may prove daunting as the challenges of their new world arise. The following themes explored in Class 4 aim is to support the children through this journey.
One major theme for the year is Norse Mythology. These gripping tales range from gods to giants to dwarves and to the Norse men and women. The stories burst with adventure, challenges, mischief and trouble, faith, respect, strength, and many more characteristics the children can relate to.
Local Geography is another focus area, as it helps the children secure themselves in their immediate surroundings. They start at the classroom, slowly working out to the Peninsula as a whole. Looking at our environment directly from where we stand, as well as learning to view it from a map, plants the idea that life situations can be viewed from various perspectives.
A theme which is unique to Class 4 is the study of The Human Being and the Animal. During this Main Lesson children are awakened to look at the human being in a threefold manner; thinking, feeling, and doing beings. We then look at various animals, focus on one characteristic that makes them unique, and then look at similarities and differences with human beings. This lesson teaches children to be aware of themselves and how they connect and relate to the world around them.
During English lessons, we continue to build on what has been previously taught. We work on more formal grammar and simple tenses through written and oral work. Additional time is spent on creative writing, poetry, comprehensions, reading, spelling and vocabulary, and dramatizing. Through Speech and Drama a love and respect for the spoken language is developed.
Fractions are introduced during Class 4. This is significant as a fraction is a part of a whole; the Class 4 child may be feeling separate from their environment, friends, and family. Thus we work with fractions to help children see that they are connected and part of a greater whole. Fractions are taught through practical examples and paper cut-outs before moving to the formal mathematical language and symbols. Long multiplication and division are introduced, and work with the four operations is extended with larger numbers.
As the themes for the year are so rich in beautiful description, art work is usually inspired by the Main Lessons. Learning to draw animal forms, painting with light and dark, Celtic knot inspired over-and-under form drawings, and work with cross-stitch are some of the inspirational artistic themes we practice in Class 4.