GRADE FOUR WORLD LANGUAGE
Fourth grade students at Half Day participate in Spanish language classes for 120 minutes per week. The curriculum addresses each of the World-Readiness Standards for Learning Languages — communication, cultures, connections, comparisons and community. The instructional goals for each thematic unit integrate language, culture and content in age-appropriate ways. The focus is on what students can do with the language and languages classes are taught almost entirely in Spanish.
Performance Goals – Novice Mid/Novice High
By the end of fourth grade, students will be able to communicate using phrases and sentences on topics they have studied in class. They will understand the Spanish that their teacher uses when working with phrases and sentences in familiar contexts and will be able to understand familiar language in authentic texts. They will communicate in sentences and will begin to extend a conversation by using memorized questions.
Unit 1: Geographical Adventures
Essential Question: Why do we travel?
Students will explore the geography and culture of Central and South America by visiting Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Honduras. They will discuss places to go and things to do in each location as they begin to consider personal preferences. They will talk with others commenting on what they like and don’t like to do commenting on what they can and can’t do in each location. Finally, students will express which country discussed in class they would like to visit considering both cultural attractions and activities that are of interest to them.
Unit 2: Amazon Rainforest
Essential Question: What makes the rainforest unique?
Students will take an imaginary trip to the Amazon Rainforest. They will begin their journey by describing the climate and weather in their current location and in the rainforest. They will create a list of rainforest animals and different plants and talk about what makes each different species unique. They will describe the different animals commenting on what each animal eats, how they move, and will name characteristics that are unique to each animal. Finally, they will describe the Amazon River and Rainforest and will explain why they want or don’t want to visit the region.
Unit 3: Needs and Wants
Essential Question: What do we all need?
Students will begin by exploring basic physical and biological needs and will be able to say what all people need to live a quality life. They will name their personal needs such as thirst, hunger, and sleep and comment on how they take care of their basic needs. They will focus on their water - where it comes from and just how much water their body actually needs. They will be asked to distinguish between basic needs and wants and will be able to state how they feel and what they need or want to deal with that feeling. Finally, they will identify and call attention to the rights of all children.