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Fourth Grade

The fourth grade teachers are Mrs. Truax and Miss Benson. Each classroom teacher leads the instruction in academic subjects in her classroom. Reading and math specialists may also work with individuals or small groups of students when needed.

Phonics is taught through the Lindamood-Bell program and the SPIRE program. Reading is taught in a whole-group, small group or one-to-one setting. The Scott-Foresman My Sidewalks on Reading Street and novel studies are used in reading instruction. Critical reading skills are taught using the STARS program. All students receive reading fluency training with a reading specialist.

The Sitton Spelling is the basis for spelling instruction. Students also work on spelling skills through aspects of the Lindamood-Bell program and Megawords.

Some of the programs used to teach language skills are Practice Exercises in Basic English Book D. The students have bi-monthly writing activities using the SRSD writing program and weekly responses to literature. The writing genres covered include descriptive paragraphs, personal narratives, journal writing, explanatory writing, letter writing, and poetry.

The Handwriting Without Tears program is used to practice cursive writing skills.

The students divide into three or four groups for The students divide into smaller groups for math instruction. Our math curriculum scaffolds to meet the needs of individual students with hands-on learning and visual models that support and optimize the learning experience. The visual models, including bar models, help students develop the ability to visualize mathematical situations, which is key to becoming a successful problem solver. The emphasis on the concrete-pictorial-abstract (CPA) approach allows students to gain a deeper conceptual understanding through manipulatives, diagrams and models, and then, abstract symbols. The PHPS math curriculum is supplemented with Greg Tang’s new interactive website that aligns with the concrete-pictorial-abstract approach, and the IXL online math program that enhances skills practice.

Texas History is the focus of the social studies curriculum in fourth grade. The main resource for instruction is Scott Foresman Social Studies, Texas Edition. As a part of their year-long Texas studies, the fourth graders go to the Fort Worth Stockyards.

The science curriculum covers The Scientific Method, Plant, Texas Wildflowers, Ecosystems, Fossils and the Solar System. The Outdoor Learning Center, which is maintained by the fourth graders, provides many opportunities for science inquiry activities related to life science such as micro-ecosystems and learning how to make and write observations. Trips to the Nature Exchange at the Dallas Zoo give the students many additional hands-on experiences with science.

As a community service project, the 4th graders collect pop tabs for the Ronald McDonald House.


Fourth grade students receive additional instruction in the following areas:

P. E.-2 days a week
Music- 2 days a week
Tech Lab-2 days a week
Art -1 day a week for an hour