Grade 4

English Language Arts

EL Education is the provider of the new ELA curriculum that has been adopted by OUSD for grades K-5, starting in the 2021-22 school year.* The curriculum is standards-based, and relies heavily on fiction and nonfiction trade books. This curriculum is open access, and full materials are available to view and at the EL Education website.

* OUSD Dual Language schools use the Benchmark Education curriculum for language instruction.


Poetry, Poets and Becoming Writers

What makes a poem a poem? What inspires writers to write poetry?

  • Love That Dog by Sharon Creech

  • A River of Words by Jen Bryant


Animal Defense Mechanisms

How do animals' bodies and behaviors help them survive? How can writers use knowledge from their research to inform and entertain?

  • Animal Behavior: Animal Defenses by Christina Wilsdon

  • Venom by Marilyn Singer

  • Can You Survive the Wilderness? by Matt Doeden


Ratifying the 19th Amendment

What can we learn from the process of ratifying the 19th Amendment?

  • The Hope Chest by Karen Schwabach


Math Expressions is the adopted OUSD curriculum for elementary schools.* The curriculum is aligned to California Common Core standards, which describe what students should know and be able to do in each subject in each grade.

* A number of OUSD elementary schools use an alternative math curriculum, including Eureka Math and SWUN Math.


Place Value and Multi-Digit Addition and Subtraction

How can we use our understanding of place value to estimate, compare, add, and subtract multi-digit whole numbers?

Understanding Multiplication

How does place value help us understand different ways of multiplying multi-digit whole numbers?


Division with Whole Numbers

How does place value help us understand different ways of dividing multi-digit whole numbers?

How are multiplication and division related?

Equations and Word Problems

What knowledge, skills and models can be applied to solve word problems?


What units of measurement exist and what relationships allow you to convert between them?

What are the measurable attributes of polygons and how can these attributes be quantified?


Fraction Concepts and Operations

How can we add and subtract fractions and mixed numbers with like denominators?

How can we convert between mixed numbers and fractions greater than 1?

Fractions and Decimals

How do we use a number line to model fractions?

How do we relate fractions and decimals?


How can we identify and measure angles?

How can attributes and measurement be used to describe, classify, and analyze geometric figures, lines and angles?


For elementary science instruction, OUSD uses FOSS (Full Option Science System), a research-based science curriculum developed at the Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California, Berkeley. This curriculum emphasizes hands-on activities and is aligned to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). The order of the three modules varies from school to school, depending on the rotation of physical science kits at each school site.

Physical Science


When is energy present? How does energy transfer between systems?


  1. Energy and Circuits

  2. The Force of Magnetism

Earth Science

Soils, Rocks, and Landforms

What are Earth’s land surface made of? Why are landforms not the same everywhere?


  1. Soils and Weathering

  2. Lanforms

Life Science


How do the structures of organisms allow it to survive in its environment?


  1. Environmental Factors

  2. Ecosystems

Social Studies

OUSD 4th graders use Newsela to access a Social Studies curriculum that focuses on California history. This online curriculum is aligned to California Common Core state standards, and consists of individual articles that are adjusted to each student's reading level.


California History:

Early Years

Chapter 1

Physical and Human Features that Define California

Chapter 2

Pre-Contact Settlements and People

Chapter 3

European Exploration and Colonial History


California History:

18th and 19th Centuries

Chapter 4

Missions, Ranchos, and the Mexican War for Independence

Chapter 5

The Gold Rush and Statehood

Chapter 6

California as Agricultural and Industrial Power


California History:

18th and 19th Centuries

Chapter 7

California in a Time of Expansion

Chapter 8

California in the Post-War Era: Immigration, Technology, and Cities