The English curriculum is built around the three interrelated strands of Language, Literature and Literacy. Teaching and learning programs should balance and integrate all three strands. Together the strands focus on developing students’ knowledge, understanding and skills in listening, reading, viewing, speaking, writing and creating. Learning in English builds on concepts, skills and processes developed in earlier years, and teachers will revisit and strengthen these as needed.
In Years 3 and 4, students experience learning in familiar contexts and a range of contexts that relate to study in other areas of the curriculum. They interact with peers and teachers from other classes and schools in a range of face-to-face and online/virtual environments.
Students engage with a variety of texts for enjoyment. They listen to, read, view and interpret spoken, written and multimodal texts in which the primary purpose is aesthetic, as well as texts designed to inform and persuade. These encompass traditional oral texts including Aboriginal stories, picture books, various types of print and digital texts, simple chapter books, rhyming verse, poetry, non-fiction, film, multimodal texts, dramatic performances, and texts used by students as models for constructing their own work.
The range of literary texts for Foundation to Year 10 comprises Australian literature, including the oral narrative traditions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, as well as the contemporary literature of these two cultural groups, and classic and contemporary world literature, including texts from and about Asia.
Literary texts that support and extend students in Years 3 and 4 as independent readers describe complex sequences of events that extend over several pages and involve unusual happenings within a framework of familiar experiences. Informative texts present new content about topics of interest and topics being studied in other areas of the curriculum. These texts use complex language features, including varied sentence structures, some unfamiliar vocabulary, a significant number of high-frequency sight words and words that need to be decoded phonically, and a variety of punctuation conventions, as well as illustrations and diagrams that both support and extend the printed text.
Students create a range of imaginative, informative and persuasive types of texts including narratives, procedures, performances, reports, reviews, poetry and expositions.
By the end of Year 4, students understand that texts have different text structures depending on purpose and audience. They explain how language features, images and vocabulary are used to engage the interest of audiences.
They describe literal and implied meaning connecting ideas in different texts. They express preferences for particular texts, and respond to others’ viewpoints. They listen for key points in discussions.
Students use language features to create coherence and add detail to their texts. They understand how to express an opinion based on information in a text. They create texts that show understanding of how images and detail can be used to extend key ideas.
Students create structured texts to explain ideas for different audiences. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, varying language according to context. They demonstrate understanding of grammar, select vocabulary from a range of resources and use accurate spelling and punctuation, editing their work to improve meaning.
The proficiency strands Understanding, Fluency, Problem Solving and Reasoning are an integral part of mathematics content across the three content strands: Number and Algebra, Measurement and Geometry, and Statistics and Probability. The proficiencies reinforce the significance of working mathematically within the content and describe how the content is explored or developed. They provide the language to build in the developmental aspects of the learning of mathematics.At this year level:
Understanding includes making connections between representations of numbers, partitioning and combining numbers flexibly, extending place value to decimals, using appropriate language to communicate times, and describing properties of symmetrical shapes
Fluency includes recalling multiplication tables, communicating sequences of simple fractions, using instruments to measure accurately, creating patterns with shapes and their transformations, and collecting and recording data
Problem Solving includes formulating, modelling and recording authentic situations involving operations, comparing large numbers with each other, comparing time durations, and using properties of numbers to continue patterns
Reasoning includes using generalising from number properties and results of calculations, deriving strategies for unfamiliar multiplication and division tasks, comparing angles, communicating information using graphical displays and evaluating the appropriateness of different displays
By the end of Year 4, students choose appropriate strategies for calculations involving multiplication and division. They recognise common equivalent fractions in familiar contexts and make connections between fraction and decimal notations up to two decimal places. Students solve simple purchasing problems. They identify unknown quantities in number sentences. They describe number patterns resulting from multiplication. Students compare areas of regular and irregular shapes using informal units. They solve problems involving time duration. They interpret information contained in maps. Students identify dependent and independent events. They describe different methods for data collection and representation, and evaluate their effectiveness.
Students use the properties of odd and even numbers. They recall multiplication facts to 10 x 10 and related division facts. Students locate familiar fractions on a number line. They continue number sequences involving multiples of single digit numbers. Students use scaled instruments to measure temperatures, lengths, shapes and objects. They convert between units of time. Students create symmetrical shapes and patterns. They classify angles in relation to a right angle. Students list the probabilities of everyday events. They construct data displays from given or collected data.
The Science Inquiry Skills and Science as a Human Endeavour strands are described across a two-year band. In their planning, schools and teachers refer to the expectations outlined in the Achievement Standard and also to the content of the Science Understanding strand for the relevant year level to ensure that these two strands are addressed over the two-year period. The three strands of the curriculum are interrelated and their content is taught in an integrated way. The order and detail in which the content descriptions are organised into teaching/learning programs are decisions to be made by the teacher.
Over Years 3 to 6, students develop their understanding of a range of systems operating at different time and geographic scales. In Year 4, students broaden their understanding of classification and form and function through an exploration of the properties of natural and processed materials. They learn that forces include non-contact forces and begin to appreciate that some interactions result from phenomena that can’t be seen with the naked eye. They begin to appreciate that current systems, such as Earth’s surface, have characteristics that have resulted from past changes and that living things form part of systems. They understand that some systems change in predictable ways, such as through cycles. They apply their knowledge to make predictions based on interactions within systems, including those involving the actions of humans.
By the end of Year 4, students apply the observable properties of materials to explain how objects and materials can be used. They use contact and non-contact forces to describe interactions between objects. They discuss how natural and human processes cause changes to the Earth’s surface. They describe relationships that assist the survival of living things and sequence key stages in the life cycle of a plant or animal. They identify when science is used to ask questions and make predictions. They describe situations where science understanding can influence their own and others’ actions.
Students follow instructions to identify investigable questions about familiar contexts and predict likely outcomes from investigations. They discuss ways to conduct investigations and safely use equipment to make and record observations. They use provided tables and simple column graphs to organise their data and identify patterns in data. Students suggest explanations for observations and compare their findings with their predictions. They suggest reasons why their methods were fair or not. They complete simple reports to communicate their methods and findings.
The Year 4 curriculum introduces world history and the movement of peoples. Beginning with the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, students examine European exploration and...
The Year 4 curriculum introduces world history and the movement of peoples. Beginning with the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, students examine European exploration and colonisation in Australia and throughout the world up to the early 1800s. Students examine the impact of exploration on other societies, how these societies interacted with newcomers, and how these experiences contributed to their cultural diversity.
The content provides opportunities to develop historical understanding through key concepts including sources, continuity and change, cause and effect, perspectives, empathy and significance. These concepts may be investigated within a particular historical context to facilitate an understanding of the past and to provide a focus for historical inquiries.
The history content at this year level involves two strands: Historical Knowledge and Understanding and Historical Skills. These strands are interrelated and should be taught in an integrated way; they may be integrated across learning areas and in ways that are appropriate to specific local contexts. The order and detail in which they are taught are programming decisions.
A framework for developing students’ historical knowledge, understanding and skills is provided by inquiry questions through the use and interpretation of sources. The key inquiry questions at this year level are:
By the end of Year 4, students explain how and why life changed in the past, and identify aspects of the past that remained the same. They describe the experiences of an individual or group over time. They recognise the significance of events in bringing about change.
Students sequence events and people (their lifetime) in chronological order to identify key dates. They pose a range of questions about the past. They identify sources (written, physical, visual, oral), and locate information to answer these questions. They recognise different points of view. Students develop and present texts, including narratives, using historical terms.
The Earth’s environment sustains all life focuses on developing students’ understanding of sustainability which is about the ongoing capacity of the environment to sustain human life and wellbeing. Students recognise that people have different views on how sustainability can be achieved. They learn that sustainability means more than the careful use of resources and the safe management of waste, and they develop their understanding of the concept by exploring some of the other functions of the environment that support their lives and the lives of other living things. They investigate the custodial responsibility of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples to their Country/Place and their past and present views on the sustainable use of resources. Students’ mental maps of the world and their understanding of place are further developed through learning the location of the major countries in South America and Africa and investigating their types of natural vegetation and native animals on those continents.
The inquiry process provides opportunities to consider the sustainable use of environments and resources and to apply this information to develop a plan for appropriate action that people could take to improve environmental quality.
The content of this year level is organised into two strands: Geographical Knowledge and Understanding and Geographical Inquiry and Skills. These strands are interrelated and should be taught in an integrated manner, and in ways that are appropriate to specific local contexts. The order and detail in which they are taught are programming decisions.
A framework for developing students’ geographical knowledge, understanding and skills is provided through the inclusion of inquiry questions and specific inquiry skills, including the use and interpretation of maps, photographs and other representations of geographical data.
The key inquiry questions for Year 4 are articulated below.
By the end of Year 4, students describe and compare the characteristics of places in different locations at the national scale. They identify and describe the interconnections between people and the environment. They describe the location of selected countries in relative terms and identify simple patterns in the distribution of features of places. Students recognise the importance of the environment and identify different views on how to respond to a geographical challenge.
Students develop geographical questions to investigate and collect and record information and data from different sources to answer these questions. They represent data and the location of places and their characteristics in simple graphic forms, including large-scale maps that use the cartographic conventions of scale, legend, title and north point. They describe the location of places and their features using simple grid references, compass direction and distance .Students interpret data to identify spatial distributions and simple patterns and draw conclusions. They present findings using geographical terminology in a range of texts. They propose individual action in response to a local geographical challenge and identify the expected effects of their proposed action.