As we begin the 2021–22 school year, we’ve made some improvements to the scope and sequence of 4th Grade Math.
First, we’ve moved the factors and multiples (4.OA.4) topic out of our unit on Multi-Digit Multiplication and into the beginning of our unit on Fraction Equivalence. Factors and multiples supports both the work of multi-digit computation and the work of generating equivalent fractions, so it works fairly well in its old versus new place. However, by moving it to the beginning of the fractions unit, students will have already worked with multi-digit computation, giving them more strategies for determining whether a number is a multiple of another.
Additionally, this change gives Unit 2 on Multi-Digit Multiplication and Unit 3 on Multi-Digit Division a similar structure: they each start with new word problem types with operations within 100, then develop their multi-digit computation skills, then apply those computational skills in more complex word problems at the end of the unit. Finally, it evens out the pacing of Units 2 and 4, changing their lengths from 23 lessons and 11 lessons, to 18 lessons and 15 lessons, respectively.
We have also moved our unit on Shapes and Angles from the 4th unit to the end of the year, Unit 8. We’ve done this for a few reasons. First, because this unit covers additional cluster content, the change allows more focus on major cluster work in the first half of the year, allowing teachers and students to spend more time and attention on those areas.
Secondly, it means that students’ work with Multi-Digit Multiplication and Division in Units 2 and 3 proceeds directly into their work with Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, with the Factors and Multiples work mentioned above providing that smooth transition. In other words, students will use their multi-digit multiplication and division skills to work with factors and multiples, then use their understanding of factors and multiples to make sense of equivalent fractions.
This decision reflects our core value of continually improving and refining our resources to make them the best resources for teachers and students.
If you have questions or thoughts, you can reach out to us at [email protected].
Sarah Britton is the Senior Curriculum Director for K–5 Mathematics. Ms. Britton began her career in education through Teach For America Massachusetts, where she taught 7th and 8th grade mathematics. She then joined the staff at Teach For America as a manager of teacher leadership development, supporting and coaching their new math teachers of all grade levels. She has a Bachelor's degree in mathematics from Union College and a Master's degree in curriculum and teaching from Boston University.