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What Your Fourth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Fourth-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series) Paperback – July 1, 1994

4.4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews
Book 6 of 8 in the Core Knowledge Series

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"1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12"
Parenting tools to use in virtually every situation, from internationally renowned clinical psychologist Thomas Phelan. Learn more.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Grade by grade, these groundbreaking and successful books provide a solid foundation in the fundamentals of a good education for first to sixth graders.

B & W photographs, linecuts, and maps throughout; two-color printing.

From the Inside Flap

Grade by grade, these groundbreaking and successful books provide a solid foundation in the fundamentals of a good education for first to sixth graders.

B & W photographs, linecuts, and maps throughout; two-color printing.
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Product Details

  • Series: Core Knowledge Series (Book 4)
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Delta (July 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385312601
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385312608
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 1.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,815 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

E. D. Hirsch, Jr. is the founder of the Core Knowledge Foundation and professor emeritus of education and humanities at the University of Virginia. He is the author of several acclaimed books on education issues including the best-seller Cultural Literacy. With his subsequent books The Schools We Need and Why We Don't Have Them, The Knowledge Deficit, and The Making of Americans, Dr. Hirsch solidified his reputation as one of the most influential education reformers of our time.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The "What Your Nth Grader Needs to Know" books are a narrative of the information your child should know separated into sections such as:

World History

American History

Science

Geography

Fine Arts

Math (list of what they should know)

English (list of what they should know)

Literature (excerpts, poems, sayings, stories)

The writing is wonderful! It flows. It's interesting. It is not dummied-down! My 4th grader (an average reader) reads it out loud so I can help with vocabulary. My 6th grader reads it independently. Unlike books aimed at students, these books are good reads for adults. I finally got interested in history!

The only drawback for homeschoolers wanting to use these as texts is that there are few if any activites or review questions included. However, you can get the Redwood Games worksheets that go along with the books (free) over at [...]

For homeschoolers, one need only add a math book and the worksheets. For parents of public school kids, these books will be an eye-opener in evaluating your child's education.

Karen Crowthe
3 Comments 143 of 144 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
This and the other books in this series, are such a great idea.
They give a basic structure to what your child should be learning about each year, which is particularly important if your child is likely to change school districts, or go from private to public school, or from homeschooling into a school setting. Because so many schools use the Core Knowledge guidelines, your child won't have big gaps in her education, if she has been taught a curriculum based on these guidelines.
Each book in the series cover all the basic subjects: math, science, history, geography, language arts, art and music. The sections are broken down into small pieces, and one part can be taken up each day pretty easily.
Additional references are included for every subject, so your child can more fully explore the areas that interest him.
The language arts section includees excerpts from some great adventure classics, like "Treasure Island" and "Robinson Crusoe." It also covers poetry, grammar, and common sayings and phrases. The grammar is not in itself adequate, and I would recommend that homeschoolers use additional materials for grammar.
World Civilization covers the Middle Ages. European history is extensive, but this also includes a very nice look at Asia during this period of time. This is much more extensive than what I was taught of the Middle Ages during my entire elementary education. The geography section corresponds with this study, but also looks at all parts of the world.
American Civilization pretty much covers the period from the signing of the Constitution through the 1840's (Manifest Destiny and the Mexican War).
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Comment 66 of 67 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We bought this to use with our daughter who just started fourth grade. We used the third grade version this summer and were pleased enough with it to give this one a try. As with the other, the history portions were well written and easy for her to understand. The choices for poetry and literature are just unusual enough for her to be interested in. If I were homeschooling, I wouldn't rely on this alone, but it does make a very helpful and handy tool for suplimenting a public school education.
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Format: Paperback
One reviewer stated that homeschoolers experience some difficulty making use of this series due to the lack of worksheets. Visit coreknowledge.org for details.
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Format: Paperback
A great way to make sure at least most bases are covered...if they dont get this particular info in school then you get it here. Also serves as a great way to come at the info (especially math) in a different way. I like the social studies as I think a lot of this is not covered because schools are trying to make the mark on the no children left unscathed program...
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Consider E.D. Hirsch's book a cultural multi-vitamin. That is, you might eat well, but to be on the safe side a wide-spectrum tablet will fill in any undiagnosed nutritional gaps. Similarly, E.D. Hirsch has written a series of indispensable books that will supplement a youngster's curricular deficiencies. Every parent, every teacher should purchase, "What Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grader (and so on) Needs to Know."
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book as a new homeschooler. I wouldn't say there is anything wrong with this book, it's just hard to use when you have everything else going on as well. It does cover many subjects, briefly, but doesn't go as in depth as you'd like or follow a natural pattern of learning. You could use this, but I suspect many new homeschoolers buy these fearing they'll miss something. In reality, they probably browse through this book and move on to something else.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It arrived, my 4th grader ran off with it. Every time she has the opportunity I find her reading it. It's a wonderfully written series and has inspired our children to seek after in-depth learning of the knowledge they find inside.
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