How to Write a Fourth Grade Essay

Karen hollowell.

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If you are a fourth grade student, you are just beginning to learn about composing an essay. You began writing words and short sentences in kindergarten and first grade, and learned how to combine sentences into a paragraph in second and third grade. In fourth grade, you will learn how to combine paragraphs into a composition. A basic essay is made of five paragraphs that discuss one topic. These paragraphs introduce, support, and conclude your information, but should do so in a way that another reader can easily understand.

Explore this article

  • How To Write A Fourth Grade Essay
  • Choose a topic
  • Write the introduction
  • Write the body of the essay
  • Write the conclusion
  • Proofread your essay

1 How To Write A Fourth Grade Essay

2 choose a topic.

Choose a topic. Sometimes the teacher may give you a list of topics, or you may have to brainstorm ideas. When deciding on a topic, focus on a specific subject. For example, if you want to write about dogs, choose one breed of dog or discuss characteristics of dogs that make them good pets.

3 Write the introduction

Write the introduction. This is the first paragraph of your essay. It will contain two or three sentences that tell the reader what you will be discussing in your composition. (Ref. 1.)

4 Write the body of the essay

Write the body of the essay. The body is usually three paragraphs that include details supporting your topic. For example, if your essay is about your favorite character in a novel, each paragraph should discuss one aspect of the character that relates to why he or she is your favorite.

5 Write the conclusion

Write the conclusion. The ending paragraph is similar to the introduction, but you do not use the same words. The conclusion needs to summarize the main point of your essay. For example, a conclusion for an essay about your favorite character in "Huckleberry Finn" might be written like this: "Jim is my favorite character in this novel because he remained brave even though he faced many dangers. He was also a good friend to Huck and helped him to see how bad slavery was."

6 Proofread your essay

Proofread your essay. Your teacher will probably guide you through this process until you know the procedure. Usually you will read your essay after you have written it to be sure the sentences support the topic. Delete or add details as necessary at this time. Then check for grammar mistakes like subject/verb agreement and spelling errors. It is also a good idea to get a classmate or someone at home to read your essay. They may be able to see things that you missed. They can also tell you if your writing was easy to understand.

  • 1 Sample Five Paragraph Essay

About the Author

Karen Hollowell has been teaching since 1994. She has taught English/literature and social studies in grades 7-12 and taught kindergarten for nine years. She currently teaches fourth grade reading/language and social studies. Hollowell earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Mississippi and her Master of Arts in elementary education from Alcorn State University.

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4th grade writing

by: Jessica Kelmon | Updated: August 4, 2022

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Your 4th grader's writing under Common Core Standards

In fourth grade, study skills play an important role in your child’s writing. Kids do research using multiple sources. They also learn to take notes on what they research, read. and hear. And even stories are more advanced, with more developed characters who show their feelings and react to what happens. And perhaps most important, your child is expected to analyze a book’s structure, logic, details, and evidence in their writing. It’s all pretty impressive!

Building 4th grade study skills

This year taking notes is an important skill. Fourth graders are expected to use books, periodicals, websites, and other digital sources to conduct research projects — both on their own and as part of group work with peers. Your child should keep track of all the sources they check — noting what they learn, the name of the source and page number or url so they can find it again and create a source list or bibliography later.

Also, taking notes while reading fiction will help your child when it comes time to analyze what they’ve read or to give an in-depth description of a character, setting, or story event drawing on specific details.

Check out this related worksheet: •  Finding key points

bttr, better, best!

Last year’s prewriting step — planning — becomes more essential in your child’s writing process this year. Before your child sits down to write, they should use their organized notes to help create the structure of whatever they’re writing. While planning , your child may brainstorm ideas for a story or decide how to organize facts into a cohesive set of points. The more knowledge your child builds during the prewriting stage, the easier it will be to write. Encourage reading and rereading, taking notes, finding additional sources, discussing aloud how new knowledge fits in with what your child knew before, and visually organizing what they plan to write about. After the first draft is written, the teacher and possibly other students will offer feedback: asking questions to elicit new details or clarify an argument or suggest new sources of information. They should check that there’s a clear introduction and conclusion, and that the order of points or events makes sense. Your child will then do a revision (or two), adding, reordering, and refining their writing to show deep understanding.

After making revisions, your child does a final edit focusing on spelling, grammar, punctuation, and strengthening word choices. These steps — planning, writing a first draft, revising, and editing the final piece — help fourth graders understand that research, organizing, clarifying ideas, and improving grammar and presentation are all essential to strong writing.

See what your fourth grade writing looks like

YouTube video

Fourth grade writing: opinion pieces

Your child’s opinions always need to be supported by evidence. Persuasive writing should start by clearly introducing an opinion on a topic. To support their opinion, kids need to present their argument, which is a list of reasons why they hold that opinion. Each of their reasons needs to be supported by facts and details (a.k.a. evidence). After presenting all of their research-supported reasons, kids should close their arguments with a concluding statement or paragraph that sums up how their evidence supports their opinion.

Check out this example of good fourth grade opinion writing: • “ Zoos should close ”

Fourth grade writing: informative writing

This year, your child’s informative writing gets more organized, with headers, illustrations and even multimedia components to support specific points. To begin, your child should introduce the topic. Then they should use facts, definitions, details, quotes, examples, and other information to develop their topic into a few clear, well thought-out paragraphs. Your fourth grader should use advanced linking words (e.g. also, another, for example, because ) to form compound and complex sentences connecting their research and ideas to the point they’re making. Finally, to wrap it up, your child should have a conclusion — either a statement or, if necessary, a section labeled conclusion.

Check out these three examples of good fourth grade informational writing: • “ John Cabot and the Rediscovery of North America ” • “ Big Book of Evolution ” • “ Book report: A Tale of Despereaux ”

Can your fourth grader write an informational essay?

YouTube video

Fourth grade writing: narratives

A narrative means writing a story. This year your child will be expected to use storytelling techniques, descriptive details, and clear sequences to tell compelling tales. Whether inspired by a favorite book, real events, or your child’s imagination, your child’s story should use dialogue, descriptive words, and transitional language. Look for precise language and sensory details that bring characters to life. Finally, your child should keep pacing and sequence of events in mind. The events should unfold naturally, bringing the story to a natural conclusion. Are surprise endings okay? Sure… so long as the details and events plausibly lead there.

Check out this related worksheet: •  Putting sentences in order

Gettin’ good at grammar

You may want to review all those parts of speech your child learned last year because fourth grade grammar is expected to be quite accurate. Your child should know relative pronouns (e.g. who, whose, whom, which, that ), relative adverbs (e.g. where, when, why ), adjective ordering (e.g. short dark hair and small red bag ), descriptive prepositional phrases (e.g. in the air, down the block, on the grass ), progressive past, present, and future verbs (e.g. I was walking, I am walking, I will be walking ), and verbs used with other verbs to express mood or tense (aka modal auxiliaries, e.g. can, may, must, should, would ). Also, your child needs to master the distinctions between frequently confused words like to , too , and two and there , their , and they’re . Finally, your child should be able to recognize and correct run-on sentences.

Check out these related worksheets: •  Prepositions •  Compound sentences •  Punctuating a paragraph •  Its or it’s?

Learning to use language precisely

This means:

  • Recognizing and explaining common idioms (e.g. bending over backwards )
  • Distinguishing between similes and metaphors (e.g. quiet as a mouse and the sun is a yellow beach ball ).
  • Identifying and using synonyms and antonyms
  • Using increasingly specific words in writing (e.g. glamorous instead of pretty, pre-dawn instead of morning, quizzed instead of asked )

Your fourth grader should now be using relevant academic words in informational writing and research reports. Although accurate spelling should be the norm in fourth grade, when faced with spelling more academic words, your child should use a dictionary and thesaurus (print and digital versions).

Check out these related worksheets: • 4th grade weekly spelling lists • Making metaphors • Simile or cliché?

Sharing their work

Most classrooms will encourage (if not require) kids to use technology to produce and publish their writing. Your fourth grader should be able to type up to a full page in one sitting. While teachers should be there to help, your child should be doing the work. Students will also be expected to interact with peers about each other’s work. What might that look like? Your child might read a classmates’ published work online and comment on it, or cite a peer’s work when answering a question in class.

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How to write a perfect essay

Need to write an essay? Does the assignment feel as big as climbing Mount Everest? Fear not. You’re up to the challenge! The following step-by step tips from the Nat Geo Kids Almanac will help you with this monumental task. 

Sometimes the subject matter of your essay is assigned to you, sometimes it’s not. Either way, you have to decide what you want to say. Start by brainstorming some ideas, writing down any thoughts you have about the subject. Then read over everything you’ve come up with and consider which idea you think is the strongest. Ask yourself what you want to write about the most. Keep in mind the goal of your essay. Can you achieve the goal of the assignment with this topic? If so, you’re good to go.

WRITE A TOPIC SENTENCE

This is the main idea of your essay, a statement of your thoughts on the subject. Again, consider the goal of your essay. Think of the topic sentence as an introduction that tells your reader what the rest of your essay will be about.

OUTLINE YOUR IDEAS

Once you have a good topic sentence, you then need to support that main idea with more detailed information, facts, thoughts, and examples. These supporting points answer one question about your topic sentence—“Why?” This is where research and perhaps more brainstorming come in. Then organize these points in the way you think makes the most sense, probably in order of importance. Now you have an outline for your essay.

ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, WRITE!

Follow your outline, using each of your supporting points as the topic sentence of its own paragraph. Use descriptive words to get your ideas across to the reader. Go into detail, using specific information to tell your story or make your point. Stay on track, making sure that everything you include is somehow related to the main idea of your essay. Use transitions to make your writing flow.

Finish your essay with a conclusion that summarizes your entire essay and 5 restates your main idea.

PROOFREAD AND REVISE

Check for errors in spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and grammar. Look for ways to make your writing clear, understandable, and interesting. Use descriptive verbs, adjectives, or adverbs when possible. It also helps to have someone else read your work to point out things you might have missed. Then make the necessary corrections and changes in a second draft. Repeat this revision process once more to make your final draft as good as you can.

Download the pdf .

Homework help

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Introductions & Conclusions in the 4th Grade

Read Time 2 mins | January 14, 2021 | Written by: Kylene Reed

Now that the fourth graders have learned how to take notes, they began their research in the social studies classroom. Each student picked an animal found in one of the regions of Texas and completed their research to fill in their pillars.

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 Students then wrote their own introductions using the resources from Empowering Writers that are found in their writing journals and the modeled example as needed. 

Next, we modeled writing the conclusion using: a hypothetical anecdote, informative verbs and main ideas, and a definitive word or phrase. 

File_002 (1)-2

Here are a couple of students that I conferenced with today! I am extremely proud of their samples!

File_003 (1)

I cracked up almost the entire time I was working with this kiddo! His personality and humor came out in his writing. I loved the "razzle dazzle on over" that he used to get readers to want to read on!

File_000 (2)

This sample is from a student that is new to the district and Empowering Writers. While many of our students have had EW for the last couple of years, she just began instruction in the fall. While I conferenced with her, she new exactly what to do and what was needed each time I asked her a question! 

Kylene Reed

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How to Write A 4th Grade Level Essay

When your child gets to fourth grade, they should already be familiar with writing prompts and how to go about answering them, but they will still need to practice. According to the Common Core State Standards Initiative, there are four basic writing prompts for fourth grade students : opinion pieces, informative or explanatory texts, narratives, and short research projects.

Opinion Prompt

Opinion pieces require your child to think about how they feel about a certain idea or topic and back up their thoughts with facts and logical arguments. An example of an opinion prompt is something like this: Name one class, sport, or club you wish your school offered and explain why it should be available. To answer this, your child first has to come up with an activity and describe how it is beneficial to them or for students as a whole, then come up with a convincing argument on why it should be offered at their school.

For example, they may want to have a book club at their school. To be persuasive, they may explain that it would be helpful to students who love reading, but may not enjoy whatever books they are assigned in class. It would also allow for students to discuss their ideas and feelings about a book they are choosing, building their appreciation for reading in general. The essay would need to be well-organized, and although it may not be a convincing proposal, the ideas should be clearly stated and logical.

Informative Prompt

Informative essays are the most straightforward, where they have to introduce and detail something about a topic. An example of an informative essay would be something like this: Write about your favorite animal. Include interesting facts about this animal in your essay. To answer this, your child will have to pick an animal they like and write about it in detail. This would include things like their habitat, behavior, physical features, and any other facts about them.

For example, they may write about lions, describing their fur and manes, their habitat in the African savannah, how they hunt their prey, and how they raise their cubs. Organization is an important part of this essay; there shouldn’t just be a list of facts, but instead well-constructed paragraphs, like one for their description, one for their hunting behavior, and so on.

Narrative Prompt

A narrative essay will be a story, either real or imagined, they have to tell clearly and with detail. An example of a narrative essay would be like this: If you were the president of the United States for a day, what would you do? To answer this prompt, they would likely detail a full day from start to finish, including a variety of activities that are relevant to this position of power. The things they would do don’t have to be particularly life-changing or politically logical, but they should follow a logical order and make sense for the president.

For example, they may write about how they would spend the morning meeting with all the leaders of the world, have a very fancy lunch in the White House, spend the afternoon making homework illegal, and then sleep in the biggest bed the White House has to offer. Again, these things don’t have to be super impactful, but they should make sense and be an organized story. Their response should include dialogue, such as themselves as the president talking to other leaders or their staff.

Research Prompt

Research projects will require your child to consult sources like books, magazines, or online resources to find out about a topic and then report on it. An example of a research essay would be something like this: Choose a famous person from history or science and write about their lives and contributions. As the name suggests, this prompt requires your child to research a certain person and write about their life. The essay can be organized chronologically, like from this person’s birth, to their career and what they’re famous for, to their death or retirement.

Again, there should not just be a list of facts; your child should write about this person in full paragraphs. Something to keep in mind is that although it can be tempting for your child to Google their chosen person, they may not yet have the skills to know which online sources are legitimate or not. The best way for them to do research is through books or journals, with online sources there to help a bit.

The essential thing about all these prompts is they require a lot more detail and organization than your child has previously needed to give. If your child is having a hard time with their prompts, or with just one kind, a good idea is to enroll them in Reading Genie. At Reading Genie, the teachers provide a variety of engaging prompts for your child to practice writing and give helpful feedback. They will also have the opportunity to have peer reviews with their classmates, building their confidence while showing them where they need to improve.

These prompts can be a lot of fun for your child, even as they get more challenging. Feel free to discuss these topics with your child, or even write responses to the prompts with them. Practice is the best way for them to improve, and you can have fun with them!

Genie Academy offers a range of after-school educational activities for students, encompassing areas such as mathematics, reading, writing, and coding. Held at our New Jersey tutoring centers , our New Jersey writing tutoring program is specifically crafted for students from Pre-Kindergarten to 8th grade. Learn more about our writing tutoring classes in East Brunswick , writing tutoring classes in Hillsborough , writing tutoring classes in Marlboro , writing tutoring classes in South Brunswick , writing tutoring classes in Plainsboro , and writing tutoring classes in South Plainfield . 

Source: https://www.thoughtco.com/writing-prompts-fourth-grade-4172492

Topics: Essay , Writing Skills , Fourth Grader , paragraph writing , Writing Prompt

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How-To Writing: Motivating Students to Write for a Real Purpose

How-To Writing: Motivating Students to Write for a Real Purpose

  • Resources & Preparation
  • Instructional Plan
  • Related Resources

What do students need to know to succeed in fourth grade (or third or fifth)? What supplies are needed? What rules and steps should be followed? These and many other questions provide the framework for students to write how-to essays for a specific audience—future fourth graders. Although this lesson focuses specifically on fourth grade, it can be easily adapted for third or fifth graders. Students first learn about the how-to writing genre by reading an assortment of instruction manuals. This also demonstrates how how-to writing relates to their everyday lives. The teacher then models each step of the writing process as the students write about how to be successful fourth graders. After students publish their writing, the final drafts are saved for the following year's fourth graders to read at the beginning of the next school year.

Featured Resources

  • Power Proofreading : Students can use this interactive site to complete activities to build their proofreading skills.  
  • Essay Map : Using this interactive site, students can organize the information they will include in their essay.

From Theory to Practice

  • Students need to understand that there are purposes for writing other than for the teacher to read and grade it. Writing how-to essays has been found to be a successful alternative to the traditional research paper or teacher-based essay.  
  • How-to writing is a genre that appeals to most students because it is applicable in the world. This genre involves exploring interests and needs to identify a topic, conducting several research methods, and working through the writing process.  
  • When students' writing has an authentic audience beyond the classroom teacher, they can see a direct connection between their lives and their literacy development.

Common Core Standards

This resource has been aligned to the Common Core State Standards for states in which they have been adopted. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, CCSS alignments are forthcoming.

State Standards

This lesson has been aligned to standards in the following states. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, standard alignments are not currently available for that state.

NCTE/IRA National Standards for the English Language Arts

  • 1. Students read a wide range of print and nonprint texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment. Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works.
  • 4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.
  • 5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
  • 12. Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).

Materials and Technology

  • Computer with Internet access and LCD projector  
  • Assortment of instruction manuals as examples of how-to writing  
  • Chart paper  
  • Overhead projector and transparencies
  • How to Succeed in the Fourth Grade: Graphic Organizer  
  • How to Succeed in the Fourth Grade: Writing Rubric  
  • Correcting and Proofreading Checklist

Preparation

1. Gather a few instruction manuals to use as examples of how-to writing in Session 1. Possible items include instructions for board games, recipes, and instructions from a children's craft magazine.
 
2. Be prepared to model appropriate steps in the writing process each session. Steps of the writing process include prewriting, writing a rough draft, revising, proofreading, and writing a final draft
 
3. Visit and familiarize yourself with the . If you do not have classroom computers with Internet access, arrange one 40-minute session in your school's computer lab (see Session 2). Bookmark the Essay Map on the computers your students will be using.
 

Student Objectives

Students will

  • Recognize that how-to writing is a genre they encounter in their everyday lives  
  • Identify the characteristics of the how-to writing genre and incorporate them into a how-to essay about succeeding in the fourth grade  
  • Identify the audience for their how-to essay (i.e., future fourth graders) and shape the essay to appeal to this audience  
  • Apply the steps of the writing process to complete the how-to essay
1. Pass out the instruction manuals you have gathered in advance of the lesson to groups of students (see Preparation, 1) and ask them to take five minutes to scan the manuals, focusing in particular on the characteristics they notice in the samples.
 
2. After five minutes, ask groups what they found in each manual. List the characteristics on a piece of chart paper and post it in the classroom for future reference. These characteristics may include logical sequence, enough detail for someone to read the directions and easily complete the activity, and the materials needed.
 
3. Explain to students that they are each going to be writing a similar instruction manual for the new fourth graders to use at the beginning of the next school year. Their writing prompt is how to succeed in the fourth grade. (You can easily modify this lesson for whatever grade you teach.)
 
4. Introduce the concept of audience. Discuss the audience of the students' essays and what students feel will be important for future fourth graders to know. They are now the fourth-grade experts. Discuss how their audience will not know any of the rules and procedures so their explanations will have to be very detailed.
 
5. As a prewriting activity, use an overhead projector and have students brainstorm a list of materials needed for the fourth grade. Students can then choose which materials are most important (maybe all) and include them on their .
 
6. On the overhead projector, make another list of the rules for fourth grade, and have students again choose the most important to include on their graphic organizers.
 
7. Using the overhead projector once again, ask students to brainstorm the steps for success in the fourth grade. Have each student choose the steps he or she feels are most important and to include them on the graphic organizer.
 

Note: This prewriting activity allows students to work together to brainstorm ideas for their writing, but it also allows for each essay to be different, as students may choose different materials, rules, or steps for success in the fourth grade.

1. Give students the . Discuss the expectations for the writing assignment as described on the rubric. Focus the discussion on how students can achieve a score of four in each category.
 
2. Model for students how to use the to help them organize the information from the . For example, information about the supplies or materials needed for fourth grade can comprise the first paragraph of the essay and should go in the box labeled . During this modeling, show students how to add detail and explanatory information that would be relevant for the audience of their essays.
 
3. Emphasize the importance of keeping the information organized in the map, because they will use it to write their first draft. You may instruct students to write one paragraph about the supplies needed in fourth grade, one paragraph about the rules for fourth grade, and one paragraph about how to succeed in the fourth grade. This organization makes best use of the information students recorded during the prewriting stage.
 
4. Have students fill in their own Essay Maps using the information from their graphic organizers. They should print their maps when they are finished.
 
1. Model for students how to use their printouts to begin drafting their rough drafts. Tell them to skip lines as they write their drafts to allow for revisions and proofreading marks.
 
2. Circulate while students are working to offer support and answer questions.
 
1. Begin this session by showing the . [You may also want to access the lesson to give students more practice with peer editing.]
 
2. Discuss how to work with a partner to help each other improve and revise the rough draft (i.e., make positive comments first, ask detailed questions, and accept your classmate's comments without becoming angry).
 
3. Have students work with a partner to review each other's rough drafts. Students should first switch papers to read silently. They can then use colored pencils to make comments and suggested changes. Make sure that students remember to discuss spelling, punctuation, and capitalization errors that they notice in each other's essays. They should also ensure that the essay includes the characteristics of how-to writing (as posted on the chart paper in Session 1) and is appropriate for the intended audience of future fourth graders.
 
4. Ask students to revise their essays based on the peer editing for homework.
 
1. Bring students to the computer lab to access the website. This site has grade-appropriate activities for students to practice their proofreading skills.
 
2. After students complete the practice activities online, they can begin proofreading their own essays using the .
 
3. After making appropriate corrections, students can prepare their final drafts.
 
4. As a reflection activity, discuss with students how they felt about this writing activity. Ask questions, such as:

Students may choose a topic of interest to write another how-to essay. For example, students may choose to write instructions for how to play a board game or a sport that they enjoy.

Student Assessment / Reflections

Use the How-To Succeed in the Fourth Grade: Writing Rubric to assess students' writing.

  • Strategy Guides
  • Student Interactives
  • Calendar Activities

This strategy guide explains the writing process and offers practical methods for applying it in your classroom to help students become proficient writers.

The Essay Map is an interactive graphic organizer that enables students to organize and outline their ideas for an informational, definitional, or descriptive essay.

Students examine the different ways that they write and think about the role writing plays in life.

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How to Teach Opinion Writing to Kids in Grade 4

how to write an essay for 4th graders

Here's a step-by-step guide to help you teach opinion writing to students at the grade 4 level.

Introduce the concept

Begin by explaining what opinion writing is. Emphasize that it involves expressing personal beliefs or viewpoints.

Provide examples of opinions in everyday life, such as favorite foods, movies, or books.

Model the process of forming an opinion and supporting it with reasons. Use a simple topic, like "What is the best season?" and demonstrate how to express your opinion and provide reasons for it.

Brainstorming

Help your kids brainstorm topics for their opinions. Encourage them to think about things they feel strongly about, such as favorite hobbies, school subjects, or extracurricular activities.

Organize thoughts

Teach students how to organize their thoughts before writing. Use graphic organizers like a T-chart or a web to help them outline their opinion and reasons.

Introduction

Teach students to begin their opinion writing with a strong introduction that clearly states their opinion. This could include a hook to grab the reader's attention.

Body paragraphs

Break down the body of the essay into paragraphs, each focusing on a specific reason supporting their opinion.

Emphasize the importance of providing details and examples to support each reason.

Transition words

Teach the use of transition words to connect ideas within and between paragraphs. Words like "first," "next," "finally," and "in addition" can help create a smooth flow.

Counterarguments

Introduce the concept of counterarguments. Teach your kids how to acknowledge and address opposing viewpoints while strengthening their own arguments.

Guide students in writing a strong conclusion that restates their opinion and summarizes their key reasons. Encourage them to end with a memorable statement.

Opinion writing worksheets

In our grade 4 grammar and writing are, we have a section of new worksheets for students to practice opinion writing .

Counterarguments practice

Students practice writing counterarguments in this first set of opinion writing worksheets.

Opinion writing graphic organizer

Students make use of these graphic organizers to plan out their thoughts, reasons and counterarguments.

Prompt and write worksheets

Students are given a prompt and asked to organize their essays with these different types of graphic organizers.

Writing prompts practice

The final set of worksheets has students practice stating their opinions of a series of writing prompts .

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The Guide to 4th Grade: Reading and Writing

Review reading and writing curricula for 4th grade, including what to expect and resources to support learning..

Congratulations: Your child is officially a member of the “upper” grades! As fourth graders, students deepen their skills to prepare for middle school. That being said, they still learn like elementary school students do. Most fourth graders are developmentally very much still children — they enjoy and learn from play, and they thrive in nurturing and warm environments. However, the content of most 4th grade curricula pushes students to think, analyze, and learn in more sophisticated and structured ways than they did in the “lower” grades.

In 4th grade, students learn how to deeply think about and make connections in new material, and grasp more complex concepts across all subjects. They also write with clarity, flow, and structure similar to that of traditional essays. Fourth graders are encouraged to be more independent in how they learn, and depend less on their teacher's guidance. They research, plan, and revise their work more by themselves — setting the foundation to be lifelong, self-starting learners.

Read on for what to expect this year, and shop all books and resources for 4th grade at The Scholastic Store . 

For more book and reading ideas,  sign up  for our Scholastic Parents newsletter!

Reading in 4th Grade

Much of the 4th grade reading curriculum teaches students how to analyze the books they read. Rather than just understand the plot and information given in a text, students are encouraged to think about the messages and how they relate to their own lives. They also compare texts to each other and make connections both within one text and across multiple texts.

In short, 4th graders begin to learn how to think and talk about a text to find deeper meanings and messages. This is done both with texts students read independently and those read by the whole class or smaller groups of students. Teachers may often use a class read-aloud to show students strategies for thinking about and analyzing what they read, encouraging them to do this in their own reading. Students also do this as they write in more detail about the texts they read. 

To build reading skills, your 4th grader :

  • Uses specific examples from the text to explain characters’ motivations, main events, central themes, or ideas about a text.
  • Uses the context of a text to determine the meaning of a word.
  • Understands and can explain the differences between narrative prose, drama, and poetry.
  • Identifies and refers to the different parts of poems and plays, such as verses, settings, and characters.
  • Interprets and connects information from illustrations, graphs, charts, or other sources related to the text.
  • Identifies, compares, and contrasts different perspectives from which texts are written (for example, first and third person).
  • Compares and contrasts the way different texts address the same issue, theme, or topic.
  • Makes connections between people, events, or important ideas in a text.
  • Uses previous knowledge to read unfamiliar multi-syllable words.
  • Reads grade-level texts with accurate comprehension, pacing, and expression.

Fourth Grade Reading Activities

Read and Research Together : Read the same book as your child independently, together, or a combination of both. Talk about the book as you read it, reviewing main ideas and plots and expressing your opinions. Then read an additional book or books on the same subject and compare and contrast how they dealt with the same issue. 

Compare Perspectives : Read two texts — one written in first person and one in third person — about the same event. Talk with your child about the differences and why they thinks these differences exist. Or, try it yourself! After sharing an experience with your child, each of you can write about it from your own perspective. Talk about the differences between what you wrote to gain a better understanding of perspective.

Read magazine and newspaper articles. Focus on the illustrations, graphs, or charts. Point out to your child what they show, ask them to help you interpret them, and discuss how they help explain or elaborate on the text. 

Writing in 4th Grade

Much of the 4th grade writing curriculum focuses on developing writing that has clarity and structure, and that uses reasons, facts, and details to support and strengthen arguments. Fourth graders are taught to organize their writing, ensure that it flows well, and group together related components. As students learn to think more deeply about concepts they are taught, they are encouraged to write in deeper ways as well. They do this by going beyond simply stating the facts — they express ideas, make connections, and provide details and emotions when appropriate.

To build writing skills, your 4th grader :

  • Writes opinion pieces that express a point of view; have an introduction, a conclusion, reasons, and facts to support the opinion; and group together related ideas.
  • Writes informative/explanatory pieces that present information on a topic, use facts and details, and group together related topics; provides introductions and conclusions in these pieces.
  • Writes narrative pieces that use specific details, descriptions, and dialogue to convey a real event; includes an introduction and conclusion in each piece.
  • Plans, revises, and edits their writing.
  • Uses technology to publish, research, and communicate with others under the proper guidance of an adult or teacher.
  • Types with a beginner’s accuracy and ability (for example, types one page of text within one sitting).
  • Completes research projects by taking notes, organizing them, and presenting them; lists the texts and resources used.
  • Writes for both long (over weeks) and shorter (one sitting or a couple of days) periods of time.

Fourth Grade Writing Activities

Ask Why : When your child expresses their opinion about something, ask them why they think that or how they know it is true. This will help them learn to support their opinion with reasons and/or facts. Do the same when you express your opinion or ideas about something.

Email with your Child : Set up an email account for your child and write emails describing your days to each other. Include details, conversations, thoughts, and emotions you had. This can be done in addition to generally encouraging (and supervising) your child’s use of technology — helping them use it for research, writing, and communicating with others. As always, be cautious of your child’s technology use by monitoring and supervising how much it is used and with whom they communicate.

Practice Note Taking : When you and your child go somewhere like a museum or a new city, pretend to be reporters and take notes (give them a journal they'll love to take notes in, like the Klutz: Decorate This Journal ). Later on, use those notes to describe what you learned. You can even relay your “reports” like a newscaster would.

Shop the best resources for fourth grade below! You can find all books and activities at  The Scholastic Store . 

Explore other grade guides: 

  • Kindergarten
  • First Grade
  • Second Grade
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4th Grade Essay Writing Educational Resources

Map Your Essay: Graphic Organizer

Because differences are our greatest strength

Video: How fourth graders do research for an essay

how to write an essay for 4th graders

By The Understood Team

In fourth grade, kids usually start to think more deeply about the essays they write. You’ll see this in the ways they investigate a topic and organize their thoughts about it. Watch this video from Understood founding partner GreatSchools to find out what methods they’re likely to use.

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50+ Tips, Tricks, and Ideas for Teaching 4th Grade

Brilliant ideas from brilliant teachers (like you).

Tips and tricks for teaching fourth grade including writing positive notes and letting students plan an assembly.

Are you new to teaching fourth grade and looking for inspo? Or have you been doing this for a while and you’re looking for ways to revamp what you’re already doing? We’ve got you! We’ve looked through our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook and the web for some of the best tips for teaching fourth grade. We’ve organized the list by topic to make it easy to cruise for ideas. Let’s do this!

Getting Your Classroom Ready

1. classroom setup.

Need ideas to make sure your classroom is ready for your students? Here’s an excerpt from the book Responsive Classroom: What Every 4th Grade Teacher Needs To Know About Setting Up and Running a Classroom.

2. Try different classroom layouts

Long gone are the days of straight rows of desks lining the classroom.  Throw out your seating chart and try one of these ideas instead .

3. Fill your classroom library with these classic fourth grade books

Collage of 7 books for teaching 4th Grade

Teaching fourth grade involves a lot of reading! Here is a big list of our favorites.

4. Create interactive bulletin boards

Brit-Jeltema-standing-in-front-of-her-interactive-bulletin-board when teaching 4th grade

Have you ever heard of or tried interactive bulletin boards? Here’s an article from Brittany Jeltema and her tips for bulletin boards students can use . Plus, here are our favorite interactive bulletin boards for inspiration.

5. Get a jump start on lessons

Teacher planning and prep time are precious! It makes life a lot easier when you can purchase existing lessons, bundles, books, and pages. And why not support other teachers while you do it? Check out our favorite Teacher Pay Teachers sellers for fourth grade.

The First Days of School

6. introduce yourself creatively.

Make day one memorable by introducing yourself in a creative way, such as sending postcards over the summer. Here are our favorite creative teacher introduction ideas .

7. Make “Big Plans”

Students written plans on sticky notes displayed on a wall, as an idea for teaching 4th grade.

We love this start-of-the-year activity from Write On, Fourth Grade ! Start by reading Big Plans by Bob Shea and Lane Smith. Then on construction paper, have students create their own plans for fourth grade, for their school career, and for adulthood. Hang ’em up and label the wall “Our Big Plans”!

8. Set goals with your students

Have you ever heard the phrase “a goal without a plan is just a wish”? Let’s support our students in turning their wishes into actions with this goal-setting activity.

9. Establish an anti-bullying culture from day one

Download free and kid-centric anti-bullying printables from Kid Pointz to help your students understand the importance of avoiding peer pressure and handling bullies constructively. Plus check out our anti-bullying videos and anti-bullying books to share with your students.

“I also went to the dollar store and got these cute little ‘pledge’ cards that kids can sign at the beginning of the year to pledge that they won’t bully each other and will report bullying when they see it. It’s a great way to start the year!” —Jen B.

10. Establish a culture of kindness

Free kindness posters illustrated hand throwing confetti, as an idea for teaching 4th grade.

Print these free, downloadable classroom posters to remind your students that kindness matters most of all.

11. Build your students’ social-emotional skills

Teaching fourth grade means building SEL skills. Use these SEL read-alouds  to talk about everything from kindness to courage to trying your best.

12. Create classroom jobs for your students

Here are some creative classroom job ideas from our teacher community: tech support, environmental support, organizer, textbook coordinator, sanitation engineer, librarian, substitute, chief in charge, messenger, paper passer, supply clerk, IT technician, human resources officer, administrative assistant, waste management. Plus check out these creative classroom job charts .

13. Encourage students to make new friends and maintain existing friendships

Friendships are important to fourth graders. Help them figure out friendships and form new ones with these friendship videos and books about friendship .

14. Make a class time capsule

At the beginning of the year, have students write down their thoughts, expectations, goals, feelings, and predictions. Put them all in a decorated jar, seal it up, and then read them all in the last week of school.

15. Keep your students linked into the big picture of the lesson

Anchor chart that shows how teachers use lesson plans when teaching 4th grade.

We love this kid-friendly version of a teacher’s lesson plans . Put day-specific “Today I am …,” “So that I can …,” and “I’ll know I’ve got it if …” posters on your board.

16. Get rid of the boring worksheets

Instead, engage your fourth graders with:

  • “Thinking maps that students create.” —Aimee V.
  • “Brain-based activities and games.” —Joy W. (Check out these fourth grade brain breaks .)
  • “Foldables. Check out Dinah Zike for ideas!” —Dianne K.
  • “Interactive notebooks!” —Shanna J.

17. Use the walls for anchor charts instead of premade posters

anchor charts for teaching 4th grade

Check out our top fourth grade anchor charts for inspiration.

18. Ground your teaching in ABAR work

Learning for Justice is a website that offers free educational resources for all grade levels in order to engage and focus our learners and ourselves in community, collective action, and social justice. Bookmark this website so you have it all year long.

Ideas for Language Arts

19. incorporate daily writing prompts.

Four printed index cards for fourth grade.

We’ve gathered a big list of fourth grade writing prompts that you can download and use to have your students practice their writing skills.

20. Use paint chips to inspire sensory poetry

Red paint chip with poetry examples.

Let color work its inspiration for your fourth grade poets . Check out other educational uses for paint chips here!

21. Teach apostrophe usage with a strong visual

Shows teachers and students how to use apostrophes when teaching 4th grade

We like this one from Write On, Fourth Grade !

22. Teach the difference between tone and mood with a helpful anchor chart

An anchor chart that showcases mood vs. tone.

Practice applying the definitions by reading passages in class and asking students to identify the difference between tone and mood in each passage. Check out this helpful tone and mood anchor chart .

23. Teach how to use context clues to bridge into larger close-reading skills

Anchor chart for teachers about context clues when teaching 4th grade

We love this context clues anchor chart .

24. Teach the difference between literal and figurative meanings through writing and drawing

Take sentences from your class’s current text that use figurative language and have students (literally!) illustrate and explain the difference in the literal and figurative meanings of the expressions.

25. Try a vocabulary activity … or 15

Use RAFTs, try Vocabulary Jeopardy, and more with these vocabulary activities .

26. Help fourth graders find just the right word

Speaking of vocabulary, when teaching fourth grade, show students how to grow their vocabulary by spending time finding just the right word for their essay or story. Check out all the options for classroom thesauruses .

Ideas for Math

27. practice math skills with the most mathematical icebreaker ever.

This is a great first-day-of-school activity that doubles as both an icebreaker and a math review of last year’s skills. Students create a poster of math equations representing different aspects of who they are, and then they can get to know each other by solving the problems. Bonus: You’ll have instant wall art for Back-to-School Night! From Fourth Grade Fun in Florida .

28. Focus on fact fluency

Being able to add, subtract, multiply, and divide quickly and accurately will serve your fourth graders well. Spend some time each day practicing math facts with these effective teaching strategies .

29. Reinforce math skills with fun games

Check out all of these fantastic free math card games for fourth graders .

30. Learn about area and perimeter with robots

robot craft made from paper squares to practice area and perimeter

How fun is this robot ? Students apply their understanding of area and perimeter by creating different robots based on mathematical specifications provided to them. Buy a TPT robot lesson of your own.

31. Focus on fractions

If it’s not math fluency, it’s fractions. The better understanding fourth graders have of fractions, the better off they’ll be when the quantities get more complicated or the operations get sophisticated. We really love this pool noodle fractions hack for teaching fourth grade.

32. Teach the dreaded word problem

ways to teach word problems in math when teaching 4th grade

Use these word problem activities and strategies .

Ideas for Science

33. get hands-on with science.

Science is the perfect subject for kids to get down and dirty. Try these fourth grade science projects for inspiration.

34. Try daily STEM challenges

Four printout note cards for 4th Grade STEM Challenges

These  STEM challenges are designed with your fourth graders in mind. Try one each day or each week to get their minds thinking outside the box.

35. Teach the plant life cycle

Plant life cycle is always a fun science unit. You get to talk about growing, planting, and nature. Plus, students love digging in and getting their hands dirty when they plant seeds themselves. Here are our favorite activities for teaching plant life cycles .

36. Take a deep dive into ecosystems

animals from various ecosystems, including a cheetah and a bumble bee

Learn about specific animals and how climate change, conservation, and people’s decisions impact their lives. The World Wildlife Fund has lessons on animals from polar bears to monarch butterflies.

37. Teach electricity

It’s electrifyingly good fun!  Shock them with these electricity science experiments !

38. Explore animal habitats

Animal Habitat activities for teaching 4th grade

Ready to explore animal habitats around the world, from rain forests to deserts and everything in between? These fun animal habitat activities are just what you’re looking for.  Take a walk on the wild side!

Ideas for Social Studies

39. try social studies inquiry circles.

Address the required standards through inquiry-based learning. Here’s an inquiry-based learning how-to guide from the One Stop Teacher Shop. Watch your kids sink their teeth into the “thick versus thin” concept, and the Work Plan Form will help students take control of their own learning.

40. Add social justice books to your library

Here is a list of the Best Social Justice Books for Kids of All Ages ! Reminder: Books don’t have to be brand-new to be valuable. Check out your local library and Facebook groups, or buy used to save some bills.

41. Remind students that “all means all”

Learn about ALL people by including LGBTQ+ inclusive books in your social studies lessons.

42. Learn about heroes

Read biographies about famous people in history. Match books to holidays, like  Presidents’ Day  or  Black History Month.

43. Plan an assembly

a man at a school assembly doing a science experiment that makes a cloud of steam for teaching 4th grade

Source:  @jeffevansmagic

Teach your fourth graders how to bring a big project together by taking on a school assembly. Plan the assembly from start to finish; here are ideas to get you started.

44. Use online learning

There are some amazing websites out there for teaching social studies lessons.  Check out this big list of our favorites .

45. Take a field trip

Fourth grade field trips

The independence of 9- and 10-year-olds, coupled with grade-level focus on their state, makes for lots of fantastic options for fourth grade field trips .

Ideas for Classroom Organization

46. check homework three ways.

  • “Pick what’s most important about the lesson, not the small details, and grade that way. Don’t worry about spelling or grammar. The important thing is, did they understand the content?” — Megan P.
  • “For my gradebook, students receive credit for returning homework completed. I go around and mark them off, then I put the answers up and students correct it themselves. Then I go over any problems that the students request for me to explain.” — Montoya M.
  • “I have a box of clothespins with each kid’s name on them. They clip their pin to their homework and drop it into the homework file up front. It’s easy to tell who didn’t hand in homework because you just take a glance at the remaining clothespins! I set a two-minute timer for them to complete this so it doesn’t take too long, and my fourth graders do it in no time! You just have to practice and train them. Make a game out of ‘beating the timer’ without pushing or shoving.” — Jamie S.

47. Set up interactive, exciting centers in your classroom

Having centers, or workstations, in your fourth grade classroom allows students to work independently.

“When introducing a new independent activity, I usually do it in small groups first, so when put in the independent stations, they are able to do it without my help.” — Carol V.

“I have center folders that students keep their work in, and at the end of the cycle of centers, I grade the work as 100, 80, or 60 based upon what’s done and the quality. I give one center grade for each cycle.” — Gary F.

48. Make sure you’re supporting your students with disabilities

It’s likely that some of your fourth graders will have accommodations or modifications that you’re in charge of. One way to make sure you’re providing students with their accommodations is to make a note of which accommodations they need by their name on a discussion or participation tracker . This will help you feel confident that you’re helping each student access learning, and allow you to contribute insights at the IEP meeting.

Ideas for Classroom Management

49. quietly redirect.

Teachers use these STOP sign shape tags to STOP certain behavior.

Looking for a way to redirect your students without making it “a thing”? Hand one of these to a student who needs a reminder to focus and you’ll be in the clear. Just be sure to explain the why and how of this activity before you hand out your first one! Here are free printables from Rock and Teach , or make a more discrete design yourself on PowerPoint, Google Slides, or with just paper and a Sharpie.

50. Establish classroom community in the first days of school with heart maps

Blank heart map for teachers and students.

When teaching fourth grade, you can show your students how to express what matters most to them by illustrating and writing in these heart maps. Download a free template from Fourth Grade Lemonade .

51. Affirm your students daily

Teacher uses a sticky note to send daily affirmation to students.

We love this idea of leaving positive sticky notes for kids every day to encourage them and let them know you’re behind them 100%!

52. Teach executive functioning

examples of executive functioning reminder cards with the example of what you would do if you have homework and it is already late

Fourth graders are at the start of learning to do things independently, like really independently. Support students’ executive functioning skills, those skills that will help them manage classwork and organization throughout their lives, starting now. Check out the executive functioning skills that kids should learn in elementary school and how to teach executive functioning . Also, learn what it feels like to struggle with executive functioning in fourth grade .

53. Accept job applications

job applications that could be used in a fourth grade classroom

Try this classroom job board idea from Teach Create Motivate . Roll out classroom jobs, or add new ones by posting a job board and having students apply for jobs. Students will get important practice in writing skills and managing the feelings around getting or not getting the job they want.

Other Ideas

54. have a sense of humor.

Teaching fourth grade requires a sense of humor, both for yourself and your students. Poetry from Shel Silverstein and Jack Prelutsky hit right at fourth graders’ funny bones. Or try one of our fourth grade jokes to start the day .

55. Build positive relationships with parents

Here are 10 tips to make working with parents the easiest part of your job.

What are your top tips for teaching fourth grade? Come share in our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook!

This master list of tips and lessons for teaching 4th grade will help veterans and newbies alike sail through the year.

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More than 100 reference examples and their corresponding in-text citations are presented in the seventh edition Publication Manual . Examples of the most common works that writers cite are provided on this page; additional examples are available in the Publication Manual .

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  • Online Course or MOOC References
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  • PowerPoint Slide or Lecture Note References
  • Radio Broadcast References
  • TED Talk References
  • Transcript of an Audiovisual Work References
  • YouTube Video References

Online Media

Online media are covered in Sections 10.15 and 10.16 of the Publication Manual . Please note that blog posts are part of the periodicals category.

  • Facebook References
  • Instagram References
  • LinkedIn References
  • Online Forum (e.g., Reddit) References
  • TikTok References
  • X References
  • Webpage on a Website References
  • Clinical Practice References
  • Open Educational Resource References
  • Whole Website References

Link to Home Page

  • Plan for College and Career
  • Take the ACT
  • School and District Assessment
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how to write an essay for 4th graders

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Other ACT Services and Products

ACT Test Day

Everything you need to know for the day of the test., what to bring on test day.

Prepare for test day by knowing what to bring and what to leave at home! 

Bring This, Not That

Admission Ticket Print a copy of your admission ticket to bring to the test center. Your ticket contains important registration match information or your online launch code.

Once you have uploaded your photo , you can print your admission ticket in MyACT .

Acceptable Photo identification  Acceptable photo identificatio n is required to be admitted to the test center. You will not be admitted to test if your ID does not meet ACT requirements.

Number 2 pencil 

Bring sharpened, No. 2 pencils with good erasers (no mechanical pencils or ink pens). Do not bring any other writing instruments; you will not be allowed to use them. 

Watch or Other Timing Device You may bring a watch, timer, or stopwatch to pace yourself during testing, but it may not have an alarm. Your watch or other timing device must be removed and placed on your desk while in the test room, so that it remains visible to staff during the test. If an alarm sounds, you’ll be dismissed and your test will not be scored.

Calculator  Bring a  permitted calculator  to be used on the mathematics test only. You are not required to use a calculator at all, but if you do, it is your responsibility to know whether your calculator is permitted.

Snacks You may bring a snack to eat outside the testing room during break.

Don't bring any of these; you can't access them:

  • Textbooks, foreign language or other dictionaries, scratch paper, notes, or other aids
  • Highlighter pens, colored pens or pencils, or correction fluid/tape
  • Any electronic device, other than a permitted calculator and acceptable watch or timing device
  • Reading material
  • Tobacco in any form

Prohibited devices

The prohibited use of devices is in effect from the time you are admitted to your testing room until you are dismissed at the end of the test, including break times. Specifically: 

  • You may not handle or access a cell phone or electronic device at any time in the testing room or during break times. This includes smart watches, fitness bands, and any other devices with recording, Wi-Fi, internet, or communication capabilities.
  • All devices, including cell phones and wearable devices, must be turned off and placed out of sight.
  • If you access your device or it activates or alarms in the testing room or during break times, you will be dismissed, your test will not be scored, and your phone or device may be taken away.

Calculator Policy

The ACT calculator policy is designed to ensure fairness for all examinees, avoid disturbances in the testing room, and protect the security of the test materials.

ACT recommends bringing a permitted calculator you are familiar with to be used on the mathematics test only. If you test online, a calculator is available in the test platform, but you may still bring a calculator to use. It is your responsibility to know whether your calculator is permitted.

CAS Calculator FAQs

Acceptable Forms of ID

Current official photo id.

Must be an original, current (valid) ID issued by a city/state/federal government agency or your school.

ID must be in hard plastic card format. Paper or electronic formats are NOT acceptable.

You must use the name on your ID to register to test and the photo ID must be clearly recognizable as you.

ACT Student Identification Form with photo 

You MUST present this ACT Student Identification Form (PDF) with photo if you do not have a current official photo ID as described above. This document must be fully completed by a school official or notary public; neither may be a relative.

Unacceptable Forms of ID

You will not be admitted to test if you present any forms of ID other than those listed as acceptable. The following are examples of unacceptable identification:

  • ACT ticket alone
  • Birth certificate
  • ChildFind ID card
  • Credit, charge, bank or check cashing cards, even with photo
  • Family portrait or graduation picture, even if the name is imprinted on the photo
  • Fishing or hunting license
  • ID issued by an employer
  • ID letter that is not an official ACT identification form
  • Learner's driving permit (if it doesn't include a photo)
  • Temporary/replacement driver's license (if it doesn't include a photo)
  • Organization membership card
  • Passport or other photo ID so old that the person presenting it cannot be identified
  • Personal recognition by anyone, including members of the test center staff, classmates, parents, counselors, and teachers
  • Photo ID of parents
  • Photo with your name embossed or printed on it by a photographer
  • Photocopies or reproductions
  • Photos issued by a business for promotional purposes (e.g., amusement parks)
  • Police report of a stolen wallet or purse
  • Printed, stamped, or photocopied signatures
  • Published photo, including yearbook or newspaper
  • Report card
  • Social Security card
  • Telephone calls to counselors, teachers, or school officials
  • Traffic ticket, even with a physical description and signature
  • Transcript, even with photo
  • Web page with photo

How Long Does the ACT Take?

The ACT consists of four multiple-choice tests in English, mathematics, reading, and science. The four multiple-choice sections contain 215 questions and take 2 hours and 55 minutes to complete. After the mathematics test, You will be given a 15-minute break.

If you take the optional writing test you will have 40 minutes to complete the essay and will receive an additional 5-minute break before the writing portion begins. 

How Long is Each Section of the ACT?

Each section of the ACT varies in length and number of questions. The  sections are designed to measure skills that are most important for success in postsecondary education and that are acquired in secondary education. 

Here is a breakdown of each section of the ACT: 

Test Number of Questions Minutes Per Test This section measures:
75 45 the ability to make decisions to revise and edit short texts and essays in different genres.
60 60 the mathematical skills you have typically
acquired in courses up to the beginning of grade 12.
40 35 the ability to read closely, reason logically about texts using evidence, and integrate information from multiple resources.
40 35 the interpretation, analysis, evaluation, reasoning, and problem-solving skills required in biology, chemistry, Earth/space sciences and physics.
1 essay 40 writing skills taught in high school English classes and in entry-level college composition courses. This section is optional.

Your scores will be based only on the number of questions that you answer correctly; there is no penalty for guessing. Try to answer every question within the time limit allowed for each section. Keep in mind the optional writing test will not affect your composite score. 

What to Expect on Test Day

What time does the act start.

We know test day can be stressful, so we recommend giving yourself plenty of time. Plan to arrive at the test center no later than 8:00 a.m. As you arrive, testing staff will confirm your registration against your ID, and assign you to your designated seat in a test room. You will NOT be admitted to the test if you are late .

Plan for your Test Morning

  • Dress comfortably. Consider dressing in layers, so you'll be comfortable.
  • If you're unsure where your test center is located, do a practice run to see how to get there and what time you'll need to leave.
  • If possible, travel to the test center on a non-test day to plan your travel time.

Arriving at the Test Center

  • Testing staff will check your photo ID during check-in. Be ready to begin testing after all on-time examinees are checked in.
  • Please note that ACT may visit test centers to conduct enhanced test security procedures. Testing staff may use an electronic device or paper materials to administer the test. 

During the Test

  • Once you break the seal on your test booklet, or use your launch code, you cannot request a Test Date Change, even if you do not complete all your tests.
  • A permitted calculator may be used on the mathematics test only. It is your responsibility to know whether your calculator is permitted. Please refer to the ACT Calculator Policy (PDF).
  • During your registration process, you will agree to the ACT Terms and Conditions, which contains detailed information about prohibited behavior. On test day, you will once again be asked to agree to the Terms and Conditions.

Taking a Break 

  • A short break is scheduled after the second test. Using cell phones or any electronic devices during the break is prohibited . You may eat or drink outside the test room during the break.
  • If you take the ACT with writing, you will have a five minute before the writing test to relax and sharpen your pencils.

Finishing Up 

  • After the science test you should expect to take a shorter, multiple-choice test covering one of the previous subject areas. The results of the fifth test help develop future test questions and will not be reflected on your scores, so please try your best.
  • If you do not want your test to be scored, you must tell a member of the testing staff before you leave the test center. If you do not, your test will be scored. 

What time does the ACT end?

If you take the ACT (no writing) you will finish around 12:35 p.m. If you take the ACT with writing you will typically finish at about 1:35 p.m.

Additional Reminders

  • Please note that ACT may visit test centers to conduct enhanced test security procedures including, but not limited to, collecting images of examinees during check-in or other security activities on test day.
  • Also remember that cheating hurts everyone. If you see it, report it .

Unexpected Changes

Missed your test date.

Once you have submitted your registration to ACT, by any method, it cannot be canceled. For more information see  Registration Changes .

Occasionally, a test center must cancel a test administration due to bad weather or other unforeseen circumstances. When this occurs, the test will be rescheduled for a future date. Visit  Rescheduled Test Centers  to find out if your test center has been rescheduled and for more information about procedures.

Unexpected Registration Changes

Infrequently, ACT may be notified by the test center of a change that could unexpectedly affect your registration. We do our best to minimize the impact to your test experience, however, we may have to update your testing location or update your test format between paper and online testing to ensure your ability to test.

If a change must be made to your registration, an email will be sent to notify you.

ACT Test Security  

You’ve worked hard to prepare for the ACT, and that’s a big deal. We’re also working hard to ensure everyone has a fair and equal opportunity to demonstrate their academic achievement.  

Prohibited Behavior at the Test Center

To ensure fairness for all examinees, avoid disturbances in the testing room, and protect the security of the test materials, certain behaviors are prohibited at the test center. You will be dismissed and your answer document will not be scored if you are found engaging in any of these behaviors. For more information view the  Prohibited Behavior at the Test Center section of the Terms and Conditions (PDF) .

Report Cheating

Cheating hurts everyone– if you see it, report it through the  Test Security Hotline .

Students who don't do their own work put honest students at a disadvantage. Whether it's using a cheat sheet, copying someone else's work, or sending another person to take the test, we all feel cheated when someone tries to game the system.  

Everyone deserves the chance to show what they have learned. ACT has designed its testing procedures to give everyone an equal opportunity to demonstrate your own academic achievement on a fair and equal playing field.  

If you suspect that someone is trying to take unfair advantages or encounter anything else out of the ordinary, please report it to ACT. You can make an anonymous report about test security concerns by using the Test Security Hotline .

Keep the ACT fair. Report cheating and comply with all testing rules.  

Security Measures

We regularly review preventive measures to ensure every reasonable effort is made to deter and detect potential compromises to test security, while still enabling the greatest possible access for students. Our security measures include:  

  • Students upload or otherwise submit (via ACT website, mobile device, or mail) a recognizable head-and-shoulders photo of themselves when registering for the ACT  
  • In addition to submitting a photo, students must provide ACT with their gender and identify the name of the high school they attend. ACT will use this information to help match the examinee’s identity throughout the testing process. 
  • The student's photo is printed on the examinee roster that testing staff use to check in students on test day.  
  • The photo prints on the student's ticket. In addition to their ticket, students bring and present an acceptable photo ID on test day. 
  • On test day, test center staff match the name and photo on the student’s ticket, the test center roster, and the student’s photo ID to the student who arrives to take the test before granting the student admission.  
  • Both before and after testing, students provide written affirmation that they are the person whose name appears on the test booklet and answer sheet which they have submitted. They also acknowledge that assuming anyone else’s identity to take the test may be a violation of law and be subject to legal penalty.  
  • ACT may visit test centers to conduct additional test security measures on test day, such as collecting images of examinees during check-in and/or other security activities.  
  • After tests have been scored, the student’s photo will be printed on the score report that is automatically sent to the high school attended by the student. Score integrity can then be reinforced by the people who know the students best—the teachers and counselors at their schools.  
  • To deter attempts to circumvent these procedures, students (including those who hope to test on a standby basis) will be required to register their intent to test and will not be allowed to make any test center or test date changes on the day of the test.   

Why We Do This  

Our test security procedures are designed to ensure that examinees have an equal opportunity to demonstrate their academic achievement and skills, that examinees who do their own work are not unfairly disadvantaged by examinees who do not, and that scores reported for each examinee are valid. 

Related Information

Can Scores be Cancelled?

Terms and Conditions - Compromises/Disruptions in the Testing Process (PDF)

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Welcome to ACT

If you are accessing this site from outside the United States, Puerto Rico, or U.S. Territories, please proceed to the non-U.S. version of our website.

SAT Dates and Deadlines

Sign in and register for the sat..

At this time, registration is open for all students for the entire 2024–25 testing year.

All deadlines expire at 11:59 p.m. ET, U.S.

June 2024 Test Dates

These test dates and deadlines apply to all students—U.S. and international—taking the digital SAT:

SAT Test Date* Registration Deadline* Deadline for Changes, Regular Cancellation,
and Late Registration**
June 1, 2024 May 16, 2024 May 21, 2024
*Students will need to register and request their device earlier than the registration deadline—at least 30 days before test day.

**Late registration is available internationally starting in March 2024.

August 2024–June 2025 Test Dates

These test dates and deadlines apply to all students—U.S. and international—taking the SAT:

SAT Test Date* Registration Deadline Deadline for Changes, Regular Cancellation,
and Late Registration**
Aug 24, 2024 Aug 9, 2024
Aug 13, 2024
Oct 5, 2024 Sept 20, 2024
Sept 24, 2024
Nov 2, 2024 Oct 18, 2024
Oct 22, 2024
Dec 7, 2024 Nov 22, 2024
Nov 26, 2024
Mar 8, 2025 Feb 21, 2025
Feb 25, 2025
May 3, 2025 Apr 18, 2025
April 22, 2025
June 7, 2025 May 22, 2025
May 27, 2025
*Students will need to register and request their device earlier than the registration deadline—at least 30 days before test day.

**Late registration is available worldwide.

Anticipated 2025–26 Test Dates

SAT Test Date

Review the latest registration fees and other charges for taking the SAT.

Policies for International Testing

Learn about the different registration policies for students taking the SAT outside the United States and U.S. territories.

International Fees

Learn about SAT registration fees and other fees for students taking the test outside the United States.

IMAGES

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  2. Essay Writing For Grade 4

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  3. 4, How To Write In Fourth Grade

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  4. Five Paragraph Essays

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  6. 24+ Essay Examples 4Th Grade Tips

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VIDEO

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  2. 32 Great Writing Prompts for 9th Grade

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  4. Pick. Organize. Write! (POW!)

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  6. Writing Reasons for an Opinion Essay for Kids

COMMENTS

  1. 4th Grade Essay Writing Worksheets & Free Printables

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  2. How to Write a Fourth Grade Essay

    If you are a fourth grade student, you are just beginning to learn about composing an essay. You began writing words and short sentences in kindergarten and first grade, and learned how to combine sentences into a paragraph in second and third grade. In fourth grade, you will learn how to combine paragraphs into a ...

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    Essay writing made easy using this 4th-grade writing template that provides a step-by-step essay writing process, and examples for students to easily follow. Students at any instructional level will be able to develop and execute essays using this easy to follow format.For more Common Core-aligned writing resources, check out our collection of 4th Grade Writing activities.

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  6. 101 Engaging Fourth Grade Writing Prompts for 2023

    Oct 6, 2023. Fourth grade is a time for students to continue to hone their writing chops as they put to use the skills they've learned and gain confidence in their abilities. We've collected this list of fourth grade writing prompts—including opinion, persuasive, informational, and narrative—to spur your students' imaginations and get ...

  7. Introductions & Conclusions in the 4th Grade

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  8. How to Write A 4th Grade Level Essay

    Include interesting facts about this animal in your essay. To answer this, your child will have to pick an animal they like and write about it in detail. This would include things like their habitat, behavior, physical features, and any other facts about them. For example, they may write about lions, describing their fur and manes, their ...

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  10. Printable 4th Grade Informative Essay Structure Worksheets

    Worksheet. Informational Outlines 3. Worksheet. Personal Stories in Informational Writing. Worksheet. 1. Browse Printable 4th Grade Informative Essay Structure Worksheets. Award winning educational materials designed to help kids succeed. Start for free now!

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    Opinion writing graphic organizer. Students make use of these graphic organizers to plan out their thoughts, reasons and counterarguments. Prompt and write worksheets. Students are given a prompt and asked to organize their essays with these different types of graphic organizers. Writing prompts practice. The final set of worksheets has ...

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  16. Video: What fourth-grade writing looks like

    Kids in fourth grade are writing essays that are more complex than what they've written before. Typically, they'll start with an introduction that gives a thesis. Then they'll use detailed examples to support their points. Watch this video from Understood founding partner GreatSchools to see what else usually goes into a fourth-grade essay.

  17. Video: How fourth graders write informational essays

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  18. 4th Grade Essay Writing Educational Resources

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  20. Opinion Writing

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  25. What You Need to Know for Test Day

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