Fourth Grade Team

Mrs. Cocolis, 4A

I strive to create a community where students feel safe, supported and empowered to grow and find their voice both in and out of the classroom."

Mrs. Catherine Cocolis

Ms. Merriman, 4B

Each day presents a new opportunity to communicate to my students the fundamental truth that they are loved by God and He has a beautiful plan for their lives. My hope is to foster a nurturing environment, where expectations are clear and standards are high, so that my students can grow to become the best version of themselves.

Ms. Kathleen Merriman

Mrs. Fairchild, 4C

I love learning, and I believe that it is a gift we should continue to access our whole lives. I believe that every student is capable, and should be encouraged to improve their weaknesses and develop their strengths in order to reach their full potential. I believe that parents are the first and most important educators of their children, and my job is to support families in your desire for your child to grow in knowledge and virtue.

Mrs. Jennifer Fairchild


In Fourth Grade, students apply the skills they’ve learned in reading and writing at a complex level. In Reading, they learn new analytical skills such as compare and contrast, cause and effect, character and plot analysis, the use of similes, metaphor, idiom, and various types of visual imagery. Students learn to identify and explore the author’s purpose, setting of the story and how to identify and characterize the variety of literary genres. They use the skills that they master in Language Arts to write with a more “mature voice” and express themselves, at the same time being able to identify nouns, pronouns, verbs, etc. in their writing. They also learn the meanings of hundreds of new vocabulary words and strive to use them in everyday speech.

In Math, fourth grade students use their basic math facts extensively as they learn to add, subtract, multiply and divide much larger numbers. They also learn more about fractions, mixed numbers, equivalent fractions, standard and metric measurements, and use different types of graphs and tables to organize data. They review the basic geometric shapes and learn how to find perimeter, and other dimensions of simple polygons.  They learn all kinds of Math vocabulary and the various properties of addition and multiplication. They also see how decimals relate to fractions, as parts of a whole number or mixed numbers.

During Religion, students are offered a more in-depth study of Jesus and Mary as our examples of living a life that is pleasing to God. Students learn about the 10 Commandments, the sacraments, the Beatitudes and the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy in detail.  The curriculum also includes examining God’s covenant with the Israelites as well as the prophets and Old Testament figures in the Bible.

In Science, students have the opportunity to engage in a hands-on approach through the Lablearner curriculum.  Fourth graders experiment with chemistry, learn how to use scientific tools such as the microscope and triple beam balance, and explore all types of energy.  As students learn about light waves, they are able to experiment with chromatography.  The Lablearner program allows student to develop critical thinking skills as they collaborate with peers to conduct experiments.

Social Studies emphasizes the study of Virginia history, geography, environment, resources, culture and arts from the 17th century to the present in an interdisciplinary approach. Students participate in map and globe studies and various research reports, culminated in a field trip to one of the local historical sites in which the students experience first hand what it might be like to live in colonial times. A highlight of the year is Colonial Day held in the spring, when the children dress in colonial garb for the day, and are immersed in colonial activities all day, including lunch and recess activities.