How to Write a Book Report in the 4th Grade

Tell others how you feel about a book by writing a book report.

Elementary school helps children learn the basics in a wide range of subjects. In the fourth grade especially, children begin to learn how to write about more abstract ideas than ever before in their education. One such writing endeavor most fourth-graders have to perform involves reading a book and writing a report about it. Because children of this age have the ability to read and tackle more dynamic themes and ideas, a book report helps them demonstrate their comprehension of the book as well as their interest in it.

Think about the book and write down a list of things you liked and things you did not like about it. To make this easier, create a table that clearly shows which things you liked and disliked. If you did not like the characters, write "characters" underneath the “Disliked” section. If you liked the description of the setting, write “setting” underneath the “Liked” section. This table can help you later when you begin writing.

Start the report with a paragraph that describes the basic parts of the book. For example, you can write who wrote the book, where the book takes place and what genre the book falls under, such as horror, fantasy or adventure.

Describe the setting of the book in a paragraph. Write about the places in the book where most of the action takes place. For instance, if many scenes take place in a jungle, describe the jungle briefly. If you need to, you can look through the book to jog your memory.

Explain the personalities of the characters in a paragraph. Focus on the main characters--especially the protagonist and the antagonist--of the story by describing any important physical attributes and how they respond to other characters.

Summarize the plot of the book, focusing on the most essential moments of the story. These include any events that present obstacles for the characters to overcome. You also want to detail any crucial information in the book that matters to the overall understanding of the plot. Remember that you need to tell how the book started, what the characters faced in terms of struggles and how or if the characters overcame their obstacles.

Write a paragraph detailing the basic themes or ideas of the book. This part enables you to look more deeply into what you read. Some sample themes include forbidden love for the play “Romeo and Juliet,” injustice for the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” and friendship for the book “Anne of Green Gables.” Remember to describe why you decided on the themes you came up with so that the reader of your report understands the book better.

Discuss your feelings about the book in a short paragraph. Tell what you thought of the book by talking about the parts that you liked and disliked. Write about what you saw as the shortcomings and the good aspects of the book.

Gerri Blanc began her professional writing career in 2007 and has collaborated in the research and writing of the book "The Fairy Shrimp Chronicles," published in 2009. Blanc holds a Bachelor of Arts in literature and culture from the University of California, Merced.