• 4th Grade Social Studies Curriculum Vocabulary


    Bay – A body of water partially surrounded by land but open to the sea.


    Border – A line that separates political regions, such as states or countries.


    Boycott – A kind of protest in which people refuse to do business with a person or company.


    Cape – A point of land that sticks out into the water.


    Capital – A city where a state or country’s government is located.


    Civil rights – The rights that every citizen has by law.


    Climate – The usual weather conditions in an area over a long period of time.


    Coast – The land that borders an ocean.


    Coastal plain – The flat, level land along a coast.


    Command economy – A system in which the government decides what to make, who will make it, and who will get it.


    Compass rose – A symbol on a map that shows direction.


    Consumer – Someone who buys or uses goods and services.


    Continent – A large mass of land.


    Cost of Living – The money that people pay for food, clothing, transportation, and housing.


    Crops – Plants that people grow and gather.


    Delta – A triangle – shaped area at a mouth of a river.


    Democracy – A system in which the people hold the power of government.


    Discrimination – The act of treating a person or group unfairly.


    Economy – The way the people of an area choose to use the area’s resources.


    Enslaved – A word used to describe someone who works for no pay and can be sold as property.


    Entrepreneur – A person who uses the factors of production to start a new business.


    Fact – A statement that can be proven true.


    Factors of Production – People and materials needed to make goods or provide services.


    Factory – A building or groups of buildings in which goods are made.


    Fertile – Filled with the materials that plants need to grow.


    Flow Resources – Energy sources that constantly move through the environment such as water, wind and sunlight.


    Fossil Fuels – An energy source formed by the remains of things that lived long ago.


    Free Enterprise – A system that lets people control their business and decide what goods to buy and sell.


    Globe – A model of the Earth.


    Goods – Things that people buy and sell, including both manufactured and agricultural products.


    Government – A system of making and carrying out rules and laws.


    Governor – The chief executive of the state.


    Hub – A major center of activity.


    Human Resources – The services, knowledge, skills, and intelligence, that workers provide.


    Immigration – The movement of people from one nation to another.


    Import – A product brought in from another country.


    Industry – A business that makes goods in a factory.


    Interior – A place away from the coast or border.


    Irrigation – Supplying land with water.


    Landform – A physical feature of Earth’s surface.


    Latitude – Distance north or south of the equator, measured by lines that circle the globe parallel to the equator.


    Levee – A high river bank that stops the river from overflowing.


    Livestock – Animals that people raise on farms, especially animals raised to sell.


    Longitude – Distance east or west of the prime meridian, measured by lines that run between the North and South poles.


    Lumber – Wood cut into boards.


    Manufacturing – Making goods from other materials.


    Market Economy – A system in which people are free to decide what, how, and for whom to make products.


    Mining – Taking minerals from the Earth.


    Natural Resources – Things from the natural environment that people use.


    Nonrenewable resources – Things that nature cannot replace after they are used.


    Opportunity Cost – What someone gives up to get something else.


    Peninsula – A piece of land surrounded by water on three sides.


    Plains – Large areas of flat lands.


    Plantation – A big farm that grows mostly one crop.


    Plateau – A high, flat area of land.


    Population – The people living in an area.


    Port – A place along the shore of a lake or an ocean where ships can dock.


    Precipitation – Water that falls to the earth as rain, snow, sleet, or hail.


    Primary Source – An account written by someone who saw the event.


    Prime Meridian – A line at 0 degrees longitude that divides Earth into Eastern and Western hemispheres.


    Private ownership – A system in which individual people, not the government, own the factors of production.


    Producer – Someone who makes or sells goods or services for customers.


    Product – Something that is made from natural resources.


    Profit – In a market economy, the money left over after a business pays its expenses.


    Ranch – A farm where people raise animals, such as cattle, sheep, or horses.


    Raw Materials – Natural resources before they are made into products.


    Region – An area that is defined by certain features.


    Renewable resources – Things that the environment can replace after we use them.


    Rural – In a country area with few people.


    Scale – A ruler that shows distances on a map.


    Scarcity – A situation in which there are not enough resources to provide a product or service that people want.


    Secondary source – An account written by someone who did not witness the event.


    Service – Something a person or company does for someone else.


    Slavery – An unjust system in which one person owns another.


    Suburb – A community that grows outside of a larger city.


    Suburban – In a smaller town near a city.


    Supply – How much of a product producers will make at different prices.


    Tax – A fee paid to the government.


    Temperate – Without extremes, such as the very cold weather in the Arctic or the very hot weather near the equator.


    Textile – Cloth.


    Trade – The exchange, purchase, or sale of goods and services.


    Transportation – The business of moving people or goods from one place to another.


    Treaty – An official document that defines an agreement between nations.


    Urban – In a city.


    Wages – The payments people receive for work.