The Fifth Grade Curriculum
The primary goal of the Language Arts curriculum is to expose students to several different literary styles. Ten books on different subjects are covered throughout the year as well as other fun reading books which are shared by the class. Book reports, time lines, and the creation of a board games based on a book are assigned. Daily reading is encouraged. Additionally, students take weekly spelling tests and definition tests that include bonus words from a junior SAT source. Furthermore, vocabulary is consistently integrated with other subjects in fifth grade. Emphasis is also placed on using a thesaurus, as well as studying the etymology of words. Students create crosswords puzzles, as well as other word games in order to build their vocabulary. Additionally, the curriculum aims to strengthen grammar and punctuation skills. Students also concentrate on how to use the dictionary, encyclopedia, and the MLA style sheet as learning tools. Different types of writing are emphasized. Students learn how to write a structured paragraph and composition as well as have an opportunity to develop creative writing pieces. Additionally, students learn how to write a research paper through a joint collaborative effort with the librarian. Technology is also integrated as the children learn to use the computer to access information. Learning how to write a formal bibliography as well as format the research paper is also stressed. Emphasis is placed on using correct grammar and punctuation as well as developing and strengthening writing skills.
The focus of the fifth grade math program is to teach basic math skills as well as geometry, problem solving, graphing, statistics, probability, pre-algebra, percentages and ratios. In addition, students are asked to apply what they have learned through worksheets and problems of the week. Group problem solving is encouraged. Students solve a problem of the day relating to a topic of the week, and are encouraged to use word problems and written explanations to detail procedures.
The fifth grade year focuses on American History. Students learn how our country has developed from the first explorers to Reconstruction. The curriculum covers the American Revolution as well as the Industrial Revolution. Students engage in a variety of learning projects to reinforce concepts and skills taught in each unit. Learning projects include creating brochures, completing individual projects and reading materials that relate to specific chapters they are studying. Additionally, literature and poetry are integrated into the curriculum. For examples, students study Paul Revere and then read and analyze the poem written by Longfellow.
A major goal in fifth grade is to solidify and reinforce study skills that have been taught throughout a child’s Carey School years. Students are asked to keep an organized assignment notebook as well as a binder for each subject throughout the fifth grade year. In addition, students learn how to better manage their time as well as become more organized. Students also review test preparations as well as test taking techniques. Additionally, students learn note-taking skills and how to make and use outlines. All of these skills are integrated into all the other subject areas.
During the fifth grade year, students are introduced to the communication flow chart and learn how communication takes place. Students are asked to give three different speeches and then the class participates in focused debates. Debating skills are emphasized throughout the year. The fifth grade students are asked to use what they have learned when leading assemblies, talking to other classes and giving presentations. The focus of the class is to help students become better speakers. Different communication skills are stressed and students practice speeches on different topics.
The focus of the fifth grade geography class is for students to learn about the different geographic regions of the United States, while keeping a journal of their “travels” around the country. Students create a power point project of their journey as well as design a hot-air balloon in art class. Students enjoy taking the imaginary balloon ride across the United States while stopping in different states. This class integrates technology and art as well as creative writing. Map skills are also emphasized.
HEALTH AND SEX EDUCATION
The focus of sex education is to help students gain an accurate and age appropriate understanding of puberty, while developing a positive self image and attitude towards the changes experienced. Students learn about social, emotional, and physical changes associated with puberty. They also learn about the development of the male and female reproductive systems. Emphasis is placed on good health, nutrition, and personal hygiene.
As stated in the goals of The Carey School Mission statement, we strive to promote the value of kindness. As one avenue for promoting kindness to others, the fifth grade participates in the community service program. Students are asked to complete four hours of community service. Afterwards, students are asked to write a report based on their service. The community service projects are displayed at The Carey School in the 5th grade classroom at Open House. The focus of the program is to show the students how they can contribute to their community.