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Grade 5

Martin Prinsloo


English Language Arts

Students in fifth grade expand and deepen concepts, skills, and strategies learned at earlier grades. They make new connections as they experience more sophisticated ideas and begin to study subjects in more formal ways. They read and write a variety of texts with greater breadth and depth, critically analyzing and evaluating information and ideas. Fifth graders revisit and refine concepts and their knowledge of English Language Arts conventions as they become more sophisticated, independent learners.

The learner will: use reading and writing to learn about and understand their world and other cultures, evaluate text to determine the author’s purpose and point of view; increase vocabulary knowledge through wide reading, word study, discussion, and content area study; use print and non-print media to persuade an audience; use metacognitive skills to accomplish a task independently or as a group member; research multiple sources to deepen understanding and integrate information and ideas across varied sources and content areas; apply comprehension strategies critically, creatively, and strategically and use media and technology as resources for extended research and as tools for learning.


Students will cover the following topics: number sense 0.001-999,999; whole number computation; addition and subtraction of non-negative rational numbers; transformations; properties of plane figures; perimeter and area; bar graphs and stem-and-leaf plots; coordinate grids; rates of change; line graphs; simple equations and inequalities; median, mode, and range. Students will solve relevant and authentic problems using appropriate technology and apply these concepts as well as those developed in earlier years.


Fifth grade students focus on evidence, models, and scientific explanations. Evidence consists of observations and data on which to base scientific explanations. Using evidence to understand interactions allows students to predict changes in natural and designed systems. Models are tentative schemes or structures that represent real objects. Models help students understand how things work. Explanations incorporate prior scientific knowledge and new evidence from observations, experiments, or models into consistent, logical statements. As students understand more science concepts and processes, their explanations should become more accurate and logical.

Students will cover the following topics: the interdependence of plants and animals, landforms, weather and climate, the role of forces and motion in technological designs.

Social Studies

The fifth grade study extends the focus to geographic regions of the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Central America. Students learn about the people of these nations and the physical environments in which they live. As they examine social, economic, and political institutions, students analyze similarities and differences among societies. Concepts for this study are drawn from history and the social sciences, but the primary discipline is cultural geography. Given the swiftness of change and our global information systems, students’ examinations of these concepts must require continuous reference to current events and trends.Computers

Students will cover the following topics: using search strategies, responsible and safe use of online resources, awareness of Copyright and Fair Use guidelines, exploring the need for protection against viruses and vandalism, participating in curriculum-based telecommunication projects, developing word processing document using proper keyboarding techniques, developing multimedia presentation citing sources, developing a product using a database, evaluating resources and information for accuracy and usefulness and selecting and using a variety of technology tools.

Healthful Living

Students will cover the following topics: media literacy, conflict resolution, identify feelings of depression and resources for help, puberty, self-protection, elements of the FIT principals, assessing personal behaviors and taking responsibility for outcome and manipulative skills that impact the quality of movement patterns.


Students will cover the following topics: integrating and synthesizing subject matter, current events, evaluating results and recognizing which media will be successful in given situations, unity, cultures of the Americas, plants, interdependence and exploring the art of the Americas.


Students will cover the following topics: demonstrating appropriate expressive and technical vocal and instrumental practices, demonstrating pitch and rhythmic accuracy, reading and notating rhythmic and melodic patterns, identifying traditional symbols and terms and using appropriate terminology, improvising, composing, and arranging music, listening to, analyzing, and evaluating music, developing understanding of music in relation to history, culture, and other content areas and showing respect for the efforts of others.

Foreign Language

The Grade 5 program described in this document is sequential leading to the development of communicative proficiency in one language other than English. It can be a beginning program which lays the foundation for further language study in upcoming grades or a continuing program which strenghtens and extends concepts and skills introduced during the previous year(s) of language study. The stated objectives can be applied for both beginning and continuing programs. However, frequency and quality of instruction will impact on the students’ ability to meet the stated objectives. Modifications may need to be made for programs meeting minimal periods of time.

The emphasis at this grade level is on: communication including the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing; awareness of other cultures; comparison of language and culture to the students’ own language and culture; connections to the fifth grade curriculum; wareness of the importance of learning another language and culture.

Reading and writing are incorporated as extensions of oral language with a focus on prereading/ writing activities through oral language. Concrete activities involve students in oral language development within a social setting and include interaction with their teacher and their peers in a variety of groupings. Students communicate through basic words and short memorized phrases within a context and may begin to combine words and phrases to exchange information about everyday topics.