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Fifth Grade Blog

June 9: End of the Year Wrap-Up

Humanities  What a year! We’ve read novels, written essays, traveled through ancient civilizations, and kept up with current events. We ended the year by finishing A Long Walk to Water and learning more about Salva’s effort to bring clean water to his former home. We also watched interviews with Lost Boys who have been resettled to the United States where they shared their experiences moving from Sudan to the US. Our final social studies project was a talk show where the guests each represented one of the three Chinese philosophies, Confucianism, Daoism, or Legalism. The students learned about the philosophies,...
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March 3: 5th Grade Updates

Hi parents! We had our first visit to BAC this week. 5A spent an hour with our buddies at BAC and had a fantastic time touring the school, doing a get-to-know-you craft, and playing together in the gym. Our 5th graders showed such wonderful maturity and compassion while spending time with the young students at BAC. We can’t wait for 5B to visit the week following Purim! Thank you to the many parents who volunteered to join our field trip to BAC! Sarah or Katie will reach out if you are needed for one of the trips. We unfortunately can’t accommodate...
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January 27: A New Semester

Humanities We are well into our new units in humanities! In reading, 5th graders have been assigned and started reading book club books. Each book features a main character who has autism. In connection with our upcoming visits to the Brooklyn Autism Center (BAC- more info to come!), we learned about what it means to be a person with autism. Although we learned about some common symptoms associated with autism, our books and partnership with BAC will emphasize that everyone is a unique individual. The 5th graders have created a reading calendar for their club and will have reading and...
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December 16: Winter Updates

Humanities What a joy to share the 5th graders learning during our Conference on Civilization this week. These projects really were a culmination of a lot of hard work and skill-building. Over the past several weeks, we have learned about the Neolithic (farming) revolution and the rise of early city-states in Mesopotamia and throughout the Fertile Crescent. We learned about the challenges these early communities faced and how they managed to create a system of irrigation and farming advancements which allowed them to grow and flourish. We then looked at the seven qualifications of a civilization and each student chose...
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November 11: Fall Updates

Humanities  We’ve been really busy in humanities! During reading we are over half-way through Wonder. Along the way we have tracked character development, made connections to our own lives, and continued to practice answering reading comprehension questions using complete sentences and examples from the text. As we read Jack’s chapters, students chose a project to complete. Many chose to do a reader’s theater performing some of the chapters we read. We loved seeing each groups interpretation of the conversations they performed. During writing, students are working on a short essay about the history of their name. I hope you enjoyed...
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October 7: The First Month of School

Humanities In reading we have begun our first class novel, Wonder. During the beginning of the book we are focusing on tracking character development and using the text as evidence for our ideas. The students have written and revised paragraphs sharing their first impressions of the characters in the novel. We use ‘thought prompts’ such as “For example…,” “This happens when…,” “The author says…,” and “This makes me think…” to incorporate examples from the book into our writing. In social studies, we just finished our unit on mapping skills with a quiz and are well on our way into learning about early...
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September 2: Welcome from the 5th Grade Team

Hi 5th grade families, Welcome to middle school! Over the past few weeks, the teachers have been busy setting up the rooms, planning lessons, and thinking collaboratively about best practices for our teaching. As amazing as it has been to have this time together as a staff, it is much too quiet around the building and we are eager to welcome back our students next week! We look forward to meeting the 5th graders during orientation on Tuesday, September 6, 9:00-10:30.  This year’s 5th grade teaching team has a mix of old and new faces. We’re excited to welcome Matt...
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June 15: A Farewell to Fifth

Humanities  We ended the year by finishing Seedfolks and creating projects around the book. Every student wrote an additional chapter of the book where they created a new character and shared how that character came to the garden, what they planted, how they contributed to the community, and what struggle they faced. They also created various projects such as drawing a new cover, researching one of the countries mentioned in the book, drawing the garden, or writing a sequel chapter to one of the characters in the book. Our final social studies project was a talk show where the guests...
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May 20: Holidays, Events, and Plenty of Fun

Humanities In reading, we are working our way through Seedfolks. As we read, we are studying real-world connections to the characters. For example, as we read about Leona each student chose a noteworthy woman from history to research and write a biography about. As we read about Tio Juan who spoke a native Guatemalan language, we learned about endangered languages and people/projects that are attempting to document these languages for preservation. We have reached the final stages of our argumentative essays in writing. This past week, the students incorporated a counterclaim and a quote. They also wrote their conclusion and then peer...
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April 8: Spring Rolls In

Humanities In reading, we are moving onto a new class novel, Seedfolks by Paul Fleischman. I have taught Seedfolks for many years and love this book! It is a beautiful story about a diverse community who come together to build a garden in their worn-down neighborhood in Cleveland. As we read, we will focus on immigrant stories, lost languages, women in history, community leaders, and how each individual can make a difference. Your students will be tasked with charting each character’s background, motivation for helping the community, and the character’s struggle. They will also be given vocabulary assignments and quizzes. In...
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