Friday, October 21, 2016

Week of 10/17 Update

Hello everyone!

We have been SUPER busy here in fifth grade over the last few weeks.  Read below to check out what we've been doing!

In Math:
We are wrapping up Topic 2: Adding and Subtracting Decimals.  Students have been using their math notebooks turned side ways to help them line up their decimal points and place values.  Our Topic 2 test will be on Wednesday (10/26).  From there we will be moving on to multi digit multiplication.

Things covered in Topic 2:

  • Mental Math using the Commutative and Associative Properties of Addition
  • Making reasonable estimates using rounding and compatible numbers
  • Adding and subtracting decimals up to the hundredths.

Here are some photos from our Fluency Practice activity we did in class with a partner.

We have finished Tuck Everlasting! We talked about different themes that were presented throughout the book.  I was very impressed with the high level of discussion when debating different themes in the story.  Students did a great job backing up their reasoning with evidence from the book  Some themes we discussed were:

  • Order vs. Disorder
  • Morality - or knowing the difference between right or wrong
  • Natural Life Cycle / Wheel of Life
  • Friendship
As an extension of the book, students created their own Epilogue as a weekly writing assignment.  When we first read the ending, many students were disappointed with the outcome of the story.  The alternative endings they wrote this week came out AWESOME! I love the creativity and detail that went into them.  We will be sharing these in class on Monday.

We have also begun our first writing assignment in ELA - Haunted Happenings.  Students are required to write a spooky, suspense story that takes place in a haunted house. Our goal is to create a piece of writing that keeps the reader's attention with vivid word choice and realistic characters.  We discussed using figurative language, such a similes and metaphors, to strengthen our writing.  We also talked about adding realistic dialogue between characters to help make them come to life.  They are doing a wonderful job so far building up their reader's anticipation with each plot twist! I am excited to see the final outcome of these assignments.

Below are pictures of hard-working writers brainstorming descriptive words for their settings.  We used pictures of spooky looking houses for inspiration!

In Social Studies:
We are wrapping up our unit on the First Americans.  We have been working to create a book on our ipad to document what we have learned.  So far, we have studied the Maya and the Aztec civilizations.  During their research, students have to answer essential questions about each civilization, and include this information in their script that they will record into their Book Creator.

The essential questions are:

  • When / Where was this civilization?
  • How did they govern themselves?
  • What contributions or inventions did they leave behind?
  • How were they defeated?

This week, students wrote and recorded their scripts for the Aztec Civilization.  They have also begun to research the Incas.  We will have a class discussion on Monday where we will create a shared class document to record all of our research.  Students will then use this document to write their final script for their book creator.
Skylar recording her script on the Aztecs into her Book Creator.  
Amber using our new microphone headsets to record her script on the Aztecs!

Maya Glyphs are Done! Can you spot your child's name in Mayan?

Coming up Next: Our first Science Unit - What is Matter?

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