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Weekly Update Week of December 17th

ELA: We will continue working on constructing paragraphs this week. We will identify the different parts of a paragraph and learn how to construct t-charts that show the topic and conclusion sentences, star ideas, and supporting details within a paragraph. We will continue to study commas cumulatively in preparation for the test after the break.

History: Students were given a study guide in preparation for the the open-notes test that will take place on Tuesday. Students used this list to go through their notes in their binder, as well as, their spiral notebook to highlight the most important information that will pertain to the test. They should still review their notes so they feel confident on Tuesday!

Math: Monday will be our chapter five unit test. All students were instructed to bring home textbooks this weekend. If you are looking for additional practice for your child, you can copy the example problems listed on each lesson page. Then, they can solve and check their answer using the textbook. This is an easy way for them to practice independently! There are also chapter review lessons at the end of chapter five with example problems!

Science: We will conclude Investigation One of our new cell, Earth’s Forces. Within this investigation, students learned the difference between weight and mass, and we are studying Newton’s first law of motion. We will chart our data by making line graphs and interpret the results.

Please make sure your child brings in their wrapped gift (with clue) by Wednesday for our gift exchange with fourth grade. Students were given a page to help them with their shopping!

Lost and Found items will be donated Thursday afternoon, so be sure to stop by the front office sometime this week to claim any lost items.

At 11:00 on Thursday, students will celebrate the holiday season with a little party. Thursday is early release at 1:00! Also, don’t forget that Treehouse services will close at 5:00 pm on Monday due to our staff holiday party. There will not be afternoon Treehouse services on Thursday.

5th Grade Weekly Update December 10th-14th

Math: We are soaking in a lot of new information in our current unit as students learn how to rename mixed numbers and fractions in order to add and subtract. This week, we will practice all of these skills together as we work on problem-solving and estimation. Students will practice these skills with fun partner games and holiday themed art projects! Our unit test will be on Monday, December 17th.

Science: On Friday, all families should have received an e-mail with a Jeopardy review game in preparation for our unit test on Monday, December 10th. On Monday, students should turn in databooks and unit flash cards, as well as return his or her study guide. We are excited to begin our Earth’s Forces Cell next!

ELA: In grammar this week, we will continue to practice the use of commas in sentences. We will start to do some cumulative practice this week to review all the lessons we’ve learned. We will start our mini-writing unit before the break to review parts of a paragraph, color-coding paragraphs, and constructing topic and concluding sentences.

History: Thursday is our Civil War Food Day! Students should bring in their dish in an appropriate serving container, a serving utensil, their recipe (with source used), and their paragraph sharing how they know their dish is from the Civil War time period or their dish’s history. We will continue our study of the Civil War this week by watching a biography about Stonewall Jackson, comparing the leaders and soldiers from the different sides, learning about the Emancipation Proclamation, the heroic Massachusetts 54th Regiment, and women in the war effort.

Other: On Friday, students read through our Reader’s Theater skit that we will be performing on Thursday morning before the break for our Book Buddies. Please confirm with your student that they will be here that morning before they choose a part on Monday. Our set will consist of a decorated cardboard gingerbread house. If you have any large boxes, please send them in some time this week! We will begin construction on Friday!

Info was also sent out about our Winter Wishes Gift Exchange this week. Wrapped gifts should be brought in on the last week before break, no later than Wednesday, the 19th. Don’t forget the include the tag with the receiver’s name as well as a clue about the giver!

We can’t wait to see everyone for our band concert on Thursday! The performance begins at 6:30 p.m. Tell family and friends to come a little early and stop by the art room to enjoy some tasty treats and support the eighth grade fundraiser for Spain! Please be on the look out for additional information this week from Mr. Gissendaner regarding the concert.

Week at a Glance:
– Science test on Monday, December 10th
-Civil War Food Day on Thursday, December 13th
– Band concert on Thursday, December 13th at 6:30 p.m. (Students will need to arrive earlier.)

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of December 4th

Math: We finished our Understanding Fractions unit and the chapter test was sent home in Friday Folders. Please sign and return them on Monday. In our new unit, students will build upon the skills we learned in our previous chapter as we learn how to add and subtract fractions and mixed numbers. A great way to practice at home is to have your child help out in the kitchen and learn how to adjust recipes to change the serving size! We will practice this skill with the recipes students choose for their Civil War food project!

Science: This week, we will conclude Investigation Five of our Inheritance and Adaptation Cell and begin preparing for a unit test. Our unit test will be Monday, December 10th. On that day, I will also collect data books to grade as a test/project grade. This week, I will send home the rubric that will be used to grade the data books.

ELA: On Monday, students will take the Shades of Gray/Turn Homeward Hannalee novel test. They can use their study guide, their story elements graphic organizer, and the Venn Diagramming the two novels to help them prepare for the test. Over the course of the week we will complete a couple of cumulative vocabulary activities to end the unit. Our last literature circles meeting will take place on Tuesday, this is also the last day to turn in the bonus assignment (Roswell Mill picture). The 10 bonus points will be added to the lowest lit circle grade. All six classwork grades will be averaged into a test/project grade. In grammar, we will review and practice commas in quotations.

History: We will compare advantages and disadvantages facing both sides during the Civil War and Scott’s anaconda strategy to win the war. One of the advances in technology used during the time period was the ironclad. We’ll take a look at the story of the Merrimack and Monitor and create a foldable to go into our interactive notebooks. After more vocabulary practice throughout the week, we’ll end the week with a test on the civil war vocabulary terms given out the week before last. The test will take place on Friday and will consist of matching and completing the sentence.

Other: We will meet with Book Buddies on Friday to decorate gingerbread houses!

Week at a Glance:
-Monday: SOG/THH Test and Civil Food Recipe due (NOT FOOD, JUST CONFIRMING RECIPE)
-Tuesday: Last Lit Circle Meeting/Last day for Extra Credit
-Friday: Civil War Vocab Test

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of November 26th

Math: When we return to school, we will review all the concepts we learned before the break and our chapter four unit test will be on Wednesday. Then, we will move forward with adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers.

Science: Students enjoyed building our edible DNA models as we learned how to decipher the genetic code! Students will then learn how mutations play a vital role in the concept of natural selection. Our unit will end soon, so please make sure students are reviewing their flashcards daily!

ELA: Students will meet on Monday for our second to last literature Circles meeting discussing chapters 7 and 8 in Turn Homeward, Hannalee. Students will then receive their final literature job to end the unit! We will take our final vocabulary test, covering chapters 14-17 in Shades of Gray on Tuesday. We will read our final chapter in Shades of Gray this week and then use a Venn Diagram to compare Shades of Gray with Turn Homeward Hannalee. We will also complete cumulative vocabulary activities that pick out the most important terms mentioned throughout the chapters. Students will be given a study guide that covers information from both books in preparation for the final test the following week. In grammar, we will review the first five comma lessons and then review commas with addresses, dates, titles, and letters. Our final comma lessons will cover quotations.

History: We will review Civil War vocabulary this week to review terms that you would see through our study of the American Civil War. We will create timelines of Abraham Lincoln’s life this week. The timeline will include his birth and death, along with other memorable events. We will use our new laptops to complete our research to complete the timeline!

Upcoming Dates:
-Lit Circles Meeting MONDAY 11/26
-SOG Ch 14-17 Vocabulary Test Tuesday 11/27
-Understanding Fractions unit test on Wednesday 11/28

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of November 12th

ELA: On Tuesday this week, literature circles will meet to discuss the next two chapters in Turn Homeward, Hannalee. The next meeting will take place the Tuesday after the break. In our novel study Shades of Gray, we will read chapters 14 through 16 this week, with comprehension checks along the way. Students will also receive new vocabulary that covers these chapters. The test will take place when students return from Thanksgiving break. In grammar, we will cover commas in a series and commas in compound sentences, followed by a cumulative review of the first five lessons we’ve covered. A bonus assignment was introduced to students last week and a flyer went home in the Friday Folder. Students will have the opportunity to earn 10 bonus points on their lowest lit circle grade for visiting the setting of Turn Homeward, Hannalee at the Roswell Mill. Students must email or print a picture in front of the historic mill and it will be posted in class. The final due date for this bonus assignment is December 2nd, the last literature circle group meeting. The Thanksgiving break would be a fabulous time to visit the park with friends and family!

History: This week we will cover the start of the Civil War, as well as, advantages and disadvantages both sides faced. We’ll learn about the Dred Scot case and how it further divided the nation, the Lincoln-Douglass debates, and the Raid at Harpers Ferry. Once Lincoln was elected president in 1860, and the southern states succeeded, the Confederate States of America were formed and the first shots were fired at Fort Sumter, starting the American Civil War. We’ll add another note-taking method to our repertoire: outlining. I’ll model how to create an outline and students will fill in the blanks to gain a better understanding of how details follow main ideas. On Friday, students will take part in a Civil War Escape Room where they try to capture a Confederate Spy! A great way to end the wee

Math: Last week, students enjoyed playing partner and class games as we practiced comparing and ordering fractions and mixed numbers. This week, we will continue to reinforce those concepts and dive into more estimation and problem-solving.

Science: Our Handy Tree and All About My Traits posters turned out wonderful! The goal of the assignment was to spark family discussions about inherited traits and help students relate to the concepts we are currently learning. They will be on display for you to see during our Thanksgiving feast, so take a moment to check them out! This week, we will make edible DNA models and learn how to decipher the genetic code! How exciting!

Other: All parents, siblings, and grandparents are invited to our Thanksgiving feast on Friday at 11:00. A sign-up was sent out from our Room Moms. We will go to recess at 12:00 and dismiss early on Friday at 1:00 p.m. Please remember that Treehouse will not be open in the afternoon.

Mr. G has graciously offered morning band rehearsals for anyone interested. Rehearsals are from 7:15- 7:45 on Tuesday and Thursday.

Next Friday the 16th is the last day to turn in your poinsettia orders!

In honor of Veteran’s Day, students were offered an optional bonus assignment of interviewing a veteran. Those who were interested in the assignment brought home a sheet explaining the assignment and providing a list of good interview questions. The assignment is due on Wednesday.

Week at a Glance:
-Lit Circles covering Chapters 5 and 6 in THH
– Veteran’s Day extra credit assignment due Wednesday
-Thanksgiving family feast on Friday at 11:00 a.m.

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of November 5th

ELA: On Monday, students will take their vocabulary test that covers terms from Chapters 9 and 10. Over the course of the week, we will read chapters 11-13 from our novel study, Shades of Gray. Our literature skill focus this week is types of conflict. We’ll review the various types of conflict found in this novel and practice identifying types of conflict in other outside examples. Character vs character, character vs self, character vs society, and character vs nature are the types we’ve be studying this week and next. In grammar, we will start our commas unit. The first two lessons comma when using introductory and closing elements. We’ll add notes to our binder and practice using these types of commas in our every day writing.

History: This week we’re going to study abolitionists that contributed to the growth of the anti-slavery feeling.We’ll study how slavery spread into the western lands and how Northerners responded to the idea. We’ll use a series of maps of the United states to visualize what was going on to the states during the Missouri Compromise of 1820, how the United States changed with the Compromise of 1850, and how the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 repealed the Missouri Compromise put in place only a few years before. We’ll learn how the North and South began to become more divided before the American Civil War began.

Math: A big thank you to the Williams and Hofeler family for making our Halloween pumpkin raffle possible through their donations! It was a fun opportunity to explore a variety of math concepts including circumference, measurement, divisibility rules, and decimal operations! Last week, we practiced finding equivalent fractions in lowest and greater terms. We also introduced the concept of mixed numbers and improper fractions. Students created fall themed banners modeling their understanding, which will be hanging in our windows soon! This week, students will learn the procedures for changing mixed numbers to improper fractions and vice versa. We will also practice comparing fractions and mixed numbers.

Science: Last week, students were given a choice of completing the Handy Family Tree poster or the All About My Genes poster. They brought home a handout explaining the assignment and the materials needed to complete it. This assignment is fun way of exploring concepts we are currently learning within our Inheritance and Adaptations unit. The poster is due on Friday, November 9th. Last week in lab, students extracted DNA from an onion cell and we are currently exploring the concept of inherited traits.

Other: The 8th graders have started their 7th annual poinsettia fundraiser to raise funds for the 8th grade trip to Spain. They are selling small and large poinsettias this year. Order forms went home in Friday Folders and can also be found on the Wood Acres website to be filled out online. The form address is The deadline is Friday, November 16th.

Mrs. Bratcher is collecting candy for our troops, so bring in any left over candy by Friday, November 9th!

Week at a Glance:
-SOG Vocab Test Ch 9-10 Monday, November 5th
-Lit Circles covering Chapters 3 AND 4 on Tuesday, November 6th
– Handy Family Tree or All About My Genes poster due on Friday, November 9th
-Bring in Candy for Troops to Mrs. Bratcher by Friday, November 9th

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of October 29th

ELA: On Tuesday, students will take their vocabulary test that covers chapters six through eight. Literature circles were very successful last Tuesday! Please check Friday folders for pink sheets that give you an update where they are in the process of finishing their next assignment. Graded literature circles are also included in the Friday Folder. Please review the comments to help prepare for the next week’s discussion. The next Literature Circle assignments will be handed out on Tuesday, after their group meets to discuss chapter two. Week three will cover chapters three and four. On Wednesday, we will review vocabulary for the next two chapters in Shades of Gray. We’ll read chapters 9 and 10 this week. Students will complete a writing assignment that correlates with chapter 10. It will be from our protagonist’s point of view. We will brainstorm together listing pros and cons of a decision that our main character has to meet before we learn the outcome!

History: Our Westward Expansion Before the Civil War Unit will come to an end this week, with a test on Monday. Students were given a study guide to prepare last Wednesday and it was reviewed on Friday. The Jeopardy game used to review on Friday has also been emailed, please use it! We will begin our next unit, the American Civil War, on Tuesday. We will cover the cotton gin, slavery, and what life was like for slaves before the Civil War started. In Studies Weekly, students will learn about the people that immigrated to America, the reasons why they came, and the challenges, hardships, and obstacles they overcame to become Americans.

Math: Last week, we learned the difference between prime and composite numbers, how to find the prime factorization of a composite number, and the difference between greatest common factor and least common multiple. If additional practice with prime factorization, check out this website . On Monday, we will create a graphic organizer that will help remind students of all these skills as we move forward. This week, we will focus on renaming fractions in greater and lower terms. We also have a fun Halloween math lesson in store! The Williams family is donating a pumpkin for each class! We will use these pumpkins to demonstrate math concepts we will learn this year. Then, two lucky students will take home the pumpkin with a carving kit!

Science: We are starting our Inheritance and Adaptations Cell! On Friday, we kicked off the unit by discussing the differences between inherited traits and learned traits/behaviors. Students enjoyed sharing some of the traits they have in common with their family members, and then we polled our class to discover how many inherited traits we have in common with one another. Students created bar graphs displaying the results, which will be on display in our room. Investigation One introduces students to the science of genetics. In our study of plant and animal cells, students learned that DNA is located in the nucleus. Within this lab, students will learn how to extract DNA from an onion cell, and they will discover that individual DNA molecules are not visible to the unassisted eye or even with a compound microscope!

Other: On Wednesday, we have invited students to dress up as a book character! We would like them to write down clues, which they will share with us as we try to guess who they are! We do ask that costumes be appropriate for younger audiences. We do not want to scare any of our little ones on campus. Therefore, no scary masks, etc. Students are welcome to bring appropriate accessories that may help us guess their character, but please only items that will be easy to put away during the day to limit distractions.

Open House will be on Sunday, November 4th from 2:00-4:00 p.m. Our fifth grade families are welcome to join and meet the Upper School team! You are familiar with our stellar sixth grade team, but this would be a wonderful opportunity to meet our 7th and 8th grade teachers too!

Week at a Glance:
-Westward Expansion Test on Monday
-Shades of Gray Vocabulary Chapters 6-8 Test on Tuesday

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of October 22nd

ELA: Our first Literature Circle groups will meet on Tuesday this week. Students should have their folder, completed assignment, and book when they meet in their small groups. A “lit circle check” pink colored sheet went home in Friday Folders to help students understand what they have left to complete over the weekend in preparation for their group’s meeting. Students will be introduced to vocabulary terms covering chapters 6-8 in Shades of Gray early next week. We’ll practice using these terms in context and play some fun review games. We will read through each of the chapters, followed up by class discussion. In grammar, we will continue practicing diagramming sentences. We will have our first grammar test that covers parts of speech and diagramming sentences on Thursday. Our next unit will cover commas!

Math: We will begin our Understanding Fractions Unit this week. Students will identify prime and composite numbers, learn how to make factors trees in order to find the prime factorization of a number, and all kinds of new skills!

Science: Our scientists are having a blast as they become young CSI agents in charge of figuring out the mysterious events that occurred at the Rozier home! As part of our performance assessment, students read a story about a pretend event that occurred. They have been given “crime scene samples” to analyze in the lab using their knowledge of the microscope. They are comparing these samples to known substances in order to determine what they are. They will use their findings to create a hypothesis of what they think happened in the story. It’s a fun way to demonstrate their knowledge!

History: We will finish up Lessons 9 and 10 early in the week. These lessons cover war with Mexico, gaining California and the Southwest through agreements with Mexico, the migration of the Mormon population, and the Gold Rush. Once we’ve wrapped up these chapters, students will be given a study guide to help them prepare for a test the following Monday. We will also play a fun review Jeopardy to help prepare for the test.

Week at a Glance:
-Sign and return Turn Homeward, Hannalee planning calendar
-Diagramming Sentences Test on Thursday
-Westward Expansion Before the Civil War- NEXT Monday, Oct. 29th

5th Grade Weekly Update October 15th

ELA: All students should bring their Turn Homeward, Hannalee book by Monday. On Friday, students were introduced to our next outside novel study that correlates with Turn Homeward, Hannalee. They received a yellow overview sheet of this assignment that gives a description of the assignment, as well as, a brief description of each of the literature circle jobs. Please review this sheet with your student and sign and return it on Monday in the Friday Folder. On Monday, students will take a open vocabulary list quiz over the first two chapters. Due to other tests being taken on theses couple of days, we’re not having a test on these terms and students will be able to use their lists to help them match synonyms and complete the sentence. We will read chapters three through five this week and have discussions after each chapter. We will continue practicing diagramming sentences this week now that all parts of speech have been reviewed and we’ve learned how to diagram them all. Cumulative review is always the trickiest part!

History: We will continue our study of Westward Expansion this week, focusing on how the United States gained the Oregon Country and why it was desired, the Oregon Trail, mountain men, and what life was like on the trail. We’ll work on a new note-taking method, word webs using information from Lesson 9, War with Mexico. In Studies Weekly, students will learn about the fight for equal rights for African Americans and about their first educational institutions. Then, students will learn about several men and women who invented or created things that still help us in today’s society.

Science: Our unit test on Microscopic Explorations will be on Monday, October 15th. Students should review their study guides and flashcards in preparation for the test. In our Battleship review game, students did well and seemed confident in their answers. I’m sure they will knock this assessment out of the park! Later in the week, we will begin our performance assessment. Then, we will dive into our Inheritance and Adaptations Cell!

Math: We are wrapping up our division unit. This week, we will focus on problem-solving and complete a chapter review of the skills we have learned. Our unit test will be on Friday, October 19th.

Other: In Friday Folders, you will see a permission slip for our upcoming field trip to the Southern museum on Wednesday. Please sign and return it ASAP! We will leave at 8:30 and return to school by 1:30. Please have your child bring a disposable sack lunch and wear a Wood Acres tshirt on Wednesday!

Week at a Glance:
-Send back signed THH yellow form and field trip permission slip
-Field Trip Wednesday to the Southern Museum 8:30-1:30
-Microscopic Explorations unit test on Monday
-Math division unit test on Friday
-Microscopic Explorations performance assessment will begin on Tuesday for Armstrong’s class and Thursday for Rozier’s class. It will last for several days.

5th Grade Weekly Update Week of October 8th

ELA: We had so much fun working on our haunted house writing last week, please feel free to stop by at drop-off or pick-up to check them out in Mrs. Armstrong’s room! This week, we are starting our next novel study, Shades of Gray by Carolyn Reeder. Students will be introduced to a little background information about the Civil War and some basic Virginia geography to gain a better understanding of where our story begins. We will begin a new vocabulary unit covering terms in Chapters 1 and 2. We will also complete a character chart that covers all of the characters that they are introduced to within the first two chapters. In grammar, we will continue our study of diagramming sentences by learning how to identify prepositions, prepositional phrases, and the object of the preposition in sentences. Once we’ve mastered this skill, we will add this last section to our diagramming! Last week, I sent out an email about purchasing Turn Homeward, Hannalee for the start of literature circles by the 15th! Please make sure your student has his or her book by that date! More information about literature circles will go home in Friday Folders this Friday.

History: We will continue our study of westward expansion before the Civil War by studying how settlers took over more land following the Louisiana Purchase and how we acquired Texas from Mexico. Students will create a timeline of events leading up to Texas becoming part of the Union. In Studies Weekly, students will learn about Pittsburgh and what it was like in the 1800s and how the city grew. Students will learn about Chicago during the 1800s including the industries housed in the city and the 1893 World’s Fair. While learning about Chicago students will learn about the famous stockyard, which started in Chicago. Finally, students will learn about Nellie Bly and Andrew Carnegie who were famous during the period.

Math: We had a blast this week as we played partner games, such as Bump, and participated in classmate trivia! In classmate trivia, students learned surprising facts about their classmates as they solved long division problems to uncover the facts! This week, we will continue to explore division and order of operations. On Tuesday, students will take the divisibility quiz. Students are expected to write the rules for 2,3,4,5,6,8,9, and 10. Then, they will need to apply these rules to determine if larger numbers are divisible by them. On Friday, students completed an activity to see if they are ready for the quiz. You will find this worksheet in Friday Folders labeled “Am I Ready for the Divisibility Quiz?” If he or she would like additional practice, please refer to the PowerPoint I sent last week or textbook.

Science: I am incredibly excited to see our cell models on Monday! We will all share our cell models at 9:45 am. Students will walk around to see all the projects. Then, they will partner up to try to identify the organelles of a classmates’ model. As students are in Spanish, I will prepare our edible models to share at lunch time. If you are sending in an edible model to share, please provide a serving utensil. I will have plates, napkins, and cutting tools if needed, but I do need serving utensils. Thank you again for helping in this fun learning experience!

Last week, students received a study guide for our first unit test. They were given class time to work on it. The guide is due on Wednesday, October 10th. We will check it together and students are expected to refine answers based on our discussion. I will grade it using the attached rubric. The unit test will be on Monday, October 15th. Then, we will begin preparing for the performance assessment!

Week at a glance:

-Cell projects due Monday.
-Divisibility quiz Tuesday.
-Science study guide due Wednesday.
-Microscopic Explorations test on October 15th.
-Purchase Turn Homeward, Hannalee by October 15th.

This Matters At Wood Acres.

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  • Strong Instructional Leadership

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