5th Grade

Fifth Grade Syllabus


 Fifth Grade Syllabus  

Class 501

Class 502

5th Grade Happenings

Current Unit:  Let’s Go On An Adventure - Learning through a lens of narrative reading and creative narrative writing

Summary of Unit: 

As soon-to-be middle school students, we will embark on an analysis of literature through the eyes of a migrant worker from Mexico in the novel Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan.  We will be doing a complete novel study of the fictional work, examining the different elements that create a compelling story and compelling characters, and identify key themes and social issues that the novel tackles.   


Historical Fiction Novel Study - Esperanza Rising

Our fantastic fifth graders will engage in a novel study of the middle grade novel, Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan. Within this award winning text, students will examine the complex story structure that loops historical elements with fictional drama, creating a captivating story around our protagonist, Esperanza Ortega.  This novel examines complex issues, including poverty, loss, racism, and discrimination. We look forward to learning alongside Esperanza and rooting her on within this exciting story.

(External Link)

Greatschools.org Book List (External Link)


Tips for families to support learning

Download the digital version of the novel here (External Link)(all students will be provided with a paper version of the text as well).

→ Take a virtual tour (External Link)of the settings within Esperanza Rising 

Check out a review of our novel study

→ Need help with some of the Spanish words and terms from the text? Check out these English-Spanish vocabulary cards(External Link) that connect with the language in the novel.

→ Need help with complex vocabulary within this text? Check out this site  (External Link) that breaks down the challenging words in each chapter and provides a definition or example of each term.

→ Encourage your child to read every night to build stamina.


Use these websites to support your child’s learning at home:

RAZ Kids has a large variety of fictional reading passages on your child’s reading level - Kids Log-In - (External Link) please reach out to your child’s teacher if they need their log-in information.

→ Open access reading is available on www.readworks.org/  (External Link)and www.commonlit.org  (External Link)for short fiction and nonfiction passages on a variety of reading levels - have your child log in using their NYC email account and they are connected to our classroom

Room Recess  (External Link)- reading games for all ages



Our creative writing skills will surely shine brighter as we loop back to our narrative writing unit.  We will be working on developing our skills as narrative writers, including using dialogue to show conversation and including sensory details to create vivid images to develop the experiences and events of multiple characters.  This narrative unit will have a heavy focus on how a character's decisions impact the outcome of the story through a create your own adventure style of writing.  Students will create multiple outcomes through the use of a story web and use technology to make their story an interactive experience for the reader.  Our narratives will take shape in both realistic and imagined experiences and our imaginations will soar as creative writers.   


Tips for families to support learning

→ Try out this Create Your Own Adventure Example. (External Link)

→ Ask questions about different situations and determine possible outcomes based on the decisions that were made.  Check out these decision making question prompts. (External Link)

→ Have your child free-write narrative stories in a notebook.  Encourage them to use their imagination and tell a story with characters, a setting, and a problem and solution.

→ Encourage your child to read a variety of fictional novels and stories.  Some great authors include Jacqueline Woodson, Rita Williams-Garcia, Kwame Alexander, Lois Lowry and Varian Johnson.

→ Provide a place for your child to write.  You can print out this creative writing notebook  (External Link)for some inspiration and a space to write. 

→ Read, read, read! 

→ Be a writing role model. 

→ Check out your child’s progress through the lessons on google classroom. 


Check out these resources that we are going to use to guide our narrative writing

Narrative Writing Prompts. (External Link)

Narrative Writing Extensions. (External Link)

Beginning - Middle - End. (External Link)

Math Topic 7:

etting Ready for 6th Grade 


From now until the end of the year, we will be working to get ready for sixth grade adventures! We will be looking at multiple topics to make sure we are prepared for sixth grade math. All of our topics will be looked at through the context of story problems and Exemplars.  We will begin by looking at the order of operations. Students will discover the correct order to solve equations: groupings ()[]{}, exponents, multiplication/division, and addition/subtraction. Then students will solve problems involving length conversions and plotting/interpreting data on line plots. Next up is coordinate grids. Students will learn what grids are, how to read points, and how to plot points. We might even be playing some old school battleship! We will dive into ratios or negative numbers at the end of the year! Finally, we will end the year by creating a Google Slides lesson to teach next year’s students a topic we learned about this year!


**It is extremely important that children know their basic multiplication and division facts.



Ask your child about our Exemplars work! We are working on showing our thinking not only with an algorithm but with a representation. They are creating plans with math vocabulary. They are labeling their representations with keys. They are verifying their results and they are making connections. They take each task a step further by doing something extra!

→ Encourage your child to use the Problem Solving Procedure when solving math problems at home!

Tips for families to support learning

Practice your Multiplication facts. (External Link)

Basic Facts Flash Cards.(External Link)

→ Revisit old lessons and videos with your child for some spiral review. 

       → This will help to reinforce all of the 5th grade concepts we learned about throughout the year.


Use these websites to support your child’s learning at home:

https://www.khanacademy.org/math/cc-fifth-grade-math      (External Link)

https://www.math-play.com/5th-grade-math-games.html        (External Link)

https://www.splashlearn.com/math-games-for-5th-graders        (External Link)

https://www.mathgames.com/grade5        (External Link)

https://www.education.com/games/fifth-grade/math/(External Link)

https://www.mathplayground.com/grade_5_games.html    (External Link)



5th grade artists created watercolor landscapes in the style of modern artist, Jen Aranyi. They learned about using cool colors to make a galaxy sky and simplified black lines to draw landscapes that included mountains, valleys, trees, and rivers. Instead of drawing on a plain rectangle white background, students choose an unusual shape such as a triangle, diamond, oval or square. This served as a distinctive canvas for their mixed media piece.

   Art Piece by Jen Aranyi 

SPARK New Victory Theater:

Students are learning about acrobatics and physical expression in their sessions with SPARK New Victory Theater. The students traveled to NYC to see Zephyr Circus in March. They will continue to hone their acrobatics and acting skills as they work toward a presentation at the end of the partnership. 


We  ❤️  Feedback in Fifth Grade

The most important strategy we learned in writing this year:

  • The most important thing I ever learned was How to write persuasively and how to use author's craft in my writing. –Elisha P..
  • I learned informational writing and the important components of the writing piece, like relevant details and more.  - Najiba S.
  • The most important thing I learned as a writer this year was learning how to write a conclusion and the steps of writing a conclusion. –Kendall M.
  • I learned that to be a good writer I have to hook the reader so they want to keep reading my writing.  –Carlee T. 


The most important skills we learned in reading this year:

  • I learned connecting texts and finding themes.  –Michael S.
  • The most important reading skill or strategy I have learned in reading this year was to read stories and find themes and lessons the character has learned.  –Kendall M. 
  • The most important reading skill or strategy I learned this year is analyzing 2 different texts to see how they are similar and different. –Nabeeha U.
  • Always answer the question completely, if it's a short or an extended response. –Abu C.


The most important concepts we learned in math this year:

  • The most important thing I learned in math this year is how to divide and multiply decimals and whole numbers.  –Abdur Y.
  • Show another way to prove your answer so you know it's right .  –Walter R.
  • The thing I learned as a mathematician this year is multiplying decimals!.  –Rafan S.
  • The most important skill I learned this year as a mathematician was annotating key words and looking closely at what the question is asking you.  –Najiba S.