5th Grade News

December 9, 2014

Mrs. Crenshaw's and Mrs. Lillich's Class News

Important Dates

11/17-12/12 Kylee Lillich Charitable Giving Tree - choose an ornament in the office to fulfill a wish for a needy, grieving, homeless or hospitalized child (in memory of Mrs. Lillich's daughter Kylee. Help WCS fulfill wishes for the 501c3 all volunteer children's charity

12/10 - High School Information Night - PW Campus

12/12 - 12/14 Barnes and Nobles Bookfair

12/17 - Minimum Day

12/18 - Minimum Day/Pajama Day

- Talent Show Applications Due

- Holidays Around the World Class Breakfast and Celebration

12/19/14-1/2/15 Winter Break

1/19/14 - No School - MLK Holiday

Field Trip Donations - Westminster Woods

Our Westminster Woods trip has been confirmed for June 8-11. We are planning a meeting to discuss details of this trip after the first of the year.

You can make a complete or incremental donations to support this trip. Below is a short video that will lead you through the steps necessary to easily make those donations.

Please click on the following URL or paste it in the URL line at the top of your screen and hit enter to proceed to the video:


Crenshaw's Homeroom/Language Arts/ Social Studies News

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We have added more classes and assignments to Google Classroom and the students have been using it to complete Language Arts and Writing assignments. Google Classroom is a wonderful educational tool that helps educators create and organize assignments quickly and communicate with students more efficiently as well as reduce the use of paper!

Students also continue to practice their keyboarding skills and are getting closer to reaching their goal of typing 25 words per minute with no more than two mistakes! Some students are typing 30+ words per minute!


Students have new Second Trimester AR reading goals and should be reading a minimum of 30 minutes per night. Please check your student's AR Reading Log on a weekly basis.

After the Winter Break, we will begin Literature Circles and taking a closer look at literary elements including foreshadowing and flashback.

Writing (Focus on Non-Fiction)

We have finished reading Sign of the Beaver by Elizabeth George Speare and have watched the movie. Students are in the process of writing a compare and contrast essay. Compare and contrast essays promote critical thinking, analytical reasoning, and organized writing. Students will learn and practice both the similarities to differences and the point by point method of organizing their essays.

Next, students will write a persuasive essay on "Books vs. Movies." They will focus on starting with a clear statement of their opinion or position, support their position with organized and relevant information/evidence, and anticipate and address the reader's concerns and counter-arguments.

Language Arts

Students are "owning" the weekly academic vocabulary words by using their creative and performing arts skills. Before Thanksgiving Break, students had fun using the List 9 vocabulary words to write an original script and act it out!

They also started the Weekly Language Arts Skills Challenge on Google Classroom. Skills covered include similes, metaphors, root words, hyperboles, idioms, personification, irregular verbs, homophones, antonyms and synonyms.

Social Studies

Our Early Explorer Unit was a huge success. Students enjoyed sharing their knowledge, journals, timelines, maps, treasure chest and artifacts by hosting an Explorer Gallery Walk before Thanksgiving Break. They also had an opportunity to perform a Christopher Columbus Reader's Theater!

Next, students read about the first three English settlements in North America (Roanoke, Jamestown, and Plymouth). Students took notes and created mind maps to help them summarize the information about each settlement.

This week we began learning about the first 13 British colonies!

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Mrs. Lillich's Homeroom - Reading, Language Arts, and Technology

Accelerated Reading - Independent Reading: Students should be reading 10-20 minutes a day in class and 20-30 minutes each evening. A new AR goal contract for Trimester 2 should go home this week. Students should be logging their reading in their AR folder every day. Students should be completing a book every 2 weeks and taking an AR quiz.

Reading for Literature - We have completed our novel study and watched the movie Sign of the Beaver. We are examining Literary Elements and reading short stories to identify themes in literature. Next week, we will learn about types of characters in literature and how to identify them.

Reading for Information - We are reading our Time for Kids magazines learning about non-fiction text features for Reading for Information. Good Reading for Information Strategies include: Reading everything twice, Reading everything on the page including picture captions, titles, diagrams, and charts, Understanding vocabulary associated with the concept before answering questions, and using clues in the text to formulate answers.

Spelling and Vocabulary - We are up to list 11 vocabulary and spelling words. Students are taking the tests on EngradePro now. Students should complete the word work associated with each word list and study a few minutes each day.

Technology and Project Based Learning and

GOOGLE CLASSROOM - Some of our assignments such as our recent Element Trading Card project are begin done using Google. Students are loving the technology pieces of assignments are great teammates helping each other learn.

Lillich's Math and ScienceNews

Math - We have continued to work on Number Sense concepts learning how to add, subtract, multiply and divide decimals. Students are doing a terrific job. We are also doing some review/preview of concepts during daily warm-up and working on math writing in our math journals where students need to explain their answers and their conceptual thinking. We will move on to Percents and Geometry next week.

Science - We have learned all about Chemical Reactions and the Periodic Table of Elements over the course of the last month. We completed our Alien Egg experiment learning about chemical reactions and osmosis. We did an exceptionally fun lab on making Marshmallow Molecules. A huge shout-out to Mrs. Gustafson and Mrs. Carter for helping in the classroom and helping with the supplies. Students worked on creating Element Trading Cards developing their knowledge of the Periodic Table of Elements.

In Science now we are moving on to Life Science and learning about body systems. We will work on the Circulatory System this week and learn how the heart works.

EnGradePro - Online Grading for your Student

Your student has a user name and password in their agenda to check their grades on-line at any time. A good rule of thumb is to check in with your student weekly and check grades together so that they can communicate information about assignments, grades, how they did, and find associated graded papers to share with you. Please do not wait until the trimester ends to begin to check grades. Checking EnGradePro daily will create more questions than answers and we do not recommend it. We do not usually enter grades every day. Check backpacks for graded work and go over it with your student, that is often much more productive.

A few bits of information to know about EnGradePro and Grading:

- There are some grade categories that have no grades and may not have any for the first trimester because we have not yet covered those standards.

- An “M” means a missing assignment. Your student did not turn in their assignment and this counts as a zero. Have your student check the “NO Name” bin in their classroom as a first way to problem solve this or perhaps check their backpack to see if they forgot to turn the paper in. Most of the time we would take their paper and grade it for a few points off.

- An empty spot in the grade book can mean we just have not gotten to grade a particular paper.

- Be sure when your child is absent to encourage them to complete and return all work so that it can be graded and entered in the grade book. Many times when students are absent they forget to return their work.

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