The Upton 4/5 Team News

Your 4th & 5th Grader's Curriculum News for October 2016

Marvelous Math with Ms. Wasil

4th Grade - Students just finished up Unit 1, which focused on adding and subtracting large numbers, rounding, and place value. Please continue to work on rounding numbers to a specific place value as this is a challenging concept. Students are beginning Unit 2, which focuses on multiplication. Students will be exploring and trying new strategies to multiply large numbers and two-digit times two-digit numbers. Please have your child practice multiplication math facts 0-12 at home. They may use the program Xtramath on the computer to do so or flashcards. When students have mastered their multiplication math facts, multiplying large numbers is much easier for them. Throughout every unit, students will be solving word problems. It is expected that math will be challenging. Please encourage your child to have a growth mindset and view each challenge as an opportunity to learn. Students have homework every Monday-Thursday and are expected to complete both sides.


5th Grade - Students are just finishing up Unit 1, which focuses on adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers with unlike denominators. Please continue to review the skill of finding a common denominator, if necessary. Students will begin Unit 2, which focuses on addition and subtraction with decimals, rounding, and place value. Please have your child practice multiplication math facts 0-12 at home. They may use the program Xtramath on the computer to do so or flashcards. Throughout every unit, students will be solving word problems. It is expected that math will be challenging. Please encourage your child to have a growth mindset and view each challenge as an opportunity to learn. Students have homework every Monday-Thursday and are expected to complete both sides.

Spectacular Science with Mr. Boyer

4th Grade- Students are exploring the interaction between land and water this month. They will begin by learning the behind the scenes work that causes the water cycle on earth. We will then investigate the ways water can shape and change the land around us.


5th Grade - Students will continue to work with variables. Students are learning how to isolate one variable (independent variable) to find different results (dependent variable). We will work with several different investigations to get comfortable with the language of science and experiments.

Scenic Social Studies with Mr. Van



4th Grade Thinking Like an Economist

In this unit 4th graders will learn that:

•Economics is the study of how people use resources to fulfill economic wants.

•People’s wants are unlimited but resources are limited. When people cannot have all the goods and services they want, a condition called “scarcity” results.

•Scarcity forces people to make choices when they produce or consume goods or services.

•Economists examine the choices people and societies make by asking questions such as: What is produced?; How it is produced?; Who gets what is produced?; and What role does the government play in the economy?


5th Grade 3 Worlds Meet!

In this unit students study early American History with a focus on the period prior to 1585. Starting with the art of historical thinking, students review the questions historians ask in examining the past. After they reconsider the tools historians use (primary and secondary sources, artifacts), they explore their textbook as a type of secondary source. In doing so, students examine text structures, text features, and the role of informational text in learning about the past. This unit takes a separate examination of life in America, Africa, and Europe in order to set the stage for the convergence of these three worlds in America.

8 CULTURAL FORCES
Did you know that ROUTINES is only one aspect of a Cultures of Thinking classroom? http://www.rcsthinkfromthemiddle.com/cultures-of-thinking.html to find out more about the other forces!

Wonderous Writing with Ms. Kirkwood and Mrs. Piccirilli

4th & 5th Grade Writing

Unit 1 Personal Narratives:

Students will write first person narratives in which they introduce characters with the event sequence unfolding naturally. Students are expected to use details that include dialogue, descriptions of actions, thoughts, feelings and transitional phrases to signal event order.


The goal of this unit is for students to write personal narratives that focus on an important message or heart of the story. Students will immerse themselves in age-appropriate personal narrative mentor texts and gather possible story ideas from their life experience. They will understand the qualities of good writing and the craft of creating a strong personal narrative. Students will select their best work to revise, edit and publish. The 4th and 5th grade curriculum is similar. Fifth graders will review their narrative writing strategies and fine tune their writing skills through elaboration.


Writing Tools & Expectations:


  • Students will learn to use professional editing marks to check their own and peer writing. (Give your child a terribly written sentence and ask them to correct it using the editing marks they've learned.)
  • We will focus on correct sentence structure. Students have learned that every sentence needs a subject and predicate. They are expected to use capitalization and punctuation correctly.
  • Understanding grammar is vital to becoming a excellent communicator. In writing conferences and as a whole group students will be asked to work on specific grammar rules and issues that may present themselves in their writing.