Grade 5 & 6 News

Newsletter #2: How we Express Ourselves

Transdisciplinary Theme:

An inquiry into the ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs and values; the ways in which we reflect on, extend and enjoy our creativity; our appreciation of the aesthetic.

Central idea:

People around the world convey their uniqueness through diversity.

Key concepts: Change, Connection, Reflection

Related concepts: ecosystems, biodiversity, identity, culture, geography

Lines of inquiry

  • What makes us diverse
  • Similarities between cultures around the world
  • Different countries around the world

Our Learning So Far!

UOI/Language Arts/Science/Social Studies

Assalam-Alaikum Parents,

This is the second newsletter for our current UOI, "How we Express Ourselves".

Students have been busy in inquiry and activities to explore the central idea listed above. They have been exploring the key concepts of change, connection, reflection through the lines of inquiry.

ELA/Social Studies

The focus for this UOI is culture and diversity. Students have been exploring the lines of inquiry through short stories, poetry and research.

Students have worked on the following:

  • explore the role that identity plays in forming their values, ideas, and actions.
  • identify factors in a fictional character's identity and identify information about the character's culture and heritage.
  • follow the writing process to write a bio poem to identify how their experiences have shaped their identities.
  • learn about the qualities that make their classmates unique as well as the qualities they have in common. Explore the word diversity.
  • Understand and explain how the point of view is developed by the narrator or speaker in text.
  • identify adjectives, and use adjectives to strengthen their poems.
  • explore elements of culture in different countries around the world.
  • Understand what figurative language is and be able to recognize it in text (similes, onomatopoeia, and hyperbole).
  • understand the importance of theme in a literary text.

Next week, students will continue working on the summative assessment. Students will continue to research Japanese cultural elements and work on informative writing and International Day displays. You can find more details on the summative below.


Students worked on diversity in living systems and the key concepts of change and connection. They specifically worked on

  • What is a system?
  • Earth's systems: the interaction of four earth systems: the rocky part (the geosphere), the atmosphere, the water (the hydrosphere), and the complexity of living organisms (the biosphere).
  • ecosystems & the food chain.
  • predators, herbivores & carnivores


5th Grade

Students have continued working on Multi-Digit Whole Number and Decimal Fraction Operations.

  • connect area models and the distributive property to partial products of the standard algorithm with renaming.
  • Fluently multiply multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm and using estimation to check for reasonableness of the product.
  • Fluently multiply multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm to solve multi-step word problems.
  • Multiply decimal fractions with tenths by multi-digit whole numbers using place value understanding to record partial products.
  • Multiply decimal fractions by multi-digit whole numbers through conversion to a whole number problem and reasoning about the placement of the decimal.
  • Reason about the product of a whole number and a decimal with hundredths using place value understanding and estimation.

6th Grade

Students have continued working on Arithmetic Operations Including Division of Fractions.

Students have explored the following standards:

  • Interpret and compute quotients of fractions, and solve word problems involving division of fractions by fractions, e.g., by using visual fraction models and equations to represent the problem. For example, create a story context for (2/3) ÷ (3/4) and use a visual fraction model to show the quotient.
  • Use the relationship between multiplication and division to explain that in general,
a/b divided by c/d = ad/bc
  • divide fractions by mixed numbers by first converting the mixed numbers into a fraction with a value larger than one.

UOI Summative

Students are working in groups to research an element of Japanese culture. Students will

create an International Day display to inform students and families about Japan. As an IB student, the students' aim is to demonstrate how we should show tolerance and open-mindedness as Internationally minded students by learning about the similarities and differences between each other.

Students will be working in week 4 of the unit to write paragraphs and create a display in class.

Part of the summative includes using artifacts and foods from Japan to enhance the display.

Please use the link below to access a Google doc where you can sign your child up for a food and artifact.

Subject Specific Summatives

All subject specific summatives can be found on ManageBac.

Next week, students will have a summative assessment for Unit 6 in vocabulary. Words and practice activities can be accessed through ManageBac (follow the link in the homework assignment) or students can use their Vocabulary Workshop books.

Math quiz and test dates are specific to the grade level, and can also be found on ManageBac.

Pictures from Goddard Space Center Trip

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Spelling Bee Winners

Last week, students participated in the school-wide spelling bee. The competition was fierce , and alhamdulillah, the 5th/6th Grade class had two winners. The winners of the competition are:

First place: Hassan Sharieff (6th grade)

Second place: Ayesha Sharif (4th grade)

Third place: Hamza Farooqui (5th grade)

Congratulations to all the winners and well done to all participants.

Hassan Sharieff will be representing Tarbiyah Academy in the Howard County Library System Bee, held on March 17, 2017.

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IB Learner Profile Passports

This month, students have been working on the LP Attribute of Open-Minded, and the attitude of Tolerance. This ties in perfectly with our OUI about uniqueness and diversity.

Insha Allah, completed passports are due on Wednesday, February 1st, 2017.

I expect all students to submit passports.

Please encourage your child to find/fill out/complete their passports and submit them ON TIME!

Special Assembly: Students presented their Biopoems to demonstrate the LP attribute Open-minded

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Friends working together on "Bring a Buddy to School Day"

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Upcoming Events

Grandparents Day/International Day

Friday, Feb. 3rd, 11am

6785 Business Parkway

Elkridge, MD

Students will give a special presentation for grandparents/special people from 10 a.m. There will be an International Day gallery in the gym with culture, food and displays from various countries around the world.

Please make sure your child returns their RSVP indicating who will join them on Friday.

Please also use the google doc link below to sign up to bring food and artifacts.