To promote responsible work habits, I recommend that each evening a period of time be set aside for homework routines. Establishing consistency (time and place) will promote a pattern of study habit success throughout their school years. My homework will always reinforce and extend the work the children are doing in class and help inform you about the kind of progress your child is making.
A homework folder/binder/planner (chosen by your student) should come back and forth to school each day. We encourage students to choose their own organization style. The spiral bound student planner we provide is a must for reminding students of their assignment and informing you of what your child has to do as homework that evening, for the week and any future projects. If lost, students will be responsible for replacing their planner. It is essential that your student take the responsibility to finish their homework accurately and return it when it is due.
Spelling: There are no graded spelling lists so please do not plan on seeing any lists sent home. Instead 5th grade uses a hands on spelling intervention for students who are identified via the beginning of the year PALS+ assessments.
There will be a list sent home every Monday for word study with the assessment on Friday. Students will be expected to use time at home to study the prefixes, suffixes, and meanings.
Math: Practicing math facts (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) are an on-going type of homework. As a fifth grader, it is crucial that your child learns their basic facts so more complex math operations will be easier for them. Please use the Family Letters (sent home in the Friday Folders) for each unit to find helpful ideas for homework and activities to do with your child. Math study links will be sent home with your student at the beginning of the unit in a packet. Please remind your child to do only the assigned page(s) each night.
Reading: Reading for enjoyment is strongly encouraged as a home activity. It is essential to help your child develop the best possible reading skills. During the school day, the students have numerous reading experiences. To continue your child’s growth in reading, it is necessary that they read at home and make books an important part of their lives. It is required that each student read some sort of literature each night at home for a minimum of 30 minutes. Again, create a routine!
Social Studies & Science: Studying for assessments is important and students have all needed materials from day one of a unit to start studying for their assessment. We can no longer have our focus be on teaching isolated events. Conceptual teaching is teaching the big ideas, which are living, breathing understandings, rather than simply teaching facts that exist in isolation, disconnected and irrelevant in a larger context. For example, rather than teach all the facts of European Exploration of the Americas, I teach the concept of exploration. First, the students learn what exploration means in their own lives and the causes and effects of exploring. Then we illustrate that with the curriculum - why did people and governments explore the Americas; what were the positive and negative results of that exploration; why did we explore the moon and what was the effect? Taking the pros and cons of past exploration, next we look at the exploration people and governments are currently involved in such as the human genome, oceans and Mars. What are the positives and how might we change the negatives? Learn from the past, live in the present, and prepare for the future. Most of science and social studies will be taught conceptually.
As expected, any work that does not get completed during the time given in class will be considered homework to be finished that night at home and returned the next day. If a student turns in all of their weekly work on time, they can earn the right to attend T.P. time, an extra recess on Friday afternoons.