The goals of the program are to instill a lifelong reading habit and to foster an appreciation of the written word. To that end, fifth graders become more adept at distinguishing facts while supporting inferences and opinions in texts. They are asked to draw inferences, conclusions, or generalizations about text and support those findings with textual evidence and prior knowledge. While writing research reports about important ideas, issues, or events, fifth graders organize writing into an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Rounding, (x) and (–) numbers within 10,000; Greatest Common Factor and Least Common Multiple; prime factorization; order of operations; properties of numbers; ordering integers; fractions, decimals, percents and decimal operations; area of shapes and volume of prisms; converting metric units; coordinate plane; angle measurements; representing data; algebraic expressions; word problems with Singapore Math bar models
Types of investigations and controlled experiments are introduced as students probe concepts in oceanography, the solar system and astronomy. They examine living things (classification/reproduction), ecosystems, natural resources, the Earth (how it changes), rocks and minerals, ancient earth, sound, light, engineering and design.
With early American history as the foundation, students study the impact of colonization, the European conflicts over land and resources, the scourge of slavey, and other key events that lead up to the “imperfect” establishment of a new country. They investigate how economics, geography, and religion influence political choice, power dynamics, and class structure. The focus is on understanding how decisions and events are seen from various perspectives, how we can learn from past mistakes, and how we can work towards social and racial equality.
Value (light/dark) is a key element that is explored through realistic and abstract drawings. Asian and western calligraphy and book binding are examined through the creation of two journals. Colonial Immersion Week includes calligraphy, paper marbling, and the creation of costumes. A formal self-portrait using a mirror and a surrealistic collage (a la Magritte and Dali) complete the year.
The one-to-one iPad program in fifth grade gives the students the ability to type and submit many of assignments digitally. Students continue to create digital art and learn to apply digital tools to showcase creative work. Inter-curricular projects present the opportunity to learn and apply the design process. Growing mastery in research, coding, using Google accounts, and creating, sharing and submitting assignments in the cloud prepares them for secondary school.
Fifth grade students continue to read across a variety of genres. Librarians offer the opportunity to participate in an organized book club. Students gain competence navigating the online catalog and independently locating books on the shelf. They continue developing research skills and complete MLA-style bibliographies.
By the fifth grade, the students learn leadership, and their roles are more defined on their teams. The San Fernando Valley Private School League and Campbell Hall provide a safe atmosphere to take risks and to succeed and fail in a supportive environment. Students receive recognition if they achieve National or Presidential levels in the Presidential Challenge.
After school dance instruction begins in first grade and continues through sixth grade.
Fifth grade music includes playing the recorder for their Colonial Immersion study while composing a piece for the recorder in the style of that time period. Students continue to hone their skills in keyboarding, advanced African drumming, and Jumbie Pan drumming. They sing in the chorus and have the opportunity for solos for Grandparents’ and Special Friends’ Day, the Arts Festival, and Celebration Chapel.