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Challenger fifth graders can handle complex real-world math problems by creating equations and solving them. They divide decimals; convert between fractions, decimals, and ratios; and find the volume of cylinders. They approach new knowledge with eagerness because they understand how to integrate facts into concepts by looking for the essential similarities among apparent differences.
By fifth grade, Challenger students know how to use the parts of speech effectively in their compositions. They learn to incorporate their unique voices and determine the appropriate tone and style for their writing depending on their audience and purpose. Students also become acquainted with both MLA and APA research formats.
Fifth graders continue to increase their understanding of the workings of the English language. They conjugate verbs; diagram participles, gerunds, and infinitives; correctly identify prefixes, suffixes, and roots of words; and use context to determine the meanings of unfamiliar words. Challenger students happily share their expertise with others!
Fifth graders focus on world history as they analyze and critically evaluate cultures of ancient civilizations up through the Roman Republic and the Middle Ages. They discover how individuals’ values shaped their own lives and influenced later civilizations. They also begin to independently outline notes during in-class discussions.
Our fifth graders read novels such as The Secret Garden and Johnny Tremain, and class discussions and assessments provoke them to go beyond simply relating what happened to recognizing underlying concepts and values and applying them to their own lives. As they study each work, they analyze literary devices such as parallelism, foreshadowing, and onomatopoeia.
Fifth grade teachers set high expectations for clear thinking and effective communication of ideas, which sets students up to find greater success in every subject. Special areas of focus include formulating deductions, determining sequence, and analyzing truth values. Students use reasoning to solve complex logic puzzles.
At Challenger, science is an exploration of the world as it was, is, and can become. Fifth graders are naturally curious about the world around them, and this year’s curriculum piques their curiosity as they delve into topics like atomic theory, states of matter, Newton’s Laws, and changing ecosystems.
By fifth grade, Challenger students are experienced speakers. They appropriately use volume, tone, and rate to convey emotion, and they articulate and make eye contact to gain and keep the attention of the audience. In both formal and informal settings, they are powerful communicators!
Fifth graders review healthy singing habits and continue to work on diction and melodic jumps. They continue learning simple harmonies through rounds and partner songs. Featured music history pieces include Handel’s “Hallelujah,” Chopin’s Waltz in C-sharp minor, and Sibelius’s Finlandia. Students present remarkable Christmas Sings and Spring Programs to showcase everything they have learned.
Having learned to analyze, breakdown, and solve problems using simple programming languages, fifth grade students learn true recursion, which leads to fractals and beyond. With this know-how, they begin to experiment with animation. They continue to hone their typing skills and review word processing.
Though students work with a variety of media, our art program focuses on drawing, since drawing well is essential to all other artistic genres. Students demonstrate the application of their growing art skills through displaying and compiling portfolios of their best work.
Maggie Z., Middlefield campusGrade 5
Over the course of their fifth grade year, students work on their coordination, strength, speed, and stamina in team sports such as basketball and volleyball, learning specific skills and moves to increase their knowledge and athleticism. They also add the waltz and the foxtrot to their dance repertoire.
In this composition, the student describes the three schools of Individualism that emerged during Greece’s Golden Age following the reign of Alexander the Great. Not only does she exhibit an excellent command of essay organization, vocabulary, grammar, and mechanics, but she also skillfully explains the principles and influences of each of these schools of thought.