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5th Grade Curriculum Guide


SGCS utilizes The Math Learning Center’s Bridges in Mathematics and Number Corner as the instructional resource for mathematics.

  • Developing students’ deep understandings of mathematical concepts, proficiency with key skills, and ability to solve complex and novel problems.
  • Blends direct instruction, structured investigation, and open exploration.
  • Taps into the intelligence and strengths of all students by presenting material that is as linguistically, visually, and kinesthetically rich as it is mathematically powerful.

The Bridges in Mathematics and Number Corner programs address the PDE State Standards for Mathematics.

In 5th grade, students study the following concepts:

  • Developing fluency with addition and subtraction of fractions, and developing understanding of the multiplication of fractions and of division of fractions in limited cases (unit fractions divided by whole numbers and whole numbers divided by unit fractions)
  • Extending division to 2-digit divisors, integrating decimal fractions into the place value system, developing understanding of operations with decimals to hundredths, and developing fluency with whole number and decimal operations
  • Developing understanding of volume

Language Arts

SGCS utilizes Calkins & TCRWP Units of Study for Reading and Writing as an instructional resource for ELA.

  • Through writer’s and reader’s workshops, students receive whole and small group instruction through a differentiated, engaging approach

In 5th grade, students study the following units:

  • Writing Units:
    • Narrative Craft
    • The Lens of History: Research Reports
    • Shaping Texts: From Essay and Narrative Memoir
  • Reading Units:
    • Interpretation Book Clubs: Analyzing Themes
    • Tackling Complexity: Moving Up Levels of Nonfiction
    • Argument and Advocacy: Researching Debatable Issues
    • Fantasy Book Clubs: The Magic of Themes and Symbols

The Calkins & TCRWP Units of Study for Reading and Writing resources are used to meet the PDE State Standards for English Language Arts.

EIC Units of Study

The fifth grade curriculum revolves around the EIC curricular framework. Three project-based units use the local environment and community as an integrating context for learning.  These hands-on, integrated community investigations engage us in real-world explorations of natural and social systems. Fifth grade students study body systems, systems interrelationships and interdependence, the interactions between settlement patterns and ecosystems, and pollinator populations.

Systems Survive and Thrive

Systems Survive and Thrive

This unit relates the concrete understandings of systems to more abstract understanding of systems as students investigate a variety of systems. These begin with the human body. Students explore the components, processes, and functions of each body system and learn how they are dynamic and interdependent. Students inquire into the ways systems change, balance, grow, and adapt. Through this community investigation, students discover how by-products from social systems affect human health.

Seven Generations Ago

Seven Generations Ago

The focus of this unit is on the rich history of Emmaus and early settlement of our town to gain information about the natural and social systems present during earlier time periods. Students partner with the 1803 House and also use historical records to determine the interactions between natural and social systems in our local region. Using these and other resources, students will research and reconstruct the local history of the first settlement. Students continue their learning to discover how early settlements affected the natural systems, including deforestation of South Mountain and changes in local water systems.

Nature’s Pollinators

Nature’s Pollinators

In this investigation, students discover how pollinators play an important role in maintaining local ecosystems and the relationship between pollinators and the natural environment. Students also develop an understanding of how populations interact and change as a result of those interactions. By investigating pollination at the school and in the surrounding area, students come to understand how their actions directly and indirectly affect the pollination system, including the environment, themselves, the local community and the school. Students investigate the downward trends in the pollinator populations and probable causes and effects. Maintaining a top bar beehive and pollinator garden for the health of the colony is an important part of this investigation.

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