Greetings from Teacher Devon!
Another exciting year has begun at Goshen Friends and I am so very lucky to be teaching both fourth and fifth graders this year! It will be a fun-filled school year with lots of hard work, laughter, and collaboration.
Over the summer vacation fourth/fifth graders read about Poppy, a lovable deer mouse, who embarks on a heroic journey to discover the truth, save her family, and clear her good name—as well as her friends. The adventure changes Poppy’s life forever as she bravely revenges the death of her best friend, Ragweed.
We will start the school year off by reading Poppy & Rye to continue the adventures of Poppy as she journeys west through the vast Dimwood Forest to bring the sad news of Ragweed’s death to his family. When Poppy and Ereth travel to Ragweed’s family home at the Brook, they get involved in fighting the construction plans of the beavers, who dam the stream and flood the area, thereby forcing the mice to leave. How can mice fight animals that are more powerful than they are? Together Poppy and Ragweed’s brother, Rye, brave kidnapping, imprisonment, and a daring rescue to fight the beavers. Something to discuss at home about the Poppy books is being true to you. Even at a young age, the characters in the Poppy stories must discover their passions and find out about the world on their own. They question authority, follow their hearts, stand up for what they believe in, and face overwhelming challenges. Discuss what it means to be true to you. What are your child’s passions? What dreams do they hope to follow?
In Science we are learning about the characteristics of living things and how animals and plants are classified. Students will discover how organisms grow and reproduce and how traits are passed from one generation to the next. Students also explore adaptations and discover adaptations that allow plants and animals to live in water and on land. Finally, students discover what makes up an ecosystem and describe how energy moves through an ecosystem. This unit leads us into our study of owls, complete with an owl pellet dissection!
In grammar class students are focusing on marking punctuation; specifically end punctuation, commas, semicolons and colons. Choosing the correct end punctuation is a basic step in punctuating your writing as a fifth grader. To start we are reviewing the uses of the period, the question mark, and the exclamation point. We will then move on to using commas in a series, between independent clauses, between items in dates, to set off phrases and clauses, and in conjunction with appositives.
Important Dates for September: September 9th – First Day of School September 11th – Tower Garden presentation and raised bed planting September 14th – Community Cares event for the lower school students September 16th – Back to School Night for Parents 7:00 pm September 18th – Back to School Picnic 5:30 pm – All Welcome! September 24th – All-School Gathering at 10:00 am, parents welcome!
Important Dates for October: October 9th – In-service Day for teachers – no school for students October 12th – Columbus Day – no school October 14th – All-School Gathering at 10:00 am, parents welcome! October 14th – Kids’ Care October 17th – 1-5th Grade trip to the Brandywine River Museum with Tr. Chris October 26th – Community Cares event for the lower school students Week of October 26th – CTP4 Standardized testing practice October 30th – Halloween celebration
ON GOING FOURTH/FIFTH GRADE PROJECTS
This year, in conjunction with Learning Pathways, the fourth/fifth graders are continuing with the independent study project that was started two years ago. An independent study is a student-centered project that involves students working individually to investigate self-selected topics. These topics are connected to the curriculum and the students’ personal interests. Differentiating the curriculum remains at the center of our continued initiative – Learning Pathways. An independent study project is the most effective strategy to use in addressing the needs of all learners in the group. It provides an opportunity for students to study topics of interest in-depth while learning and practicing a variety of skills.
An independent study meets the needs, readiness, interests and learning preferences of students. It also allows students to experience learning beyond the classroom and encourages independence. Additionally, it teaches research skills and improves reading, writing and presentation skills. The semester-long project provides opportunity and time to explore in- depth topics. The fourth/fifth graders came to school in September with a chosen topic to study, and hit the ground running on their research and planning. Stay tuned for a timeline of due dates.
The goal of having the student’s conduct an independent study project was to:
The outcome of the independent study project is to create a formal writing piece at the completion of this assignment, as well as a presentation that reflects the child’s learning preference.
Stemming from our all-school theme, Celebrating You and Me, during the 2009-2010 school year, International Week has traditionally been a time for the Goshen community to come together to honor and celebrate the diverse families we have here within our student body. Former alum, Jonathan K., said it best when asked why we have International Week, "We have International Week to learn about cultures other than ours, to have fun, and to understand other country's people, food, and traditions." This year's International Week will take place on Monday, April 25th - Thursday, April 28th, and is the culmination of the studients' yearlong study of three focus countries. This year students are focusing on Guatemala, Philippines, and South Korea. International Week will be filled with guest speakers, activities and quite often culinary treats! International Week concludes with the One World Cafe, an on campus potluck featuring the cuisine of the countries studied, music and other activities.
Fouth/Fifth Graders will specifically be focusing on GUATEMALA throughout the school year!
FIFTH GRADE RESOURCES:
Click on the picture to familiarize yourself with the Playground Rules.
Click on the picture to read about the ABC’s of Tr. Devon.
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