Week of 10/9/2018

Happy Tuesday, Parents! We hope you had a wonderful fall break! We are so excited on what’s ahead and ready for quarter 2! Here’s what’s happening this week:

Reading:  We are continuing with our second unit in the Benchmark Advance program.  We are reading stories in which students compare characters and analyze their relationships with each other. As we continue to analyze several excerpts from Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, we will focus on:

  • Analyzing key events to make a prediction about the text.
  • Reading to identify and annotate key events.
  • Using key events to summarize a narrative.
  • Integrating information from two texts to understand character
  • Drawing inferences from the text
  • Contributing to a discussion by building on classmates’ ideas.

Here’s what you can ask your child:

  • How many main characters are in the selection you read today?
  • What types of people are they?
  • Where does the story take place?
  • What was one key event in the story?
  • What can you infer about the character?  Or What is the author trying to tell you that’s not stated in the text?
Writing:  We are starting a new text type!   Your child will be working on writing informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.  How will they do that?

  1. Introduce a topic clearly, provide a general
  2. Develop the topic with facts, definitions, concrete details, or other information and examples related to the topic.
  3. Link ideas within and across categories of information using words, phrases, and clauses (e.g., in contrast, especially).
  4. Use precise language and domain-specic vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.
  1. Provide a concluding statement or section related to the information or explanation presented.

Science: This week students were introduced to constellations, and learned how there are different constellations visible each season. They explored the Mystery, “Why do the constellations change with the seasons?”

Your child will build a model, “Universe in a Box,” that will make it easy for them to visualize the answer.

Take this opportunity to have your child explain how their “Universe in a Box” works.  Ask them:

  • Why do we see different constellations each season?
  • What are some constellations we will see if we go outside tonight?

If you have an iPhone or iPad, check out “SkyGuide” for iPhone and iPad. It lets you point your phone at any part of the sky, and then it will show you what constellation you’re seeing. Enjoy!

Math:  We are currently working on Module 2.  Students are moving from whole numbers to multiplication with decimals, again using place value as a guide to reason and make estimations about products.

Words to Know!

  • Area Model 
  • Product
  •  Standard Algorithm
  •  Factor
  •  Numerical Expression
  •  Estimate
  •  Decompose

Things to Remember!

  • Standard Algorithm is a  Step-by-step procedure to solve a problem
  • Numerical Expression is a mathematical phrase involving only numbers and one or more operational symbol Example: 11 x (6+13)
  • Symbol for ‘about’ ≈
  •  Product is the answer when two or more numbers are multiplied together.

Here’s a resource you can check out to become more familiar on this topic.

Have a great week!

Fifth Grade Team



Boo Grams!

BOO gram picture

Student Council is selling Boo Grams, and orders are due on Friday. The link to the order form is https://drive.google.com/open?id=1rh57jaYyPT4W4nxvd5nKwN-zWt_P2HjN.

Week of 9/10/2018

Dear Parents,

Screen Shot 2018-09-12 at 9.34.58 PM.png

We have a couple of more days before quarter 1 ends! Here’s what’s happening in fifth grade land before our fall break:

Reading:  We are beginning our second unit in the Benchmark Advance program.  In this unit, your child will read stories in which he or she compares characters and analyzes their relationships with each other.  We will read several excerpts from Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. This will help students get an idea of how different characters interact with each other, and it will also help them understand what makes some characters more likable than others.  We are looking forward to this exciting unit! It will be fun to discover how they make connections between the characters in the stories and people in real life.

Here’s what you can work on at home:

  • Discuss with your child the question we have been discussing in class: “Why do we value certain qualities in people?”
  • Help your child focus on qualities that people consider most admirable by working together to make a top five list of the most important character traits of a good person. Then discuss why that value is important.
  • Next to each of the character traits, list a real person or fictional character who has that trait.

Science: We started our science unit and we’re answering the question: “Why does the Sun rise and set?”If you have the chance to watch the sunset or sunrise with your child, be sure to turn around and check out the super long shadow you both cast when the Sun is low in the sky.  For a spectacular view of the sunrise, I recommend you and your child watch this time-lapse video of Earth:click here to watch the video.  It was created by putting together photos taken from the Intern

ational Space Station. You’ll see the yellow lights of human civilization, the flashing white of lightning in the clouds, and in the end, a brilliant sun rising above the curve of our planet.

Math:  We started Module 2!  In this unit we will be multiplying and dividing whole numbers and decimals.  How can you help at home?

  • Become familiar with the area model, a different method of multiplying than you may have learned
  • Continue to review the place value system with your student
  • Discuss mathematical patterns, such as 5 x 9, 5 x 90, 50 x 90, 50 x 900, etc.

In this module, we will be building up our knowledge of first multiplication and then division. We will start with whole numbers and then move to decimals as we practice different ways to model these operations. Click here for another great parent resource!

Happy parent/teacher week!

Fifth Grade Team

Grandparents Day


Week of 9/4/2018

Happy Thursday, Parents!

We are almost towards the end of the week, but here are some things to keep in mind:

BizTown: Your child has now completed the core lessons for Junior Achievement’s experiential-learning program JA BizTown. The journey has been fun and educational! Hopefully, you have heard about the simulation at JA BizTown, where your child was employed within a thriving community and economy.  We invite you to continue your family’s involvement with Junior Achievement and encourage you to visit the Junior Achievement USA website (www.juniorachievement.org). JA My Way (jamyway.org) offers interactive games, competitions, and timely, pertinent information about your child’s economic future.

Math: This week, we started Module 2. In this module, students apply patterns of the base ten system to mental strategies.  Students move from whole numbers to multiplication with decimals, again using place value as a guide to reason and make estimations about products.   Students will also solve multi-step word problems using multi-digit multiplication and division with unknowns representing either the group size or number of groups.   Click here   for another great parent resource!

Reading:  Below you will find some questions and/or activities to discuss with your child about our last passage.

Ask: What was the purpose of Marshall’s historic speech? What was he hoping to persuade his audience to do? Then do a search online or at your local library for a complete list of recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Parent/Teacher Conferences:  A reminder that parent/teacher conferences will begin Thursday, September 13th and dismissal time will be at 1:15.  Please make sure you check in with your child’s teacher to schedule a conference.

Mexican Fiesta: The Camarena Community is invited to our school’s Fiesta Mexicana on Friday, September 14th starting at 2:30 to 5:30 p.m.  Stop by to enjoy tasty food from a variety of vendors and listen to great music!

Have a great day!

Fifth Grade Team


Week of 8/27/2018


Screen Shot 2018-08-27 at 10.25.54 PM

Happy Monday, Parents!

Thank you all who were able to make it to Curriculum Night! We are looking forward to the continuous communication and support.  Now that you are familiar with the fifth grade expectations, parent/teacher conferences will be a good time to look closely at your child’s current academic levels and goals.  Please make sure you contact your child’s teacher to schedule a parent teacher conference.

Learning for the week:

Math:   We are getting ready to take our Module 1 assessment!  These last couple of weeks, we have been focusing on our deep understanding of place value and how it applies to standard algorithms.  Clickhere for another great parent resource that you can use to review all of the math concepts learned in Module 1.

Reading:  As good readers, we are constantly checking back on our essential question- Why do laws continue toevolve?  So far, we have read and compared selections about the development of laws and about people who have fought to change unfair laws.  This week’s reading selection is  “Thurgood Marshall’s Liberty Medal Acceptance Speech” which we will give us more information on how laws continue to change.  To continue the dialogue at home consider asking- Why was Thurgood Marshall’s Liberty Medal Acceptance Speech important? Explain how Marshall’s use of real-life examples makes the ideas and concepts in his speech “concrete” for his audience.

Biztown: We are looking forward to the big day!  This week, your child will apply for a job.  One of the questions we are asking is- What interests and skills do you have that would make this job a good fit for you?  We are looking for CEO’s, anchors, sales, news reporters, photographers, and much more!

Minimum Days:  Parent/teacher conferences will begin Thursday, September 13th and dismissal time will be at 1:15.

Mexican Fiesta: The Camarena Community is invited to our school’s Fiesta Mexicana on Friday, September 14th starting at 2:00 to 5:00 p.m.  Stop by to enjoy tasty food from a variety of vendors and listen to great music!

Have a great week!

Fifth Grade Team

Week of 8/20/18

Dear Parents,

Happy Monday! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!  Here’s what’s happening this week in fifth grade:

Curriculum Night: Our Fifth Grade Back to School Night for parents is this Thursday!  We have prepared two sessions for you to choose from either at 5:30 pm or 6:15 pm.  We will share important information, fifth grade expectations, and plans for the school year.  Can’t wait to see you all!

Math:  This week we will begin to divide decimals by whole numbers. Students will continue to use place value understanding and relate it to a written methods.  Click here for another great parent resource!

Reading:  This week we will begin to read about the Dred Scott case.  Some questions to consider asking your child:

  • Explain the basis of the Dred Scott case.
  • What was the argument for each side based on?

Biztown: We are looking forward to our very first fun field trip! To prepare for our upcoming day, your child will begin to learn about:

  • Financial literacy skills needed to use in financial institutions
  • Managing spending and savings accounts.
  • Practice formal business greetings, letter writing, job application skills, and job interviewing.

The early development of these important skills will help students as they enter the world of work and begin to manage their personal finances.

VAPA: Every two weeks, your child will participate in VAPA (Visual and Performing Arts).  This week, VAPA will be on Tuesday.


Have a wonderful week, parents!


This Week 8/13/2018

Dear Parents,

Hope you had a wonderful weekend! Here’s what’s happening this week:

Math:  We will soon start to add and subtract decimals to hundredths, using concrete models or drawings and strategies based on place value.  Students will relate the strategies to algorithm methods and explain the reasoning used.  Below you will find another great math resource for you to continue to support your child at home!

Math Resource English

Math Resource Spanish

Reading: Students have been discovering how one of the nation’s most important documents has been shaping our lives for hundreds of years.  I invite you and your child to look up the Bill of Rights online and read the first ten amendments of the U.S. Constitution together. Then quiz one another on each amendment!  A simple and engaging activity that will support and extend your child’s learning at home.  Enjoy!

Writing:    Our first text type will be narrative!  Your child will begin to write real or imagined experiences or events using effective techniques, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.  This week, students will have the opportunity to write about Native Americans and their experiences in different regions.  Some topics include:

  • Native Americans living in the Pacific Northwest region and going on a whale hunt 
  • Native Americans living in the Plains region going on a buffalo hunt
  • Native Americans tribe experiencing a drought
  • Native American living in the Eastern Woodlands region and building a longhouse


Curriculum Night: Don’t forget curriculum night will be August 23rd!  We will have three rotations starting at 5:30 p.m.  Mark your calendars!

Have a great week!


Curriculum Night

Screen Shot 2018-08-08 at 9.32.57 PM.png

Happy Wednesday, Parents!

Curriculum Night will take place on August 23rd at 5:30pm.  Please mark your calendars!


Upcoming Week 8/06/18

Dear Parents,

We are starting our third week as fifth graders and we can’t be more excited!  A couple of reminders for this week:

Reading:  We will be starting our unit 1 where students will discover how one of the nation’s most important documents has been shaping our lives for hundreds of years. They will discover how the Constitution continues to change to guarantee rights for all Americans, including the civil rights and voting rights of women and minorities.  Understanding the way our government can influence the way we live will help students become responsible citizens. I hope the topic will spark some lively discussions at home.

Math:  We are naming decimal fraction numbers in expanded, unit (e.g., 4.23 = 4 ones 2 tenths 3 hundredths), and word forms as well as comparing decimal fractions.  Have questions about this topic?  Click here to learn more!

VAPA: Wednesday will be our first VAPA (Visual and Performing Arts) day!

Any questions, please feel free to contact us!  Have a wonderful week!


Screen Shot 2018-08-05 at 10.06.37 PM