Our main reading curriculum is the Rigby program. Students will read a variety of fiction and nonfiction books and articles to increase their reading skills. Students will work independently, in small literature groups as well as in small teacher-directed groups. Students will work on specific reading targets that will enhance their comprehension, vocabulary and enjoyment of reading.
Students will regularly be assigned reading at home, and will be expected to write reading journal entries about their readings grades.
This year we are using the Investigations series to teach math. Students will discover new ways to solve multiplication and division problems, work with fractions, decimals and percents, work with area and perimeter, measure angles and explore many mathematical concepts as they increase their mathematical skills. This program is strongly aligned with state standards and will be supplemented as needed.
Throughout the year we will work on a variety of activities that strengthen each student's writing abilities. Students receive in depth studies of the 6 Trait writing model. This model helps the students develop themselves as writers. We discuss ideas and content, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and conventions. The text that we use for language arts is called Writers Express. Students will use a Writers' Workshop approach as they strengthen their ability to use the Writing Process. From time to time, topics will be assigned, but much of the time the topic is the student's responsibility.
One writing convention is spelling. Spelling is taught as part of the writing process. I use "Words Their Way" as part of this. This program is specifically tailored to meet the student's needs.
Assignments in the other subject areas will often receive a writing grade.
During science this year we will use the scientific process to explore different content areas. In our Life science unit students will use the Foss Environments kit to conduct a variety of experiments using seeds and brine shrimp. They will explore physical science through the Foss Levers and Pulleys kit or the Variables Kit and will use the Foss Landforms kit to study Earth science
Our health units include a unit on Human Reproduction, a unit on AIDS/HIV using a program called KNOW and a drug and an alcohol awareness unit using a program called Here's Looking at you. Students will take a classroom based assessment in Health and Fitness this year.
Our study will begin with the discovery and colonization of North America.
Students will learn more about life in the colonies before moving to the conflicts that lead to the Revolutionary War and the forming of out government. Students will participate in a project called "Join the Revolution". This webquest will allow students to study key events that led up to the Revolutionary War conflict. Students will then share their research with the class in a group project.
Another important Social Studies project that we will do is a classroom-based assessment. This assessment will entail researching a key event in our history and analyzing laws or policies that resulted from that event. Students will then create an individual written presentation of their research.