BIBLE: In fifth grade Bible, students survey the Old Testament with Dr. Diggit, the archeologist; Dusty, his pet camel; and Austin and Katie, his fifth grade tag-a-longs. Fifth graders study Bible characters in-depth and in chronological order as they appear in the Scriptures. Students are challenged to examine their own decision-making as they observe the choices (whether good or bad) these Old Testament heroes and heroines made. The addition of hymn studies, missionary stories, hands-on application assignments, and a coordinated Scripture memory program challenges fifth graders to put their faith in action. Fifth graders utilize the Purposeful Design Bible Curriculum.
LANGUAGE ARTS: Students are involved in six areas of language arts: reading, language, writing, speaking, listening, and spelling. In reading, fifth graders focus on a variety of genres including folktales, fables, myths, biography selections, and excerpts from other classical stories. Reading and critical thinking skills are developed through short stories and three novel studies that are integrated with the geographical, political, historical, and cultural aspects of what the students are studying in history. These novel studies include King of the Wind, The Door in the Wall and The Sign of the Beaver. The studies emphasize plot, setting, characterization, and literary devices, along with comprehension skills, such as inference, cause and effect, and main idea. Biblical principles are integrated throughout discussions and writing assignments that compare and contrast characters/ideas with Bible people and the Christian world-view. Other writing assignments include a variety of expository and creative writing. For example, students write narrative, descriptive, explanatory, and persuasive paragraphs and a variety of poetry and stories. Open Court Reading Curriculum, A Reason for Spelling, Bob Jones English: Writing and Grammar, SRA Reading, D’Nealian Handwriting Curriculum, and other quality literature are used.
MATH: Fifth grade math includes six areas of study: whole numbers, time and money, measurement, geometry, fractions, algebra, and problem solving. Students work with place value to the billions, add and subtract five digit numbers, multiply three digit numbers, divide to find three digit quotients, and round off numbers to the nearest ten thousand. They enjoy hands-on practice as they measure using the metric system, work individually and in groups to find answers through applying their knowledge of geometry/fractions/decimals, and analyze a variety of graphs to solve problems. Students will write and evaluate algebraic expressions with one variable and solve equations with integers, as well as learn other basic algebraic concepts such as: ratio, proportion, and percent. The Harcourt Math Curriculum, SRA Math and Hands-on Equations Learning System are used for curriculum.
SCIENCE: Students in the fifth grade study life science, earth and space science, physical science, and the human body. Major science units include a study of invertebrate and vertebrate classification, plant processes, life cycles and cells, potential energy, matter, the lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmospheric conditions and the solar system. The scientific method is taught through individual and group projects throughout the year and students are challenged to carefully observe and come to logical conclusions when analyzing data. Students participate in a yearly science field trip in order to extend and provide real world application of what they have learned about God’s world. The Purposeful Design Science Curriculum is used.
HISTORY/GEOGRAPHY: Fifth graders focus on the study of ancient history. Students begin with a thorough study of the people, customs, artifacts, and geography of the ancient civilizations of the world, like the Sumerians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans. As students investigate the religious beliefs of these people, they sharpen their ability to critically think about the uniqueness of Christ and their Christian faith. Fifth graders enjoy combining two disciplines as they read King of the Wind while they are studying Middle Eastern history and geography. One of the highlights of the year is the fifth grade unit on The Middle Ages. Church history comes alive as students discuss how the early Christians became martyrs and died for their faith. When students are studying the Middle Ages in history, they are also reading a historical novel, The Door in the Wall. The A Beka Curriculum, Old World History, is used.
SPECIAL SUBJECTS: Every day fifth graders also enjoy participating in special classes that provide extra enrichment. Weekly special subjects include music, library, computer, art, and Spanish. Daily physical education classes are scheduled as well. As part of the music program, fifth grade takes a field trip to the Dallas Symphony. In P.E., students delight in taking a field trip to learn about archery.
ACCELERATED READING: AR is a computer generated motivational reading program for students in 4th – 6th grades. The AR software provides guided independent reading practice. Studies show that increased time spent reading leads to gains in reading achievement for all students regardless of prior ability.
DISCOVERY DAYS: Discovery Days are experienced at each grade level. These exciting and fun days involve hands-on activities that culminate a science or social studies unit. Students have the opportunity to personally “discover” historical lifestyles and events. Fifth grade students participate in three exciting hands-on events. Toga-robed students enjoy a Roman feast full of tasty and unique foods. An English Tea integrates components of history and reading, as well as emphasizes courtesy and manners. The high point of the year is Medieval Day. Students parade through the school garbed in medieval attire before becoming involved in a full day of food and fun dating back to the Middle Ages.