Languages

Upcoming Changes in Fifth Grade

Incoming fifth grade parents attended a parent meeting where Dr. Vallez shared a few things they are working on for this coming school year as summarized below.

These are a few of my thoughts that I am using to guide our decision making about fifth grade:

  1. We have an opportunity to better support teachers in developing the fifth grade curriculum to bridge the elementary curriculum with middle school curriculum
    • Everyday math (K-5) to Connected math (6-8)
    • FOSS science (K-5) to SEPUP (Science Education for Public Understanding Program) science (6-8)
    • Literacy developmental change from “learning to read” to “reading to learn”
    • Common Core
  2. We have an opportunity for each teacher to develop expertise in their subject matter in order to better collaborate with elementary teachers and middle school teachers for curriculum development.
    • Math lead teacher
    • Content lead teacher (Science and Social Studies)
    • Literacy lead teacher (Reading and Writers’ Workshop)
  3. More planning time leads to improved instruction and student achievement.
    • Establishing a unit plan and weekly lesson plans for one subject area can enhance the quality of the instruction.
    • Re-teaching the lesson provides the teacher an opportunity to reflect on how its working and make improvements
    • Differentiation can happen more effectively in the classroom when the teacher has enough time to plan for these components.
    • Grading and evaluative feedback will be more consistent for all students.

 

What will stay the same?

  • The students will still learn through thematic units that integrate the essential question and big ideas across the content areas.
  • Students will still have homeroom teachers.
  • Students will still be grouped with their homeroom classroom.
  • Students will have 30 minutes at the beginning of the day and 30 minutes at the end of the day with homeroom to work on unit projects (ie: Aztec play).
  • Full implementation of the dual language program.

 

What will be different?

  • Students will move classrooms for literacy, math and content.
  • Homework will be distributed over the week for each subject matter (ie: M, W, F – literacy and math homework, etc.)
  • Students will be graded by the teacher who is teaching that subject matter.
  • The homeroom teacher will be the contact for any questions about the child’s grades and behavior.  Based on the situation, the homeroom teacher might decide to invite the other teacher(s) or ask the other teacher(s) to meet with you as well.

 

What will each teacher be teaching?

            Ms. Bravo – Content

            Ms. Ramirez – Math

            Ms. Vargas – Literacy

 

What are we going to do to support this transition?

  1. The 3 fifth grade teachers will be planning during the week of August 20 – 24 to prepare for this change.
  2. We will take the first two weeks of school to teach the students organizational skills, study skills and team building before we start the new schedule.
  3. We are already identifying students who need extra literacy support.  These students will be getting support from Ms. Jessen (reading specialist/RTI director), Ms. Super/Ms. Chahine (Literacy Consultants).

 

What might my child’s day look like?

 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

8:45 – 9:20

Homeroom

9:20 – 10:30

Period 1

 

Period 1

Period 1

Period 1

Period 1

10:30 – 11:45

Period 2

Period 2

Period 2

Period 2

Period 2

11:45 – 12:30

Lunch / Recess

Lunch / Recess

Lunch / Recess

Lunch / Recess

Lunch / Recess

12:35 – 1:20

Specials

 

Specials

Specials

Specials

Specials

1:20 – 2:30

Period 3

 

Period 3

Period 3

Period 3

Period 3

2:30 – 3:00

Homeroom

3:00 – 3:35

Developing Language

Extra Instruction

Extra Instruction

Extra Instruction

Developing Language

3:35 – 3:45

Dismissal

**This schedule is a draft only – Final schedule will be developed in August**

 

What else is new?

New specials schedule for 5th graders:

  1. Quarterly Specials:  5th grade students will have quarterly specials in order to better facilitate the work on projects that are more meaningful and integrated with the content area.
  2. Tentative Specials Schedule:

Quarter 1: Library / Computers (P.E. once a week, integrated with 6th grade)

Quarter 2: Music / Art (P.E. once a week, integrated with 6th grade)

Quarter 3: Library / Computers (P.E. once a week, integrated with 6th grade)

Quarter 4: Music / Art (P.E. once a week, integrated with 6th grade)

“Socios” will be scheduled during the day so that all students can participate and to improve the consistency of our extra instruction time.

 

If you have questions or concerns, please send them to Dr. Vallez at vmvallez@cps.k12.il.us.