The Week Ahead in Fifth Grade - An Example

Isla Murphy
Sarah Layton
Language Arts
Angela Fisher
Social Studies

Mark Your Calendars: Here are a few of the upcoming events that you’ll want to plan for. Please stay tuned for details as the dates arrive:

  • March 9-13: ERB Testing for 5th Grade Students

  • March 18: Parent Workshop re: MOSAIC program (6-8 p.m.)

  • Week of May 11 or 18: Parent Education Night for Puberty Education Classes

  • May 26-29: Puberty Education for 5th Grade Students

Library: Due to the library’s constraints around the timing of our visits and the constriction of our available time given many moving parts this week (and next!), we were unable to make our planned visit this week. Nevertheless, we intend to try again next week. Certainly, if your family plans to visit the library this weekend, your student should return and check out new books.  We will be sure to return books, at least, even if we aren’t able to fit a visit into our packed schedule next week.


Homework: Monday- Friday

Independent reading: 30 minutes nightly

As we enter the last week of the term,, students should be working their way through their sixth books of the trimester. Most students are on track to meet (or surpass) our goals, so their reading group books will count toward next trimester’s total. Similarly, most students have been able to finish their group book reading in the time available at school, but some students may need to bring their books home, and back, to pace their reading with their group’s goals.


Math: 10 minutes nightly on Matific

Jon Polly
March 9th, 2020

A whirlwind week back included another successful Ocean Ecology presentation, ocean plastics research and projects consuming students’ hearts, minds, and hands, ongoing math projects, and new subjects and literature in social studies and English. Details below!


Many thanks to visiting guest author Dan de Roulet, whose Friday morning presentation fired the imaginations of readers now eagerly waiting the May 12 publication of his first fantasy novel, The Lost Princess of Aevilen, under the pen name, D.C. Payson. Dan shared insights about his writing process, beginning with the valuable advice that aspiring writers-to-be should follow their instincts to tackle ambitious projects, in the moment they occur, heeding the wisdom that “sometimes ‘later’ becomes never.” Dan offered valuable insight about the constraints that fantasy writers must honor while animating the worlds and magic they imagine, the centrality of character development, and the importance of coupling plot tension with “moments to exhale,” however brief. We cannot wait to be among the first to read his book, and we are so grateful for the generosity with which Dan invited us into his creative process. 

On Friday afternoon, 5th Grade also had a special visit from three of the Mosaic counselors. Chano, Shenay, and Christabel taught the class some fun songs and symbols that we’ll use during our camp-out and told us about some of the fun “gametivities” and free-time options that we’ll have such as swimming, ball games and hikes in the Santa Cruz mountains. Ask your student to teach you the “high-five, flip-it, drip-it, jelly-fish it out, PEACE” chant. ;) It looks like it’s going to be an exciting and enriching growth experience for our students, and most of the class is looking forward to the adventure. Thanks to all the parents who made it out to the info night on Wednesday and we hope you can dive in for more experience with Mosaic at the upcoming  Parent Workshop at AVS on March 18th. 


And finally, next week, students need to arrive on time, as late arrivals will not be allowed to join ERB testing in progress each morning and will have to participate in the make up tests on Friday. The testing next week is as follows::

Test Schedules--CTP  Level 5



  • 8:40-9:15: Verbal Reasoning (35 mins)

  • 9:20-9:40: Vocabulary (20 mins)

  • 9:45-10:30 Garden/Art

  • 10:30-11:00: Recess/Snack  (30 mins)

  • 11:05-11:45: Reading Comprehension (40 mins)



  • 9:00-9:40 Mathematics Part 1 (40 mins)

  • 9:45-10:30 EQ/SEL

  • 10:30-10:55 Recess/Snack (25 mins)

  • 11:05-11:45 Mathematics Part 2 (40 mins)



  • 8:40-9:10 Writing Mechanics (30 mins)

  • 9:10-9:55 Writing Concepts & Skills (45 mins)

  • 9:55-10:30 Garden/Art (shortened)

  • 10:30 -10:55 Recess/Snack (25 mins)

  • 11:00-11:45 Quantitative Reasoning (45 mins)



  • Make-up test day 



More details about upcoming events are listed in the announcements below or can be accessed via the following link: Fifth Grade Program March - June 2020



Despite best laid plans--we actually worked together with Michael, our tech director, the day before our presentation to try to ensure there were no wrinkles--we were unable to share during their presentation the stop-motion animation that our presenters worked so hard on. We shared it with the other teachers after the presentation though and have asked teachers to share it with their students. We are proud of how gracefully the presenters handled this unfortunate and unexpected complication. Although this week in fifth grade will be dominated by taking the ERBs, we will plan to make at least some time for students to begin their work on the next marine science topic: sea level rise. Students who are not preparing for the next presentation (which will happen on March 23) will be working on a Sea Level Rise Infographic. 



Last week, students completed a challenging assignment where they interpreted a graph and then created a sketch of a graph from limited information. They will have a chance to compare which strategies helped them sketch the graph. They will also continue taking review mini-quizzes (no studying required) to help them prepare for the ERB. We talk about the solutions afterwards to clear up any confusion. 


Thanks to a room newly adorned with streamers featuring their favorite poems, the underwater, “kelp-forest-feel” mirrors the ocean settings of the new books that reading groups began this week. Students first defined their characters’ essential attributes according to evidence found in the the things that they do, say, feel, and think and/or believe. Students continue to work on aligning salient evidence in support of arguments about who their protagonists are, at heart, the challenges they confront, and the hopes and dreams that motivate their actions. Next week, in addition to finding evidence supporting character development and tracing their characters’ growth and change, groups will explore the thematic ideas they identify in the ocean settings and imagery their novels share in common.

Social Studies

During this busy week back from break, the students have been following the primary elections in California and other states that voted this week.  The class had the opportunity to take a guided tour of a polling place next door to AVS. Lead Volunteer Tom took time to show the students sample ballots and a variety of machines used by voters with different abilities and desired modes of voting. This coming week, we will continue to follow the primary results in other states as more votes are cast.  

The class will explore the history of voting rights as they pertain to women and other marginalized groups of people. Do women have an equal voice in politics and voting today? What has changed since women gained the right to vote, and what still needs to be done? The class will discuss and research these questions and more as we recognize Women’s History Month and the primary election season.

Emotionally Intelligent Leadership

Last week, we took a pause from our emotional climate projects. Instead, we took the opportunity for a meta-moment to plan and prepare a growth mindset for the ERBs this coming week. Students watched a teen newscast on testing-anxiety, reflected on their own feelings about testing, and made a plan to show up as their "best self. "During our class this week, students will return to their reflections and consider how their plan worked and where they might like to make adjustments to experience themself as calm and ready to take on challenges.                                                                                                                                                                             

Art Elective: Design & Development

5th grade designers are creating soft sculptures inspired by the Artist Claes Oldenburg. Each student is designing an iconic food out of cloth and fibers and sewing multiple components together. 

Music Elective: Chorus

Next week 5th chorus will look at Bob Marley's famous "Redemption Song." We'll also keep singing the canon "Dona Nobis Pacem" and take our singing/hand game "A Cup of Tea" to the next level. Finally, we’ll wrap up chorus by reviewing all we have learned, singing through our entire repertoire. 

Drama Elective: Broadway Bound

This week in Broadway Bound elective, 5th graders will put finishing touches on their revue of showtunes. They will learn the importance of becoming performance ready in order to shine on stage for an audience.  Stay tuned for an upcoming show date! 

Garden Elective: Food Lab

On Tuesday, we will make art out of food.  We will discuss food presentation and plating.  I will show some examples and then we will make edible insects on a leaf.  Students will learn to cut a variety of fruits and vegetables in different shapes to make butterflies, snails, and beatles.  We will take photos of our creations and eat them with our home-made salad dressings. 


On Thursday, students will learn how to multiply a recipe by increasing their salad dressing recipes. We will make new batches of dressing.  Students will write their final recipes out with some art work and it will be turned into a zine that they can take home at the end of the trimester.


This unit  in P.E. we will be playing more unconventional sports like ultimate frisbee, wall-ball, and a mixture of the two. There will be an opportunity for the students to create rules and regulations for the games to help better the experience. 



This week 5th grade will continue reviewing regular verbs ending in ER. Students spent the last two classes writing a song with the verbs in ER and this week they will be performing in Spanish class. Fifth grade will also be learning about possessive adjectives. Repetition is key so feel free to practice with your child at home! 

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 for curious young minds |

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450 Somerset Street | San Francisco, CA 94134 | ​Tel: 415-467-3700 

Middle School Campus:

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