5th Grade Curriculum

Here is an overview of our plan for this year.

  • Math – Teaching Textbooks 6
  • Language Arts – All About Spelling and joining a book club
  • Science – Apologia Zoology Flying Creatures
  • History – Story of the World Volume I Ancient History
  • PE – Horseback Riding, Baton, and exercise at home
  • Bible – Apologia Who Is God
  • Geography
  • Typing
  • Scratch Coding
  • Spanish

We will also continue writing and cursive handwriting work through the other subjects.

What would you pack?

On February 8th we were studying WWII, and how children in London were sent by train to the English countryside. I reminded her about the journeys like this that we have read about in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and our current read aloud, The War That Saved My Life (which is excellent by the way). I told Caitlyn that we were going to pretend we were living in London in WWII.

Once pretending, I told her that I had decided to evacuate her to keep her safe, and that the training was coming and we had to leave soon. I gave her a suitcase and backpack that she could carry on her own, and told her she only had five minutes to pack.

  • one bra
  • five pairs of underwear
  • a hankerchief
  • one pair of socks
  • one night gown
  • two play/sleep tshirts
  • two pairs of shorts play/sleep
  • one pair of leggings
  • two shirts (one short sleeve and one long sleeve)
  • her phone and kindle
  • her favorite book
  • a notebook
  • a diary
  • a pencil
  • some snacks for the train ride

After the five minutes was up we evaluated her choices. I was really surprised by her clothing choices, because she is normally very picky and this was not anything she would normally be seen in. She explained that she was trying to get the most things and not be picky, because it was an emergency. We also talked about other things she might need: medicine; toiletries; water; flashlight; and shoes. Then we talked about things she might have wished she had: photos; a charger for her phone/kindle (she was thinking similar situation now and not about the fact these things didn’t exist then); a stuffed animal for comfort; clothes she actually likes; and colored pencils (she moved them to get other things and had plenty of room in her backpack for them).

Overall, I thought she did a pretty good job in a short period of time.

Club Days

This year I am teaching Lego Club again, and my friend Diane is teaching STEM. We have both done some pretty cool projects this year. The week that Diane taught nano technology we went by her house for a trial run.

That week in Lego we did floating builds. The kids always love this challenge.

After our exciting club day and lunch with friends,

Caitlyn crashed in the floor in the school room.

Mitchell Dam Field Trip

In August, I scheduled us a field trip with Mitchell Dam. As typical I really didn’t know exactly what we were going to do or how it was going to go. This was one of our best field trips yet. The tour guide was very animated and extremely knowledgeable. He did an excellent job presenting and fielding questions.

Caitlyn said her favorite part of the tour was that we actually got to watch them do a release. She thought it was really cool how the water bubbled up and churned the lake water.

Dolphins and Whales

Caitlyn and I have really been enjoying her science curriculum, and last week we finished up our unit on whales and dolphins. We did an illustration in our driveway showing how large different whales are. Here is Caitlyn standing by the line for her favorite whale, the Orca.

The largest whale, the blue whale, went all the way down the full length of our driveway.

Caitlyn really enjoyed this activity, and was thrilled the ran held off and it actually stayed in our driveway for a couple of days.

Dolphins and whales are marine mammals, and they are both part of family Cetacean. Dolphins are well known for their echolocation. We investigated how sounds returning to you from various materials sound different.

We also watched Dolphin Tale and Free Willy. Caitlyn really liked Dolphin Tale, and afterwards we went to the website, and watched the real Winter. I planned on reading Island of the Blue Dolphin during this time period, but I’m still waiting on it from the library.

July 2016 – weeks two and three

Science, science, and more science

This first experiment was just an add on for Caitlyn, and had nothing to do with our science curriculum for the year. Which is a good thing since the experiment was a flop, in theory the vinegar egg was supposed to bounce. It was still kind of neat to see the change in the two eggs after soaking one in water and one in vinegar.

Day 1

Day 4

Look at the shell coming off the vinegar egg

Day 10

The vinegar egg that splatted, and the water egg with the broken shell

Two experiments in one day, she was thrilled. 

This experiment was demonstrating what happens to a human lung under pressure, like diving in the ocean. It was hard to see even in person, but this experiment did actual work.

Finally we did an experiment on deep water currents, and how cold water mixes with hot water. Our cold (ice water) was yellow, and the hot water was blue. Caitlyn took these photos, she’s working on a photography badge for AHG.

You can see the green staying at the bottom

I don’t have any photos from week 3. Major happening were an attempt to make nan for our history study. It was nan-edible! Also Leia was suspended from school.

1st Week of 4th Grade

The first chapter of history and science both had a lot of activities that I thought were worth doing, and that Caitlyn would enjoy. First of all Mimi let us borrow a hair dryer, so we could make gyres (ocean currents).

For history we were studying the Victorian Era of the British Empire, and we did a mini project based on the phrase “the sun never sets on the British Empire”.

We also constructed a model of the Crystal Palace. Caitlyn thought it made a cool looking spider.

Caitlyn and I are also making an effort to include Leia in school this year. It went ok but she’s having a hard time finding a spot to settle in.

All About Caitlyn

One of our back to school traditions is having Caitlyn complete an all about me worksheet. Once again she had an incredibly hard time choosing a favorite in many of the categories. These were Caitlyn’s answers this year.

Hobbies: Horseback Riding and Reading

Favorite TV Show: Little House on the Prairie and Gilmore  Girls

Favorite Candy: Nerds

Favorite Place: Home

Favorite Color: Light Blue

Favorite Music: Elvis Presley

Favorite Book to Read: Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo

Favorite Vacation: Beach

Favorite Subject in School: Science and Reading

Favorite Food: Spaghetti

Favorite Animal: Elephant and Giraffe

Best Friend: Sarah Day

When I grow up I want to be an: Author

1st day of 4th Grade

School Room Set-Up

I’m glad Richard convinced me to keep the table.

Caitlyn’s workspace

My workspace




Our new bookcase – Thanks Mimi and Papa




The reward system












I’m liking our separate work spaces, and it’s nice to have an organized space to work during school. Caitlyn is getting more independent, so I can work while she does.  I also love our new bookcase, it is nice to be able to see everything. I added the book tracker to the door, because last year we had trouble keeping up with the books for the reward system. She was really excited by some of the additions to the prize bin, so I’m hoping for a good start to the year.

First Day of School

Teacher and student – We had a really good first day of school

 She is getting so big, and growing into such a beautiful young lady with grand aspirations: