Mrs. Hassett's 5th Grade

Oak Knoll School - Menlo Park Elementary City School District



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5th Grade Curriculum

I use the California Content Standards to guide what I teach in each subject area and to help me determine what my students need to learn. Below are links to those standards.

History-Social Science: United States History and Geography: Making a New Nation
CA Content Standards

Units Include:
•  U.S. Geography
•  Pre-Colombian Settlements
•  Early Exploration
•  Colonial Settlements
•  American Revolution
•  U.S. Constitution & Government
•  Immigration
•  Westward Expansion

Planned Projects:
•  "See the USA" Interact Simulation
•  Salt Dough Relief Map
•  Explorer Mini-Research Report
•  Colonial Faire
•  Loyalist vs. Patriot Writing Piece
•  International Feast
•  Immigration Presentation
• Postcard Project - See below. 10/23/06

CA Content Standards
Students will rotate through all 5th grade classrooms for science lessons. Exploration in the Oak Knoll Life Lab (garden) and focus on the scientific method are ongoing

Units Include:
•  Weather & Water
•  Chemistry / Mixtures & Solutions
•  Living Systems
•  Human Growth & Development

Language Arts
CA Content Standards

Writing Units
•  Personal Narrative
•  Response to Literature
•  Report Writing
•  Persuasive

Writing Across the Curriculum
Daily students will participate in writing of various types and throughout each curriculum area, for example:
•  Science Journal
•  "Writing Container" daily journal
•  Social Studies/History
•  Responses to reading
•  Summaries
•  Note taking

Weekly topics will be studied and practiced in class.

Each Monday students are given a pre-test from an Open Court Reading word list. If one scores 80% or higher on their pre-test, they then create their own list including 1) word they missed on the pre-test, 2) words misspelled on assignments, and 3) challenging words found in a dictionary, online, vocabulary lists, or anywhere else!

CA Content Standards

I will use a variety of differentiated materials and methods to help enhance the reading comprehension skills of my students, to build higher order critical reading skills (cause/effect, consequences/implications, inferences, questioning, generalizations, greater themes/concepts, creative synthesis), and to promote student discussion of textual meaning. In order to do this, I determine what level reading skills each student has, and use scaffolding strategies to build from lower order skills to the higher ones (e.g., sequencing -> cause & effect -> consequences/implications).  

William & Mary Jacob's Ladder Reading Comprehension Program

•  Short Stories and Essays, Poetry, Non-Fiction
•  Students are currently learning how the program works in a whole group setting.   I model how the assignment ladders should be completed as well as how to have a group discussion using the questions in the assignment.
•  As soon as the initial training and assessment is complete I will differentiate by reading level: reading material, assignment type, reading comprehension skills they need to work on, ability grouping.

Junior Great Books

•  Similar to above and recommended to be used in conjunction with above program.
•  Based on shared inquiry, discussion, supporting opinion with textual evidence
•  Students read text both as a whole class and individually.
•  Weekly, under an adult leader within ability groups, a question with no one correct answer is posed that is suitable for their reading ability.   Students are held accountable for their discussion, supporting opinions with evidence, etc. by the group leader.

Novel Studies

•  The following novels will be studied as a whole class: The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, Sign of a Beaver, My Brother Sam is Dead, and Bridge to Terabithia. Students are given differentiated journal response questions.

Literature Circles

•  Approximately twice per year students will be assigned a novel appropriate to their reading level to read, complete assignments appropriate to their reading level, and conduct literature circle discussion meetings (4-6 students) within their ability group.


•  The school district has adopted a reading assessment program, called G.R.A.D.E., to assist teachers in determining student reading levels. The results will be used to aid in my selection of appropriate reading materials and instruction for groups of like readers.

Independent Reading

•  I loosely monitor what my students are reading in their spare time by meeting with them individually approximately once per month to discuss their reading and to help them select appropriate books if they want me to.
•  The "Passport to Reading" program is designed to help students become excited about reading on their own and to try reading books from different genres. We have a large map where each continent represents a genre. Each reader has a flag that they tack onto the continent that corresponds to the genre of the book that their reading. Students "visit" a continent (by reading a novel in that genre) and record information in their passport.   To receive a stamp for having visited that land, they choose from a list of creative projects to complete.


CA Content Standards