Okay, tomorrow is my very first day teaching 5th grade. I’ve taught 3rd grade for the last three years, and as sweet and cute as they are, they lack a certain sophistication that I prefer. The topics I’d want to teach them are simply out of their grasp. So, I moved up to the grade I always wanted: 5th. When I first began teaching, there were no 5th grade positions open, but now there is…whoo hoo!
My class will be about 30-32 kids, all of them native Spanish speakers still learning English. I actually had about 12 of these kids two years ago for third grade. My classroom has a mini-menagerie: a corn snake, 10-gallon aquarium of fish (my baby electric yellows from my tropical fish breeding hobby), and two small red-ear turtles.
So, what can you tell me you loved about 5th grade? (No bitching sessions, please!) I personally loved fifth grade; it’s when I really began to develop my writing and story-telling, and my love for reading. My teacher was very cool. We would write stories, and then she would read the best of them out loud the next day, leaving the names anonymous. She also seemed to actually care about me.
Fifth grade was when I started playing music. I sucked at sports and had “Dork” tattooed to my forehead (still do), but I was king in band. It’s nice to find your place.
The other nice thing about 5th grade is it’s sorta the last year of childhood. No raging hormones to deal with. At least that’s the way it was when I was in grade school, Lord knows what it’s like now.
BTW, God bless you for doing what you do. I took a shot at being a band director and couldn’t take it. Teachers are heros, IMHO.
Read My Posse Don’t Do Homework previously titled Dangerous Minds and subsequently made into a movie and a short lived television series. Read the book. I think all teachers sould be required to.
I’ve read it twice, Garfield, and keep a copy in my classroom.
Here are some things I loved about 5th grade:
During math, we would have races on long division and multiplication on the black board. It would be up to 5 teams and each had a space on the blackboard. You read the question and they write it down and work it out. The teams progressivly earned points for the year, until one team wins. Our prize was a class party.(everyonewas included, but we didn’t care.)
Also we made up out solar system out of paper mache. I did the sun :D.We strung it up across the room in their respective orbits. It was a lot of fun making them. My sun was made from a beach bal, paper mache’d.
Another thing we did was an incubator. They cost between 40-100 bucks. Go to a local farm and get some fertalized chicken or duck eggs. It is a nice 2-3 month process of setting up the incubator and hatching the eggs. chickens are low maintence too. they don’t need to be specially fed since they feed normally from hatching.
Also, when we did history reports, we got to dress up like the theme of our paper. Mine was about the native Indians. I wore a headband with feathers and braided my hair up.
Another thing, which I’m not sure your familiar with is tese coloring grids. The sheetgives you 20-50 instructions on how to fill out the grid. It gives you the location on the grid and the colors and shapes you are to draw. In the end, you end up with a picture ranging from santa claus to shamrocks. They keep the class quite for a half hour or so as well.
one last thing is a craft that my mom still has and looks at all the time. All ou need is a bunch of plain beige file folders and many different types of materials. You have them trace ne anothers feet on the material and cut them out. They place them on a mirror cut out of a dogs face. They fill in the face. Then they have to write a story either about a dog they want, had, or fictional story about a dog. They put that on sheets of paper followed by a binding of the mirror cut out behind it. Tie with ribbons. It makes a great little story book that every mom will save.
Mine has green felt ears and a red nose (I was absent the day they started and I got leftovers). Inside it had a story about my childhood german Shepard at ChristmasTime. It is so cute.
And of course, Mother’s day cards with homemade poems inside are a must (alt. to father if no mother present in home)
I hope these suggestions are good for you, sorry it is so long.
5th grade was wicked, I loved school then. Kickball was where it was at. That and math, I always loved math, science too, but mainly math. School has and always will be an excuse to not be home, which is always good. Hmm…what else…band was wicked, I learned the recorder…yay me…
My fav. memory of 5th grade was when the kid I was sitting next to (he was a real smart-alec) kept talking in class. Finally our teacher (who was a really awesome teacher, by the way) stopped right in the middle of what she was doing, walked over to him, got up onto his desk, and started yelling at him. It was mostly a joke-type punishment, but the kid looked like he was gonna wet his pants. Everyone else in the class was laughing hysterically…hehehe, I’ll never forget that. (For this to be accomplished correctly, you’ve gotta be moderatly tall and just about touch the ceiling when you stand on the desk)