Curriculum and Fifth Grade Information

2018-2019 District Calendar

Lunch Menu

Mrs. Bloomfield's Blog


Arrival Procedure…

Students should not arrive at school before 8:15 AM, as there is no outside supervision. This year Iron Horse will be implementing a rolling start.  Students will be allowed to enter the building at 8:18 to head to their classroom. Students will enter either through the main doors or through the doors near the turf area.  Students will be considered tardy if they are not in the classroom by 8:35. 


Dismissal Procedure…

Students will be dismissed at 3:25 PM (second bell) through the southwest doors. Please make sure your child knows how they will be returning home from school, before coming to school. If you have several children at Iron Horse, please help them to determine a pre-arranged place to meet outside of the school building. As all students have different dismissal doors, it is not possible for students to walk freely throughout the building to pick up siblings or friends.


Snack Break/ Morning Recess…

We will have a snack break and morning recess from 10:30-10:45. Snacks are allowed during this time, as long as they are nutritious. We strongly urge you to send fruits or vegetables with your child for this break; growing bodies and learning minds need optimal fuel and that fruits and veggies provide!  Please do not send in candy. During the first couple days of school, students will have a discussion about what a healthy snack is. 


Water Bottles…

We do allow and encourage students to bring water bottles into the classroom. Be sure that the water bottles have a top that is secure so it does not leak and ruin materials in their backpack or on the desk. Students should bring water bottles home a couple of times a week to be washed and sanitized.  Please do not send water that is flavored or colored.


Birthday Treats...

Iron Horse Elementary is a healthy school and birthday treats are not allowed (cupcakes, cookies, etc.).   If you would like to donate a book for our classroom library, it would be appreciated or you may send in a pencil, stickers or fun trinket to celebrate your student’s birthday



Students will receive a planner and  will be responsible for bringing it to  and from school each day. All activities/tasks assigned will be written in the planner.  All classroom assignments are also posted daily on our classroom website and we encourage you and your your child to check this resource as needed. If any questions arise, your child is encouraged to email their classroom teacher, as this helps your child build advocacy for themselves. If students are missing any assignments (as of the date due), parents will be notified, via email. 



We are looking for volunteers to: come in the classroom and help with language arts, math, and science.. In addition to classroom help, we are looking a room parent that will organize our classroom parties (Halloween, Holiday, Valentine, and the end of the year party).  As the oldest class in the school, party parents will need to be able to work with other 5th grade parents to plan an awesome end of the year party, including lunch and afternoon activities.  Volunteer sign up will be emailed via Google Docs at the start of the school year.


Leaving School for Appointments…

Please attempt to make appointments after school.  If you do have to pick up your child early, make sure that you email, send a note, or call in to the school to notify us of any absences during the school day.  Students cannot be released until a responsible adult has signed them out. Upon return to school, it is asked that you bring your child back into the building and sign him/her in.



Extended absences are discouraged. Missed instructional time can significantly impact a student’s learning. In-class instruction is difficult to replicate. Teachers will provide any missed work that can be made up after the student returns to class. Teachers will not provide work in advance of an extended absence due to the purposeful planning to meet students needs on a day-to-day basis. It is suggested that students continue to read during the absence. 


Curriculum Topics and Grade Level Expectations for 5th grade


5th Grade 4C’s 

Communication: Respectfully listen and interact with everyone 

Collaboration: Cooperate with others and contribute to being productive 

Critical Thinking: Problem solve by using reasoning and judgment 

Creativity: Demonstrate curiosity and innovation

Douglas County 21
st Century Skills and Themes:

  • Global Awareness
  • Financial Literacy
  • Problem Solving
  • Civic Responsibility


Literacy Grade Level Expectations:

  • Communicates and listens effectively in various situations
  • Understands and interprets fiction and nonfiction using a range of strategies
  • Uses strategies to increase vocabulary
  • Writes for a variety of audiences and purposes
  • Uses the writing process for a variety of purposes both narrative and expository
  • Edits for grammar, punctuation, usage, mechanics, and clarity
  • Conducts, evaluates, and synthesizes research effectively


Reading Instruction:   

Students will be engaging in a balanced literacy model of instruction based on the work by Jan Richardson. A balanced literacy model includes:  teacher read aloud, shared reading, guided reading, guided writing, independent reading, and independent literacy activities.

  • Read Aloud:  The teacher reads an on or above level selection to the students that is of high interest.  Discussion and activities will follow related to checkpoints.
  • Shared Reading: The teacher shares with students an interactive, above level text that is read aloud first, and then students participate in the subsequent readings. Discussion and activities will follow related to checkpoints.
  • Guided Reading/Literature Groups:  Student groups are developed based upon identified needs and interests, as well as instructional level.  Appropriate text is chosen according to level and interest. Skills and strategies to be learned are model and explicitly taught to each group.  Groups are assessed informally and formally throughout the process.
  • Independent Reading:  Students choose and read appropriate leveled text for up to 45 minutes daily.  Time is set aside to conference with the teacher regarding reading strategies weekly. Students should read their independent reading book for 20 minutes each night.
  • Guided Writing: Guided writing lessons are small-group lessons teaching those strategies that a group of students need to practice with immediate guidance.


Writing:  Students will be using a writer’s workshop model using Thinking Maps and the Write from the Beginning curriculum. In addition, grammar, punctuation and other conventions will be taught in skill blocks daily. Writing to persuade and inform will be our focus this year.

  • Writer’s Workshop:  Students will do independent writing in their writer’s notebook for self-selected, as well as teacher selected topics. Students will learn to brainstorm, outline, plan, compose drafts, revise, edit, and publish written selections. 
  • Thinking Maps: The Thinking Maps® model program consists of eight maps that correspond with fundamental thinking processes. The Circle Map is used for defining in context; the Bubble Map, describing with adjectives; the Flow Map, sequencing and ordering; the Brace Map, identifying part/whole relationships; the Tree Map, classifying/grouping; the Double Bubble Map, comparing and contrasting; the Multi-Flow Map, analyzing causes and effects; and the Bridge Map, seeing analogies. These maps are a "common visual language" for students in all subject areas (Grades K-12).
  • Write from the Beginning: Write...from the Beginning and Beyond is a developmental writing program for Kindergarten through 5th Grade focused on those criteria necessary for successful writing achievement beyond the elementary years. The program includes both narrative and expository writing, each utilizing the Thinking Maps. Teachers build upon and extend the instruction of previous grades by using Modeled Instruction, Improvement Rubrics, and Focused Mini-Lessons. 
  • Interactive Writing and Editing: The teacher will model and student groups will practice, writing using varied forms (essay, story, poetry etc.) to address different purposes and audiences.  Students will organize writing in a focused and logical manner (intro, body/details, conclusion) using stylistic elements to add clarity, interest and variety.
  • Grammar and Written Conventions:  Students will participate in skill blocks daily, which focus on particular grammar and written conventions.  These areas include: identifying and using varied parts of speech, using precise and figurative language, punctuation/capitalization, noun/verb agreement, indention, quotation marks, compound/complex sentences, eliminating fragments/run-ons etc.


Science:  Students will be engaged in interactive experiments and activities related to trade book information found in a variety of science kits provided by the district.  Fifth grade teachers each specialize in one topic and teach it to all three classes. Topics to be covered in fifth grade include:

  • Scientific inquiry/scientific method (all)
  • Physical Science (Ms. Scott)
  • Life Science (Mrs. Mendelsohn)
  • Earth Systems Science (Ms. Young)


Social Studies:  Students will work with their textbook, as well as a variety of other resources, to master concepts about US History, and States/Regions of the US.  Topics to be covered in fifth grade include:

  • Age of Exploration
  • Colonization
  • American Revolution
  • Government
  • Identifying Regions and their Resources/Identifying Characteristics
  • Geography
  • US Civics 
  • Economics


Math Grade Level Expectations: Starting this year Iron Horse will be using the updated version of the program we use last year-Pearson 2.0.  This program has been piloted by some IHE teachers and is used at Cimarron. Here is some further information on the program.

  • Applies properties, rules, and concepts of numbers to solve problems.
  • Represents numbers as fractions, decimals, and percent.
  • Estimates and solves multi-digit multiplication and division problems.
  • Analyzes, represents, and extends patterns.
  • Collects, displays, and interprets data.
  • Probability.
  • Geometry and Measurement.


Math Instruction:  Students will be using the enVision Math program this year. 

Areas of study include: 

  • Number Sense, Properties, and Operations
  • Patterns, Functions, and Algebraic Structures
  • Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability
  • Shape, Dimension, and Geometric Relationships


In order to best meet these needs, the fifth grade teachers will be switching classes at various times for science, social studies, and Young Ameritowne throughout the course of the school year. This means that your child will have a different teacher for each science unit, various activities. This teacher will be responsible for giving homework, class work and administering assessments for the 2018-2019 school year. Furthermore, this is a great way to help students become more responsible for their learning as they prepare for middle school.


Daily Schedule: Fifth Grade 2018-2019

8:18-8:35 Rolling Start

8:35-9:30 Science/SS

9:30-10:10 Specials (Art, P.E., Music)

10:10-10:45 Literacy Block

10:45-11:00 Recess/Snack Break

11:00-12:40 Literacy Block

12:40-1:25 Recess/Lunch

1:25-1:50 Intervention

1:50-3:20 Math

3:20-3:25 End of Day Activities

3:25 Dismissal

Specials... This year, specials will be on a daily basis.  Please be sure that your student has tennis shoes on PE daily.

Behavior Expectations and Classroom Management 

  • Students are expected to follow all TRACK policies as found in the parent handbook.
  • The main priority in the classroom is to create a positive environment in which ALL can learn and experience success.  As such, students will be a vital part in the development of class rights, rules, and mission statements.
  • Based on TRACK expectations the specific behavior will be evaluated by a teacher or administrator to determine potential consequences.
  • Rewards will be given as surprises when the entire class meets an academic or behavioral goal through hard work and perseverance.  They will not be announced or planned, but may include: educational movies related to the curriculum, a book breakfast, homework passes, a special class lunch, Fun Friday game time, etc.
  • In order to help teach responsibility, each student will be expected to help maintain order within our classroom community. Jobs will be assigned weekly for such maintenance chores as taking lunch count and setting up equipment in the classroom.
  • We are looking forward to working with all of you; we are going to have a great year!  As a reminder, “Meet and Greet” is being held on August 8th from 4:00 pm-6:00 pm. 
    • Families will be invited to drop off supplies and meet the teacher etc. during this time.