June 2015

Dear Families,

As we are quickly approaching the end of a very successful school year, the fifth grade teachers would like to extend a warm welcome to all rising fifth-graders and their families. Next year, we will be emphasizing our writing curriculum and want to focus on increasing the level of reading in order to support our initiatives. We will expect that the students read at least eight books this summer, varying both the authors and genres, and record the books that they read on the reading log that is provided. Our fifth grade students have compiled a list of the most enjoyable books that they have read this year. Please use the list to help you select appropriate reading books for your child.

In addition to the summer reading, we are including a writingproject to accompany your child’s reading. Your child will select a main character from one of the books that he or she is reading and keep a character journal based on this character. The journals will be collected and shared during the first week of school. The character journal project guidelines are attached. There is also a rubric that you can use to help guide your child in preparing the diary. Please attach the reading log and the rubric to the back of the project.

Summer reading and writing is a wonderful way to maintain the skills that the students have learned in school and will use in the upcoming year. Please assist your child in the completion of the assignment in any way that you can. Your continued support is invaluable and appreciated. Have a great summer and we are looking forward to seeing you in September!


Sincerely,
The 5th Grade Team







DO NOT ENTER!
Character Journal Writing Project


For your summer vacation assignment, you will keep a character journal for one of the main characters in the book that you are currently reading. You will create and decorate the journal as the character that you have chosen would have created and decorated it. It is preferred that you type or neatly hand-write your entries. Be sure to attach a cover with the title of the book you read, your character’s name, an illustration, and your first and last name on the front.
You are going to choose from a list of writing prompts. Your journal entries must reveal the character’s inner thoughts and feelings. They should be as in-depth as possible. Although we are looking at the quality of the writing, we are expecting each entry to be at least a page long. You need to also include illustrations to go along with each entry. You will be required to select at least five out of the ten prompts listed below. Using one of the books you read, complete each journal entry from the perspective of one of the characters in your text. Use the journal template provided in the packet. Be sure to attach the rubric to your work with the reading log on the back fully completed.

Character Diary Writing Prompts:

1. What are you most afraid of or worried about, and why? What is making you anxious? Describe the person, object, or event that bothers you. Talk about specifically what concerns you. What's the worst thing that could happen to you? What do you hope will occur? How do your fears or worries relate to the things that have happened with you so far?

2. Who has impressed, annoyed, or pleased you most so far? What other character has had the strongest effect on you? Who is the other character? Describe the interaction you've had with the character, and explain why you feel the way that you do. How have the other character's actions influenced the way that you feel?

3. When you grow up, what do you want to do or become? What are your goals and dreams? What job do you want to have? When you dream about the future, what do you mostly think about? How does what you want to do relate to who you are now?

4. What is your biggest accomplishment so far? What have you done that has made you feel proud of yourself? Describe what you've done, and why you think it is so important. What makes this your biggest accomplishment? When you think about your accomplishment, how does it make you feel about the future? How would you complete a sentence such as this: when I think about this great accomplishment, I only hope that in the future, I'll be able to .

5. If you could relive a moment, what moment would you like to relive, and why? What event do you think about? Why is it such a strong memory for you? Why is it stuck in your thoughts? If you revisited this event, would you change it? Would you do anything differently? Would you try to notice something in particular? Would you want to relive it exactly as it occurred the first time? Describe the event in a way that makes your interest in reliving it clear.

6. What has made you happy recently? Describe the event, object, or person who has brought you happiness, and explore why you felt happy. Reflect on the event, object, or person -- look back and think about exactly the way that you felt. What does your happiness tell you about who you are and how your mind works?

7. Sketch your house, yard, office, or another important space that you know well. Label all your special things and the specific places. Once you've sketched things out, write a description about the place that explains why it's important to you. What makes the place significant? How does the place make you feel, and why? How does it relate to who you are -- is it messy, neat, clean, and so forth? What qualities does the place have, and how do those qualities relate to what you want in life?

8. What lesson(s) have you learned? What have the events that you've been through taught you? Think of them as a sort of fable -- what would the moral be? Describe the events in a way that makes the lesson that you've learned clear. Once you've described the lesson, talk about why it is an important lesson and how you think that it will affect you in the future.

9. Describe your dream getaway. If you could escape, where would you go? What would you do? Use details to describe your getaway -- what does it look like? What sounds do you hear? What do you smell? How does your dream place relate to the places that you live in and visit now? Reflect on why you would want to escape to this place -- Why is it better than where you are now? Why this place instead of another?

10. Choose a value or ideal that is important to you -- honesty, courage, faithfulness, and so forth. Define your value, and explore how it relates to your life. Why is this ideal important to you? What events, objects, or people have brought this word to mind? And what makes it more than just a word? What makes it an important value or ideal? Describe the events in your life that make this an important value, and explore how and why the ideal has grown so important to you.

SUGGESTED READING LIST FOR STUDENTS ENTERING GRADE 5
5th Grade Reading List
Dear Incoming Fifth Graders and Families

Here is a suggested reading list with books that you can choose from as you are keeping up with your reading this coming summer.
All students should read regularly over the summer, varying both the authors and genres. This is a list of authors and books that your teachers and librarians think that you will enjoy. Check out other books by these authors, and come up with your own favorites as well. These books may be found in bookstores, online, or in public libraries.

NEW AND NOTEWORTHY

Applegate, Katherine
HOME OF THE BRAVE
Kek, an African refugee, is confronted by many strange things at the Minnesota home of his aunt and cousin, as well as his fifth-grade classroom, and longs for his missing mother, but finds comfort in the company of a cow and he owner.

Lowry, Lois
THE WILLOGHBYS
The four Willoughby children set about to become “deserving orphans” after their neglectful parents embark on a treacherous adventure, leaving them in the care of their odious nanny.

Zevin, Gabrielle
ELSEWHERE
After fifteen-year-old Liz is hit by a taxi and killed, she finds herself in a place that is both like and unlike earth.

FICTION

Avi
MIDNIGHT MAGIC
In Italy in 1941, Mangus the magician and his apprentice are summoned to the castle of Duke Claudio to determine if his daughter is indeed being haunted by a ghost.

Blume, Judy
ARE YOU THERE GOD? IT'S ME, MARGARET
Faced with the difficulties of growing up and choosing a religion, a twelve-year-old girl talks over her problems with God.

Burnett, Frances Hodgson
THE SECRET GARDEN
Mary, a spoiled orphan, is sent to live in an English mansion, where she encounters Dickon, Colin, and a secret walled garden.

Byars, Betsy
THE SUMMER OF THE SWANS
All on one summer day, a girl deals with her own growing up, her brother's handicap, and a new friend.

Clements, Andrew
NO TALKING
It’s the boys against the girls in a contest of who can say the fewest words during two whole days.
Also try THE LAST HOLIDAY CONCERT, and LUNCH MONEY.
Creech, Sharon
GRANNY TORRELLI MAKES SOUP
With the help of her wise grandmother, Rosie manages to work out some problems in herrelationship with her best friend Bailey.

Danziger, Paula and Ann M. Martin
P.S. LONGER LETTER LATER.
Best friends Tara Starr and Elizabeth continue their friendship through letters when one of them moves away. Also, SNAIL MAIL NO MORE.

DeClements, Barthe
NOTHING'S FAIR IN FIFTH GRADE
A fifth grade class is repelled by an overweight classmate who has problems at home.

Gantos, Jack
JOEY PIGZA SWALLOWED THE KEY
School is seen through the eyes of an ADHD child, whose wild actions and mood swings are not being effectively controlled by his medication. This is a funny, yet poignant novel. Also, JOEYPIGZA LOSES CONTROL (Newbery Honor Book, 2001), and WHAT WOULD JOEY DO?

Hiaasen, Carl
HOOT
Roy becomes involved in another boy’s attempt to save a colony of burrowing owls from a proposed construction site.

Hiaasen, Carl
FLUSH
With their father jailed for sinking a river boat, Noah and his sister, must gather evidence to prove that a casino boat is polluting the protected waters in the Florida Keys.

Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds
SHILOH
A boy who loves a dog that is not his struggles with right and wrong as he attempts to make the dog his own. Also SHILOH SEASON and SAVING SHILOH.
Paterson, Katherine
BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA
Jess meets a neighbor girl named Leslie who leads him to the magical world of imagination. This power of imagination also helps him get through one of the most terrible things that will happen to him.

Paterson, Katherine
THE GREAT GILLY HOPKINS
Eleven-year-old Gilly lives in a foster home and tries to cope with life. Can she learn to accept friendship?

Paulson, Gary
HATCHET
This Newbery Honor book is a dramatic, heart-stopping story of a boy who, following a plane crash in the Canadian wilderness must learn to survive with only a hatchet and his own wits. Also try BRIAN'S WINTER &; THE RIVER.
Spinelli, Jerry
MANIAC MAGEE
Maniac Magee is the fastest runner in town. He's even better at showing people how to get along with one another.

Woodson, Jacqueline
LAST SUMMER WITH MAIZON
Eleven-year-old Margaret tries to accept the changes that come with her father's death and her best friend's leaving for a boarding school. Her story continues in MAIZON AT BLUE HILL where Maizon is one of five black students trying to fit in.

SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY
Funke, Cornelia
INKHEART
Twelve-year-old Meggie learns that her father can “read” fictional characters to life. An adventure begins once one of the characters abducts them and tries to force her father into service. Also, INKSPELL and THE THIEF LORD.

Gaiman, Neil
CORALINE
Coraline ventures through a mysterious door into a world that is similar, yet disturbingly different from her own. Here she must challenge a gruesome entity in order to save herself, her parents, and the souls of three others.

Haddix, Margaret
AMONG THE HIDDEN
Luke is the third boy in his farming family, has been hidden since birth thereby safe for the time being from the Population Police. One day he notices a girls face in the window and realizes that there must be other shadow children like himself.. Also, check out AMONG THE IMPOSTERS,AMONG THE BETRAYED, AMONG THE BARONS and AMONG THE BRAVE also by the sameauthor.

Levine, Gail Carson
ELLA ENCHANTED
A story about a noble girl, Ella, who suffers from a terrible curse from birth: the curse that forces her to obey anybody’s command. This is a humorous and well-crafted retelling of the Cinderella story.

O'Brien, Robert C.
MRS. FRISBY AND THE RATS OF NIMH
The 1972 Newbery winner, Mrs. Frisby, has a terrible problem and she has nowhere to turn to but the rats who keep to themselves. Those rats once were the lab rats in the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and they possess special intelligence and powers.

Pullman, Philip
THE GOLDEN COMPASS
Lyra and her daemon Pantalaimon live in Jordan College, Oxford. Like other daemons of young children, Pantalaimon can change shapes and turn into any animal he wants to. Don't skip Books 2 & 3, THE SUBTLE KNIFE and THE AMBER SPYGLASS.

HUMOROUS STORIES
Carey, Peter
THE BIG BAZOOHLEY
Sam’s family sure could use “The Big Bazoohly” when they find themselves staying at a fancy hotel with barely enough money to buy a sandwich. If only Sam could win the $10,000 prize in the Perfect Kiddo contest! Can he do it?

Dahl, Roald
ROALD DAHL’S REVOLTING RHYMES
Dahl changes your view of fairy tales in this collection of short twisted tales/rhymes by making them funnier, odder, and definitely more gruesome.
Coville, Bruce
JENNIFER MURDELY’S TOAD
Jennifer, a fifth grader, discovers that a kiss from the talking toad she purchased in a magic shop will give you more than warts.

Fitzgerald, John D.
THE GREAT BRAIN
The exploits of the Great Brain of Adenville, Utah, are described by his younger brother, frequently the victim of the Great Brain’s schemes for gaining prestige or money.

Fitzhugh, Louise
HARRIET THE SPY
When Harriet's classmates find her diary and read what she has written about them, they decide to make life miserable for her. Also: THE LONG SECRET.

Rogers, Mary
SUMMER SWITCH.
A boy and his father find themselves, literally, in each other's shoes. Also FREAKY FRIDAY in which Annabel wakes up to find herself turned into her mother.

HISTORICAL FICTION

Armstrong, Jennifer
BLACK-EYED SUSAN
The hardships and joys of pioneer life on the Dakota prairie.

Giff, Patricia
LILY’S CROSSING
This story is about a girl during World War II whose friendship with Albert, a young Hungarian refugee, makes her see the war and her own world from a different perspective.

Giff, Patricia Reilly.
NORY RYAN'S SONG
Twelve-year-old Nory Ryan, along with her family and friends, learns how to survive and help one another during the Potato Famine in Ireland.

Lord, Bette Bao
IN THE YEAR OF THE BOAR AND JACKIE ROBINSON
A Chinese girl comes to Brooklyn in 1947 and makes new friends at school, in her new apartment, and through her love of baseball.

Lowry, Lois
NUMBER THE STARS
Set in Nazi-occupied Denmark, this novel recounts the efforts of Annemarie Johansen and her family to smuggle their Jewish friends to safety in Sweden.

Speare, Elizabeth George
THE SIGN OF THE BEAVER
Left alone to guard the family's wilderness home in eighteenth-century Maine, a boy is hardpressed to survive until local Indians teach him their skills.






BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIRS

Bridges, Ruby
THROUGH MY EYES
Ruby Bridges recounts the story of her involvement, as a six-year old, in the integration of her school in New Orleans in 1960.

Dahl, Roald
BOY: TALES OF CHILDHOOD
This story of the author's childhood in Norway and England is filled with peculiar, funny and awful
incidents.

Spinelli, Jerry
KNOTS IN MY YO-YO STRING
Spinelli, author of MANIAC MAGEE and WRINGER, makes regular happenings in his life like
sidewalk races and other events very hilarious in this autobiography.

Yates, Elizabeth
AMOS FORTUNE, FREE MAN
The life of the eighteenth-century African prince brought to Massachusetts after being captured by slave traders


Character Journal Rubric
(This will be filled out In class)
Category
4
Your Best Work
3
Almost Your Best Work
2
Incomplete Work
1
Unacceptable Work
General Content

Self grade
Peer grade
Teacher grade _
Writing addresses all parts of the question prompts
Writing addresses most parts of the prompts
Writing addresses few parts of the prompts


Writing only addresses one part of the prompts


Inner Thoughts and Feelings



Self grade
Peer grade
Teacher grade _


Writing created a deep understanding of what the character was thinking and feeling. The character came to life.
Writing created some idea of what the character was thinking and feeling.
Writing created some idea of what the character was thinking and feeling.
Writing gave no idea of what the character was thinking and feeling.
Details and Description



Self grade
Peer grade
Teacher grade _
Writing included many details and descriptions. Your reader can visualize the story and the setting came to life.
Writing included some details and descriptions. Your reader can somewhat visualize the story and the setting came to life.
Writing included few details and descriptions. Your reader can rarely visualize the story.
Writing included no details and descriptions. Your reader can’t visualize the story.
Organization

Self grade
Peer grade
Teacher grade _


Writing stays on topic all of the time and is organized into paragraphs.
Writing stays on topic most of the time and some organization is evident.
Writing stays on topic some of the time, and could be more organized.
Writing does not stay on topic and is not organized neatly into paragraphs.

Peer Comments:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Teacher use only: Final Grade
Comments:___


READING LOG
Use this log in order to record your reading:

As you complete a book please record the information in the chart below. It is suggested that you read eight books over the summer. You may read more than eight books please record the additional information on the bottom of this page or on another sheet of paper. Happy reading!



TITLE
AUTHOR
GENRE
LEVEL
(IF KNOWN)
STUDENT SIGNATURE
PARENT
SIGNATURE



















































Summer Math Journal Project

For your math homework for this summer vacation, you will be creating a math journal in which you will answer math related questions. From the below list you will chose 5 journal topics out of 20 to answer using words and pictures.
Using the blank pages provided, you will use at least one page per journal entry to write a detailed answer.

  1. Cover: Please make sure that your cover has your name, a title, and some sort of math related drawing.
  2. Table of Contents: The first page inside your journal should be the table of contents in which you list your journal entries and the page that they are on. (You must number each page in your journal)
  3. Inside of the journal: At the top of each page, you should have your journal question written out. Below that, you should have a detailed answer (which is at LEAST one page long) to the journal question and a drawing relating to that journal question.

From the list below, choose 5 out of 20 questions that you would like to answer:
1. Write a humorous paragraph describing what it would be like to live in a world without numbers.
2.Create a money system the students in your grade could use. What items will be valuable? What will each item be worth? Explain why you think all countries should or should not have the same money system.
3. If zero represents “nothing” why is this numeral so important?
4. How could you calculate the number of minutes you have been alive? (You do not have to do the actual calculation, just describe the steps you would take to do it)
5. List as many examples as you can of ways you use fractions in your daily life?
6. Imagine you are a news anchor person. Write the lead story for the evening news in the city of Arithmetown, where everything that happens involves math.
7. Write an advertisement that would attract new students to join our math class. Be sure to make the class sound exciting and useful.
8. Imagine you have just walked into a local department store. Describe all the ways you might use numbers while you are shopping there.
9.Choose any profession and tell how a person in that profession might use math each day.
10.Write a paragraph describing how our lives would be different if we didn’t have any round objects. Be creative.
11. Plan a class field trip to the moon. Describe all the things that would need to be done prior to taking the trip. Be sure to write the steps in order.
12.Think of a business you might like to own someday. Write a paragraph telling what things you would have to estimate before opening your business. Describe how you would come up with these estimates.
13.What is meant by “mental math”? Discuss where and how you use mental math other than in math class.
14.Albert Einstein was a genius, but he received poor math grades in school. Do you think students should be graded on their schoolwork or not? Defend your argument.
15.Using math terms and their definitions, create a crossword puzzle with at least ten clues.
16.Imagine you are opening a store that sells only math-related items. Write an ad for your store.
17.If you could invent a new machine for use in schools, what would it be? Describe its function, size, price, etc. Give as many details as you can.
18.Write a word problem about your favorite summer activity. Include some information that is unnecessary for solving the problem.
19.Write a letter to eventually give to your grandchildren. In it, explain what you use a computer for. How do you think computer use will be different for them.
20. Imagine you have just walked into a baseball stadium to see your favorite team play. Describe how you might use numbers while you are there.