That November Summer - November Update

Friday, November 6, 2020 2:20 PM

You did it, you survived the week and while I know you’re all enjoying hearing about the American election in 15 vote increments, I was hoping to peal your attention away for a few moments to pass along the November update. It’s a busy month and we’ve lots going on so here’s a quick run down of what to expect.


Important Dates

Wednesday, November 11th – No school for all students (Remembrance Day)

Monday, November 16th – Practice lockdown (am)


Language Arts

We have completed part 1 of “Wonder” and are excited to begin part 2. Even though many of the students have already read the book, they have really enjoyed hearing it again. The themes in the book provide rich discussion each day and we are looking forward to watching the movie once we are done!

In writing, students have been focusing on persuasive writing as well as descriptive writing. When possible, we try to integrate our writing efforts in other areas. For example, last week students wrote up a realtor listing for a haunted house and the finished results were downright spooky! The details, the descriptions and the imagery used were fantastic and truly represented the best writing from each student I’ve seen all year. I loved it. For the month of November, our writing efforts will incorporate elements from Social Studies as we continue to learn about Canada’s war efforts and the experiences of the men and women who have served our country. Students will be writing their own “letters from the front” where they will take the perspective of a soldier, nurse, or medic on the front lines and trenches of WW1, writing a letter home to his/her family. In support of this work, we made use of the following resources which make for great discussion and exploration:


We have just finished up our rounding and estimation unit, as well as comparing and ordering numbers up to millions. Next up, we will do a quick review of adding and subtracting numbers, both with and without regrouping, as well as word problems. We will then begin our Data Analysis unit.  

Students completed their November fact frenzy and should have brought them home for you to sign and review. If you are noticing gaps in any of the four operations, please take a little bit of time each night to practice. Their estimation tests were also returned to them and should have come home for your signature and review.


We are nearly complete our unit on Wetlands. Students recently learned about physical and behaviour adaptations and used their knowledge to create their own adaptation animals. They also learned about producers, consumers, and decomposers, and their roles in a food chain. To wrap up our unit, students will complete a culminating activity using all their knowledge about wetlands to help “Save the Wetlands". They’ll be completing this using any and all of the links in the Wetlands Ecosystems section of the Science Resources and the Wetland Web Links page. Our next unit of study will be Weather which you can preview here.

Social Studies

We have many different topics on the go in Social Studies right now. With November being a month to focus on our veterans and Canada’s efforts in the war, we have been learning about both World War 1 and 2. We have been making use of and exploring the many resources shared here - World Wars & Remembrance Day. Traditionally students in grade 5 would have been in charge of the Remembrance Day assembly, however since we are not able to have any assemblies this year, it will look a bit different. Students are learning “In Flanders Fields”, which they will perform virtually for the rest of the school. Grade 5 is also in charge of collecting donations for the Veterans Food Bank, and thank you to those who have already brought in some food items. As I mentioned last month, we are fortunate to have connections with HMCS Calgary and HMCS Tecumseh, and we are hoping to connect virtually with a crew member for Remembrance Day. Lastly, we our continuing our mapping unit by studying latitude and longitude. 


We have begun Francais! We started with the alphabet and Halloween vocabulary and today we covered colours. We will move on to numbers, as well as the days of the week and months of the year. 

I will leave it there for now and will update you all with more specific details for things as they come up. Have a great weekend!


Daniel Polsky
Grade 5 Teacher | Learning Leader
Fish Creek School |
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