The Successful 5th Grader

5th grade is a milestone year. It’s a school year that will be one of your most memorable because of so many “firsts”….first locker, first time changing classes, first L-Block (skills/study work), first F-Block (Fine Arts/Unified Arts/Wellness)…but it’s also a challenging year. A lot more will be expected of you this year because you’re ready for it. It’s normal to be overwhelmed with all the new responsibilities that come with being in the upper grades. 

With that in mind, I would like to share with you...

Mrs. Close’s

1. Practice knowing your math facts by memory. (I know, I know, I’m not the Math teacher…but I did teach Math for a looong time…so I know what I’m talking about on this one.) This means no counting. If you don’t have them committed to memory, practice memorizing them!! It is a skill that will help you in math class and in life!!! TRUST ME ON THIS ONE!! :) 

2. Keep an open mind. Maybe Social Studies wasn’t your favorite subject last year, or Writing wasn’t your “thing”. You never know…things may be different this year!

3. Be patient. 5th grade is challenging…in a lot of ways. Not only will you be learning new information, but you will have the added responsibility of having a locker, 2 new teachers, and all the other changes 5th grade will bring.

4. Be organized. You no longer have your belongings stored in your classroom and you will be moving between two classrooms throughout the day. That means that you will have to remember to bring in ALL your materials. You can do it! You are, after all, one of the “big kids” now!

5. Give your very best! I have spent many hours this summer planning ahead what we are going to do this year. I take teaching very seriously: I do lots of prep and planning. I even take work home because I want you to have the very best teacher you can have. I expect you give your very best also! Don’t do anything halfway!

6. Forget about the past! Okay, don’t forget about all you’ve learned…that wouldn’t be very good, but one of the great things about the start of a new school year is getting a fresh start! You have a clean slate! Maybe you were the kid who didn’t always do homework last year…or you didn’t control your behavior like you should have. Maybe you did just fine last year, but know you could have done even better. This can be your year to shine! It’s completely up to you!

7. Use your binder! I know that seems like a “no-brainer”, but you would not believe how many kids don’t put their papers in their binders. Then, when Mrs. Close says, “Take out the worksheet we did last week.” or “Take out your Language homework, please.” these same kids can’t find it, or left it in their lockers…oops! Your binder is your best friend in 5th grade…be kind to it!

8. Use your time wisely! Kids who use their time wisely at school have less homework to do when they get home. This includes managing your time outside of school, too. I know many of you have very full schedules (sports, church, etc.). I recognize that sometimes you may do homework on the way to practice, or right when you come home from school because you have an activity that evening. When you can however, try to find a distraction-free area to complete your homework neatly. You will have time in school to read each day and complete independent work. Don't waste that time day dreaming, chatting with friends, and not being productive. 

Don’t waste a single minute. Plan ahead, organize your time, and have good self-management!

9. Be faithful about using your agenda. Writing down your assignments each day is a habit that will help you all the way through college! If you ever got home and then couldn’t remember what page the homework was on, then you already know what I’m talking about!

10. Be yourself!!!! I can’t wait to spend this year with you, and get to know all of you better. I am a better teacher when I let my personality shine through, and you will be able to learn better if you can relax and be yourself, also. This happens best when everyone follows the classroom rules for behavior and our Social Contract, which we will talk more about the first week. 


Get ready for a great year!!! 5th Grade is going to be your BEST year yet!!!!