Degrees and Certifications:
Dr. Warren Nagano
Dear Fifth Grade Student, Parent or Guardian, September 20, 2022
It is with great enthusiasm that I formally welcome you to the First Semester of our 2022-23 school year. My 5th grade homeroom & core content courses will focus on Math & Humanities (a blend of English Language Arts, Social Studies and STEM). We will continue to build upon foundational knowledge & skills that were acquired in years past.
We will begin with a review of reading and writing – especially the development of “characters” within written text. Then we will focus on a series of short google docs related to reading and writing about “small moments in our students’ lives (a seemingly unremarkable experience such as a walk on the beach or meeting a puppy on that beach). That small moment can be both the springboard to creating a larger personal narrative or one of a number of small moments that together will add to a larger narrative. Finally, we will finish the school year refining and polishing-up non-fiction reading and writing – with emphasis on a “Claim, Evidence and Reasoning approach to written & spoken advocacy.
In Math, we will start with a quick review of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to sharpen up on basic computational skills that may have gotten a bit rusty over the summer break. Soon thereafter we will begin to explore core concepts such as exponents, order of operations, volumes of rectangular prisms. Eventually, we will dive more deeply into “real world-like” problems involving rectangular prisms such as custom aquariums & large complex buildings. We will also begin to explore fraction and decimal multiplication and division.
By the middle of the school year, we will begin to approach more challenging math and pre-algebra concepts. By year’s end will make more sophisticated connections to the relationship of data tables, coordinate graphs and equations (function machine rules). We will be able to make straight line linear predictions based upon the patterns that we can determine from those tables, graphs & equations (function machine rules).
Because many students are transitioning to these complex topics for the first time, periodically we will revisit many of the first Semester areas in math and language arts. Re-teaching for mastery, will yield some gratifying results.
Depth of knowledge is also important, so rather than just telling a student to accept on faith that any non-zero number to a power of zero equals 1, my students will learn how to mathematically prove and to understand why that statement is true.
While learning how to analyze informational text in a general sense, they will also dive more deeply into how to think about the significance of math in their scientific and
everyday lives. They will learn how to apply “cost-benefit analysis of real world situations. They will learn how to advocate for or against proposed public policy solutions – asking “...just because we can, should we?” My mission will be to help our students to discover the utility of Math & Language Arts - that it is fun to learn new skills and that it is empowering to use them.
As a reminder of the school’s prior invitation to you, I would like to add my personal invitation regarding “Back to School Night” on Thursday, September 22, 2022 beginning at 6 PM in the cafeteria and then migrating to Room 19 later in the hour..