# Smooth Sailing into September

Smooth Sailing into September

Having finished a whirl-wind of a Curriculum Night, gotten into the thick of our first units of study, and settled into our routines, back-to-school “to-dos” feel like they are finally complete. While back-to-school can be a stressful time for parents, teachers, and students alike, there has been something in the air at The Cooper School for the past several weeks that has made every day feel more exciting and adventurous than the day before. With students taking risks in their learning, engaging in meaningful conversations, and building intentional friendships, this first (almost) month of school has been anything but stressful.

Although I’ve only been on board at The Cooper School for about a month, I can whole-heartedly feel and see what makes The Cooper School so special. I have high expectations that every month at The Cooper School will feel as exciting and adventurous as this first month has.

-Allison Gold

Here’s a look at what is happening in each of the classes:

What’s going on in Science?
Fifth graders explored the weathering of rocks this week! They experimented with physical weathering by shaking granite and conglomerate rocks, and then considered how the rocks were affected. They observed the effects of chemical weathering, by manipulating rocks with acid (vinegar) to consider the impact acid rain can have on the earth’s surface. Lastly, they learned about the supercontinent, Pangea, and how it has broken apart due to seafloor spreading. Next week, they will explore erosion!

What’s happening in Math?
This week, 5th graders reviewed concepts of volume and took their Unit 1 Volume test on Thursday. I’m beyond proud of how hard students have worked to prepare for the test! They thoughtfully completed study guides, engaged in review games, and asked intentional questions. On Friday, they explored fractions during an introductory activity in which (imaginary) friends shared sandwiches.

Next week, students will continue to explore fractions as parts of a whole, fractions as division problems, and understand how division and multiplication relate to one another.

What’s happening in ELA?
This week in ELA, 5th grade assembled into book clubs. All students are currently engaged in a variety of critically acclaimed middle grade novels. We spent time discussing the qualities of a strong and collaborative book club conversation. Students’ first meetings were extremely successful and enthusiastic following that discussion! 5th grade also began some fluency work to build our confidence and accuracy as we read.

Next week, we’ll be building on one another’s ideas about the characters in our novels. Readers will dig deep into the conflicts in their respective novels and ask what a character’s response to conflict reveals about the theme.

What’s happening in Social Studies?
This week, the students finished their first unit, focusing on the basics of geography before we start diving into the content of specific places around the world. Students were assessed over their skills on Friday and were given their vocabulary terms to begin mastering!

Next week, the students are going to begin their deep dive into the history of The United States and Canada. We are going to start the week off with a fun jigsaw activity to introduce the different regional Native American cultures. We will then shift our focus to the colonization of these two regions. Students will map the different areas of European colonization and connect the culture of those areas with which European country settled there.

Important Dates:
Friday, September 15th- Parent Coffee (8:15-9:00)
Saturday, September 23rd- Charleston Battery Family Fun Night
Monday-Tuesday, October 9-10 Fall Break