Negative Number Inquiry

In Maths this week…

We were working on number properties. There was a strong focus on decimals

  • comparing numbers
  • place value
  • rounding decimals
  • ordering decimals
  • placing decimals on a number line

In collaboration with Mr Matt, we explored negative numbers. We know that addition has commutative properties (being able to move the numbers in a sum around and get the same result e.g. 4 + 2 =6 / 2 + 4 = 6) however, when dealing with subtraction that produces negative numbers, the principle does not apply e.g. 4 – 6 = -2 / 6 – 4 = 2

We talked about where we might see negative numbers in ‘the real world‘…

  • in maths (of course)
  • currency
  • the Stockmarket
  • temperature
  • freezers
  • discounts in sales
  • coordinates underground (such as a mine) below sea level
  • elevators / buildings

Maybe you have some other ideas that you can share with your child.

Next week we move on to understands the procedures for finding perimeter and area.


Photos above…

  1. Stop light formative assessment – used to determine students’ level of understanding.  You can see with our work on negative numbers, most students felt confident enough to teach others!  Fantastic.
  2. Mr Matt’s amazing record of our mathematical thinking.


Grade 5 Service (see student comments)

As part of Grade 5 Service, we headed over to the cemetery. We had lots of fun doing the service and we cleaned a few graves. We filled all our bags and it was a great job, we all worked together and we did not have any conflict.  We were happy to help the community so that people can come and visit and see it as clean. Everyone did a great job and we cleaned very much and we were all happy about the job . It was lots of fun.

Written by Lazare.

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UOI HTWW posters / Technology Challenges


❄️ ❄️ ❄️   What perfectly snowy weather we had.  ❄️ ❄️ ❄️










Unit of Inquiry

This week we culminated our unit on Inventions. The photos below show the students presenting their summative assessment task to the other grade 5 students.

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We also transitioned into our new unit on Science.  You can see from the lines of inquiry below that it has a strong emphasis on energy.  This week we have been tuning in by developing topic related vocabulary, looking at the central idea through the lens of the word ‘experiment’ and engaging in some fun group challenges. Ask the children about the egg tower and the marshmallow challenge.

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The winners… Harumi and Clara.  

(winning design in the background)

Central Idea: People’s understanding of science has evolved over time, and shapes the future.

Lines of Inquiry:

  • The forms of energy (form)
  • How energy works in everyday life (function)
  • The importance of energy sources and its uses (reflection)



Our thinking skill focus for this unit is Bloom’s Taxonomy.  We will be analyzing and evaluating concepts, processes, procedures, and principles, (not just remembering facts) which higher forms of thinking.abed8fccb5310a4206eaeb06dc4f2848

  • Remember
  • Understand
  • Apply
  • Analyse
  • Evaluate
  • Create

This coincides very well with group challenges, Science experiments and the scientific method (process) that we will conduct over the 6 weeks of the unit.


2D and 3D Shape

Maths learning outcome – Use 2D representations of 3D objects to visualise and solve problems, for example using drawings or models.

Last week we were learning about and trying to draw 2D shape with absolute accuracy.  Sounds easy enough!  

This week we have been super busy looking at and constructing 3D shapes.  


We began by using toothpicks and marshmallows.  The students could create any 3D shape they wanted.  The first step was to find out the attributes of their chosen shape… faces, edges and vertices.  Now the more vertices (corners) the shape has, the more marshmallows you get! Clever!  

Well, some shapes, as Harumi found out when attempting to create a dodecahedron was that  these materials did not make for a stable shape.  So she tried the same thing with modelling clay.  A bit better, but still not absolute success.  So… did she get to eat the marshmallows?  Of course!  Sometimes it’s all about the effort!


We also created shapes form nets.  This time the shape was allocated.  Some shapes were easier than others.  I’m sure Athul will always remember what a icosahedron is as will Goki remember the name and attributes of octahedron.


Our next challenge was to attempt to draw 3D shape from unifix cubes and show the side, front and top view.  To be successful we needed to make sure the vertical and horizontal lines were perfectly parallel and the angles were all the same. Here’s how Elsie managed the task.  Catherine incorporated a ‘testing area’ at the top of her work. This was a great way to show her progress.

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Last week’s homework challenge was to explore the relationship between maths and art (amongst various other topics).

So this week in maths we also did a quick collage inspired by artist Wassily Kandinsky’s concentric circles.  Kenzo measured his circles to make very even and regular layering of circles, Julia, like me, preferred the more relaxed, irregular shape based on the circle.  


Phebe expressed that our room is looking ‘very mathematical’ at the moment.  Feel free to pop in and have your child show you what we’ve been up to.

UOI – Group Inquiries

The week in 5H seemed to go very quickly.  It doesn’t seem like Friday at all?

Food Fair – thank to all the kids that were able to help out.  We were all very proud of their efforts.

UOI – we continued our group inquiries based on the central ideas we developed last week.  The students are using a template to develop connections to key concepts, pose questions and come up with key words for research (see below).  Most groups are up to the ‘finding out’ aspect of the inquiry cycle.  This is excellent preparation for the exhibition later in the year.

Ms Catasti popped I to help us ‘tweak’ our central ideas…

  • Sources of power revolutionises the way people live
  • Electronics have impacted on people’s lives in many ways
  • Entertainment has led to new ideas and discoveries which impacts on people’s lives
  • Transportation has changed the way people live and has connected the world
  • Sailing has developed over time for various purposes and needs
  • Writing has evolved to printing which impacts on the world
  • Photography and television has changed human living

Usually I produce anchor charts to assist student learning. Anchor charts are a great way to make thinking visible – record strategies, processes, cues, guidelines and other content during the learning process.

Maths – This week as we began our unit on space and shape, the children worked together to construct anchor charts 

  • 2D shapes (types and names)
  • 3D shapes (types and names)
  • 2D shapes (attributes)
  • 3D shapes (attributes)
  • Geometric vocabulary
  • Quadrilaterals

Part of the job was to become the expert to be able to teach others.

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Expository Writing

How nice it is to walk into class on a sunny morning! No complaints from me 🙂 



Food fair HERE kids, as promised.

This week…

UOI – developing a central idea for our group inquiry Is not easy, but we came up with what we think was pretty good.

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Language – this unit we are looking at expository writing. This is a factual text that often requires research, so we brainstormed not only what we know about this text type but non-fiction text features in general.

We have been learning about the various features of explanation writing including:

  • Kid friendly websites
  • Introductions to explanations
  • Action verbs
  • Topic specific vocabulary

Also in Language – Genre – from horror (inspired by Halloween) to biography.  We’ve been reading from a great series of books titled ‘Who Was’


Maths – we logged into Mathletics for the first time to review data handling



Catch you all on Sunday.  can’t wait.