Subject: Language Arts

June in Language Arts

June brings with it a busy end to the school year. The students will start the month by completing their final language arts DDI. In addition, they will round out the year by writing their final five-paragraph essay. June is the month for students to showcase all that they’ve learned throughout fifth grade!

May in Language Arts

The 5th graders have just completed part 1 of Watership Down and hopefully have begun to understand why this is my favorite book of the year. We have already begun our discussions around foreshadowing and theme. We are focusing specifically on the following five themes throughout the book: 1) what makes a place a home, 2) the importance of trickery, 3) the necessity of adapting, 4) what makes a strong leader, and 5) the purpose of “government.” This book will take us through the remainder of the year and will culminate in a final assessment, as well as a final essay.

April in Language Arts

April will bring the end of our time with the Greeks, Trojans, and Black Ships Before Troy, after which students will take on (with my support over the course of many days) their first 5-paragraph essays of this year. After that, we will move onto Watership Down, which will continue to focus on the use of foreshadowing and theme. We will look at five themes throughout the book: 1) what makes a place a home, 2) the importance of trickery, 3) the necessity of adapting, 4) what makes a strong leader, and 5) the purpose of “government.” We will also touch on how weather can be used to create mood throughout many parts of the book.

5th Grade Memorization

Each 5th grade student is expected to memorize a poem during the months of February and March. Students will recite one of the following poems, as assigned by Ms. Heuett:


  • “If,” by Rudyard Kipling
  • “A Psalm of Life,” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • “Casey at the Bat,” by Ernest Lawrence Thayer
  • “All the world’s a stage,” from As You Like It by William Shakespeare
  • “Mother to Son,” by Langston Hughes
  • “Sympathy” by Paul Laurence Dunbar


Important Dates:

  • Students should rank their top four preferences by Wednesday, February 14th, after which students will be assigned their poems.
  • Students should have their poems memorized and well-rehearsed by Wednesday, March 7th, when poetry recitations will begin during language arts class.


Contact Ms. Heuett at with any questions regarding our poetry memorization.

February in Language Arts

The beginning of February was spent saying goodbye to the March girls as we finished part one of Little Women. Some students have even chosen to keep the book a little longer in order to read part two on their own! February now brings us into our poetry unit, during which students will explore figurative language such as similes, metaphors, and personification. Students will also be assigned a poem to memorize and recite in front of the class, so they should plan to spend a little bit of time every night memorizing and rehearsing their poem throughout the coming weeks.

Language arts–September overview

The beginning of September in language arts will be focused on introducing and practicing literary devices that we will explore all year, specifically the dramatic story arc, theme, mood, foreshadowing, and hubris. The remainder of the month will be spent jumping into our first book, Gilgamesh the Hero, which is an adaptation of the ancient text The Epic of Gilgamesh. While reading this story, we will explore whether Gilgamesh should be considered heroic and whether or not he displays hubris. Our first writing assignment will involve writing a paragraph which highlights how Gilgamesh changed throughout the text.