United States

5th Grade

We’ve made it to 5th grade!

I’m back to blogging for science and history this year, so stayed tuned!

Here’s what we’re doing as far as curriculum:

Math: Math U See (we’re a grade behind with Delta)

Science: Apologia (Exploring Creation with Chemistry & Physics)

History: The Story of the World (Volume 1: Ancient Times)

Reading: Detectives in Togas by: Henry Winterfeld
Reading: Mystery of the Roman Ransom by: Henry Winterfeld
Reading: Holes by: Louis Sachar
United States



Geography: Louisiana

Louisiana by: Amy Van Zee

Feliciana Feydra LeRoux by: Tynia Thomassie

Three Little Cajun Pigs by: Mike Artell

Trombone Shorty by: Troy Andrews
Freedom in Congo Square by: Carole Boston Weatherford
Alligator Sue by: Sharon Doucet
Chicken Joy on Redbean Road by: Jacqueline Briggs Martin
A Good Night for Ghosts by: Mary Pope Osbourne

History: Ruby Bridges

The Story of Ruby Bridges  by: Robert Coles
tlccontent (5).jpeg

Ruby Bridges  by: Simone T. Ribke
tlccontent (10)

Science: Hurricanes

Hurricane Watch  by: Melissa Stewart
tlccontent (1)

Hurricanes  by: Carol Ryback
tlccontent (12).jpeg

Two Bobbies: A True Story of Hurricane Katrina, Friendship, and Survival  by: Kirby Larson
tlccontent (4)

Heroes of Hurricane Katrina  by: Allan Zullo
tlccontent (8).jpeg


  • Visit New Orleans!
  • Eat Cajun/Creole food
  • Hurricane lamp experiment
  • Watch Reading Rainbow: “Mama Don’t Allow” and “Boxes for Katje”
United States

Johnny Appleseed

Johnny Appleseed.png



Ohio  by: M.J. York
tlccontent (13).jpeg

B is for Buckeye  by: Marcia Schonberg
index (2)

The Price of Freedom: How One Town Stood Up to Slavery  by: Judith Bloom Fradin
tlccontent (16)



Pennsylvania: The Keystone State  by: Maria Lusted
tlccontent (14).jpeg

The Liberty Bell  by: Mary Firestone
tlccontent (15).jpeg

The Liberty Bell  by: Gail Sakurai
index (3)

Can We Ring the Liberty Bell?  by: Martha Rustad
index (5)

The Egg Tree  by: Katherine Milhous
index (4)



History: Johnny Appleseed

The Real Johnny Appleseed  by: Laurie Lawlor
tlccontent (7)

The True Tale of Johnny Appleseed  by: Margaret Hodges
tlccontent (9).jpeg

Seed by Seed: The Legend of John “Appleseed” Chapman  by: Esme Raji Codell

Johnny Appleseed  by: James Howard Kunstler
tlccontent (10).jpeg

Johnny Appleseed: A Tall Tale  by: Steven Kellogg
index (1)

Johnny Appleseed  by: Christin Ditchfield
tlccontent (8)


Science: Apples

How Do Apples Grow?  by: Betsy Maestro
tlccontent (11).jpeg

From Blossom to Fruit  by: Gail Saunders-Smith




  • Bake an apple pie!
  • Cut apples in half
  • Plant an apple seed in a pot – test the seeds first to see if they float or sink
  • Look up x-ray pictures of the Liberty Bell
United States

Oregon Trail

Oregon Trail.png


The Oregon Trail

The Oregon Trail  by: Karen Bush Gibson
tlccontent (38)

How to Get Rich on the Oregon Trail  by: Tod Olson (not everything is appropriate for 2nd grade, but we just read bits and pieces)

Westward to Home  by: Patricia Hermes
tlccontent (1).jpeg

The Golly Sisters Go West  by: Betsy Byars
tlccontent (3).jpeg



Wagon Wheels  by: Barbara Brenner

I Have Heard of a Land  by: Joyce Carol Thomas
tlccontent (4).jpeg

Little House Picture Book Treasury  by: Laura Ingalls Wilder
tlccontent (5).jpeg

Welcome to Kirsten’s World  by: Susan Sinnott
tlccontent (6).jpeg



United States

Lewis & Clark Expedition

Lewis & Clark.png

We changed things up by revolving our studies around an event rather than a U.S. state.  We followed Lewis and Clark on their journey to Oregon, studying some of the states they journeyed through and some of the animals they encountered.


Lewis and Clark

Lewis and Clark: A Prairie Dog for the President  by: Shirley-Raye Redmond
tlccontent (14)

From Sea to Shining Sea  by: Callista Gingrich
tlccontent (10)

Lewis and Clark: Opening the American West  by: Ellen Rodger
tlccontent (11)

Lewis and Clark Expedition  by: John Perritano
tlccontent (12)

Westward Expansion  (pg. 7-19)  by: Teresa Domnauer

Plains Indians

Indians of the Plains and Great Basin  by: World Book Inc.


Sacagawea and the Bravest Deed  by: Stephen Krensky
tlccontent (3)




Missouri: The Show Me State  by: Marcia Amidon Lusted
tlccontent (15)

Gateway Arch  by: Julie Murray
tlccontent (16).jpeg

Steamboat School  by: Deborah Hopkinson
tlccontent (6).jpeg


Nebraska: The Cornhusker State  by: Miriam Coleman
tlccontent (17).jpeg

Little Red Riding Hood: A Newfangled Prairie Tale  by: Lisa Campbell Ernst
tlccontent (18)

Elsie’s Bird  by: Jane Yolen
tlccontent (9).jpeg

Three Names   by: Patricia McLachlan
tlccontent (2)

Tulip Sees America  by: Cynthia Rylant
tlccontent (8).jpeg



Montana  by: M.J. York
tlccontent (19)

Dust Devil  by: Anne Isaacs
tlccontent (20)



Oregon: The Beaver State  by: Marcia Amidon Lusted
tlccontent (35)

Oregon  by: M.J. York
tlccontent (36)

Apples to Oregon  by: Deborah Hopkinson
tlccontent (37).jpeg




Thunder on the Plains: The Story of the American Buffalo by: Ken Robbins
tlccontent (13)

by: Phyllis Jean Perry
tlccontent (22)

American Bison: A Scary Prediction  by: William Caper
tlccontent (23)

They Come From the Bronx: How the Buffalo Were Saved From Extinction  by: Neil Waldman
tlccontent (7).jpeg

Grandfather Buffalo  by: Jim Arnosky
tlccontent (25)

The Buffalo Storm  by: Katherine Applegate
tlccontent (26).jpeg

Buffalo Music  by: Tracey E. Fern
tlccontent (24).jpeg

Prairie Dogs

Prairie Dog Song: The Key to Saving North America’s Grasslands  by: Susan Roth
tlccontent (27).jpeg

Prairie Dogs  by: Amanda Markle
tlccontent (28)


Corn  by: Gail Gibbons
tlccontent (29).jpeg

From Kernel to Corncob  by: Ellen Weiss
tlccontent (30)

Grizzly Bears

Lions, Tigers, and Bears (pg. 28-31)  by: Ron Harchi
tlccontent (31).jpeg

Eat Like a Bear  by: April Pulley Sayre
tlccontent (32)


The Lifecycle of a Beaver  by: Bobbie Kalman
tlccontent (33).jpeg

A House in the Sky: And Other Uncommon Animal Homes  by: Steve Jenkins
tlccontent (34).jpeg



  • Study Plains Indians pictographs & draw our own
  • Watch “Wild Kratts: Where the Bison Roam,” “Prairie Who?” (S9, E2), “Prairie Mystery,” “Amazing Creature Race,” “Bandito,” “Build it Beaver”
  • Watch “Reading Rainbow: Gift of the Sacred Dog”
  • Make & eat popcorn
  • Map Lewis and Clark’s journey
  • Watch Old Faithful video
  • Watch Yellowstone video


United States, Weekly Lesson Plan


Hawaii (1).png

Geography: Hawaii

tlccontent (5)
Hawaii: The Aloha State 
 by: Marcia Amidon Lusted

tlccontent (2)
Uniquely Hawaii  by: Geok Yian Goh

tlccontent (7)
National Parks of the U.S.A.  by: Kate Siber

tlccontent (4)
Froggy Goes to Hawaii  
by: Jonathan London

tlccontent (8)
Grandma Calls Me Beautiful  by: Barbara M. Joosse


History: Duke Kahanamoku

tlccontent (1)
Surfer of the Century: The Life of Duke Kahanamoku  by: Ellie Crowe

tlccontent (9)
Duke Kahanamoku  by: Laurie Calkhoven


Science: Volcanoes

tlccontent (6)
Inside Volcanoes  by: Melissa Stewart

tlccontent (3)
The Magic School Bus Presents Volcanoes and Earthquakes  by: Tom Jackson

DirtMeister’s Nitty Gritty Planet Earth  by: Steve Tomecek



  • Make a lei for each member of your family out of tissue paper, cupcake liners, ribbons, and beads
  • Have a luau! (we invited the kids’ grandparents over and had a chicken supper with fresh pineapple, watched a how to hula video, and hula danced to some of the songs from the movie “Moana.”
  • Watch “Magic School Bus: Blows Its Top”
  • Watch “Reading Rainbow: Hill of Fire”
  • Do the magma experiment on page 47 of Nitty Gritty Earth
  • Do the hei activity in the back of Grandma Calls Me Beautiful



United States, Weekly Lesson Plan


Geography: Alaska

tlccontent (4)
Alaska: The Last Frontier  
by: Marcia Amidon Lusted

State-by-State Atlas  
by: Justine Ciovacco

tlccontent (5)
Tlingit Indians  
by: Suzanne Williams

tlccontent (6)
Being Caribou  
by: Karston Heuer  (we just looked at the pictures)


tlccontent (9)
Mama, Do You Love Me?  
by: Barbara M. Joosse

tlccontent (11)
Arctic White 
by: Danna Smith

You’re Snug With Me  
by: Chitra Soundar

tlccontent (2)
The Bear Report  
by: Thyra Heder

tlccontent (8)
The Eyes of Gray Wolf  
by: Jonathan London

Science: Sled Dogs

tlccontent (1)
Wind-Wild Dog 
by: Barbara M. Joosse

tlccontent (3)
Alaska’s Dog Heroes: True Stories of Remarkable Canines  
by: Shelley Gill

tlccontent (7)
by: Robert J. Blake

History: Balto

tlccontent (10)
The True Story of Balto 
by: Natalie Standiford

Language Arts

Reading: The True Story of Balto  by: Natalie Standiford (Step Into Reading: Step 3)




  • Watch Wild Kratts “Spirit Bear” (S12), “Hero’s Journey Part 1 & 2” (S5, E14&15), “The Fourth Bald Eagle” (S5, E18), “The Mystery of the Two Horned Narwhal” on Amazon Prime
  • Watch polar episode on The Magic School Bus on Netflix
  • Make paper snowflakes
  • Paint the aurora borealis
  • Make a chalk rubbing aurora
  • Watch this video about the aurora borealis 





United States, Weekly Lesson Plan

North Carolina

Hurricane Florence blew through our area and my older son’s school was canceled for a few days and my husband worked from home.  So we didn’t get much done even though this week we studied our home state!  However, at the end of the week we were able to go tour the Biltmore Estate, so I’d call this unit study a success!

Geography: North Carolina



Welcome to the U.S.A.: North Carolina  by: Ann Heinrichs


tlccontent (1)


North Carolina  by: Ann Heinrichs

tlccontent (3)

T is for Tar Heel  by: Carol Crane

tlccontent (2)

Wright Numbers  by: Carol Crane

The Green Gourd: A North Carolina Folktale  by: C.W. Hunter


Exploring Biltmore Estate from A to Z  by: Chris Kinsley


tlccontent (6)

Miss Dorothy and her Bookmobile  by: Gloria Houston

tlccontent (5)

Halloween Scare in North Carolina  by: Eric James



History: The Wright Brothers

tlccontent (7)

The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane  
by: Russell Freedman

tlccontent (4).jpg

Animated Hero Classics: The Wright Brothers DVD




  • Build paper airplanes
  • Eat Krispy Kreme doughnuts
  • Visit the Biltmore Estate!


Activities, United States

Alabama Activities

We continued learning about space, space travel, and spacecraft as we moved from Florida to Alabama.  I used to live in Huntsville so I know about the space center located there.

I told Levi about the rover on Mars named Curiosity.  Levi already had this toy that included a “rover,” so I asked him to name it (he chose Red Rock Rover) and then sent him on a mission outside to collect samples of the planet Earth.  He returned with some rocks and a twig so now we know what Earth is made of and that it can support plant life.


It just so happens that the science lab Levi attends every other week is also learning about outer space.  In this week’s lab they made a nebula in a bottle which looks super cool!


United States, Weekly Lesson Plan


Week 4

Geography: Alabama


by: Mari Kesselring

tlccontent (2)
Alabama Spitfire: The Story of Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird  
by: Bethany Hegedus


History: Space Travel

Science: Spacecraft & Outer Space

tlccontent (1)

The Moon  
by: Tim Furniss

tlccontent (3)

Seven Wonders of the Solar System  
by: David A. Aguilar



Blast Off to Space Camp  by: Hillary Wolfe





by: Jenny Fretland Vanvoorst




  • Send a rover (Legos, K’nex, etc) to collect samples of Earth
  • Watch “Reading Rainbow: Hot Air Henry”
  • Look at pictures of the space center/space camp in Huntsville
  • Make a nebula in a bottle
  • Oreo moon phases