Building a new civilisation in Siena Park

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This week Galaxy 5 started a new unit of inquiry, – Where we are in place and time- The central idea : Connections between past civilisations and present day societies influence the future

To stimulate student thinking and to get an idea of prior knowledge, the teaching team organised the following provocation for-  What is a civilisation?

Together we read the first part of the book Weslandia, up until Wesley decides he will make a civilisation of his own.

After recess this notice was up in the rooms-

 This just in!

All of the Galaxy 5 Planets have become so popular that our planets do not have room for us anymore.

We need to create a new civilisation on another planet. Please proceed to Siena Park immediately.

We need YOU to build our new civilisation.

Please hold your questions for now.

We need to get to work!


Out in Siena park we had an assortment of equipment- boxes, cones, fake food, mats, paper, pens, ropes, buckets.

No questions were answered and no other directions were given.

As the students built their civilisation,teachers observed and noted the understanding and prior knowledge of students on the addition of elements included and on how they worked individually or together to add to their own civilisation.

Back in class, students added to a Solo taxonomy map, all the ideas they had for requirements of a civilisation. Our next step is to get together in small mixed groups to share and add new ideas to our map.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile activity to provoke thinking and to gain prior knowledge as the students developed collaborative skills such as resolving conflict, sharing, respecting others, equipment and our environment.

After more investigating into ancient civilisations, students will choose and inquire into one civilisation to identify which elements were present and what legacy they have left for us to enjoy.


                                                                   What does this mean for our future??


Year 5 Camp 2017- Cheung Chau

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Year 5 students left school last Wednesday for 3 days at camp. There were mixed feelings- anxious, nervous, excited, scared- but on the return trip on Friday the feelings ranged from happy to tired to exhausted!

Our students spent their days at camp biking, hiking, swimming, shopping, studying temples and learning about the island of Cheung Chau. They were respectful of their environment and the people who live or were holidaying there. Teachers were very proud of student behaviour throughout the days at camp.

Our students importantly learnt about responsibility and independence while on camp. Whether it was keeping control of their own belongings, getting ready for the days activities or helping with setting or clearing up for meals, all participated with a friendly smile. It was pleasing to see children helping each other as they made new friends in the day adventure groups or their night time dorms.

We hope that your child has shared their camping experience with you and that you continue to help them build independence and responsibility as they look forward to the 4 day camp next year and beyond.

Thank you to Year 5 teachers, EA’s and parent volunteers who gave up their time to make sure that these experiences can continue.


You can view all the photos and the wonderful drone footage (Thanks to Greg Wee) on the Year 5 DING page.

The pathway is as follows:

DING / Y5 / camp 2017 / Year 5 camp photos



5TES assembly.

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On Tuesday 10th October, 5 TES shared their learning with the Year 5 team, parents and our special guests, 2ASD.

This assembly was written, produced and performed entirely by the students. They chose how to share their learning through various disciplines and which character strengths were needed to help them work to the best of their ability. We have since spoken about and identified the self talk that we have as we face challenges or times when we think it is too hard to do.

I was very proud of the way in which the students identified, carried out and reflected on their performance and on the way that they worked together to produce a very informative assembly.

It is difficult to have an assembly close to the beginning of the year and straight after a mid term break. It was also the first Year 5 assembly for 2017.

Well done 5TES, you are the best!!


Transdisciplinary learning for ‘How the world works’.

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We have begun our new unit in year 5.  This is a really exciting unit in which the students learn about our wonderful planet in space and what we need to know about it to keep it sustainable for the future.

Unit of Inquiry

Central Idea: Earth’s position in space and relationship with the sun and moon makes life sustainable.

Lines of Inquiry: We are inquiring into:

1. Earth’s capability to sustain life 

 2. The structure and function of the solar system 
 3. Earth’s relationship with the sun and moon

Skills and Attitudes:

Attitudes Focus: curiosity, confidence, appreciation

ATL Skills Focus:  Research skills; observing, organising info, presenting research findings.

Research Skills – Focusing on keywords and using appropriate kid friendly search engine and space sites



Students will be learning to write explanation pieces and also descriptive poetry. Our focus will be to organise our ideas and paragraphs in a logical sequence. This is our focus trait of the 6+1 writing traits.

As always during reading sessions, we will be monitoring our comprehension and will also focus on being able to identify relevant and reliable information when using reference books, computers and web-based applications. Mrs Sercombe will join the Y5 teachers in supporting our students in these tasks.



In math we will be moving into our unit about the four operations, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, including decimal numbers. Students will be inquiring into everyday problems including time, money and measurement.




How the world works!

Posted by year5


To introduce and provoke thinking about our planet and the solar system, Year 5 students have been visited by the Discovery Dome igloo and by our own resident ‘space nut’ Mr O’Brien for a fascinating look into EARTH and SPACE.

We have visited the planets, heard about the Goldilocks zone, seen tardigrades and pink methane ice worms, watched Curiosity Rover land on Mars and been in awe at the size, time and distances in Space.

We have lots more to see and learn over the next weeks as we explore our central idea, ‘Earth’s position in space and relationship with the sun and moon makes life sustainable.’

Hopefully we will have lots of ‘space nuts’ by the end of this inquiry!

Our Program of Inquiry for 2017/18

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Please find the Year 5 program of inquiry for this year at the link below. You are welcome to refer to this as you discuss your child’s learning throughout the year.

Year 5 POI 2017-18 (2)

Week 1 in Galaxy 5

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What an exciting start to the school year. All students, and teachers, settled in well to their new class. Old friends were found and new friends made. We have been discussing what we would like others to know about us, what we are looking forward to, how we learn best and what will make Year 5 a great learning community.

Our time capsules are about to be put away for the school year and it is always a surprise to see how much we change over the course of a school year, academically, socially and physically. It is always nice to get our special artefact back after it has been hidden away for so many months.

The Year 5 combined meeting on Friday, a reminder of health and safety school rules, times and expectations, was presented by Year 5 teachers, Mr Barr and Mr Eastwood. Please talk to your children about this.

We hope to meet you all at the parent fair on 31st August.

Welcome to Year 5

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It has been a pleasure meeting many parents during the past few days. We would like to take this opportunity to formally welcome you to the Year 5 learning community at Discovery College. We have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the new Year 5 students and are all looking forward to a successful and enjoyable year ahead.

We would like to take this opportunity to communicate some key information to you regarding such things as homework, reading and our upcoming camp.


  • Year 5 students will be receiving their homework every Wednesday and will be expected to return it to school the following Wednesday. Homework will consist of maths practice and language or unit of inquiry work. At times, the homework will be project-based and students may be given two or three weeks to complete it.


  • Students will be choosing their own ‘home readers’ from the library or they may choose to read a book they already have at home. We hope they will be reading to or with an adult every night for at least 15 minutes which should be recorded in the diaries.


  • We will be going on camp to Cheung Chau Island from Wednesday 25 – Friday 27 October. It is expected that every student will attend camp as a crucial part of our learning programme. Further details on camp will follow in a few weeks.

Our first unit of inquiry,’Who we are’ explores the central idea, Role models reflect the values of individuals and communities. We will inquire into our own strengths and those of our role models and develop an action plan to help us learn and grow as international students.

In mathematics we will review and inquire into place value. The central idea, The value of numbers can change depending on their place within our base system, will lead our inquiry.

During language we will be inquiring into ‘what makes great readers and writers’. We will do this through exploring the elements of letter writing and poetry.


We hope to see you all at the primary parent information evening being held on Thursday 31 August. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact us or pop in to see us should you need any further information.

Year 5 team


Our final units of inquiry for this school year!

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As we head into our final units of inquiry, Year 5 students will be investigating what it means to be a responsible consumer. Through a variety of trade games, we hope the students will learn that fair trade is important for everyone in our world, either in a local or global capacity. Through empathy, integrity and reflection we encourage students to be responsible and fair in the participation of trade.

As we investigate narrative writing we will be focusing on the writing trait of sentence fluency, the rhythm and flow of our word choices in sentences.

How probable is it that ……….?        These questions will need to be answered through words, fractions and games as the students look into the world of probability!


Transdisciplinary Theme:     How We Organise Ourselves


Central idea:  

  • Consumer responsibility impacts local and global trade


What lines of inquiry will define the scope of the inquiry into the central idea?

An inquiry into:

  • How trade works
  • Factors that influence trade
  • Our responsibilities as consumers 


Causation, Function, Responsibility


Related Concepts:

Demand, Resources, Consumption, Supply, Fair Trade


Learner Profile and Attitudes:


Principled, thinker, reflective


Integrity, cooperation, empathy



Ratio and probability


  • Identifies and describeschance in daily events
  • Represents probabilityusing fractions




Asking questions is at the heart of all learning. Readers and writers can use questions to clarify new ideas and discover/present new information

Oral LanguageSpeaking and Listening
Written LanguageReading and Writing
Visual LanguageViewing and Presenting

Storytelling experience

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Today Year 5 along with their Year 2 buddies were entertained by Kevin Locke, a native American storyteller. We learnt about appreciating our world through music, song, dance and stories. We were amazed with the use of 28 hoops,  which Kevin was able to use all at the same time, to tell a story and make symbols to represent parts of the stories. Some of our children took part in learning to use the hoops too.

We are looking anxiously to next week when Year 5 will start a PE unit of inquiry using hoops. Watch out Mr Wilkinson and Mr Debarr!!!