Fifth Grade School Program Curriculum

Hydrology—Water Density and the Water Cycle

  • What is water made of?
  • What is a molecule, and what is an atom? And what do they have to do with water?
  • What happens to water when it gets really cold, and really hot?
  • How do cold water and warm water interact together?
  • How does their interactions benefit freshwater environments?
  • How much water exists on earth and how much of it is freshwater?
  • How does earth naturally recycle its water?
  • How can we help to ensure the cleanliness of earths freshwater?

Fresh Water Ecosystems

  • How do we define freshwater?
  • What is an Ecosystem?
  • What types of life depend on most freshwater ecosystems?
  • What do the tiny bugs called macroinvertebrates tell us about any freshwater ecosystem?
  • What is the life cycle of typical macroinvertebrates?
  • How do these bugs benefit the entirety of the ecosystem?
  • What does the food chain in a freshwater ecosystem look like?

Forest Ecology

  • What is an ecosystem?
  • What is a forest life zone, and which one are we in?
  • What kinds of trees grow in our area, and how can I tell them apart?
  • What are the different parts of a tree?
  • What is photosynthesis?
  • How does that whole process work? How can a tree make its own food?
  • What purpose do fungus and other decomposers serve in the forest ecosystem?
  • What are other ways of managing our forests to make sure they stay healthy?


  • What does zoology mean?
  • How are animals classified?
  • What mammals live in our area and what makes each of them unique?
  • What is a food chain and a food web?
  • What is an ecosystem? And how do the mammals in our area fall into our specific ecosystem?


  • Where does wind come from?
  • What is an air mass, how do they form, and how do they affect the weather?
  • What is a weather front?
  • How can I look at the sky and tell what kind of weather front is coming?
  • What kind of weather comes with each type of weather front?

Astronomy—Solar System

  • Why should we study astronomy?
  • What is the sun?
  • What defines a planet and what exactly is a dwarf planet?
  • What is the definition of a moon?
  • What are the names and physical makeups of each of the planets in our solar system?
  • What happened to Pluto?

Star Gazing

  • What is Astronomy?
  • How has studying the stars been used in the past?
  • How can you tell the difference between a star and a planet in the night sky?
  • What is a constellation? And what is an asterism?
  • What is a satellite?
  • What constellations can we see and what are the stories to how they were named?


  • What instruments do astronomers use to study the night sky?
  • Who is Galileo? And how did he first use telescopes?
  • What is a star cluster, a nebula and a super nova?
  • What objects can we see through our telescope?