Math Skills Every 5th Grader Needs to Know

As a fifth grader, your child is only one or two short years away from middle school. Since your child is now almost done elementary school, all math work will be geared towards preparing for middle school math. This means that more difficult and complex skills will be taught.

what 5th grade homeschoolers should know about Math

Order of Operations
In fifth grade, your child will start to learn order of operations. This has to do with the order your child will solve a math problem. A great way to teach your child about order of operations is to teach the phrase, “Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally,” or PEMDAS. This phrase helps your child remember that in an equation, parenthesis are solved first, followed by exponents, then multiplication/division, and finally addition/subtraction.

Your fifth grader will develop a better understanding of numbers using decimals this school year. Your child will learn how to identify and write numbers to the thousandths place. In addition to this, your fifth grader will learn how to add, subtract, multiply and divide decimals to the hundredths place.

Last year, your child was taught how to add and subtract fractions with same and different denominators. This skill will be extended in fifth grade to include how to multiply and divide fractions and mixed numbers. In order to do this, your fifth grader will need a strong understanding of how fractions work, as well as how to create equivalent factions and improper fractions.

Conversions are another skill your child will learn in fifth grade. Your child has already worked with units of measurements such as feet, inches, centimeters, and meters. Now, your fifth grader will learn how to convert units of measurements. For example, your child might be asked to convert 500 centimeters to meters. Since there are 100 centimeters in a meter, 500 centimeters can be converted to 5 meters.

Perimeter, Area, & Volume
Your fifth grader has already learned basic perimeter and area skills. This school year, your child will learn even more, solving perimeter and area for complex shapes. In addition to this, your child will also be asked to solve volume for basic shapes using a formula.

Although your fifth grader will learn many new and difficult concepts in math, practice will help your child master these important skills. Stay in touch with your child’s teacher so that you know what your fifth grader is learning, and then practice the necessary skill until your child feels comfortable doing the work independently.