Grade 5 Standards

Grade 5: My economic choices affect others. 

Fifth grade is an opportunity to apply benefit/cost analysis to early American history. The concepts of choice, trade-offs, opportunity cost, incentives, property rights, economic conflicts and the economic reasons for the American Revolution can all be taught in the context of benefit/cost analysis. Throughout grades six, seven and eight the concepts of incentives, trade, supply, demand and markets should be developed.

5.1 Students describe the major pre-Columbian settlements, including the cliff dwellers and pueblo people of the desert Southwest, the American Indians of the Pacific Northwest, the nomadic nations of the Great Plains, and the woodland peoples east of the Mississippi River:

Section 1. Describe how geography and climate influenced the way various nations lived and adjusted to the natural environment, including locations of villages, the distinct structures that they built, and how their obtained food, clothing, tools and utensils. Section 3. Explain their varied economies and systems of government.

5.2 Students trace the routes of early explorers and describe the early explorations of the Americas:

Section 1. Describe the entrepreneurial characteristics of early explorers (e.g., Christopher Columbus, Francisco Vasquez de Coronado) and the technological developments that made sea exploration by latitude and longitude possible (e.g., compass, sextant, astrolabe, seaworthy ships, chronometers, gunpowder). Section 2. Explain the aims, obstacles, and accomplishments of the explorers, sponsors, and leaders of key European expeditions and the reasons Europeans chose to explore and colonize the world (e.g., the Spanish Reconquista, the Protestant Reformation, the Counter Reformation).

5.3 Students describe the cooperation and conflict that existed among the Indians and between the Indian nations and the new settlers:

Section 1. Describe the competition among the English, French, Spanish, Dutch and Indian nations for control of North America.

5.4 Students understand the political, religious, social, and economic institutions that evolved in the colonial era:

Section 5. Understand how the British colonial period created the basis for the development of political self-government and a free-market economic system and the differences between the British, Spanish, and French colonial systems. Section 6. Describe the introduction of slavery into America, the responses of slave families to their condition, the ongoing struggle between proponents and opponents of slavery, and the gradual institutionalization of slavery in the South.

5.5 Students explain the causes of the American Revolution:

Section 1. Understand how political, religious, and economic ideas and interests brought about the Revolution (e.g., resistance to imperial policy, the Stamp Act, the Townshend Acts, taxes on tea, Coercive Acts).

5.6 Students understand the course and consequences of the American Revolution:

Section 4. Understand the personal impact and economic hardship of the war on families, problems of financing the war, wartime inflation, and laws against hoarding goods and materials and profiteering. Section 6. Demonstrate knowledge of the significance of land policies developed under the Continental Congress (e.g., sale of western lands, the Northwest Ordinance of 1787) and those policies’ impact on American Indians’ land.

5.8 Students trace the colonization, immigration, and settlement patterns of the American people from 1789 to the mid-1800s, with emphasis on the role of economic incentives, effects of the physical and political geography, and transportation systems.