Year in review: Fifth grade teachers speak their minds


Fifth grade teachers Mr. Alexander Ventura, Mrs. Mary Goldszer and Mrs. Meryeme Gashi.

FIFTH GRADE CLASSROOMS  —  What has happened over the year in the school? The kids might have their ideas, but what do the fifth grade teachers think? This reporter sat down with all three teachers to find out what they thought about the past year.

“The passion that they had for their work was my favorite thing about my class,” said Mr. Alexander Ventura.

Mrs. Meryeme Gashi said, “The readiness they had for their work was what impressed me about my students.”

And finally, Mrs. Mary Goldszer said, “I liked getting to know my students. I liked getting to know their unique personalities.”

The fifth grade switches classes on days 1, 4, and 6 for social studies, science, and study skills.

Mr. Ventura teaches social studies. One of the big projects in that subject was “Junior Top Chef,” where students made a dish from a country in the Western hemisphere.

Mrs. Gashi teaches science.  One of the big projects in that subject was on endangered species. Each student had to choose an endangered species and make a model of it.

Mrs. Goldszer teaches study skills and one of the projects was creating a book of similes with illustrations.

The fifth grade teachers talked about their favorite projects.

Mrs. Gashi said, “The endangered species project was my favorite  because I got to see the kids uniqueness.”

“The invention convention is my favorite project,” said Mr. Ventura. “I like it because it is a real world project, and I was impressed by the things they came up with.”

Mrs. Goldszer explained, “So far my favorite project was the simile project because I love reading and finding interesting similes. I love the figurative language authors use. I love to share that with my students.”

“We are going to be working on writing our own poetry booklet because reading, writing and studying poetry is a great way to improve reading and writing,” she said. “Poetry is enriching and exciting.”

All the teachers noticed changes in their students this school year.

“I would say they have changed in many ways since the beginning of the year,” said Mrs. Goldszer. “They have all grown taller and all become more mature and confident. They have become better problem solvers, and more experienced writers.”

Mrs. Gashi said that “academically and socially the children blossomed as they do every year. As a teacher, I receive so much satisfaction when students reflect and realize how important it is to take the business of learning seriously.”

Mr. Ventura said he has “seen a lot of growth in my students personalities, and we’ve done a lot  of great things this year, and it is this time of year that makes me miss my class the most.”

When pressed further to share his favorite part of teaching the current fifth graders, Mr.Ventura said it “is seeing the growth in my students. Seeing them passionate, doing their best, and being good role models is the most important thing.”

Mrs. Gashi said, “Every year, each class is unique in terms of their strengths. Watching their social dynamics is my favorite.”

Mrs. Goldszer said, “This year the students are very artistic and creative. That was my favorite.”

I am sure if you asked fifth graders the same questions, many of them would have completely different answers and opinions, and some would have the same ones. We would all agree that we are all going to miss one another, and that this year has been an adventure that we are sad to see end.

(This story was originally published in the printed year-in-review edition of the Colonial Times.)