Grade 5 Language

In Grade 5 Language, our students will learn to value the power of language and use it responsibly. They will learn how to express feelings and opinions and support these opinions with research by using clear language in formal and informal situations. As they read and reflect on a rich variety of literary, informational, and media texts, they will develop a deeper understanding of themselves, others, and of the world around them. They will also develop the ability to understand and critically interpret a range of texts, and to recognize how a text is affected by the author’s perspective. This course is designed to be 200-300 instructional hours.

Curriculum Information: Language (2006)

Over the next year, the VES team will be working on updating some of our language courses to align with changes to the curriculum released by the Ontario Ministry of Education in June 2023.

Developed by: D2L

Development Date: 2021

Please note that elementary courses do not have prerequisites, and Ontario schools do not issue transcript credits at the elementary level. All courses are available in the facilitated and independent pathways.




In the Poetry unit, you will learn about forms of poetry, such as riddles, limericks, and abstract poetry, through reading and listening. You will also learn how to identify poetic elements, make connections, and construct meaning through inferring. You will produce your own poem that incorporates poetic elements. You will demonstrate fluency and appropriate speaking skills by recording your poem using expression and emphasis.


In the Biographies unit, you will understand and learn how to identify and apply a biography’s features and organization patterns. You will reflect on how listening, speaking, viewing, and representing skills contribute to writing. You will conduct research to write, revise, and reflect on your own biography. You will create an interesting and information collage to accompany your biography by applying graphic elements.

Narrative Writing: Short Stories

In the Narrative Writing: Short Stories unit, you will read short stories and learn to identify and apply story elements. You will learn how to identify a text’s main idea and supporting details and how to make inferences from conversations. You will learn how to brainstorm and plan for your own short story. After learning how to create a media text to accompany your short story, you will learn how to improve your story by editing and proofreading.

Informational Texts

In the Informational Texts unit, you will learn to identify the purpose, topic, and audience of informational texts. You will use this new knowledge to brainstorm, write, and present your own informational text with an accompanying visual aid. You will learn to identify points of view and bias. Using listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, you will learn to compare and contrast informational texts based on audience response.

Communicating Effectively

In the Communicating Effectively unit, you will learn how to identify and use non-verbal cues and active listening strategies, such as avoiding distractions, responding with appropriate facial expressions, body language, and polite questioning. You will also learn how to use visual elements, tone, and voice to enhance communication by identifying features of effective posters and newsletters. You will apply your new skills to create a newsletter with a purpose and target audience.

Media Texts

In the Media Texts unit, you will learn the difference between traditional and digital media features by focusing on billboard advertisements and elements such as images, slogans, and content. You will identify overt messaging and implied messaging, such as bias, generalization, and stereotypes. You will create your own media text. Throughout the unit, you will use reflective tools such as journaling, discussing, and visualizing. You will consider how listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills are effective for communication, and you will identify areas for improvement.

Novel Study

In the Novel Study unit, you will learn the distinguishing features of several types of fiction genres and demonstrate your comprehension skills using select reading strategies. You will learn to make judgments and draw conclusions by examining the differences between the elements of a novel and a newspaper. You will identify different points of view to write an article and a diary entry. You will also learn to make connections and use tone and expression to present your views in a audio recording.

Opinion Writing

In the Opinion Writing unit, you will learn how to use evidence to support your opinions and make connections to media texts. You will also learn how to gather information relevant to a specific topic and track and organize your sources. Finally, you will apply reading, writing, listening, and speaking strategies. You will reflect on your skills in each of these areas and how they contribute to your ability to follow the writing process to communicate a message to an audience.

This course is entirely online and does not require nor rely on any textbook. Students will require the following resources:

  • A scanner, smartphone camera, or similar device to digitize handwritten or hand-drawn work
  • A device to record audio
  • A printer
  • A physical binder, folder, or notebook for offline activities
  • A dictionary
  • Language Journal, headphones, media texts, dictionary, thesaurus, commercials, paper, pencil, non-fiction texts, colouring tools
  • Various household items to complete offline activities

By weaving together the four strands of language (oral communication, reading, writing, and media literacy) throughout each unit and course, students develop a strong understanding of the English language. Through the interconnected skills of reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and representing, they will analyse a mixture of literary texts and informational texts, and learn to create and analyse their own versions of these as their knowledge of the writing process increases. A strong emphasis is placed on building mastery of the basics through phonics, word recognition, building vocabulary, spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Students are also constantly encouraged to think critically about what they are reading, leading to improved research skills and better understanding of internet safety. Students are engaged in the content using bespoke storylines, videos, graphics, audio clips, and interactives which are assessed in a variety of online, offline, and blended ways. Every page in the Language courses builds a foundation of literary skills and strategies that students will use throughout the elementary grades.

The course relies on the assistance of a learning coach who supports young students as they move through the content. The learning coach will be involved in facilitating technical aspects of the course and in participating in discussion-based activities to assist students in developing communication skills.

Have a question about Grade 5 Language? Contact us!