Fifth grade math curriculum varies between schools, but most curricula have several common elements. Fifth grade math focuses on practice with fractions and decimals, and measurement with different units. Fifth graders also learn about graphing and exponents.
This sample problem deals with adding, subtracting and multiplying decimals: "George went to the store with $5.00. He bought two candy bars for $0.88 each, an apple for $0.75 and a bottle of juice for $2.25. How much money did George have left over?" To solve this problem, first multiply $0.88 x 2. The result is $1.76. Add $1.76, $0.75 and $2.25. The result is $4.76. Then, subtract $4.76 from $5.00 to get the answer, which is $0.24.
Fifth graders learn about measuring area by multiplying length by width and about measuring volume by multiplying area by length. This problem is an example: "Kate is building a swimming pool that is 10 feet long and 8 feet wide. What is the area of the swimming pool? If the swimming pool is 4 feet deep, what is the volume?" To find the area, multiply 10 feet x 8 feet. The result is 80 square feet. To find the volume, multiply 80 square feet x 4 feet. The result is 320 cubic feet. Fifth graders learn about the difference between feet, square feet and cubic feet, and when it is appropriate to use each measurement.