Fifth Grade Geometry: Subject Overview and Sample Problems

If your child struggles in math or geometry in particular, it can be helpful to know what he or she will be expected to learn throughout the year. Keep reading for an overview of fifth grade geometry and a few sample problems that will give your child extra practice.

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What Fifth Graders Learn in Geometry

Coordinate Planes

Fifth graders are introduced to coordinate planes, which are graphs that contain x- and y-axes. Before plotting points on a coordinate plane, it's especially important that your child knows all the terminology. The x-axis is the horizontal line, and the y-axis is the vertical line. The origin is the point where the x-axis intersects with the y-axis.

A coordinate is an ordered pair that tells you where to find a point on the graph. Coordinates include a value for the x-axis and a value for the y-axis, like this: (x, y). The coordinate for the origin, for instance, is (0, 0). So, to locate a point, like (3, 1), your child should first find the number on the x-axis. In this case, the number is three, so your child should put one finger on the three, and then put another finger on the one on the y-axis. Then, find the point where these two lines intersect. That is the point (3, 1).

2-Dimensional Shapes

Your child will also categorize shapes and figures based on characteristics. For instance, you might draw three shapes (a right triangle, a square and a rhombus), and then ask your child to identify which is not a quadrilateral. Because quadrilaterals must have four sides, your child should recognize that the triangle does not qualify. Alternatively, you could help your child create a chart that lists classifications of shapes and the characteristics that are common for each.

Sample Problems

1. On a coordinate plane, label the x-axis, the y-axis and the origin.

This question tests your child's knowledge of the vocabulary. The horizontal line should be labeled 'x-axis,' the vertical line should be labeled 'y-axis' and the origin is the point where the two axes intersect.

2. On the same coordinate plane, locate the points (4, 1), (3, 6) and (10, 2).

If your child struggles to plot these points, be sure that his or her graph is drawn neatly. It often helps if the coordinate plane is drawn on graph paper.

3. Draw a trapezoid and a square. Which of these quadrilaterals can also be considered a parallelogram?

The square can also be considered a parallelogram because its sides are parallel to each other.
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