My name is Ross Karsten and this is now my seventh year teaching fifth grade at Iowa Valley.  I am originally from this area; I grew up about five miles northeast of Marengo on a small farm.  I went to Benton Community High School and graduated in 2012.  I then attended the University of Northern Iowa where I studied Elementary and Middle Level Education, with endorsements in Math, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies.  I love to camp, kayak, hike, and play sports.  I also enjoy traveling and spending time with friends and family.   

I really enjoy working with fifth graders.  They are at a fun age where they are still curious about new things, but can really start exploring topics at a deeper level of understanding.  Throughout the school year we will be learning several new skills and strategies to help with reading comprehension and fluency.  In math, the students will do a lot of work with fractions, in addition to multiplying and dividing whole numbers.  Area, volume, and place value are a few other focus areas for the year.  I will have all the fifth graders for science while Mrs. Jacobson teaches them social studies.  The three units we will cover in fifth grade science are Living Systems; Sun, Moon, & Planets; and Mixtures & Solutions.  I’m looking forward to another great year at Iowa Valley!