Mrs. Frank's Class Update

The Latest News That's Fit to Click!

Back in Our Classroom & Feeling Settled!

As you know, we are settling back into our classroom after being flooded out for several weeks in December. It feels great to settle into our own space, and many students have volunteered their time and energy to restore it to its former beauty. It's hard to believe that on December 12, our classroom looked as shown to the right. ☞

I am very grateful to all of those who have helped out, and I think we are all feeling that we are "home" again. Thank you!

(By the way, I'm having fun trying out this new "Newsletter Format" using


Writing We have just begun our Character Analysis Essay. Students can choose to either write about a character from one of their recent independent reading books, or Crispin. In this writing project, we will develop our skills in writing essays in general, while focusing specifically on responding to literature. Students will consider three strong character traits of their chosen character and how these traits were important to the story. We will be learning to analyze the character, to use evidence from the text to support one's viewpoint, and to develop a well-organized, coherent essay.

To write these essays, we are using My Access. My Access is a writing program which my classes are piloting this year. We are very fortunate that the Parent Club decided to fund this program for us. Students can write their essays online in the MyAccess program and submit the essays for a score. Then, the program will suggest revisions for students to improve their scores. For the Character Analysis Essay, I am allowing students to submit their essays as many times as they would like so that they can practice revising and see how it improves their scores. I can also comment on students writing in this program, and will be encouraging students as they write. My Access will keep a portfolio for each student, so that students and parents can see the progress each student is making. Though this program is an "auto-grader", I have told students that I will grade the essays in the end. All in all, it will be an interesting process!

In Grammar, we are studying adjectives, articles, and verbs. Students will complete grammar packets related to our studies, and these packets include definitions and examples.

Typically, I will post Powerpoint Presentations on grammar on Edmodo, so students can review if they feel it necessary. I will also include practice games using a game-making website called Zondle. Students can play games while reviewing content for an upcoming quiz! The Adjectives, Articles and Verb Quiz is now posted on Edmodo. Students should study from all of the available resources before taking the quiz. Many students have been sick or are gone for the jazz festival, and these students have until next Wed., 1/30. to take the quiz.

Reading Students need to keep reading their own free-choice books! We are recording these books in our Reading Records and giving Book Talks in class to inspire more reading! Soon, I will be rolling out KidBlog which will make it easier for students to post blogs.

Poetry Beginning on Monday, 1/28, we will begin the Yes-funded program of Poets in the Classrooms. I am very excited as this is the first year that the poets will be teaching the seventh graders! I am sure that it will be an enriching experience for us all.


We are deep into our Islam Research Project. This is a large group project with four distinct parts:
  • Research Paper
  • Powerpoint or Prezi
  • Hands-On Project
  • Oral Presentation.
The students will spend a total of three weeks preparing all of these components and then present their project to the class. In this way, each group will be teaching the rest of the class about an important contribution of the Islamic Golden Age. Skills in focus are: researching facts, using an outline in prewriting, writing a well-organized report, and citing sources in a bibliography.

Students can choose several options for a hands-on project, so there is an opportunity for them to get creative and hopefully, have fun. Technology skills in creating a Powerpoint or Prezi, and giving an effective oral presentation to the class will also be developed.

Every student has a yellow or beige packet which guides the research and writing process. Students should be working on this every night as homework, but I do want parents to know that all of our class-time is devoted to this project since we have returned from Winter Break. Please check in with your child's progress and how they are feeling about the whole project. As always, let me know if you have questions.

Many students have been sick and some are feeling a little behind. I encourage all students who need help or who have questions to let me know in class, or ask me on Edmodo by sending me a Direct Post. Students can post their first-draft of their reports and I can comment and send it back. They can also do this via Edmodo. Some groups are posting their work and this way their group members can access it from their homes, too. Groups who are working to catch up due to illness will have a little extension by presenting on Thurs. 1/31.

The Islam Project Guide (download from Edmodo or our class website) includes a detailed list of requirements, a timeline and a calendar. Presentations begin on January 29th!

Mrs. Katie Frank

White Hill Middle School

Seventh Grade English & History

Room 304