Mrs. Walldorf's Reading Class

October 2, 2017

What we are up to....

Main Idea and supporting details

We have been busy learning strategies for finding the main idea, and knowing when details in the text support the main idea and when they don't (minor details). Finding the main idea can be one of the most challenging skills for fifth graders. That is why we start working on it right off the bat, and we continue to work on this and review it throughout the year. Students took a quiz last Wednesday and we worked on making corrections last Friday. The first day of school this year, we learned that mistakes are ok because (as your child can tell you) "your last mistake is your best teacher!" It is an important part of learning. That is the attitude we take in the classroom as we grow and continue to strive for excellence. If your child did not do well on the quiz, encourage them to keep working and have confidence in their ability to learn and do new things this year.

Reading Rotations

We are beginning to incorporate "Reading Rotations" into our classroom routine this week. Student groups will rotate through stations so that each day we are also working on word work (spelling/Wordly Wise/root words), reading with a partner, independent reading, small group instruction with Mrs. Walldorf, and blogging.


Speaking of blogging, we are working on getting our blogs up and running. As I have told you, your children are our guinea pigs...and the most wonderful guinea we have never had Whitaker bloggers before. You will be the first to know when we are up and running and ready for you to log on. They are very excited about it! As soon as they see me in the morning, the first thing they ask is whether we will be blogging today. Students are able to access their blog from home, and are welcome to work on it from home also.

40 Book Challenge

We are also embracing our "40 Book Challenge" and are working on checking off books as we make the countdown. This is meant to be a good experience as they encounter different genres and learn what genres they enjoy and which ones they have not experienced before. It will also reward students with good reading habits and an ability to find good books that suit them personally. Asking your students about their reading is a great way to help them improve and grow as readers. Ask them to summarize what they read; ask them about the characters in the story; or ask them to share their favorite part. I have posted on the Haiku page a list of good questions for you to use at home as a way to support them in their reading homework.

Narrative Paper

Later in the week, I will be introducing the topic of our narrative writing. We will follow the writing process as we begin by brainstorming and writing a rough draft. The rough draft is due on Monday, Oct. 16th. Final drafts will be due on Friday, Oct. 27th. The rubric used for grading is on our Reading Power School Page under "Writing."

We are off to a great start. Thank you for all of the support that you are giving from home. It carries into the classroom, and affects how they respond and participate in what we are working on together. So, I appreciate that!

Mrs. Walldorf