Rodas' Rockstars!

Winter Edition!

Writing...We are on a Roll!

Our focus area for these past few weeks has been on Narrative writing. Narrative writing is now more than just creating a story - it is reading a story, analyzing it and then "mirroring" the author's style, tone and characterization to create a narrative piece. This is no easy task but the kids are doing GREAT! We read the short story "Checkouts", used our decoding and analysis skills (with post-its and highlighters) and then began to brainstorm how we would finish the story. They have been creating their stories this week in class and are working well. I have enjoyed conferencing with them and reading their "published" stories next week. From there, we will create a class book of all of them to keep in our class library. Nice work!

What's Coming Up?

LOTS is coming up in ELA! We will begin to focus on:
- Rhetorical Analysis: learning how to analyze various mediums for ethos, pathos and
logos! This can be tricky - but we will have fun with it through the exploration of Super
bowl commercials and magazine ads!

- Argumentative Essay Writing: Persuasive writing - with a twist! We will learn how to
look at both sides of an argument and they will pick a current news topic that is
interesting for them. I will guide them through the stages of what an Argumentative
essay looks like and how we create one from start to finish!

- Animal Farm: Remember this classic!?! In the beginning of February, we will begin our
journey onto the farm to take a better look at Napoleon and his antics! Students will
be placed into "reading groups" where they will continue to focus on creating questions
for discussion and looking for various elements in the novel that we have been learning
this year.

Vocabulary: Tracking our Learning!

Learning vocabulary CAN be fun and exciting! Students have created accounts on and are tracking their vocabulary knowledge progress as we work through each unit. is a game-based learning site that makes vocabulary tangible for the students. Ask your son/daughter about their current score and progression!

Order in the Court!

A highlight of our year - the debate! Students will be participating in a class debate in the coming weeks. Our debate will consist of a judge, jury and is completely student-run. We will take our knowledge of ethos, pathos, logos and research to convince the judge and jury that we are right! The students LOVE this (hey, it's a chance for them to argue!) During the first week of February we will decide, as a class, what our topic will be and then research and planning will begin. Please talk to your son/daughter about this experience. Some questions you might ask are:

* what is the topic? What is your position on topic and why?

* how do you plan to convince the judge? What are strategies?

* what sites are you using to research the topic?

STAY TUNED - pictures will follow on our big day!

No Homework? Check Google Classroom!

ALL homework for ELA is updated on your child's Google Classroom page. Please have them share it with you at the beginning of the week to see what is due in ELA!

We Are All in this Together!

Please contact me should you have questions about class happenings or if you would like to discuss your son/daughter's progress. Email is the best way to reach me initially and then we can schedule a meeting should you wish to. Thank you for trusting me with your kids each day - they are the best and make my teacher heart so incredibly happy with their respect and hard-work! I am looking forward to a wonderful second half of the school year.


Shannon Rodas