Merriman's Memo

A Glimpse into Merriman's Menagerie

Working Hard and Hardly Working

This week was we worked hard at the beginning of the week through Wednesday and then played just as hard on Thursday and Friday. It was a great way to end the quarter. Early in the week we worked on answering nonfiction text dependent questions. We read "Whooping Cranes in Danger," analyzed it specifically for cause and effect and for author's purpose. We worked in partners to analyze the text by answering questions. Then we reviewed the questions as a class to see how well we answered the types of questions. Along the way we discussed strategies that would help with each type of question. What we noticed is that the reason why most students miss a specific question is because they don't want to take the time to go back into the text for proof. This is a habit that is hard to break; however, we are trying! After reviewing each type of question, we then read "Help the Manatees!" and individually answered questions. This last time was for a grade since it we worked on this as a class first, in partners second and finally individually. I can see improvement in going back into the text. We also continued reviewing proper use of quotation marks. Lastly, we had our last geography quiz. Students who did not pass will be retested when we return from break. We will also be working on Midwest region, reviewing the continent of North America and starting on South America.

Once Thursday hit, we went into party mode. We had a blast celebrating all the hard work we have done this semester. We had contest after contest and fun activity after fun activity. Each student worked hard to create ornaments the past couple of weeks. Students left Thursday afternoon with quite a few goodie bags. It was a great day! Friday was our pajama day as we had hot chocolate and watched Polar Express. It was a wonderful ending to a busy week.

When we return from break, we will also be working on narrative writing. Students will be learning a graphic organizer called STORY, which is to help them remember the elements needed in good narrative writing. We will write individually, learn the organzier, revise our draft, and model/create a class narrative. Per the state requirements, students are expected to be able to write a story or personal narrative and include dialogue (which is why we have been working on quotation marks) and a solid plot (beginning, middle and end of a story). Along with that, we will be delving into the world of commas.

Kara Merriman

Words cannot express how truly blessed I feel. This semester has been a whirlwind of learning for both my students and me. We have pushed each other to be better thinkers, readers, writers and speakers. This week I saw the joys of our fruits of labor as we took time to breathe and play. The gifts and love sent my way were abounding. I am so very thankful for the many gifts and hugs and words of appreciation and love. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!