ELA Weekly:

April 11 - April 15

Curriculum Manager Announcements

Summer Reading Program

PART I: Independent Reading Philosophy

  • As a district, we know that a student’s ability to effectively read, engage with, and analyze a text is key to ensuring their life-long success in academics and beyond. According to Nancie Atwell, author of In the Middle and The Reading Zone, and winner of the Varkey Foundation’s inaugural Global Teacher Prize, it is “frequent, voluminous book reading that makes readers. [Students who read frequently] build fluency, stamina, vocabulary, confidence, critical abilities, habits, tastes, and comprehension” (Atwell, 2010). A key tenant of Independent Reading is student choice. Rather than the district choosing one book for all students to read, students will choose a book that interests them, at their reading level, from a list of approximately forty different works. This is a departure from previous years because we know that students are more motivated to read when they have choice, and campuses sometimes do not agree with the district-chosen book.


PART II: Summer Reading Program Booklist

  • Please refer to the attached excel document which outlines the approved independent reading books per grade level. The books were chosen from a list of books referenced on the AP Literature & Composition exam, as well as lists published annually for educators as guides to works of literary merit. Each grade level represents a wide range of Lexile levels and interests (both fiction and nonfiction).

    • Note: Each grade level has appropriately 40 books of literary merit from which students can choose for their independent reading. Lexile level, maturity, and cultural relevance were factors taken into consideration when selecting titles for each grade level.


PART III: Required Informational Webinar

  • There will be a required informational webinar for all ELA teachers and it is strongly recommended that campus leaders attend as well.

  • The information for the webinars is provided below:

    • Objective: Teachers and campus leaders will understand the overall vision for Independent Reading for the 2016-17 school year. Teachers and campus leaders will understand how Summer Reading fits into the overall Independent Reading program, and will understand how students will be assessed on their summer reading novel.

    • Date: Wednesday, May 4, 2016

    • Time: 4:00 pm to 4:45 pm

    • ELA 6/7/11/12

    • ELA 8/9/10


Part IV: Ordering Books

  • How campuses choose to order texts is specific to their budget and department. However, we strongly recommend providing students with choice from the provided list.

  • Some suggestions for this first year include:

    • The ELA teacher chooses approximately 10 titles from the approved list. He/she then provides this list to students, and students choose their book for Summer Reading. The campus then orders the books chosen.

    • The ELA teacher chooses approximately 10 titles from the approved list and orders 10-12 copies of each title. Students then choose their novel from the books ordered.


PART V: Summer Reading Assessment

  • The Summer Reading Assessment is designed to assess any work from the approved list. Students will complete a Lighthouse Log with key text components during the first days of school, and then students will write a literary analysis essay over one of the components of the Log. The webinar on May 4th will provide specific details about the assignment and the essay, as well as the plan to train teachers on both of these assessments.

6th Grade ELA

Content: Students will continue to study the elements of poetry this week, looking at several different poems and analyzing how authors create meaning from alliteration and figurative language in poems. All poetry lessons are located on the Hub in the Quarter 4 documents. Each of the poems and the graphic organizers that accompany each lesson are also located on the Hub. Students will complete this week’s study of poetry with a teacher-designed lesson, which can reinforce any poetic element(s) that students still need more time to master. Caleb provided a fantastic lesson framework that teachers can use for Thursday’s lesson. Make sure to check out the recording of the April 6th webinar if you missed it!


Assessments: The next Bi-Weekly Assessment is Friday, April 15th (poetry). The scanning deadline is the same day.


Webinar: The next 6th grade ELA Webinar will be on Wednesday, April 20th.


Archived Webinars: Please visit the links below to view previous webinars.

7th Grade ELA

Content: Students will begin their study of poetry this week, using key lessons from SpringBoard Unit 5. Teachers should follow the Unit Map in order to choose the key lessons and key steps within those lessons since all lessons in Unit 5 were not used during this poetry study. Students will primarily be looking at imagery and poetic devices, analyzing how authors create meaning in poems. The week will end with a text-connections lesson in which students will read a poem and short story with similar themes. Since students traditionally struggle with text connections, this is a key lesson to focus on 7.19F (text connections). Again, support around which lessons and which steps within lessons can be found on the Quarter 4 Unit Map. Teachers and coaches should reference this document as they are planning the lessons for the week.


Assessments: There are no more scheduled Bi-Weekly Assessments. Beginning next week, teachers can choose to administer the STAAR Success Unit Bi-Weekly Assessment (paired-passage, poetry and informational passages) when it is appropriate for their review plan.


Webinar: The next 7th grade ELA Webinar will be on Wednesday, April 20th.


Archived Webinars:

8th Grade ELA

Summer Reading Program: Please refer to the Summer Reading Overview (PDF) and Summer Reading Booklist (Excel Spreadsheet) sent to your email last week, and/or re-read the Curriculum Manager Announcement section at the top of the ELA Weekly. We are looking forward to our new and exciting approach and know it is going to bring a new face to independent reading at IDEA Public Schools!


Content: SB 4.6, 4.10, and 4.12 are this critical lessons for this week.

  • SB 4.6: This lesson is broken up over two instructional days to ensure maximum coverage of the content: On Day One (Part A), you should focus on TE Steps 1-4, and Day Two (Part B), TE Steps 5-7. This lesson is critical because it provides students with examples of effective vs. ineffective elements of presentation. This process of example and non-example is key to helping students see the expectations for presentation.
  • SB 4.10: Note, adjust the lesson to not include TE Step 6. Students will rate themselves and a part on the oral representation piece of a presentation. Reinforce the importance of presentation especially for their final IOP.
  • SB 4.12: This lesson is an additional reinforcement of oral presentation and also challenges students to synthesize a larger text into key talking points. This is a critical skill, as students will be engaging with larger texts in high school and need to be able to break a text into specific talking points to ensure understanding.


Assessments: Please note, there will not be any Bi-Weekly or Interim Assessments for Quarter 4.

  • Rationale: The focus for this quarter is the MLA research paper and IOP. As a curriculum team, we wanted to place emphasis on these two critical components and did not want to add additional stress or take time from the scope and sequence. If you have any specific questions regarding assessments for Quarter 4, please contact George D. Galindo.


Webinar: The next ELA Webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, April 20 from 4:00 pm to 4:45 pm. If you have any additional questions regarding login or future webinar dates, please visit the ELA Webinar Calendar tab on The Hub.


Archived Webinars: Please visit the links below to view previous webinars:

English I Pre-AP

Summer Reading Program: Please refer to the Summer Reading Overview (PDF) and Summer Reading Booklist (Excel Spreadsheet) sent to your email last week, and/or re-read the Curriculum Manager Announcement section at the top of the ELA Weekly. We are looking forward to our new and exciting approach and know it is going to bring a new face to independent reading at IDEA Public Schools!


Content: SB 5.6, 5.7, and 5.10 are critical lessons for this week.

  • SB 5.6: This lesson is broken up over two instructional days to ensure maximum coverage of the content. Though there are not specific TE steps designated to each day, two days have been provided so that you and the students do not feel rushed to cover all of the information in one class period. This lesson is critical because it serves as the beginning stages of the topic and research brainstorm.
  • SB 5.7: This lesson is broken up over two instructional days to ensure maximum coverage of the content. On Day One (Part A), complete TE Steps 1 to 4. and on Day Two (Part B), complete TE Steps 5 to 7. This lesson provides students with an understanding of how sources are critical to their research, and without sources, their work will be considered invalid and unacceptable. This lesson allows multiple opportunities to Think-Ink-Pair-Share and should be used throughout the lesson to give students a time to pause and check their own understanding of the material.
  • Note: Though this assignment is heavy on student work, you should not be behind your desk for the entire class period. As the teacher, you should be walking around the room, meeting with students, and/or conducting one-on-one conferences to check-in with students you know may struggle with conducting research.
  • 5.10: This lesson is broken up over two days to ensure maximum coverage of the content. This week, students will only engage with Day One (Part A), TE Steps 1 to 3. A sample media clip that can be used for TE Step 2 is provided in the Instructional Notes section of the Q4 Unit Road Map. This lesson lends itself to providing multiple Think-Ink-Pair-Share opportunities. Be strategic and think about where this strategy can be effectively inserted to ensure deeper understanding for students.


Assessments: Please note, there will not be any Bi-Weekly or Interim Assessments for Quarter 4.

  • Rationale: The focus for this quarter is the MLA research paper and IOP. As a curriculum team, we wanted to place emphasis on these two critical components and did not want to add additional stress or take time from the scope and sequence. If you have any specific questions regarding assessments for Quarter 4, please contact George D. Galindo.


Webinar: The next ELA Webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, April 20 from 4:00 pm to 4:45 pm. If you have any additional questions regarding login or future webinar dates, please visit the ELA Webinar Calendar tab on The Hub.


Archived Webinars: Please visit the links below to view previous webinars.

English II Pre-AP

Summer Reading Program: Please refer to the Summer Reading Overview (PDF) and Summer Reading Booklist (Excel Spreadsheet) sent to your email last week, and/or re-read the Curriculum Manager Announcement section at the top of the ELA Weekly. We are looking forward to our new and exciting approach and know it is going to bring a new face to independent reading at IDEA Public Schools!


Content: SB 4.15 (Parts C to G) are the critical lessons for this week.

  • The following breaks down the days, parts, and pages that should be covered each day this week.
  • Monday (SB 4.15 - Part C) pages 296 to 303.
  • Tuesday (SB 4.15 - Part D) pages 304 to 309.
  • Wednesday (SB 4.15 - Part E) pages 310 to 314.
  • Thursday (SB 4.15 - Part F) pages 314 to 319.
  • Friday (SB 4.15 - Part G) pages 319 to 325.
  • Note: Students should be reading with inflection and emotion and, as the teacher, create midpoints for discussion to keep students engaged. As the teacher, you can choose to have students read the ode before the assigned day and use this time to increase discussion into the lesson.
  • As you read, make a connection back to the Updated Embedded Assessment so that students can effectively understand the process they must take when completing their research. The individual, societal, and government perspectives all apply to Antigone and, as the teacher, make sure you are drawing those connections for our students.


Assessments: Please note, there will not be any Bi-Weekly or Interim Assessments for Quarter 4.

  • Rationale: The focus for this quarter is the MLA research paper and IOP. As a curriculum team, we wanted to place emphasis on these two critical components and did not want to add additional stress or take time from the scope and sequence. If you have any specific questions regarding assessments for Quarter 4, please contact George D. Galindo.


Webinar: The next ELA Webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, April 20 from 4:00 pm to 4:45 pm. Your Course Leader will be covering the IOP Rubric and providing critical information for the quarter. If you have any additional questions regarding login or future webinar dates, please visit the ELA Webinar Calendar tab on The Hub.


Archived Webinars: Please visit the links below to view previous webinars.

AP Language

Content: The Quarter 4 AP Success Guide and review documents have been posted to the Hub within the Quarter 4 folder. The purpose of the AP Language and Composition Success Unit is to set aside time for teachers to target and revisit those skills which need additional instructional time for mastery. To support that effort, the AP Success Guide will provide information about resources available for teachers to use for review of critical components of the AP Language & Composition course. Rather than a sequence of pre-determined lessons and objectives, teachers and campuses have the freedom to tailor instruction to student needs. Quarter 4 will consist of a teacher-driven Scope & Sequence so he/she may prioritize skills at a campus and/or classroom level. While daily lessons will not be provided, suggested resources are given within the Guide, and teachers spent Course Collaboration 4B exploring all available resources on the Hub and the NMSI website and establishing a plan for Quarter 4 instruction.


Assessments: Teachers have been provided with one multiple choice assessment, one synthesis essay prompt, one argument essay prompt, and one rhetorical analysis essay prompt, with scoring guides, designed to be administered as appropriate, according to the review plan established by each teacher. All assessments are located on the Hub in the Quarter 4 folder.


Webinar: The next AP Language Webinar will be on Wednesday, April 20th.

Archived Webinars: Please use the links below to view previous webinars:

AP Literature

Content: The Quarter 4 AP Success Guide and review documents have been posted to the Hub within the Quarter 4 folder. The purpose of the AP Literature and Composition Success Unit is to set aside time for teachers to target and revisit those skills which need additional instructional time for mastery. To support that effort, the AP Success Guide will provide information about resources available for teachers to use for review of critical components of the AP Literature & Composition course. Rather than a sequence of pre-determined lessons and objectives, teachers and campuses have the freedom to tailor instruction to student needs. Quarter 4 will consist of a teacher-driven Scope & Sequence so he/she may prioritize skills at a campus and/or classroom level. While daily lessons will not be provided, suggested resources are given within the Guide, and teachers spent Course Collaboration 4B exploring all available resources on the Hub and the NMSI website and establishing a plan for Quarter 4 instruction.


Assessments: Teachers have been provided with one multiple choice assessment, one prose analysis essay prompt, one poetry analysis essay prompt, and one open-ended essay prompt, with scoring guides, designed to be administered as appropriate, according to the review plan established by each teacher. All assessments are located on the Hub in the Quarter 4 folder.


Webinar: The next AP Literature Webinar will be on Wednesday, April 20th.

Archived Webinars: Please use the links below to view previous webinars: