6A Language Arts

Spreading the joy of reading and writing

Nov. 17-Nov. 21 Newsletter

Students enjoyed a shorter week due to Parent-Teacher conferences Friday. Thank you, parents, for your time and support in your student's education! We are grateful and glad to have met with you this past week.

Reading: Book Club moved into full swing this week, as students began applying reading strategies for their hero novels in their reading notebooks and graphic organizers provided. Students expressed knowledge of story elements revealed in the beginning of the book, particularly with regard to characters and setting, through their book club discussions. Students also broke down challenging text to make meaning and clarify confusing plot events. Certainly the writers of Old English (Beowulf) all the way through modern-day Tolkien were not averse to dramatic tales and adventures!

*Students are encouraged to continue with their choice reading at home as well as when they complete an assigned reading and job in class. We hope they will demonstrate their authentic application of reading strategies taught to their choice books in their reading journals!

Writing: Final writing conferences for Flash Fiction were our focus this past week, as students put the finishing touches on these extremely short stories. Students' focus lay on crafting effective hooks, including all story elements, including plenty of sensory detail, and making a commentary on human nature through their writing. I am looking forward to seeing our finished works on Tuesday, Nov. 25. However, as any good writer knows, the writing process is never quite finished! Students are always welcome to hone their ideas past this date.

Grammar and Word Study: In Grammar, we concluded Unit 2 by distinguishing interjections from prepositions. Though both parts of speech tend to be small words, they serve very different purposes! Then, we began our GUM Unit 2 review with our in-class book review and our homework packet due Monday. We have benefited quite a bit from the visual aid of Tim and Moby in the Brainpop videos on grammar, as well. Next week we will go over our reviews and play a game of Grammar Jeopardy as time allows!

In Word Study, we discussed what a suffix is, where it is located on a word, and how it adds meaning to the root word. We looked at four common suffixes: -al, -ble, -ance and -or/er. We wrote sentences with words that have these suffixes, and we wrapped up the week with a tough-as-nails suffix competition. Our students assigned the -or/er suffix came up with the most words with that suffix.

Other activities: Though we have only just begun our student-centered Genius Hour research, some very enterprising students were ready to present Thursday! We enjoyed not only an informative PowerPoint on genetic anomalies in insects (such as butterflies with asymmetrical wings) but also a Prezi describing the science behind why students love candy.

Upcoming Due Dates/Assessments

Tues., Nov. 25: Flash fiction final draft due (see requirements sheet for materials needed)

Tues., Nov. 25: GUM Unit 2 Test

Thurs., Dec. 18: Whatcha Readin' card #2 due