Ms. Kraeuchi's ELA Class

English/Language Arts, Team 7-3, Room 206

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Course Description

We will spend an hour together everyday during which we intertwine reading, writing, speaking, and listening instruction and activities.

The Seventh Grade English/Language Arts course is centered on the Missouri Learning Standards with extensive study of literature and written composition preparing students for high school, college, and future careers. Literature spanning the years, from ancient to modern times, gives historical perspective of writing styles and authors’ changing perceptions of our world. The art of composition emphasizes the modes of argumentative, expository, and narrative writing. Student writers are encouraged to write objectively and subjectively as needed to demonstrate their mastery of the course material. As they begin to tailor and incorporate literary strategies into their personal repertoire, seventh grade English/Language arts continues shaping students into independent, life-long readers, writers, and thinkers who will be prepared to contribute to their democratic society.

Seventh Grade English Language Arts focuses on developing independence and proficiency in works of fiction and non-fiction by teaching active reading strategies. Through close reading, students will develop a rich vocabulary in order to speak and write more precisely and coherently. Students will produce formal narrative and expository compositions, including writing arguments that support specific claims and recognize opposing viewpoints from multiple credible sources. By citing several pieces of textual evidence, students will support their analyses, reflections, and research. Students will apply the rules of standard English to improve their writing. Integration of digital media into oral presentations as well as participation in classroom discussions will develop public speaking skills.

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Team Homework Website

Homework on team 7-3 is posted on our team website.

Click here to be directed to our team website.

Key Concepts

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This Year's Highlights

•Independent Reading

•Writer’s Notebooks (Regular in-class writing)

•Vocabulary and Grammar Units

•Discussion-Based Questions (DBQs)

•DBQ Essay

•Author study: Charles Dickens

•Poverty Inquiry Unit

•Socratic Seminars


•“Greek of the Year” Speech

•Heroes Inquiry Unit

•“Hero” Definition Essay

•Gender Roles Inquiry Unit

•Novel: Crispin

•Knight’s Tale Narrative

•Reading many short stories

My Goals for the Year

  • ›I want you to feel like an important member of this group.
  • ›I want you to be able to express yourselves.
  • I want you to think of writing as a way of thinking.
  • ›I want you to love reading.
  • ›I want you to succeed.

After School Sessions

Teachers on team 7-3 will be staying after school to help students on Tuesdays and Thursdays.


Grades will be based on a point system earned on a combination of class work, homework, and assessments (both formative and summative). Formative assignments will be worth 25% of the grade, and summative assignments will be worth 75% of the grade. Please check the Portal to keep up-to-date on your progress in ELA class.

Parents: How to Help your Child with ELA Course Content

Look over their work: check for completion. Verify assignments on the Homework Website.

Help students develop meta-cognition about their work and effort:

1. Ask your child to show you their graded papers.

2. Have them explain what they learned.

3. Have them determine what they will do differently next time.

4. If they aren’t sure how to improve, have them stay after school and ask Ms. Kraeuchi.

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RACER-- a paragraph format that helps students support their answers with quotes and fully explain their reasoning

R: Restate the question
A: Answer the question
C: Cite evidence--use a quote and cite it
E: Explain your reasoning
R: Reflect and conclude your paragraph

Example R.A.C.E.R paragraph

“For sale. Baby’s shoes. Never worn.”

What is the story behind Earnest Hemmingway’s six word memoir?

Example Paragraph

R The story behind Earnest Hemmingway’s six word memoir is A that a family lost a baby. C In the six word memoir, Hemmingway writes that the baby’s shoes were “never worn” (Hemmingway). E The words “never worn” show that family bought baby’s shoes, but the baby did not wear them. A family would not need baby shoes if they were expecting a baby and did not have one. R Therefore, the story behind Hemmingway’s six word memoir is that the family lost a baby.

Annotating Texts

When we look at texts that are not in our textbook, I will be encouraging the students to "annotate" them. Annotating means highlighting important details, writing notes, and writing questions that the student ponders as they read. The notes and questions can go on the pages itself, in the margins or near the text. These annotations will add to our discussions of the materials in class. This is a work in progress for us, and is a skill I know they will use in eighth grade and in high school classes. There is no set number of annotations, but several of each (highlights, notes, and questions) on a page would be a good start. We want students to start looking at the text more deeply. Not just, "What happened," but instead, "Why did the author choose to write it this way? What is the author trying to tell us about their world?" If your student is working from a packet, It is very likely that I have asked them to annotate the work. This also means we will use a highlighter in class often; please check in with your student to make sure they have a highlighter.

Inferencing: The Most Important Critical Thinking Skill

In 7th grade we do a lot of work with "Inferencing." When you make an inference, you use clues from the story to figure out something that the author doesn't tell you through dialogue or written explanation. If you have a friend or relative who is great at figuring out "twist endings" or half way through a show says things like, "I could write this stuff!" they are great at inferencing.

To practice this, when reading stories or watching TV or a movie, pause it after watching the first third of the program. Ask your student to explain what the "problem" is and how they believe it will be solved. Then, ask your student WHY the characters are doing the things they do. The characters' motivations are not always stated aloud, but are inferred. This is an easy way to practice inferencing. Plus, If they watch the rest of the selected program, they can see if they were right. Make it a game to see if you or your child is better at inferencing. Have a conversation (maybe over a bowl of ice cream) about who won and why. I'm sure your child would be happy to "keep score" for you. :)

Independent Reading

Students will be required to read one book per quarter outside of class. Research shows that reading is important to the success of students. We hope to foster a love reading through self-selected texts that appeal to each student. Activities will be designed to reinforce the skills being taught in the classroom.

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Daily Writing: Writer's Notebook

Students will engage in regular writing activities to encourage students to enjoy writing and practice the skills they are learning.


›Writer's Notebooks will be checked for:

  • ›Participation: ›Writing for the entire time
  • ›Amount of writing: ›Evidence of lots of writing (›At least a half of a page for each entry)
  • ›Thoughtfulness of writing: ›Entries are deep with meaning
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Formal Writing

Throughout the year, students will complete formal writing tasks, including narrative, argumentative, and expository writing.

The Steps of the Writing Process:


2.Writing (rough draft)



5.Publishing (final draft)

Six Traits of Writing: Students will use the Six Traits to write a well-written piece:

›Ideas, Organization, Voice, Sentence Fluency, Word Choice, and Conventions.

Typed Writing Assignments

All typed assignments must:

  • include name, class, date, and title
  • be 12 point font, Times New Roman
  • be double-spaced
  • NOT be emailed to your teacher to be printed
  • Use MLA Format: See Purdue Owl Website as a resource
  • Cite sources and include a Works Cited: Use EasyBib as a resource

Confused on how to Double Space or Single Space in Microsoft Word? Click Here!

Keyboard Shortcuts that are helpful for Spacing:

CTRL + A = Select All

CTRL + 2 = Double Space

CTRL + 1 = Single Space

OH-NO.... You have printing problems the night before the paper is due! Don't worry; see below!

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Make-Up Work

Absent Work

We missed you while you were out today, but....

  • It is the student's responsibility to get the notes, classwork, and homework missed while absent.
  • The student needs to check the daily calendar to review classroom activities. Any hand-outs will be placed in the make-up work bins according to the day of the week.
  • Students may also stay on top of assignmments whether they are absent or present by reviewing the team homework website at:

Late Work

Late work will be accepted for a reduced grade.

Contact Ms. Kraeuchi

Feel free to contact me with any questions, concerns, or comments.