Language Arts Loop

Your News for What's Happening in Room 404-September 6, 2015

Reading News

Week 2 is in the books! Literally, we spent week 2 in books. We finished our first try at reader's notes using the STOP, Think & Jot strategy while finishing the book Train to Somewhere by Eve Bunting. Students then practiced the strategy on a picture book of their choice. We also wrote our first Reader's Response Letter based on our notes. We dug a little further into our class read aloud There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom and learned more about the main character Bradley Chalkers. He is a complex 5th grader which brings great discussion from our class. Looking ahead to next week, we will continue practicing reader's notes and specifically discuss which thoughts and notes are helpful to record and which may not help with our overall understanding of the text. These types of notes shouldn't be recorded. Readers should stick with notes that are valuable. We will also discuss various genres of text and students will participate in a genre sort. This review and discussion will aide us as we continue to develop our reader's lives and think about books that we want to read and the times that we might abandon a book that just doesn't feel right. Students are learning to record on their reading logs, which will become a daily expectation.

Writing News

What a week for writing! Students engaged in two major activities this week. We continued with our daily writing time, working to build writing stamina and a collection of topics we are interested in. Students continued to try various ways to get started in their notebooks and we discussed new things we learned about ourselves as writers and how we get started. Several of us learned we like to get Ideas from other Writers to get us started. A few students like to Look at Maps and then write about places they've been, places they want to go and places that hold special memories. We also discussed writing about Topics on the Top of our Head, topics that just seem to scream at us when we sit down with our pencil and paper and must be written about. No two writing notebooks look the same or contain the same entries, we are each developing our own personal writing style and are learning from other writers in the room. We also participated in what we called Speed Week, this week, as we sped through the writing process day by day. This was a great way to review the process and to remind students of what we do during each step. The week was concluded on Friday with students publishing their one sentence that had been through the entire process.

Grammar/Spelling News

This week we will begin our Words Their Way assessment for each student. This assessment will allow us to place each student with the spelling pattern that they most need to learn. Each student will eventually have an individualized spelling list which will allow us to target their spelling strengths and weaknesses. More information about this will be shared at Parent Orientation on Wednesday night.

Staying Connected

Week 2 came and went with a BANG!! Our class is such a special group and we are making daily connections with each other. I am so thankful to be on this journey with each one of you. Please contact me with questions or concerns. Be sure to join us Wednesday night at 6:00 for Parent Orientation. Ms. Faske and I will be joining together to give you all the information you will need for this year. Hope to see you then!