The Language Arts Lowdown!

Volume 5, Issue 14 November 8, 2013

Here's the Scoop

It was quite a treat to have a "normal" week! We worked on our first round of literature circles this week, as well as re-visited our persuasive writing. Lots of busy students!!!!

4th Grade


This week, we discussed interjections. These words show an emotion or sentiment in a sentence, such as "Wow!" or "Darn!"

Word Study:

Our spelling rule this week focused on words with doubled consonants within the words. We did not get to our quiz due to Cultural Arts, but we will take it first thing Monday morning.


This week's writing was a revisiting of our persuasive piece telling what items we would have brought with us if we were stranded in the wilderness. We handed back the graded papers we finished last week, and then deconstructed our writing to "reverse" write a plan. We started to see how our writing had holes in it due to deviating from our original writing plan. We will continue to work on this piece through next week.


This week, we started our first round of literature circles. Each student has a calendar with the required readings for each day, and a packet of "tasks" that they are responsible for completing each session. Please help your child work through a little bit of the assignment each day so that they are prepared for their literature circle. If one student is not prepared, the entire circle suffers :)

5th Grade


Fifth grade dove right into their new novels, and are chomping at the bit to finish them! They've been meeting in lit circles to discuss the thematic elements in the stories, and comparing some of those themes to The Secret Garden. Please make sure your child is working on their activities a little bit each night. The preparation of all members of each group is really necessary for the conversations to have meaning.


This week, we talked about interjections! We know that they show an emotion or sentiment, but we also discussed that they do not serve any grammatical purpose in a sentence. They tend to "float" around a sentence and just give it more emphasis.

Word Study:

This week, our spelling rule had to do with the "oi" and "ow" sounds in words. There was a great discussion of the use of "y" and "w" as vowels in words, as well as discussing the differences between the "oo" sounds and the sounds we are studying this week. Due to literature circles, we did not get to our quiz, so it will happen first thing on Monday morning.


This week, we "deconstructed" our persuasive piece about a change the student would like to see in school. We looked at how our original writing "plan" often is not what is truly reflected in our writing. We are now working on our 2nd draft of this piece, using the graded rubric from the first piece, along with peer review to make it better.

Greek and Latin Roots

4th Grade

Jungo/Junctum--Latin--means join--seen in words such as join, conjuntion, and junction

Digitus--Latin--means finger, toe, inch--seen in words such as digit, digital, and prestidigitation

Caput/Capitis--Latin--means head--seen in words such as capital, captain, and cabbage

5th Grade

Homo/Hominis--Latin--means man, human--seen in words such as human, homo sapien, and homage

Anthropos--Greek--means man, mankind, humankind--seen in words such as anthropology, philanthropist, and misanthrope

Vir--Latin--means man, manly, masculine--seen in words such as virile, virago, and virtual

Reading Requirements-2nd 9 weeks

4th grade:

1-Realistic Fiction

1-Historical Fiction

2-Non-fiction (Informational)



1-Poetry (in class)

5th grade:

all of 4th PLUS

1-myth/fable/fairy tale

1-Drama (in class)