Ms. Marshall's Class

6th Grade English, World History, & Media Studies

Welcome to Back to School Night

General Outline of 6th Grade Curriculum

All of our learning is based on the Common Core Standards

Our learning is organized into 4 themes in English. I try to plan in such a way that our learning in English and History are connected in some way. We also do a lot of project based learning (see video) within these units:

  1. Theme 1: Coming of Age, Novel: "Towers Falling" and "Pax". In History we will focus on the "Coming of Age" of early humans and the first civilizations.
  2. Theme 2: Mysteries, Short texts including "Jabberwocky", "The Raven", "The Landlady", "The Mysteries Of Harris Burdick", and a selection from "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" In History we will focus on mysteries while we study ancient Egyptian and ancient American civilizations.
  3. Theme 3: Courageous Characters, Short texts that relate to Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr, Cesar Chavez and their struggles to achieve social justice through non-violent methods. In History we will study ancient China and India.
  4. Theme 4: Mythology, Novel: "The Lightning Thief" We will also focus on the monomyth/ hero's journey in a variety of texts. In History we will study the ancient Greek and Roman civilizations.

Each theme has it's own individual page on our class website-please visit it for more details. I taught myself how to build a website last summer, so it is a work in progress and many of the pages on the later themes are still under construction.

Project Based Learning: Explained.

What is this "Student Portfolio"?

As you may have noticed in the syllabus, 40% of your student's grade is based on their student portfolio. Students have a notebook that they work on in class for a variety purposes. In the notebook, you will see sketchnotes, mini anchor charts from class lessons, reading response essays, graphic organizers, maps, etc. These notes and essays are rough drafts before online publishing to our class blog, website, or to shared spaces within the various Google Apps for Education. I will give students a copy of these reflective questions and I will meet with each student to go over their progress both in their notebooks and within their Google drive. At this meeting the student will decide what 40% of their grade in the class should be. In short, students will have a say in what their grade should be based on their progress and are encouraged to be active participants in their learning. No grade is final until the end of the semester in January and students can request to have a grade revision in this area at any time. Pull out their notebooks tonight while you are here and look through them.

  • Students need supplies for working in their notebooks: Tape, scissors, pencils, erasers, multicolored highlighters, colored pencils, flair pens are really nice too. (We really use a lot of tape, buy a pack and keep your back up tape in your locker.

Please watch this TED talk that inspired me to do further research into changing the way student work is graded in my classroom.

How four simple words can solve education’s biggest problem | Mark Barnes | TEDxUrsulineCollege

What about homework?

Please visit my teacher's blog to read more about my philosophies regarding homework. In that post there are links to the book lists for each theme in English, as well as links to extra credit projects by theme. Students should be reading at home and are required to take one quiz on a book from the book list each quarter for a grade. For the most part, I don't give separate assignments (worksheets) for homework. I hope that the things that we are learning about in class are so interesting that your child chooses to do further research/exploration outside of class. That is my goal. If something comes up that does need to be done for homework, I send a text message through Remind.


  • Scholastic book orders are handed out each month. You can order online as well using our class code: MP3ZV
  • Extra Curricular Stuff: Global Read Aloud & book clubs, student council, ASSIST, yearbook, sports, dances
  • Technology permission slips

Go Digital

Click on words like "Instagram" to go to our class Instagram page, watch videos and more with the digital version of this newsletter. Scan the QR code below to view the digital version of this page.
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AKA Captain Book

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