Language Arts Loop

Your News for What's Happening in Room 404-Jan 31, 2016

Reading News

We finished our in-depth study of expository text structures and have begun our study of fiction text through a whole class novel study. Together we are reading, discussing and recording our thoughts on the novel Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing. As we read each chapter, students have the opportunity to read with the class, with partners or alone and then discuss their findings in the chapter. As we continue on with our novel we will discuss the deep fiction questions of inferring, synthesizing, multiple meaning words, and basic fact recall. Students should become familiar with all of these skills. These are skills they have been exposed to but ones we will focus in on this year. These are also the skills and questions that will be tested on the reading STAAR test this year.
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Writing News

In writing, we are moving along with our study of how to write in a testing situation. In looking at this study, we have addressed several mini-lessons which will help us as we prepare for testing situations and writing throughout our lives. Specifically, we have focused on ways to revise our writing and to expand or deepen our details. There are two questions we have practiced asking ourselves as we expand our writing details. Those questions are: What does it look like? Why is it important? These questions allow us to zone in on what we are describing specifically in our piece. We have also looked at the strategy of Flipping the Sentence. This strategy allows the writer to flip the sentence right at the predicate or action part of the sentence. Once flipped, we can revise the sentence again by adding descriptions, adjectives and asking what does it look like, why is it important.

Finally, we also looked at the various ways we can craft conclusions for our expository essays. These conclusions when written deeply can also mirror themselves as introductions. Typically, we try the Funnel, Turn About and Quote as intros but as we craft each type of conclusion, students notice that we can merge these conclusions to craft the most effect introductions and conclusions for our expository pieces.

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using the conclusion page, draft & rubric to draft the final copy

Preparing for Publishing

As we prepared our pieces for the final step in the writing process last week, students reviewed their pieces and met with a classmate to read and accept feedback based on their piece. Classmates used the writing rubric to guide their discussions, questions and reflections on the pieces. These conferences helped students decide what changes needed to be made to their essays. These are always powerful discussions and bring about much insight and change to pieces.

Staying Connected

Tuesday, February 2 - Practice Writing STAAR- 8:30-12:30, students should bring a snack and water bottle

Friday, February 12 - Valentine Celebration - kickball, pizza and valentines

Monday, February 15 - Staff Development - Student Holiday