7th Grade ELA

Mrs. Long's English Language Arts Class

Beginning of the Year 2015

This is going to be an exciting year in English Language Arts. Seventh grade provides students with the chance to explore academic content in more depth, more extracurricular opportunities, and participation in several enrichment activities. In regards to technology and twenty-first learning, make sure you check out our class Haiku page at http://bit.ly/mrslonghaiku to see our daily agenda, presentations, handouts, and extra information about what is happening in class.

In seventh grade, ELA is two class periods due to the large amount of content that must be taught. However, the curriculum of those two class periods is so integrated with one another that you will only see one grade in Skyward. Grades will be categorized in order to help clarify strengths and weaknesses in a student's performance and growth.

Common Core standards have been implemented the last few years, but this year the new standardized test, the PARCC assessment, will continue to be revised. More information and links are available on my class website bit.ly/MrsLong One large change from the old ISAT test is in the format, the tests will be digitally based and require students to now type their written tasks. There will be approximately three separate written components. Typing skills will be imperative, please help encourage proper typing skills at home.

What are all of these "Benchmarks" we are hearing about?

Throughout the year, students will hear the term pre-tests and benchmarks used by their teachers. While these types of assessments have always been around, there is a growing emphasis in education on their importance due to progress monitoring and the tracking of students growth.

A benchmark is an assessment that is meant to assess what a student knows, what standards they have mastered, and what standards they may need more assistance with. Benchmarks tend to be more all-encompassing in what they are testing for. They occur about once a quarter. On the other hand, a pre-test measures the specific skills and standards associated within a single unit.

A pre-assessment may be given before a unit begins, so the teacher can differentiate throughout the unit for individual student needs. Both tests are meant to inform students, parents, and teachers about where the student is currently at in their learning. While the "grades" of both assessments do not appear on Skyward, students are encouraged to focus and try their hardest to really show what they know.

Important Information Regarding the Class Structure

The class is highly organized to help students manage all of the various components within the ELA curriculum. Students will be utilizing one binder only for ELA and eventually storing important "resource" papers on their iPad within Notability as well.

Furthermore, you may have heard about several activities from this class that were designed to help students understand everyone learns differently and needs different guidance in their learning. The test in Japanese opened up a rich discussion! Make sure you ask your student about it. I will do my best to make sure your student receives an education that is personalized to their needs and pushes them to be successful in 7th grade. If you ever have any questions about differentiation please do not hesitate to ask.

Coming Up Next

The class will study various elements of fiction by starting the year off with a short stories unit followed by a classic short stories unit in October. Students will continue to practice vocabulary through in class activities. A list of weekly vocabulary words and word parts will be distributed to students at the beginning of each week. The writing process will be covered through students first writing assignment of a paragraph relating to International Literacy Day. A large focus within writing during first quarter will be on the argumentative writing format.

Don't Procrastinate

Vocabulary Quizzes - Expect vocabulary quiz questions to be embedded within comprehension checks that are given after the completion of each short story.

Vocabulary Quarter 1 Test - In 7th-grade students will have a cumulative vocabulary test on their study of word parts at the end of every quarter.

Short Stories Test - The first unit test of the quarter will take place on September 18th.

Book Report - Students will soon be assigned their quarter book report. It is important that students are read at least one fictional independent reading novel this first quarter. They are expected to bring this book with them every day to class. The project will be due Oct. 22nd.

Curriculum Night

Thursday, Sep. 3rd, 6:30-8:30pm

1370 N Riverwoods Rd

Lincolnshire, IL

Come meet the teachers, see the building, and learn about the 7th grade curriculum. It is designed for adults, there is no need for students to attend. I hope to see you all there!

Mrs. Kimberly Long

I teach 7th Grade English Language Arts, ELA. You can find me supervising Early Morning Study Hall daily from 7-7:40am, and PASS on Mondays and Tuesdays from 3:05-4:15pm. These are great times for students to meet with me, or they can schedule an appointment to meet during lunch. Additionally, I supervise the Daniel Wright Student Newspaper. The club meets every Thursday after school in my room.