Bartholomew's Buzz...

8th Grade Language Arts Newsletter

Dearest Parents,

Roses are red,

Violets are blue.

How long 'til Spring Break?

I'm counting, aren't you?


I hope you are all doing well and hangin' in there so far for second semester. Please read below for information about our class. As always, please let me know if you have any questions.


Ms. Bartholomew

meredith.bartholomew@risd.org

STAAR Information

Students took a practice Reading STAAR on January 14. This week, we reviewed our scores and results. As we progress toward our testing date (March 30), we will be using the simulation data to conduct some focused tutoring for the students who did not pass. More information will be coming this week with details about this if it pertains to your child.

The "Foscars"

As we have been reading our play, The Diary of Anne Frank, we have had some outstanding performances and analysis by our amazing 8th graders. To encourage this, we've been partaking of a little healthy competition with our version of the Oscars, the Foscars (faux-Oscars). Each time a student participates, their name is added into one of three categories: Best Character Analysis, Best Literary Analysis, or Best Performance. Next week we will draw names of students from these categories, and they will receive the highly coveted Foscar award, plus a homework pass. We'll also enjoy part of the film version of the play in class that day! I have promised the students that we will enjoy some snacks in class as well, so if you would like to bring some juice, crackers, chips, fruit, or any other treat for your child's class period, it would be a big help! I will provide some cupcakes. Thanks!

Outside Reading

Pre-AP and GT's next outside reading book is Our Town by Thornton Wilder. Students need to have the book in class on Wednesday, February 17. Get your copy soon!


On-level students will choose a book from the library for outside reading this six weeks.

Curriculum Highlights

Review and Explore in both reading and writing:

Memoir - point of view, structure, imagery

Persuasion - structure, appeals, diction, facts/commonplace assertions

Fiction - plot structure, conflict, characterization, theme

Informational - organizational patterns, main ideas and details, summary

Poetry - structure and elements, figurative language, symbollism

Grammar - clauses and sentence structure, revising with adjectival & adverbial clauses, prepositional phrases, gerund phrases, punctuating dialogue

Vocabulary - continued practice with Greek and Latin Roots and Stems



GT Students will be participating in a series of open-ended reading and writing projects that will vary from student to student:

Book Choice and Trans-mediation Project: students choose a book to read from various genres and create a transformed version of the text using various media.

Super-Hero Problem/Solution Project: students will research a current world issue and design a super hero that can solve this issue, considering repercussions and presented in a written, visual, and oral format.

Class Wish List

If you happen to be at the store and think of picking up one of these items, we would be forever grateful to you!


  • hand sanitizer
  • colored copy paper - pastel or fluorescent colors
  • index cards of any size