Thursday, January 11, 2018

Jan 2018

Welcome to a new year!
Our 3rd quarter has begun. After collaborating with Fifth grade and to prepare for the Milestone, we have changed our spelling routine. Spelling contract will be sent home on Monday. Parents are asked to review it with their child and sign the bottom front. Students will complete a task in class, however, if it's not completed it becomes homework. Students should study their words nightly as they will have them in their agenda. Parents are to complete a Thursday's task from the choices on the back of the contract. Once you and your child have completed the task, write your initials and return it to school.
Spelling will be addressed every other week. We will rotate it with Daily ELA spiral review.

We have begun identify text structure as a primary and secondary source. Students should have brought home their journals to learn which examples support both types. A quiz will be given tomorrow and next week. Hopefully by Friday , Jan.19th we will end the unit with a summative assessment.
Then we will begin our reading unit on Greek mythology!! Students love this unit, so do I 😍.

Currently in writing students are developing an expository "how to" essay. Before the break, students completed a partner task to practice. This will most likely take 2 weeks to finish the writing process.

** STEM NIGHT- Thurs. , Jan. 18th from 6-7:30
     Please come and enjoy the wonderful presentation/activities!!

Sunday, December 3, 2017

December is Here

I can't believe that we have 2 weeks & 2 half days before break.

The students are finishing their natural disaster informational essay. Most have really worked hard in developing sentences , paragraphs, and vocabulary. Absolutely beautiful!!
We will then practice a "How To" explanatory essay before the break. That's the plan 😁

The informational text structure quiz was moved to Tuesday of this week. Then there will be a summative test on Friday. Again, this is the plan. Students have many in class practice passages to review at home on how to identify text evidence for each of the 5 types of structure. They were asked to begin reviewing this past weekend and not wait till the last minute.

Health is back!! This week students will begin reading chapter 9 on the effects of tobacco and alcohol. We should be able to have 3 more grades for this quarter.

This week is custodian appreciation week !It would be wonderful if your child thanked them in his/her own way.

Our holiday party will be Tuesday, Dec. 19th at 11am. More information about supplies and volunteers will be sent home soon.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017


I can't believe we are in the middle of the 2nd marking period! 

We have wrapped up our opinion unit. I should have the students' essays graded by next week.
It is now time to focus on informational writing. The students will be researching about a natural disaster. They will learn how to take notes to collect relevant data to support their topic. The subtopics will include definition, location, cause & effect, precautions and safety. The two domains that most students struggle with are relevant details (specific to topic) and organization of ideas. This will be a process that I will assist them through. We have been focused on these two domains in our previous narrative and opinion essays.
As we move forward in reading, our focus will be identifying structure of an informational text. This means : compare & contrast, sequencing, description, problem & solution, and cause & effect.
I do not wish to get on my soap box but... if students apply the close reading strategies that have been taught, they will be successful! Many are not using these strategies as they complete homework and independent in-class work (tests).

Please donate to our Addison Food Drive!! Our class has only donated 7 items plus mine. Just one item would be greatly appreciated.

Our Thanksgiving lunch is around the corner. We hope that you are able to attend !

Monday, October 23, 2017

Main Idea

Thank you for attending your child's conference. It was wonderful to be able to discuss your child's progress with you.
In reading we are focused on identifying the main idea in literary and informational text. What is the author's main idea and what evidence is there to support it?
This concept should carry over into writing. Students struggle with narrowing down their purpose. Hopefully if we apply what we learn from lessons in reading, we can improve in the domain of developing ideas and supporting examples. By the end of this week, we should complete an opinion essay. The class has practiced with several texts: Dodge Dodgeball, Should Grades be Eliminated, Make that Money, Household Chores, and What if you had Animal Teeth/Feet/Nose?
If your child is struggling on our Daily ELA assessments, they have been encouraged to practice parts of speech by visiting the links on this blog. We have used them in class, so they should know what to do. There will be spelling this week.
Please email me with any concerns or questions.

Boovie Night - Friday, Oct.27th

Sunday, October 8, 2017

New Grading Quarter

    As we transition into our second marking period, we will be finishing our unit on character traits. There will be one more test this coming Friday, Oct.13th. Students will determine if a trait is positive or negative, physical or character, and make an inference from a statement given. If they underline key vocabulary words , they should do very well. Reading to understand is key 😀
   Then we will move our reading focus to informational text elements. As students pay attention to how authors write, they will become stronger in developing their own essays. We will learn to determine if statements are facts or opinions.
   This closely relates to our new writing focus, opinion writing. So far students have anchor charts for opinion sentence starters and opinion linking transitions. In a narrative they have used general transition words such as : first,then, next, finally. Here are some examples they should use for opinion: For example, In addition,Most importantly, To sum it up. This is where a student applies genre specific vocabulary to the assigned writing genre. 
   We will begin with developing introductions, then move on to an essay format. All students will be required to develop 3 opinion reasons. Then they will support the reasons with examples. Students have asked if they may complete more. Here's my thought, it is better to have 3 very strong reasons than 4 undeveloped. But we have a road ahead of us and each student will progress at their individual pace.
   Here's looking to a busy 2nd quarter!

Important Reminders:
      Thursday, Oct. 12 is Early Release
      Monday, Oct. 16-20 is Early Release- Conference Week
      Book Fair during Conference Week
      Square 1 Art- Last day is Oct. 18th!!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Theme II

The students have taken the first theme assessment. Mrs. Tansill's students were given the test and were to make corrections. My class will get their tests on Monday but I did go over the correct answers and text evidence with them. The class will have a summative/primary test on Wednesday! This is what your child should study: the corrected test of Chase and Sophia, all in class passages from the last week and a half, and the organizers from this Monday and Tuesday. They will be on the text Thank You, Mr. Falker.

Pointers on how to read for understanding the theme.
Theme focuses on the main character. How is this character at the beginning of the story? Focus on text evidence that describes the character's actions, words, thoughts, and feelings. As one reads the story, how does this character change? Who is the supporting character? What does he say or do to influence the main character? In the end, has the character's thoughts or feelings changed? If so, how?These are some of the questions I model daily as I read aloud to the class. Students should be asking themselves these same questions as they read.

Many are asking, how can I help my child improve their reading? Here are some behaviors I am seeing during instruction:

  • doodling on their paper
  • making patterns with highlighters/pens
  • drawing on themselves
  • sitting but not following along with the text (whether on the carpet or at the desk)
  • not identifying the text evidence when given the information
  • head down on desk
Please check your child's papers. if you notice any of these from the list,you could address the off task behavior.What can your child do to improve his/her grade? We need to be active learners by listening, participating, and asking questions. I can give students the tools for learning but behavior is in their control.

Important dates:
  • SLT speeches are Sept. 20th-22nd
  • Fall Break is Sept. 25th-29th
  • Conference letters will be sent on Oct.2nd
  • Picture day is Oct. 5th
  • SLT Inauguration is Oct. 6th

Sunday, September 10, 2017


We have been working on identifying the theme in a text. Students have been taught how to find text evidence to support the theme. This weekend they were asked to take home the anchor charts of common theme topics and their completed practice passages. I am moving the test to Tuesday to give us one more day of practice. This will be a secondary grade to see where each student is on this standard. Then I will be giving a primary test assessment either on Friday or the following Monday before moving to another standard. Students will be asked to identify 3 supporting evidence examples, the theme, and write a statement to support the theme they have chosen.

This upcoming week in writing, students will write a narrative essay. We have worked on narrative hooks and introduction paragraph. There has only been one writing assessment on an introduction paragraph for developing a character.Therefore, they may have a low writing grade on their progress report. I have met with every student to discuss their grade and ways to improve their writing. Some students just need to follow directions to improve their grade. Other areas of weakness were spelling, punctuation, and run on sentences. This should also be simple to correct if students take the time to reread their writing. Please remember that writing is 70% of their weight in ELA. This was discussed at Open House and I believe in the flip-book we handed out.

  • Family Fun Carnival -Friday, Sept. 15. from 5-9 pm.
  • Collection for Hurricane victims in Texas. Addison is collecting water and toiletries from Monday-Wednesday!