Tuesday, November 7, 2017

November

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

Theme

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!

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Current Happenings

In reading we have finished the unit on plot. This will reappear when we discuss themes of texts as the students will need to understand the difference. I am holding off that unit until after Labor Day.
This coming week I will be integrating the water cycle from Mrs. Tansill's science unit. The students will have a reading passage on Monday and Wednesday night. Questions will be answered in class for a science/reading grade.

We are diving into writing! This week the students have anchor charts for 3 types of hooks to introduce narrative essays. We have had an additional lesson in the Learning Commons. The students will be assessed this week on developing compound and complex sentences. We have been identifying and creating these sentences over the past 2 weeks. I am not expecting mastery but looking for growth. This is a standard that will continue through out the year. I have explained to students that their responses for our homework reading passages is the time to strengthen their writing skills. We share our writing daily.

We need your help! Quite a few students are not returning homework on a daily basis. We have heard that it was left at home or mom/dad did not put it into their notebooks. This has led to students not being prepared for discussions and for us to observe/assess their progress. We ask that you sign their agenda nightly. Beginning next week ,we will be stapling a citation for you to sign and return if their homework is missing. Homework is part of the study skills/habits on our report card and can determine if a student makes Honor Roll.

We also are requesting that you have a friendly discussion with your child about listening during instructions. We are finding that we are talking over students having side discussions and our lessons are being interrupted. This is happening at specials and the Learning Commons too. Please support Addison's 4Bs- Be Responsible , Be Respectful, Be Helpful, and Be Safe.
Thank you for your support!

Congratulations to our Leader of the Month: Deborah Park


Thursday, August 31st - Grades 3rd, 4th and 5th
In the Cafeteria from 7:15am-7:45am Breakfast for students: $1.50 Guests: $2.00


Sunday, August 20, 2017

Solar Eclipse

We will be observing the solar eclipse! If you plan on picking up your child, please do so between
 12-2 pm.Send in a note to inform us of your plan. I will be sure to give your child his/her glasses!

I am moving the plot test to Wednesday. Your child should have an orange anchor chart to study and plot organizers from in class activities to review. We will then begin our unit on identifying theme.

Students will be assigned writing partners based on their pre-narrative essay assessment. First, they will revisit their essay to revise sentence structure. As a whole, students are writing run on sentences.
Then we shall begin learning how to construct relevant hooks for narrative essays.

This week's reading passage will be "Not the Same". The reading standard is inferences. Remind your child to write complete sentences for the question responses. This is how they apply what we are learning in class about sentence structure. New and important vocabulary from the text should be included.

Spelling will begin on Monday. Their first task is to write each word 3 times. Tuesday- Thursday, students will choose 1 task to complete. These are to be completed nightly! Students will also be practicing dictionary skills in class using the spelling words of the week.