Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Science Fiction Booktalks

Tuesday is library day for GOAL students, and today I booktalked science fiction. GOAL students need to have 3 science fiction books read by the end of the school year, so hopefully they're well on their way!

Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Interstellar Pig by William Sleator

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle

The Power of Un by Nancy Etchemendy

House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

The Search for Snout by Bruce Coville

Monday, December 20, 2010

Weekly Preview: 12/20-12/22

Can we make it 3 days? YES, WE CAN! :)

6th GOAL: This week will wrap up your library time for independent project research. You can continue over the break, if you need to, but we will not take any more class time for research.

7th GOAL: We're finishing up independent project presentations this week. If we finish early, we'll be having quiz bowl competitions and other similar mental feats of strength.

8th GOAL: We'll take the rest of class time this week to finish up independent research projects. We'll start presenting right when you get back on the 3rd of January, so make sure you're ready to go with bibliographies printed out and presentations rehearsed.

7th Language Arts: No spelling this week. We'll be focusing on Writer's Workshop for these last 3 days before break. Any writing that you want to count on your quarter grade must be turned in for teacher edit by the end of the day on Wednesday. This means the rough draft is written and revised, the 2nd draft is peer conferenced and fixed, and the 3rd draft has been carefully self-edited. Fill out your turquoise "Teacher Response Form," clip everything together from the best draft down to the worst draft, and turn it into the bin. Good luck!

I hope all of you out in CyberLand have a wonderful, restful holiday break. It's time to count the blessings in our lives, and my students at Fairfield Middle School are among my biggest blessings! See you next year! ;)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Library Day Booktalks: Mysteries

Today was library day, and I booktalked the following selections in the mystery genre. GOAL students should be getting about halfway done with their 40 book contract for the year. 2 of those are mysteries, so I hope these booktalks helped with that requirement!

The Dark and Deadly Pool by Joan Lowery Nixon

Deep and Dark and Dangerous by Mary Downing Hahn

Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett

The Wright 3 by Blue Balliett

The Calder Game by Blue Balliett

I So Don't Do Mysteries by Barrie Summy

Stolen Children by Peg Kehret

The 100 Year Old Secret by Tracy Barrett

Adam Canfield of the Slash by Michael Winerip

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Weekly Preview: 12/13-12/17

It's getting closer and closer to Christmas break, so I'm sure things are bustling in every household. They're bustling at school too! Friday we'll have our annual FMS talent show which is always a big hit. The cast list is also posted for Bye Bye Birdie, and we'll have our first rehearsal this Thursday to read through the show and pass out scripts & cd's. Stop by room 101 to check the list and put your initials by your part to let me know you've seen the list and accept your role.

Here's what else is going on in room 101 this week:

6th GOAL: We will be continuing our library research this week for Independent Research Projects. On Monday, Mrs. Lantz will be showing how to use the online databases. Please use them before trying Google. Your research will be much more productive!

7th GOAL: Hopefully, we'll be finishing up the presentations for our Independent Projects this week. We saw some fantastic work last week. I can't wait to see what else is in store!

8th GOAL: Wednesday will be the last day for research in the library for Independent Research Projects. After that, you'll have until Christmas break to work in class on the projects you'll start presenting on January 3.

7th Language Arts: Monday will be devoted to spelling. The theme for this week is Adding Suffixes that Change Stress of Words. Pretest corrections and p. 100 (1-20) are due Wednesday. For the remainder of the week, we'll work on our Writer's Workshop stories. Remember, these are due for teacher edit by Christmas break which means your story is written, revised, typed, peer-conferenced twice, and carefully edited. You have a lot of work to do to make the deadline. 1/2 your grade comes from the rubric on the back of the page given in class (quality). The other 1/2 (quantity) comes from the following scale: 3+ final draft pages = A, 2+ final draft pages = B, 1+ final draft page = C, and a piece submitted for teacher edit without reaching final draft stage = D.

Week 16 Spelling Words

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Historical Fiction Booktalks

Tuesday means library day for GOAL students. Today I booktalked the following historical fiction selections:

Voyage on the Great Titanic by Ellen Emerson White
Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis
Brooklyn Bridge by Karen Hesse
Piratica by Tanith Lee
The Broken Blade by William Durbin


Monday, December 6, 2010

Weekly Preview: 12/6-12/10

6th GOAL: 6th grade GOAL students will be finishing up their last mock trial and moving into independent research projects. They will be brainstorming for topics, and then they will be researching in the library. Their research will be due on the last day before Christmas Break, and then they'll have that first week to work on projects in class. Presentations will begin on the first day of the new semester, January 10.

7th GOAL: 7th grade GOAL students will be presenting their independent research projects, starting on Wednesday. Everything needs to be done by this time, including bibliographies.

8th GOAL: 8th grade GOAL students will be spending this week in the library, researching for their independent research projects. They will 4 days before break to work on their projects in class, and presentations will begin right on January 3, when they return from Christmas break.

7th Language Arts: Spelling is a difficult list this week (Frequently Misspelled Words), so 7th grade language arts students need to pay special attention to pretest rewrites and the assignment due Wednesday (p. 94, 1-20). Starting on Tuesday, we will be introducing the writer's workshop process and working on workshopping stories on topics of the students' choices until Christmas Break. The deadline for teacher edit will be the last day before Christmas Break.

Week 15 Spelling Words