Tuesday, September 30, 2014

KEEP ON ELABORATING

Tonight you'll have another opportunity to elaborate on a specific section.

Directions:

  1. Find an important section of your personal narrative so you can focus on that for elaboration. 
  2. Ask yourself, "What is this section really about?"
  3. Write 1-2 goals.  Make sure we see your goals on the Blogger response.
  4. Take the part you selected and make the "driver", you, go slower. Make the reader notice all the details. Include what you saw--all of those visual details. Don't forget about using your powerful senses. 
  5. Include WHAT'S MY SECTION ABOUT?
  6. Show new draft along with the old draft

STRATEGIES FOR ELABORATING ON IMPORTANT PARTS

  • Slow down the action, telling it bit-by-bit
  • Add dialogue
  • Give details
  • Show small actions
  • Add internal thinking

Example Response:
Goals:
1. Add more internal dialogue by using italics
2. Add more detail to the main character including clothing

What's my section about?
text, text, text, text


Old Draft: 
my text, my text, my text

Monday, September 29, 2014

Elaborating...

ELABORATING ON IMPORTANT PARTS: YOU'RE THE DRIVER



Tonight you'll have the opportunity to elaborate on a specific section.

Directions:

  1. Find an important section of your personal narrative so you can focus on that for elaboration. 
  2. Ask yourself, "What is this section really about?"
  3. Write 1-2 goals.  Make sure we see your goals on the Blogger response.
  4. Take the part you selected and make the "driver", you, go slower. Make the reader notice all the details. Include what you saw--all of those visual details. Don't forget about using your powerful senses. 
  5. Include WHAT'S MY SECTION ABOUT?
  6. Show new draft along with the old draft

STRATEGIES FOR ELABORATING ON IMPORTANT PARTS

  • Slow down the action, telling it bit-by-bit
  • Add dialogue
  • Give details
  • Show small actions
  • Add internal thinking

Example Response:
Goals:
1. Add more internal dialogue by using italics
2. Add more detail to the main character including clothing

What's my section about?
text, text, text, text


Old Draft: 
my text, my text, my text

New Draft: 
my text, my text, my text

Sunday, September 28, 2014

NEWS ON THE MARCH

Week 5 is in the history books. Look out October, the Fireballs are charged up and ready to fire on all cylinders. 





Hats off for...
  • showing more respect for the revision process while working on personal narratives
  • finishing books that you've been reading for the past two weeks
  • taking care of computers and not abusing technology privileges
  • setting some goals before writing another draft
  • Catherine Frank for winning Friday's Spelling Bee. Congratulations!

Work in progress
  • all students need to be blogging each night, M-TH. 
  • students need to write 1-2 goals before they work on any new draft for personal narrative
  • students need to continue to use their post-its during Independent reading time
  • students need to work on using varied expression during their delivery
  • students need to be filling out their reading logs, M-TH
  • students need to apply Classical Roots words to their daily writing

Look what's on the curriculum menu for this week. 

Reading: 
  • Students will synthesize and fit together all the parts that we’ve read that are pertinent.
  • Students will work on intense listening. Intense listening creates a force field in which ideas grow.
  • Readers write to make sense of and remember reading experiences. In this session, we’ll be creating two pieces of writing – one to hold onto our memories of a cherished book, and another to hold onto the memories of our learning.

Writing:
  • Students will work on varying the pace of a story for a reason. They'll learn how to make readers slow down and pay attention to those particular scenes.
  • Students will work on making characters in personal narratives travel through time and place.

Social Studies: 
  • Students will correct Unit 1 Assessment mistakes
  • Students will begin Unit 2

Public Speaking: 
  • Students will practice using good eye contact 
  • Students will practice using varied expression
  • Students will begin their next public speaking assignment, it's a good one!

Classical Roots: 
  • Students will begin unit 3
  • Students will learn the root words -trans and -inter
  • Students will learn transfer, transact, interfere, interactive
  • Students should really concentrate on putting these words into their daily writing
Grammar:
  • Students will work on inserting commas in compound sentences

Songs to Learn and Sing:
1. Belinda Carlisle "Mad About You"
2. Blue Oyster Cult "Godzilla"
3. Citizens of Halloween "This is Halloween"

Great Minds Quotes: "Trying times are not the times to stop trying." - Ray Owen

Thursday, September 25, 2014

FAMILY BLOGGER NIGHT

SEE AND TALK ABOUT THE THINKING ABOUT THE THINKING



There are ways a reader can talk about a book they're enjoying. Today in class you learned that there are 4 ways to communicate their thoughts about a book.

  1. Readers share passages that especially drew them in/a feeling. "THIS MAKES ME FEEL(TMMF)."
  2. Readers share parts in which they're really envision. They make a mental movie in their mind. "I am picturing". 
  3. Readers share a part where they were really confused on what was going on. "I'm confused..."
  4. Readers work with a partner on a tricky word. "I think _____ means_____."
Tonight, you and a guardian are going to share and talk about a book you're reading. Each person will need post-its, book, and pencil. 
  • Find a quiet room with reading partner.
  • Students, go over the list above with your reading partner so they understand what to do. 
  • Ask he/she if they have any questions. 
  • Set a timer for 12 minutes. 
  • Each person reads quietly. While they're reading they should employ one of the strategies mentioned above. Students, don't forget to go over the strategies with the guardian; that's very important.
  • Mark up your book with post-its. Fill your particular section with post-its. 
  • After the 12 minutes share your thinking with your partner. Show them your post-its inside the book. Have a great discussion and watch the learning unfold. 
NOW IT'S TIME TO DOCUMENT YOUR WORK ON BLOGGER. Take a picture and upload to Blogger if you can. If not write down some of your discoveries that you and your partner made. Let the Blogger community know the book and author as well. I'll be very flexible with the comments on Blogger tonight. I just want to see some proof of the work/discoveries/strategies. You and your guardian can decide how and what you'd like to post. 

Off you POST!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

KEEP CALM...



Looking at your story it's time to think again about what it is that you most want to show in your story.

DIRECTIONS:
1. In Bullet point form(if possible) jot down notes to yourself about what you might change or add to strengthen your writing tonight.

2. Write 1-2 goals and how you'll achieve them. LABEL THEM WRITING GOALS.

3. WORK ON YOUR NEXT DRAFT. TYPE IT UP. SHARE IT WITH THE BLOGGER WORLD. PRINT OUT A COPY TO HAVE FOR TOMORROW BECAUSE YOU'LL NEED IT FOR THE LESSON.

If your typing skills are maturing slowly, you may certainly have a parent type up your draft.

Off you write!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Soak it up like a sponge

Tonight you'll get to merge your R and W skills. We've talked extensively that our ideas sometime come from other people's ideas/stories. Please pull 2-3 exciting excerpts from the book you're currently reading. These excerpts should absorb you. Share, word for word, with the Blogger community each specific excerpt including page #., and state WHY you choose that specific one.  How did the excerpt absorb or move you?

"WE READ TO KNOW WE'RE NOT ALONE." C.S. Lewis

Monday, September 22, 2014

STORY ARC - PERSONAL NARRATIVE


Tonight you'll get an opportunity to create your Personal Narrative story arc. Blogger doesn't provide the tools for you to draw your arc. Just use numbers for the important parts in the story. You'll goal is to create 5-7 really good story events. 

Mr. Frederick's example

Title of Story: Peter's Chair

1. Peter wants his family to stay the way it is

2. New baby sister arrives

3. Peter doesn't get attention for his building

4. Peter's parents repaint his cradle

5. ???
6. You get the point. Right. 

Off you write. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

NEWS ON THE MARCH

Week four is over. Wow--that month flew by super fast. I'm sensing the autumnal change will bring about more unity amongst the students. The Fireballs are beginning to line up more quietly, hold the door open for each other, and cheer for one another during public speaking. I'm liking it. Parents, don't forget to sign those reading logs this week.  




Reading: The students will work on... 

  • Retelling stories by starting at the beginning.
  • Retelling stories by starting with NOW AND BACKING UP. Synthesizing and fitting the parts together is another way to retell. 
  • Listening with intensity and strong purpose in order to gather ideas.

Writing: Personal Narrative. 
  • Help my writers setting and keeping track of goals: Make a personal goal chart
  • Help my writers understand the most important question they can ask is, "What's my story really about?" 
  • Help my writers understand that one powerful way to revise their narratives is to bring out the story structure
  • Help my writers employ techniques to elaborate on the parts that show meaning

    Classical Roots
  • Lesson 2: equate, equidistant, equilateral, pendulum
  • Students will be tested on word, spelling, part of speech, root word, and derivatives
  • Spelling Bee is Friday, September 26
Public Speaking: The students will practice..
  • Using good eye contact. Scanning the room to look at all audience members is important
  • The students will present their mini-dance project on Thursday and Friday

Social Studies: FIRST AMERICANS The students will work on...
  • editing their Unit 1 Assessment. Assessments will be handed back on Tuesday or Wednesday
  • begin Unit 2 on Wednesday

Genius Hour
  • Students will continue to research small guiding questions
  • Students will work on creating a bibliography
Songs to Learn and Sing:
  • REM - "It's the End of the World as we Know It"
  • Sam Smith - "Not the only One"
  • Bangles - "Hazy Shade of Winter"
GREAT MINDS QUOTE: "If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it." - William Arthur Ward

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Genius Hour Project

Tonight you'll get the opportunity to share your project with your classmates. Please take the time to answer the questions below.

  • Where does your topic apply in the world? 

  • What will students find relevant/important about this topic? 

  • Why would someone care about your topic? 

  • What are the ways that experts in this field do their work? 

  • How will you stay organized during your research? 

  • What is your big essential question?

  • What is a one of your small guiding questions?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Questions about your story

FLASH WRITING


Writers, yesterday and today was a big day for you. You chose one of those stories from your comp. book, used it as a seed, and then helped grow that seed into multiple sentences. That seed idea will grow across a bunch of days into a piece of fabulous publishable writing.

Please answer the following questions.

1. What's your story really about?
2. What's the theme(message) of your story?
3. What's the setting of your story?
4. Who are the main characters of your story and what to they want?
5. What are some effective ways to be a good writing partner?
6. What's the title of your story?

Monday, September 15, 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL ENTRY



Writers, I'm going to ask you to give yourself your own magic so that you set yourself up to continue to write the most powerful entry you've written yet--in fact you started it today in class. 

Consider the conditions in which you can do your best writing at home. Will you be writing alone, doors shut, away from everyone? Will you write at a kitchen table, in the midst of the noise? Will you be listening to music? One famous writer writes standing up at counter. Some go to busy coffee shops and write admist the noise.

ASSIGNMENT: DESCRIBE SOME OF THE THINGS YOU'LL NEED IN ORDER TO WORK ON YOUR PERSONAL NARRATIVE AT HOME. YOU WILL WORK ON THE NARRATIVE AT HOME.   LOOK AT THE QUESTION ABOVE. BE VERY SPECIFIC AND REALISTIC.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

NEWS ON THE MARCH

We worked hard acquiring new reading and writing tools. I was impressed with the elevated interest in BUZZ books. The public speaking presentations were fun! I sense the Fireballs are maturing and getting the hang of Mr. Frederick's style. Not always an easy assignment!
Reading: 
  • Help readers read differently because they have a reading partnership
  • Thinking over stories with partners
  • Retelling stories by starting at the beginning
  • Retelling stories by starting with NOW AND BACKING UP
Writing: Personal Narrative. The students will work on...

  • Help my writers setting and keeping track of goals
  • Help my writers understand that writers draft by writing fast and furious, capture that experience on the page
  • Help my writers understand the most important question they can ask is, "What's my story really about?"
  • Help my writers understand that one powerful way to revise their narratives is to bring out the story structure
Classical Roots: The students should learn..
  • Lesson 2: dependent, pending, equality, equator
  • Students will be tested on word, spelling, part of speech, root word, and derivatives
Public Speaking: The students will practice..
  • Using good eye contact. Scanning the room to look at all audience members is important
  • Take a look at the new prompt. Students will have 2 weeks to work on it at home.
Social Studies: FIRST AMERICANS The students will work on...
  • Organize a chart for note taking based on geography, climate, shelter, tools and utensils, food, and clothing
  • Examine different American Indian Customs: wampum, Kachina Dolls, Potlatch, and Lacrosse
  • Answer the common ways of life that developed among American Indian cultures
  • Create their own Unit 1 study guide using Google Presentation
  • Unit 1 Assessment will be on Friday
Genius Hour
  • Students will research their Big Essential Question and Guiding Questions
  • Students will spend a month researching their questions
  • Students will use Index cards and/or Google Docs to input answers to questions
  • Presentations will be in mid-October

Songs to Learn and Sing:
Lily and Madeleine "Devil we Know"
Electric Light Orchestra "Heaven Only Knows"
The Byrds - "Turn! Turn! Turn!"
Great Mind's Quotes: "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." - Leonardo da Vinci



Thursday, September 11, 2014

Infection is Contagious



DIRECTIONS: Creativity is all around us. Tonight, you and your guardian will get an opportunity to work on your creative thinking skills. Choose from one of the prompts below with your partner. Have fun and push yourselves to be as creative as possible. 

PROMPTS: 
  • Create a short story that is 26 sentences long, each sentence beginning with the next letter of the alphabet
  • Describe each of your family members, but limit the number of words in each description to the age of each person. For example, your 71-year-old mother must be described in 71 words, your 43-year-old sister must be described in 43 words, and your 12-year-old cousin must be described in 12 words
  • Grab the 7th book from a bookshelf at home. Open it up to page 7. Pinpoint the 7th sentence on the page. Write a quick story that begins with that sentence and limit it in length to 7 lines



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I feel a warm and cold DRAFT

Tonight you'll have the opportunity to lay down your 3rd and 4th draft.   The blogger community wants to see both drafts to see progress. We'll look at some of your drafts tomorrow in class.

Ask yourself these questions while editing.
  • Does this make sense? Are any words or parts missing?
  • Are all my sentences complete? Have I checked for run-ons and fragments?
  • Have I used correct capitalization
  • Have I used commas and quotation marks for dialogue?
  • Do my verbs and subjects agree? Are my verbs in the in right tense?
  • Have I checked for frequently confused words(to, too, two; their, they're)?
  • Have I indented and paragraphed?

Off you write!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

EDIT, EDIT, AND MORE EDITING



We think that editing is something done just before publishing. We draft, revise, we tinker with sentences and words, but it isn't until just before publishing that we set to making our writing readable. Stronger writers, though, are in the habit of editing as they write. Strong writers ask, "Have I used everything I know about Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar to make my writing clear?"

Tonight take some time to step back and ask this question mentioned above. Look over a past entry in your comp. book or blogger response and do some editing. In your blog response show your original draft that you've already composed, then show your second draft so we can see the difference. 

QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF AS YOU EDIT
  • Does this make sense? Are any words or parts missing?
  • Are all my sentences complete? Have I checked for run-ons and fragments?
  • Have I used correct capitalization
  • Have I used commas and quotation marks for dialogue?
  • Do my verbs and subjects agree? Are my verbs in the in right tense?
  • Have I checked for frequently confused words(to, too, two; their, they're)?
  • Have I indented and paragraphed?

Monday, September 8, 2014

LIVING LIKE A WRITER


















McCloskey, the author of Make Way for Ducklings, was driving in Boston one time, and the traffic stopped completely. "What's going on?" he thought, wondering if there had been an accident or something. He got out of the car to look and walked ahead a few cars--and saw a long line of ducks crossing the highway. The traffic on all sides had stopped while each little duckling waddled along. McCloskey said to himself, I could write a story about this! I could tell about the day I was driving in traffic, then everything stopped. I could tell about how I got out of my car and watched." That story has sold millions of copies.

Tonight, write down two separate INTRODUCTORY paragraphs in your blogger response. Pick any two strategies. As you try to imagine the stories you might write, remember that writers see the potential for stories everywhere. Focus on using two of the strategies for generating Personal Narrative Writing. Watch what I do after the strategies. See how I brainstormed first? I'd love to see your brainstorming ideas before each paragraph. 

STRATEGIES FOR GENERATING PERSONAL NARRATIVE WRITING

THINK OF A PERSON WHO MATTERS TO YOU
THINK OF FIRST TIMES, LAST TIMES, OR TIMES YOU REALIZED SOMETHING
THINK ABOUT A PLACE THAT MATTERS
THINK OF A STRONG FEELING/EMOTIONS.

Person Who Matters
a. Wife
b. Children
c. Best Friend Dave

My best friend, Dave, had blood red shoes strapped to his feet.  The Spiderman logo dazzled my Kindergarten eyes immediately. Instantly he and I became best friends from that moment onward.  Little did I know the steps we'd travel that would be better than any Spiderman movie. 

LAST TIME
a. 8th grade
b. Amanda Hollis
c. Lady Wilma

I hung up the white telephone. My ears were filled with such delight. Wilma, my favorite relative, told me she wanted to see my newborn Alice. I snatched my heavy keys and darted out the door. Switching the ignition key on, I dashed over to San Carlos to pick up Wilma in my forest green Lexus. Age had caught up to her vision where she was no longer able to drive independently. On my way over, I kept thinking to myself SHE'S GOING TO LOVE HOLDING ALICE DEEP IN HER arms. Ding Dong! Wilma opened the steel door with an ear-to-ear smile. "LET'S GO, KID." We raced back over to Half Moon Bay. Alice, the tiny 5 month old, fit beautifully in Wilma's arms. That would be the last time Wilma ever touched, smelled, or heard Alice's voice.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

NEWS ON THE MARCH

Done with Week 2. We dug deeper into our the Reading and Writing program. We just scratched the surface on what was life like for the First Americans. The public speaking deliveries went quite well. Even Mrs. Maijala sat in on a couple of presentations and was impressed with how well the students provided positive comments toward each other. Our flag's design is just about done. I really like the Fireballs!


Reading: We continue to build stamina, fluency, and engagement. The students are expected to read 15-20 minutes each night. This week we'll cover...
  • Introducing books that will create a buzz
  • Choosing texts that matter
  • Learning new words from text
  • Help Readers read differently because they're in partnerships
Writing: Personal Narrative. The students will work on...
  • Help my writers to jot down moments in life that have been turning points in their life
  • Help my writers climb inside the elements of narrative: setting, conflict, plot, resolution and characters
  • Help my writers read great stories in order to write great stories
  • Help my writers climb inside the SKIN of a character
Classical Roots: The students should learn..
  • circular, circulate, cycle, and circuit- Lesson 1
  • Students will be tested on word, spelling, part of speech, root word, and syllables
Public Speaking: The students will practice..
  • Using good eye contact. Scanning the room to look at all audience members is important
  • The new prompt is up. Click on PS tab. It's a dandy!
Social Studies: FIRST AMERICANS The students will...
  • Organize a chart for note taking based on geography, climate, shelter, tools and utensils, food, and clothing
  • Examine different American Indian Customs: wampum, Kachina Dolls, Potlatch, and Lacrosse
  • Answer the common ways of life that developed among American Indian cultures
Character Education: RESPECT. The students will continue to work on the intricacies of respect with Mr. Patterson.


Genius Hour
  • The Fireballs will work creating their big essential question followed by guiding questions.
  • We're almost ready to begin to investigate and research

Songs to Learn and Sing:
  • Sinead O' Connor "Dense Deep Water Down"
  • Vampire Weekend "Unbelievers"
  • Aretha Franklin "Save Me"
Great Mind's Quotes: "Do the thing you fear most and the death of fear is certain." - Mark Twain