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January 9-13, 2012

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 9th January and posted in Uncategorized

Greetings! This week, we are beginning our Business Letter Workshop. The students will spend the first day, Monday, looking through the “Yellow Pages” of a phone book, making a list of five addresses to which they can write letters of complaint, suggestion, request, or praise. By next Tuesday, January 17, the students will have turned in these letters, worth a total of 75 points. It is my hope that participating in this workshop will prepare them for the upcoming SBA (Standards Based Assessment) on business letter writing, which each student will take the week of January twenty-third.

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January 3-6, 2012

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 3rd January and posted in Uncategorized

Happy New Year! We are back and running well after a much-needed respite. I’m sure everyone had an opportunity to relax, even if it was just for a day or two, and now we are ready to get back to work.

As usual, we will do some personal writing in our Writing Notebooks, but from now until the end of this second grading period, we will be preparing for the SBA #2 writing assessment–Business Letter Writing. The students will become reacquainted with the fundamentals of writing a letter to a company by choosing various neighborhood businesses to request services. Each week, I will keep you posted on how the students are progressing.

Again, Happy New Year!

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December 5-December 16, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 7th December and posted in Uncategorized

Hello! The students have been busy working in the language arts learning centers and completing vocabulary and usage assignments (please see agenda below for details.) All work is due on Wednesday, December 14th.

As a reminder, please know that although I do not assign homework, there will be times when your child will bring work home to complete. This will happen if your child does not get his/her work done in class. Each child will have to assess what he/she completed during the work day and make the decision to take incomplete work home to finish for credit the following day.

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November 28-December 16, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 28th November and posted in Uncategorized

Hello there! Thanksgiving Break has come and gone—now, we anticipate Winter Break! The old adage, “time flies when you’re having fun” will apply in language class, as our class will begin a workshop that will be fun-filled for all who participate:

Begining on Wednesday, November 30th, we will work in language arts learning centers, which will give us an opportunity to write in a creative way. Some centers will be required to participate in and complete, while others will be ones you will choose to complete. The grade earned in this learning center will depend on how much is done and how well it’s done.

Required Centers:Vocabulary—There are two vocabulary lessons for this center. You must complete each one (one per week). Vocabulary One is due at the end of the first week; Vocabulary Two is due at the end of the second week.

Grammar and Usage—There is a grammar and usage packet that all students should complete.

Choice Centers:
For the choice centers, please choose as many as possible to work in during the two-week period. See below for details:
All handouts for each center will be on side table. Make sound decisions on what you plan to do and commit to doing it to the best of your ability. See choice centers on next page…

1. You must work every day.
2. You must make sure all work is legible
3. You must follow directions in any given center
4. If a learning center calls for any artistry, then you must use crayons, markers, or colored pencils.
5. All work is due on Wednesday, December 14, 2011


To earn a “C” you must complete the two required learning centers, plus one choice center.

To earn a “B” you must complete the two required learning centers, plus two choice centers.

To earn an “A” you must complete the two required learning centers, plus three choice centers.

Choice Centers:

Comic StripBook
Crayons or Markers
Comic Strip Sheet (provided)

What to do: Read an independent book, imagining what is happening to the character as the story unfolds. Pay close attention to the pictures in your mind. Once you have done this, choose 6 events for your comic strip. Draw the pictures you saw in your mind when each of the six parts of the book happened. Make speech bubbles to show what each character is thinking or saying at teach point. Put each event in order, and when you are finished, your comic strip should tell a shortened version of the story you read.

Team Writing
Team of writers (3)

Your group is the team of writers who will write several stories, one paragraph at a time. Each member of the group begins by writing a good lead paragraph (dialogue, action, or character thinking). This lead should be at least 3-5 sentences. Once everyone is finished with his or her beginning, pass your paper to the person to your right; you will end up with a paper, too. Tame time to read the beginning; then add one paragraph of your own. By the time you receive your original lead, you will have a finished piece of writing!

Compare the Tales
Two fairy tales
Venn Diagram

Begin by reading the two fairy tales aloud to your group (4 people at the most). You may want to take turns reading pages or paragraphs. Once you have read both fairy tales, begin to fill out the Venn diagram sheet. Put the title of one fairy tale above one circle and the other title above the opposite circle. Write the similarities between the two tales where the two circles meet and the differences on each side.

Poetry Reading
Books of poetry

For this center, you will spend some time reading poetry. Pay close attention to the rhyming words and different types of poetry. Chose a favorite poem, and draw your best illustration for that poem. Remember to use the ideas and pictures you saw in your mind the first time you read the poem. Put many details in your illustration to make it your best. Be sure to include title of poem, poet’s name, and a paragraph, telling why you liked this poem.

Creative Writing

Write a short fictional story using this statement as the premise or main idea:

“The boy went in the store to get something. He saw her. They spoke. It was great.”

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October 31-November 18, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 18th November and posted in Uncategorized

Greetings! The first grading period is over, and the second grading period is well underway! For the past three weeks, the students have been working in their Writer’s Notebook–the composition book you purchased for them at the beginning of the year. This notebook is created by the students, FOR the students. There are 5 sections in this notebook: Writing Territories, Grounds for Thought, Author’s Word-Palette, Smiley Face Tricks, and Gems. Please ask to see this notebook because it contains so many useful tools to make your child a good writer.

We’ve done a lot writing these past few weeks in our “Grounds for Thought” section; we’ve chosen our favorite novel to pick out sentences that caught our attention; and we’ve spent time in the dictionary looking up words that we would like to use in our writing one day. Most of the work has been done in class, but at times, you might have seen your child working on these activities at home. There has been a lot of sharing of our writing, as I encourage your child to share at least one good sentence in their writing. All have been cooperating with this strategy, and it has lessened the anxiety over reading aloud.

On Monday of the week of Thanksgiving, the entire school will participate in an all-school read, as the children will listen to the book, We Beat the Street. Ask them about it when they get home that day!

Reminder: Please encourage your child to show his/her agenda planner to you. This will help you keep up with what has been assigned.

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October 24-October 28, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 25th October and posted in Uncategorized

Greetings! This week, your child will be taking the SBA on narrative writing. He/She will have two days to complete this test; the first day is for planning, and the second day is for writing. It is my hope that all students will finish their writing on Thursday.

Friday is the last day of the grading period! We will celebrate all of our hard work this past nine weeks by watching the movie, Akeela and the Bee.

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October 17-21, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 17th October and posted in Uncategorized

Last week, after I collected almost 100 “Life Story” pieces, we reviewed all that your child has learned these past several weeks. The list was so long, and I was very proud of what we have accomplished! We then talked about the Standards Based Assessment that each child must take at the end of every grading period, and we made sure our list of what we’ve covered will be enough to do really well on the test.

Later that week, we spent a day on graphic organizers and we learned that not only are they useful in writing, they are even useful in math, science, social studies, and literature! Students chose two organizers that best suited how they “learn” and planned to use one to prepare for the SBA.

This week, as I diligently work on grading and returning your child’s first major writing assignment of the school year (Life Story) he/she has been given a choice from three practice SBA writing prompts to complete by Tuesday of this week. These prompts are directly connected to the “real” SBA writing prompt that he/she will receive at the end of the grading period. Please ask your child what he/she thinks should be included in a great “life story,” in order for that story to be one that is engaging and worth reading. We have spent weeks finding out the answer to this question, and I’m confident your child will have a lot to tell you!

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Week-at-a-Glance– October 10-14, 2011

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 10th October and posted in Uncategorized

Students are turning in their first major writing assigment on Monday, October 10th–“Life Story.” They have worked really hard on this personal narrative and will spend the majority of the week using the skills they’ve acquired to prepare for the first Standards Based Assessment– Writing Narratives.

The first SBA will be given sometime next week….

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Language 2011-2012

Posted by Adrienne Cobb on 6th October and posted in Uncategorized

Assignments for the week 10/3-10/7
Monday- Computer lab-time to work on revision #4 for life story.

Tuesday- Computer lab-time to work on revision #4 for life story (Rough Draft #4 is due by end of period.)

Wednesday-Peer Revision

Thursday-Final revisions (in library, using computers)

Friday-Final revisions (in library, using computers)

Final copy of “Life Story” is due on Monday, October 10th. Please have your child refer to rubric and “Final Copy Copy Requirements” sheet for instructions. The total workshop points possible are 200 and include all preliminary work since the beginning of the workshop. See handout mentioned above for details.

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