Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Adding the Mystery Box Project to your ePortfolio

When we return in January, you will be recording a quick explanation and reflection of your project onto your Weebly's Language Arts page. Find the photos of your box and upload those onto the LA page first.


Monday, December 12, 2016


Well, we didn't get to cover the proofreading strategy yet. This will have to wait until after the break. After you complete your test on Day 2, please see my comments on your newspaper article and make revisions. Simply making corrections does NOT guarantee a score of 100. Check your rubric! Make sure I have any photos, as well as your edited article BY FRIDAY.

Day 3 and Day 4 will be review for Midterms. Refer to the calendar I gave out in class on Monday to help you prepare. Due next Tuesday is a thank you note. See Google Classroom for details. This won't take you more than 15 minutes to complete.

Day 2 12/13, 12/14: Adj/Adv test, when finished, edit your newspaper article according to my notes on your rough draft
Day 3 12/14, 12/15: review for midterms - grammar, diction
Day 4 12/16: review for midterms - literary elements, diagramming **NEWSPAPER ARTICLE FINAL DRAFT DUE TODAY**

12/19: Membean Test
12/20: "A" schedule (everyone is welcome to come during study hall for additional review) writing assessment day 1
12/21: "A" schedule (everyone is welcome to come during study hall for additional review) writing assessment day 2
12/22: 1/2 day Midterm

Friday, December 2, 2016

A fun week ahead!

This week you have class time to use for creating your Mystery Box, working on your newspaper article, and clarifying any confusing concepts from our adjectives/adverbs unit. You will not have another Membean Test until 12/19. Below I have listed the schedule for the next two weeks, so you can have a better understanding of how we will prepare for Midterms.

SPIRIT WEEK! Don't forget to dress up each day. See the email sent to your parents for the schedule of themed days.
Day 1 12/5: Finish parts of a sentence game, receive Adj/Adv study guide, receive box for project, begin work on box project.
I will post on a tab at the top of the blog all the answers for the packet we have been completing. Any sections not completed should be used for practice. *** PLEASE SEE THE TAB CALLED ADJ/ADV PACKET for answers.***
Day 2 12/6, 12/7: Work on box project or work on newspaper article
Day 3 12/7, 12/8: Work on box project or work on newspaper article
Day 4 12/9: "B" Day - Rock Shabbat, During class I will distribute the Midterms Study Guide and a diction reference guide. Lie/Lay, Sit/Set, Rise/Raise **NEWSPAPER ARTICLE FIRST DRAFT DUE TODAY**

Also on 12/9 during P.E. time, we will have a Skype session with a woman who has been a police detective. Special thanks to Maya M.'s mom for helping arrange this speaker for us as a wonderful tie-in to our mystery/suspense unit.

Day 1 12/12: Mystery Box is due, we will review for the Adj/Adv test, I will show you a proofreading strategy for writing
Day 2 12/13, 12/14: Adj/Adv test, when finished, edit your newspaper article according to my notes on your rough draft
Day 3 12/14, 12/15: review for midterms - grammar, diction
Day 4 12/16: review for midterms - literary elements, diagramming **NEWSPAPER ARTICLE FINAL DRAFT DUE TODAY**

12/19: Membean Test
12/20: "A" schedule (everyone is welcome to come during study hall for additional review) writing assessment day 1
12/21: "A" schedule (everyone is welcome to come during study hall for additional review) writing assessment day 2
12/22: 1/2 day Midterm

Monday, November 28, 2016

Week of 11/28

I hope you enjoyed your time off! We are "project based" for the next few weeks. You will be working on your newspaper article, a project for the mystery/suspense novel, and finishing the adj/adv unit. The adj/adv unit test will be December 13/14 (your day 2).

UPDATE: Because of the interruption due to the weather, there will be no Membean assessment this week. (I can hear cheering.)Continue working on expanding your vocabulary, please.


Day 1: Double negatives, Countables/non-countables with degrees, by-lines
Day 2: Introduction to the Mystery Box project, punctuating dialogue
Day 3: Review adj/adv concepts, subject complements
Day 4: Receive study guide for adv/adj unit test, review

Membean 45 min due Sunday evening.

The newspaper article is instead of the journal entries for this week and next week. Work on your newspaper article on Google Classroom; first draft is due 12/9.

Read mystery novel, due Dec. 5.

Review the adj/adv concepts to identify where you might need clarification or practice.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Week of 11/14

Thank you to all of you for an outstanding day of thoughtful reflection last Friday. There has never been a more important time for us to be aware of how we perceive others and how we speak to and about them. This week, we get back to grammar, prepare for interviews for the newspaper article, and celebrate the Fine Arts on Friday.

As you read your mystery/suspense novel, keep track of the major characters, the plot of the story, and any clues you identify along the way. You won't really know if you have found a clue until you get to the end of the book. Some may be those elusive red herrings!

Day 1: Adverbs

Day 2: Degrees of adverbs and adjectives, complete survey

Day 3: Membean Test, Interview skills, professionalism, inverted funnel structure, punctuating quotes

Day 4: Fine Arts Day (1/2 day celebrating the visual and performing arts)


Journal entry #8 is up on Google Classroom. It is due Friday by 5pm as usual.
45 minutes of Membean due Sunday evening.
Read your choice novel. You should be finished with it by December 5.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Election Week is here!

On Tuesday, eligible voters will choose the next leader of our country. In school, we will have a mock election as well. Monday during study hall we will gather in the gym to hear speeches about the candidates. This means that the Decibelles who had planned to take the Pronoun Test (re-take) will have to wait until Tuesday's Study Hall or come in before school. I will meet anyone who wishes to take it before school at 7:15 at the lobby doors.

This week we begin our unit of modifiers - adjectives and adverbs. Additionally, we begin our next genre in literature - mystery/suspense. You should begin reading the novel you have chosen. You do not need to annotate, but you should be looking for main characters, main plot points (I will explain this in class on Day 3), and clues the author provides.

On Friday we have special programming. This is a day you won't want to miss as we travel to the Alliance Theatre to see a special play written for middle school students.


Day 1: Pronoun Test re-take; those not taking the test will be helping with Twitter and preparing for Friday.

Day 2: New pages in our G/W notebook, and I will introduce a big project that will be completed partly in school, partly out of school.

Day 3: Membean Test, Literature Element - foreshadowing, plot points

Day 4: Alliance Theatre


New journal entry due Friday 5pm.
Membean Test on day 3. 45 minutes of Membean due Sunday at midnight.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

FYI, by popular request.

By the way, to see older posts, look on the right side of the blog where you will find all the archives which Blogger (this platform) moves at the end of each month.

Here is the link to the answers for the SmartBoard pages: PRONOUN PRACTICE

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


You will not have The Giver Test as a graded assessment. I will explain in class.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Week of 10/31

This week we complete our study of The Giver. The test is on Day 3. Make sure you have the notes you will need for the test. Don't forget you can use the chart we filled out in class, which is on the tab above. Friday is Grandparents and Special Friends Day. We will have special programming, but you will still have your classes.

Day 1: Membean Test
You will choose a piece of writing to upload to your Weebly portfolio. Upload your edited version today. Before you do this, examine the questions in Journal #6, in which you will reflect upon what you have learned thus far. The journal entry, in which you answer the reflective questions, is due on Friday.

Day 2: Final discussion over The Giver. You can ask any clarifying questions needed to complete your notes.

Day 3: The Giver Test
Bring your notes AND the novel. DO NOT take out your annotations when you give me your book.

Day 4: Slightly modified schedule. Regular uniforms.
In class we will be working on diagramming modifiers.

You will receive information about the next novel we are reading on Monday, Oct.31, but will need to get your own copy of the book. If you would like a book to read in the meantime, I HIGHLY recommend Among the Hidden. Let me know if you wish to borrow a copy.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Week of October 24

I know that many of you are focused on basketball tryouts, but please remember to concentrate on schoolwork and homework as well. Learning to balance all your activities is what middle school is about. Good luck, athletes!

This week we complete our pronoun unit and cover the last element of literature for this novel. Please note the following important dates:

Friday, October 28 Pronoun Unit Test/Complete reading The Giver
Monday, October 31 Membean Assessment
Wed/Thurs Nov. 2/3 The Giver Test (I will tell you more about this in class. It is open note/open book.)

If you have finished the novel and are interested in reading another amazing dystopian novel, I will provide you with a copy of Among the Hidden. It is the first in a series, well worth your time to read.

Monday would normally be our Day 1.
Day 2: To complete our Pronoun Unit, I will introduce "case" and how to handle agreement with or/nor, which is NOT the same as and.

Day 3: We will look at the element of motif, completing the items for this unit on your Elements of Lit chart.
Additionally, we will discuss several important euphemisms and will review evidence/annotations.
Please bring your copy of The Giver to class.

Day 4: Pronoun Unit Test

Friday, October 14, 2016

Grammar and literature continued

We continue in our unit on pronouns, focusing on whether a word is serving as a pronoun or adjective, pronoun-antecedent agreement, diagramming, and understanding theme, symbolism, and motif in literature.

Monday - enjoy your Sukkot holiday! Sleep under the stars, if you can.
Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday are regular block days.

Day 2 - Continuing work on pronouns, diagramming practice
Day 3 - BRING YOUR COPY of The Giver. Lit elements of theme and symbolism. I will return and go over the noun test.

Friday - modified "B" schedule, Simchat Torah at the lower school, wear teal and navy
Membean Test then lit element of motif

On Tuesday morning before school, I will have an open diagramming tutorial. Anyone may come.
On Wednesday morning before school, I will have an open Membean/vocab tutorial. Anyone may come.

Looking ahead --- Pronoun Unit Test on Oct. 28
Next Membean Assessment on Oct. 31
Short Answer Test over The Giver Nov. 2/3 (Day 3 blocks)

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Weeks of Swiss Cheese

I love this expression for this time of year - we have holy "days of holes" for those of you who understand the humor. We will do our best to divide our attention between G-d's expectations for us within these Days of Awe and the continuing focus on the work of learning.

This is the calendar for this week AND next week.

Wednesday 10-5 "A" Day
- Evidence for setting, what to annotate as you read
- You will receive two important documents: Types of evidence in The Giver & Literary Elements Chart
- I hope to have time to return your papers/tests. Grades are already on NetClassroom.

Thursday 10-6 "A" Day
- Membean Test
- Categories of pronouns - you will need your G/W workbook today

Friday 10-7
- Three activities related to The Giver

Monday 10-10
- What is a euphemism?
- Diagramming interjections

Tuesday 10-11
- Special half-day programming: Davis Film Festival (you won't want to miss it)

Thursday 10-13 "B" day 10:00 start
- Indefinite pronouns
- Subject/verb agreement as it relates to indefinite pronouns

Friday 10-14
- Continued work with pronouns, agreement, antecedents

Keep reading The Giver!
Journal Entry #5 on Google Classroom due on 10-14
The next Membean test will not be until 10-21

NOTE: There will be a short answer test on the novel. You will not be writing an essay. I do not yet know when the test will occur.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

FYI, for those of you who joined the Kubo adventure in Charleston, I thought you might enjoy seeing this:

and this: (there is no sound until 12:35)

and THIS!!! You think your calendar is busy? Check THIS out!!

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Week of 9/26

I will be reading and grading the Watsons Essays all week. It takes a while for me to do a thorough and fair job of evaluating them. Please be patient. This week we focus on grammar, specifically nouns. On Friday is a unit test on this topic. I will give you a study guide in class on Monday.

MEMBEAN test on Monday
NOUN UNIT test on Friday

You will receive the next class novel, The Giver, on Friday. If you are reading Out of my Mind, keep it, and read it as you have time.


Day 1: Membean assessment, rules for plurals (bring your grammar/writing notebook), receive study guide
Day 2: Functions of a noun, predicate nominatives, diagramming review
Day 3: Review for noun test
Day 4: Noun Unit Test, receive The Giver

HEY ALL YOU BOOK LOVERS! Ms. Garrison is hosting a book club during lunch this week! Flyers are hanging throughout the building for more information.

Your portfolio (Weebly site) and your About Me page are due at the end of the week. If you have questions, ASK!


- 45 minutes of Membean 3X15 by Sunday evening
- use your study guide to make sure you understand the noun unit grammar concepts
- rewrite your descriptive paragraph from Journal entry #3, due Friday as an assignment on Google Classroom

Friday, September 16, 2016

Back in the ATL

Wow! I don't know about you, but I had a fantastic time even in the rain! I had a fantastic time despite the mosquitoes! I had a fantastic time...period. You were such an open-minded, easy-going group of students to share my time with. THANK YOU!!! To those of you who encouraged me on the ropes course, thank YOU! I can't wait to do that again! Special thanks to my incredible co-kayaker Seth. We are ready for the Olympics! Thank you to the recipients of my Good-night Fairy-ing, and thank you to the group who shared my love of Kubo.

What a phenomenal trip. So now, let's take the time to process what we did and how it impacted us. You will have a longer journal entry due Friday. You will have a good amount of class time to finish your essay and work on your journal entry. If you have not yet finished Watsons, get a move on. We will discuss the ending in class. Get some good rest, eat healthy food, and I will see you Monday!

Day 1: Explanation of this week's journal entry. Remaining time is working time for the essay. If you are finished, I hope to be able to review your essay and offer feedback in class.
Day 2: Understanding what happens to the characters at the end of Watsons. Working time for the essay/journal entry.
Day 3: Place the MLA format page in your G&W notebook. For those blocks who did not get to all parts of the noun work, we will complete it. Any remaining time should be used to work on your writing assignments.
Day 4: Independent working time. If essay and journal entry are completed, Tweet as a Watsons character. Instructions are on the "Watsons Tweet" tab on the top of the blog. If you still have time, read Out of My Mind. (Note: Our new novel will be distributed 9/30)

- Membean is once again 15 minutes 3 times before Sunday (or 45 minutes by Sunday in small chunks)
- Work on your journal entry #3, due Friday.
- If you are "behind" on your Watsons essay, work on it at home as well as in class.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Week of 9/6

For those of you traveling over the long weekend, I hope you have a wonderful trip! Enjoy Monday's holiday.

This week we continue with body paragraphs using your t-chart/annotations, we continue building the grammar/writing notebook with categories of nouns and understanding the functions of a noun (parts of a sentence). On Friday, you will have a visit from our phenomenal media center staff who will help you set up your digital portfolio. You will learn all about it on Friday.


Monday: No school
Day 2: Membean Assessment, annotation check (bring your Watsons book!), essay body paragraphs
Day 3: Grammar - noun categories, functions, difference between parts of speech --> parts of a sentence
Day 4: Digital Portfolios


Continue with Membean 45 minutes by Sunday evening.
Journal Entry #2 on Google Classroom (Submit from Google Classroom. Please do not "share" with me via your Google Docs.)
Make sure you have everything you need for our upcoming trip to Charleston! It is a FABULOUS trip!

Friday, August 26, 2016

Week of 8/29

This week we finish up with the parts of speech scavenger hunt and move to understanding the functions/jobs of those words in a sentence. Additionally, we will cover important instruction for the compare/contrast essay. You will begin composing the essay in class. You do not need to be finished with Watsons to write the paragraph we will be working on. I will also explain many of the cultural references that appear in the book. Finally, I will be explaining how to use school email and check NetClassroom for those of you who need this information.

UPDATE!!! Membean assessment #2 has been moved to Day 2 of next week. That's Sep. 6 for blocks 3,4,5 and Sep. 7 for block 6.

Day 1: Instruction on the essay - funnel style introductory paragraph
Day 2: Complete scavenger hunt, create collage of the sentence you have composed, Watsons cultural references, work on essay intro paragraph
Day 3: Review parts of speech, turning your t-chart into a paragraph
Day 4: Finish collage and upload as needed, using school email and NetClassroom

Continue using Membean - 15 minutes 3X before Sunday evening.
Read Watsons according to the pacing chart, annotate for character development and anything you do not understand/needing clarification
Watsons tweets: I will explain this in class. Due by Friday.
No journal entry this week.

Here is the video we watched in class. Be on the lookout for those extraordinary acts of kindness!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Week of 8/22/2016

Thank you for an absolutely incredible first week! I can already tell this will be a fabulous year. We will continue this week developing the first essay, working on Membean, and beginning grammar studies. I will explain Classcraft and Google Classroom. You should be reading Watsons go to Birmingham, at least ten pages each night.

Day 1 Google Classroom, how to annotate your book, continue working on evidence if time permits
Day 2 Palacio's message, empathy vs. sympathy, work on evidence
Day 3 Classcraft, paragraph development
Day 4 Membean assessment, grammar - parts of speech activity


Continue reading Watsons, annotate as you read
Continue with Membean, 15 minutes per session, 45 minutes by Sunday evening
Complete journal entry assignment on Google Classroom by Friday, 5pm.

You might enjoy this video of the author. We will not be watching the movie in class.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Hey 6th Graders! Ready to rock?

Week of 8-15-2016
As some of you already know, the information below appeared on this blog back in July. Three students completed the form BEFORE school began. Two of them will be rewarded for completing it as requested. The third did not include a name, so...no reward. Sorry!

Monday "Day 1": Syllabus, activity - value of clear communication, Membean
Tues./Wed. "Day 2": Logon sheet, Wonder characters, word cloud, BRING YOUR BOOK
Wed./Thurs. "Day 3": Critical and creative thinking skills
Fri. "Day 4": Character description/t-chart, distribute Watsons

HOMEWORK: Membean 3x week for 15 minutes each time (week ends Sunday night)
Return signed syllabus page by Friday
Bring Wonder on day 2

I hope you are having a FABULOUS summer! Don't forget to read Wonder. Think about how you would describe the main characters from this novel, and think about how to prove your description using evidence from the text. We will be discussing this topic the first week of school. Can't wait to get to know you!! One more thing...please take a moment to complete the survey below. It is confidential - no one but me will see the responses, so please be honest. This insures that I am able to do my best to make your year "Wonder"-ful!

Friday, May 27, 2016

Finals review

This is a link to a variety of review games and exercises. Special thanks to Margo, Asher, and Noah for some of the suggestions!


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Another fun week ahead!

Be sure to scroll down to the post about the poetry recitations!
If I am missing a book from you, you need to be looking at home, in lost and found, in your locker, ANYWHERE you may have left it. If you cannot find the book, you need to bring me another copy or the money I can use to replace it.

This week we continue to review for finals.
Monday: "B" schedule - review will be focused on diagramming
Tuesday: Field Day! No classes
Wednesday: "A" schedule - review will be focused on diction, some grammar, literary elements
Thursday: "A" schedule - in class, you will take the Grammar Assessment (not graded)
Friday: "B" schedule, Kabbalat Shabbat in the morning at the Lower School
Review will cover grammar. If you will be out on Friday, look for a link to the activities which will be available beginning Friday morning.

NO SCHOOL Monday, May 30

Tuesday, May 31: "A" schedule - review, all topics
Wednesday, June 1: "A" schedule - Membean final
Thursday, June 2: Finals, 1/2 day
Friday, June 3: Last Day! 1/2 day

Saturday, May 21, 2016

In case you missed it...

Here is just a tiny sampling of the phenomenal work by my 6th (almost 7th) grade students.

Ms. Fields performed both Old English and Middle English for the students in the gym. Scroll down for the video. Here is the portion of the text of the "Prologue to the Canterbury Tales" that she performed:

The Canterbury Tales : Prologue

Here bygynneth the Book
of the tales of Caunterbury

Here begins the Book
of the Tales of Canterbury

1: Whan that aprill with his shoures soote
2: The droghte of march hath perced to the roote,
3: And bathed every veyne in swich licour
4: Of which vertu engendred is the flour;
5: Whan zephirus eek with his sweete breeth
6: Inspired hath in every holt and heeth
7: Tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne
8: Hath in the ram his halve cours yronne,
9: And smale foweles maken melodye,
10: That slepen al the nyght with open ye
11: (so priketh hem nature in hir corages);
12: Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages,

Translated into Modern English:
When April with his showers sweet with fruit
The drought of March has pierced unto the root
And bathed each vein with liquor that has power
To generate therein and sire the flower;
When Zephyr also has, with his sweet breath,
Quickened again, in every holt and heath,
The tender shoots and buds, and the young sun
Into the Ram one half his course has run,
And many little birds make melody
That sleep through all the night with open eye
(So Nature pricks them on to ramp and rage)-
Then do folk long to go on pilgrimage...

Sunday, May 15, 2016

May 16 - May 20

We had a lot of fun performing Shakespeare scenes from "A Midsummer Night's Dream." Blocks 7 and 3 will compete scene 9 this week.

You should be studying vocabulary via Membean and studying for your final a little bit each day. We have a number of assessment and review days over the next three weeks.

Day 1: Membean Assessment, review how to analyze a sentence, difference between parts of speech and parts of a sentence

Day 2: I will check in with each student on how the poetry memorization is coming. Students will have two activities to work on in class. One relates to sonnets, the other to analyzing sentences.

Day 3: Pronoun review - case/antecedent agreement/point of view

Day 4: "B" schedule will allow us all to gather outside for our poetry and Shakespeare scenes. If you do not perform outside, you will perform during our regular class time.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

"What fools these mortals be!" Dame Fortuna (Roman deity)

We move from Greek myths to poetry to SHAKESPEARE! This week we have fun with language and The Bard. We will be watching and studying "A Midsummer Night's Dream." Your homework is to be memorizing your poem for our recitation day on May 20, and to be completing your 90 minutes of Membean by 5/15.

As I explained in class, the most effective way to learn your poem is to learn only two or three lines per night, unless the lines are short. Each night, make sure you have the previous nights' lines in your memory, then add two more. Once you have all the lines memorized, begin working on phrasing - pauses, words that should have emphasis, and SPEAKING SLOWLY.

This week we also have:
Monday: regular schedule, you will receive your Study Guide for your final exam in LA
Tuesday: A schedule
Wednesday: A schedule for Yom HaZikaron observance, wear white/navy
Thursday: Yom HaAtzmaut - no regular classes, wear Israel shirt, navy bottoms or jeans, water bottle, hat
Friday: regular schedule

Friday, April 29, 2016

Welcome back!

I hope you all had a wonderful break from school! We begin a unit of poetry, both traditional and creative. We will begin working towards a day of performance as well as the creation of a literary magazine. Each day this week you will both hear a poem (performed by yours truly) and create a poem. You will have Membean as homework along with choosing a piece to learn and present which you will learn about on Monday. For those of you eager for a book to read, I will happily loan you When You Reach Me, but all other books must be returned to me first.

Monday: Spoken Word, poetry intro
Day 2: Spine Poetry
Day 3: Black-out Poetry
Day 4: Visual Poetry

Membean - 90 minutes due 5/14 - aim for 15 minutes every other day
Assessment on 5/16.

and now...a classic Jack Prelutsky poem:

I Made A Noise This Morning – (from WHAT A DAY IT WAS AT SCHOOL!)

I made a noise this morning
That I didn’t mean to make.
It truly was an accident,
An error, a mistake.
I don’t know how it happened,
But it suddenly was there,
Filled with great reverberations
That resounded in the air.

It made a strong impression
On the people in the room.
A lot of them reacted
Like they’d heard a sonic boom.
They looked at one another
As if asking, “was it you?”
They were laughing, they were pointing—
I behaved the same way too.

I couldn’t keep from joking
With the other girls and boys,
And never once admitted
It was I who made that noise.
Though I’m sorry that I made it,
From the bottom of my heart,
In a way, my brief eruption
Was a little work of art.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

WHOA!!! Poetry in motion!

My son showed me this video that is an absolutely beautiful tie-in to our current unit! Bonus point when we return from break if you give me a piece of paper explaining:
1) Who was Sisyphus?
2) What does the gear mechanism have to do with math? (Yes, you can ask siblings or parents for help with this part.)
3) Who were Gehry and Knoll?

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Exciting and fun week in store!

This week you will meet Artist-in-Residence Marilyn Price. She is a nationally recognized educator, storyteller, and puppeteer. She will be facilitating a program that will culminate with a visit from 6th graders who attend Queen of Angels Catholic School in Roswell. On Thursday, we will enjoy an all-day interfaith program that includes teaching our guests about the seder, commemorating those who perished in the Holocaust, and learning about prophets (which they will teach to us).

In class, we will be preparing for Thursday, however you have assignments and homework due this week. I will be returning the Grammar Test, which for many of you will offer an opportunity for recovery. If you would like tutorial on these topics once you see the recovery assessment, plan on attending Tuesday morning beginning at 7:25.


- Journal entry due Monday 4pm
- Greek Myths chart due Thursday. If you know you will be absent, you MUST turn this in Wednesday.
- No Membean this week.

Monday, April 11, 2016

"B" Schedule this week

Due to testing, we have a "B" schedule Monday - Thursday. Each day, testing begins in the morning in your assigned classroom. In grammar this week, we revisit adverbs and touch on pronouns/antecedent agreement. For homework, please continue using Membean. A Membean assessment will pop up on Thursday afternoon, to be completed by Friday afternoon. There is a journal entry that will be due NEXT Monday. The prompt choices (YAY! Choices!) are listed below. Continue reading the myths, filling out the information table I gave to you. The table and five stories should be completed NO LATER THAN April 21. You may always turn it in early. Journal Entry due 4/18 STUDENT CHOICE
Please choose one of the following prompts about which to write TWO well-written paragraphs.
1) Who or what has made the most positive impact on your life thus far?
2) You have been given a box of magical sidewalk chalk. Anything you draw comes to life. What do you draw and why?
3) What is your opinion of the experience at BizTown? What suggestions would you make to improve the experience?

Sunday, April 3, 2016


This week is the visit to BizTown, as well as our first examination of figurative language, which will lead us to more short stories, Shakespeare, and creative writing. On Tuesday you will receive books of Greek mythology in which you will choose short stories to read. We will not be studying comparatives and superlatives in the adjective unit; the cumulative grammar test (they are always cumulative) focusing on adjectives will be Friday. We'll review on Day 2. You will see a Membean assessment pop up again on Monday. Please complete it Monday at home.

Day 1: Adjectives - good vs. well, figurative language in "A Sound of Thunder"
Day 2: Adjective unit review, distribution of Greek mythology books
Day 3: BizTown!
Day 4: Grammar Test

Homework this week:
Day 1: Complete the Membean assessment
Day 2: Review for the grammar test, begin reading Greek myths, Membean 45 minutes by Sunday
Day 3: Review for the grammar test, begin reading Greek myths, Membean 45 minutes by Sunday
Day 4: Read Greek myths, 45 minutes of Membean by Sunday

Friday, April 1, 2016

"A Sound of Thunder"

Several students are "under the weather" or will be missing class today. We are reading this short story aloud, then will be searching for examples of similes, metaphors, and personification. Please read the story at your convenience.

"A Sound of Thunder"

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Clauses, phrases, commas, and more!

**If you go onto Membean, an assessment will pop-up for you. PLEASE DO NOT COMPLETE IT AT HOME.** I want to watch the assessment the first time, so I will be having you complete it in class tomorrow. The rest of the week will include a review of dependent and independent clauses, when to use commas, semi-colons, and colons, as well as adjectives and short stories. You won't have an at-home reading assignment until next week. Feel free to read one of the sequels to the books we have read or try one that you heard a peer talk about!

Please return your sci-fi/fantasy novels to the classroom.

Day 1: Semi-colons, dependent and independent clauses, Membean Assessment
Day 2: Comma rules, adjectives & adverbs 142, 146, 147, 150, 151 Evens
Day 3: Short story "Monkey's Paw", figurative language, E.G. 177 - 198 Evens
Day 4: Short story " A Sound of Thunder"

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Purim is almost here!

As promised, this week in class you have time to work on your comic strip retelling of the novel you read. Also due at the end of the week are your lit discussion questions. Feel free to meet with other students who read your novel at any time during class. If your comic strip is complete, work on Membean or your journal entry (see below). You may also use my iPad to record your podcast and update your Weebly with your essay, comic strip, and link to your math project.

On Friday, feel free to come costumed (appropriately) for Purim! I am! If you are not in costume, wear a uniform, not P.E. clothing.

Journal Entry due FRIDAY, March 25. It is on Google Classroom. If you have a notebook, be sure to turn it in by the end of the day on Friday.
Journal entry - What is the job of the government?
Please think back to our "World Congress" simulation and our speaker, Andy Bauman. You are hearing a great deal about the upcoming presidential election and the issues that the candidates feel strongly about. What do you think is the job of government? I do NOT want you to focus on candidates or their beliefs, but on what a government should provide for its citizens and why. Write a strong, 10-sentence paragraph, including a topic and concluding sentence stating your opinion on this topic. This is a journal entry, not an essay.

- Turn in the answers to your lit discussion questions by 3/25
- Comic strip literary analysis of your novel DUE 3/24
- Journal Entry DUE 3/25
- Membean 45 minutes by Friday. NOTE: An individualized assessment will pop-up on Membean when you sign on after you complete your 45 minutes this week. It will be due 3/28.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Short Week

Our short week is a regular Monday, then two "A" days. We will be covering a subject many of you have asked about - how to tell when to use a comma in a 'long' sentence. This has to do with clauses and conjunctions. Continue working with Membean. This week - another 45 minutes by Friday. Remember, only 15 minutes at a time. Begin planning for your comic strip by creating a plot structure chart for your book.

Monday: Phrases, clauses and fragments
Tuesday: Subordinating vs. coordinating conjunctions, using a comma or semi-colon
Wednesday: Intro to compound vs. complex sentences, run-ons, comma-splices

NOTE: Your HAND-WRITTEN journal entry (10 sentences, minimum) is due Wednesday by the end of the day.

Thursday and Friday - Parent - Teacher Conferences and dress rehearsals.

Don't forget to turn back your clock for Daylight Savings Time! Longer days of sunlight! HOORAY!!!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Trimester 3

Yes - it is true...we have completed two trimesters together. This week we complete the noun unit as well as the sci-fi/fantasy novels. I will introduce a new method of learning vocabulary and explain why we are exploring it. On Friday I will tell you about the assessment for the novels (not a test, not an essay) and you will (finally) have classtime for recording your podcast.

Please see Edmodo or ask a friend if you do not know what your user name is for Membean.

Day 1: In class review of the noun unit and will introduce Membean. I will be reviewing predicate nominatives/predicate adjectives one more time before school (7:30). Anyone is welcome to sit in for this tutorial.

Day 2: On Tuesday I will be on a Field Trip with the 7th grade while you take the noun test.

Day 3: Lit circles to complete the evidence on how you know that your book is good vs. evil, as well as answer any remaining questions on the sheet handed out previously. If you are reading Trickster's Choice, you do not need to be finished with the book yet. You can tell from the events that this is good vs evil.

Day 4: Podcast using BossJock, Jr. on the iPads. Then embed onto your Weebly.

I have decided how I will be costumed for Purim but will not tell you! (BWAAAHAAAHAA!!!)

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Fascinating results!!!

Hi everyone! I was surprised by the responses to the last journal entry. I am still thinking about how I will proceed given these results. I will let you know soon!



Sunday, February 28, 2016

Nouns, Vocab, and the Arts!

This week we continue practice with possessives, plurals, and functions of a noun in a sentence. The test for this unit is 3/8 and 3/9, your Day 2. This week you will have the test over Unit 8 vocabulary and roots on Day 3. Day 4 is a 1/2 day of special programming that kicks off our month of the Fine Arts, including the performances of Lion King, Jr. and the spring music concert. Complete reading your novel by March 10.

Day 1: Continued practice with possessives, plurals, and identifying the function of words that could be used as more than one part of speech.
Day 2: More sentence construction and diagramming practice, lit circles.
Day 3: Vocab and Roots Test
Day 4: Half Day Programming

Continue reading your novel. Study vocabulary and root words. Be sure to review roots from previous units. No journal entry this week.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Week of 2/22 - 2/26 UPDATED

We will continue our grammar studies this week, moving on to the noun unit. I will return the verb unit tests most likely on Wednesday, provided all students who were absent have made up the test by that time. Literature discussion groups will meet again this week, and you have a new journal entry on Google Classroom due Friday by 4pm. Please aim for completing your novel NO LATER THAN March 10. If you finish before that time, it is even better since you can have deeper discussions knowing how the book ends.

Day 1: Categories and functions of nouns
Day 2: Functions of a noun (Note: we did not have time for anything else)
Day 3: Grammar continues with plurals, possessive plurals. I hope we will have time in class for journal entries, but cannot guarantee it.
Day 4: Return verb tests, noun or adjective, noun review.

Begin learning Unit 8 vocabulary and root words. VOCAB TEST will be Day 3 next week.
Continue reading your novel.
Journal Entry on Google Classroom due by Friday at 4pm.

****BONUS POST*****

This is the author of Peak. Click HERE.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Enjoy your break!

For those of you traveling, have a safe and fabulous trip! Next week we will wrap up the verb unit and begin discussion on the novels. Please be reading your novel, especially if you have down time while traveling. Don't worry if the story is confusing. That's quite typical for this genre as elements of the world of fantasy or science fiction come into play.


Tuesday, Feb. 16: We will review in small group competition for the verb unit test, using Easy Grammar pages 91-96. If you wish to study using these pages, please complete only the even numbered items.

Wednesday, Feb. 17: Block 7 - see Feb. 16, Block 3 will have the vocabulary and roots test, then will have discussion questions to work on about your novel.

Thursday, Feb. 18: Blocks 4,5,7 will have the vocabulary and roots test, then will have discussion questions to work on about your novel.

Friday, Feb. 19: All blocks will complete the verb test. Bring your novel to read after completing the test.

Review the verb unit. Identify any topics which are unclear to you and ask for clarification in class. Practice diagramming sentences with predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives, direct objects, and indirect objects. There are many online sites to help with this. See the tabs at the top of the blog.
Study unit 7 vocab and root words. Read your novel.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

New novel unit and grammar, grammar, grammar!

No, I did not watch the Super Bowl. I was grading essays so I could get them back to you more quickly. In fact, I will give them back in class Monday. Those of you scoring below 75% may revise your essays and resubmit them for up to 75%. These will be due to me THURSDAY as we are not in school on Friday or Monday. If I do not have your revision by the end of Thursday, your grade remains as is.

The unit of novels we will begin are all in the fantasy/sci-fi genre. They all have common themes which we will discuss in class. We will progress in our grammar studies and continue with unit 7 vocabulary and root words. The test over this unit will be 2/17 or 2/18 depending on your block.

Monday: Receive your essay. Novels will be distributed. We will hear some of the descriptive paragraphs today and some on Day 2. Grammar instruction on linking verbs and subject-verb agreement.

Day 2: Finish descriptive paragraph presentations. Continue in the verb unit with subject complements and diagramming.

Day 3: Review of direct and indirect objects, subject-verb agreement continued.

No class on Friday or Monday.


Monday: Explore Telescopic Text HERE
Find the weakest sentence in your essay. Rewrite it as a stronger sentence. Submit BOTH to Mrs. Stein. (Feel free to type these and submit on a Google Doc.)

Resubmissions of your essay are due the end of the day THURSDAY. No exceptions.
2/9 - 2/15 be studying your vocabulary and root words as well as reading your novel. Aim for 10-15 pages per night.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Though the Tunnel

STUDENTS - too many of you did not turn in pre-writing with your essay. I am adding this as a part of the grade for this assignment. Print your prewriting and turn it in by Friday, or I will deduct 10 points from your score. I DO have prewriting from the following students:
Danny, Sydney, Maya, Daniel R., Evan, Noah, Sam D., Josh F., Kady, Margo, Ezra, Amit, Ellie, Alon, Matthew S., Matthew M., Matthew R., Alexa W.

We began our integrated unit with the P.E. obstacle course, experiencing a variety of physical challenges. We continue this unit all week, exploring the themes and ideas in this coming-of-age short story. I will get your Peak tests and Persuasive Essays back to you as quickly as I can. Please know that I want to take time evaluating your work so you receive the most effective feedback.

Monday: Complete the tunnel activity and the reflection sheet. Begin discussion of the elements of literature as applied to a short story.
Day 2: Symbolism, plot structure
Day 3: Types of tunnels, descriptive writing
Day 4: Complete descriptive writing activity, overcoming fears and challenges

Homework: Begin learning Unit 7 in the Sadlier-Oxford vocabulary book and roots list. The test on this unit will be Feb. 17/18.

I recently saw this fabulous sketch-note video. It explains in more detail how some of our words got so wacky.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Week of 1/25 - End of our Peak Unit

Congratulations to everyone who participated in the Tech Fair on Sunday! We had many winners in a variety of categories. This week we conclude our study of Peak with a take-home assessment. The persuasive essay is due on Friday on GOOGLE CLASSROOM. Make sure, if you have written your essay on any other account, that you copy it into a document after you have signed in to your Google Classroom account. Please DO NOT share a document with me via email. Use Google Classroom. Thank you for carefully following this instruction.

Monday (Day 1): Brief review of constructing a bibliography, Peak test will be handed out, suggestions for proofreading strategies.

Day 2: Work on your essay or on your Peak test.

Day 3: Work on your essay or on your Peak test. Test is due by 3:30.

Day 4: We begin a new unit with a short story. We will complete an activity related to the short story.
The essay is due today. You will NOT have class time today to complete it.


This week's homework is solely to complete the essay and Peak test. The Peak test is open note, open book, but NOT open-people. You must complete the assessment on your own, but may use any personal resources you have received in class. If you simply "Google" answers, you will learn have learned nothing, which will hurt you in the long run, I assure you.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Tolerance and Equality - Week of 1/19

Enjoy your day as we observe the birth of a great leader in our nation's history. Remember that when we went to the Woodruff Arts Center, Reverend Durley said that Rev. M.L. King, Jr. never asked to lead. He was placed in that position by his colleagues. He accepted the responsibility of leadership and set an example for millions of people. His wife, the late Coretta Scott King, was a leader as well for the women of that era and later. The conflict surrounding the fight for Civil Rights can be traced to the desire for power.

NOTE: If you were absent on Friday, 1/15, and did not make prior arrangements with me, plan on taking your vocabulary test over the weekend on Socrative (7901110) or Tuesday/Wednesday before school. You will need to arrive at 7:15. You will not be able to take this test in Study Hall.

Our schedule will not change despite being off Monday.

Tuesday (Blocks 3, 4, 5): Instruction on using direct quotes vs. paraphrasing in your essay. Reminder about using parenthetical citation. You will have 30 minutes to work on your essay.
I will provide instructions for the homework, which is to write a formed poem that ties together Peak, MLK, Jr., and the concept of power. This poem will be due on Friday.

Wednesday (Block 7 see above) (Block 3): Review of how to write the introductory and concluding paragraphs. Work on your essay.

Thursday (Blocks 4, 5, 7) : See Wednesday

Friday: Instruction on the elements of a plot, creating a plot chart. If time permits, work on essay.
Poem is due today (TYPED PLEASE!)

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Week of 1/11 - World Congress

This week we experience our World Congress simulation. This may take up day 1 and day 2, but I do not yet know whether we will need day 3. My current plan is to work on the verb unit in Grammar on day 3. Friday is the test on the Peak vocabulary words. Remember, no root words this week. Working on researching your facts for the essay and studying your vocabulary are your only homework this week.

You should have completed Peak by Tuesday. Sentences with the words from this unit are due on your day 2.

Day 1: World Congress simulation. I will return Peak vocabulary homework.
Day 2: World Congress simulation. Sentences using Peak vocabulary words are due. MLA FORMAT!
Day 3: We will either be finishing up the simulation or working on Easy Grammar in the verb unit.
Day 4: Peak vocabulary test


Due Day 2: Sentences using the vocabulary from Peak. Your sentence must contain enough context clues that I can tell you understand its meaning. Simply using the part of speech in the correct manner is not enough.

EXAMPLE: UNACCEPTABLE - The fish was elusive.
ACCEPTABLE - The fish was elusive, swimming between the underwater grass so that I could not catch it with a net.

Complete reading Peak.

Day 3: Study your vocabulary. Review the facts you have found so far in your research for your essay. You are aiming for two to three different facts (record where you found them!) for EACH supporting argument. You should have 6-8 facts in all. If you have time, continue researching.

The image below is from Everest Base Camp after last year's earthquake. Rescuers are moving the injured climbers to safety.
Source: @Shaw Media, Global News

An example of why climbing is so dangerous:

Photo: Team Singapore/Facebook

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Welcome back!

I am looking forward to seeing you all and hearing about your adventures over the break! We will be diving right back into literature, writing, and Podcasting. Check the pacing chart for Peak to determine how much you should be reading each day.

Day 1: Both midterm assessments will be returned. We will discuss the cumulative portion and the opportunity for a rewrite for an additional grade on the written portion of the midterms. During class and study hall this week I will be meeting with each of you to answer any questions and offer guidance regarding your midterm results.

Day 2: Introduction to conflict (literary elements), Podcasting for your Weebly portfolio

Day 3: Introduction to the next written assignment - Persuasive Essay, source validation,

Day 4: "B" schedule - Kabbalat Shabbat at Lower School, Independent working time for Podcasting, essay research


You will receive a list of vocabulary words from Peak. By Friday, CHOOSE 20 words from this list of 40, turn in the definition(s) and parts of speech for each word. You will be using the words you have selected in sentences next week.

Continue reading Peak.

Work on a rewrite of your written midterm if you are interested in an additional written expression grade.