Class update #29 [Week of 03/24/14 – 03/28/14]

Week #11: Roots view & respond, journal entries, vocabulary HW/Quiz, and Research Paper Assignment Due…

Week #11: Roots view & respond, journal entries, vocabulary HW/Quiz, and Research Paper Assignment Due…

Greetings! Here is an update for 7th Grade Language Arts (Literature & Writing). I have a hyperlink to my lesson plans for the week of 03/24/14 to 03/28/14. If you would like to view the lesson plans in detail, please do so here >>> Lesson Plans for Week 1 – Quarter 4[click to open word document].

In Language Arts/Literature, students will view Crossing Over – How Roots Captivated an Entire Nation. I wanted the students to watch the documentary to get the background about the miniseries that we will be watching for the next 10 days. In the future, the students will be viewing an adaptation of Roots: The Saga of an American Family, a novel written by Alex Haley , first published in 1976. It tells the story of Kunta Kinte, an 18th-century African, captured as an adolescent and sold into slavery in the United States, and follows his life and the lives of his alleged descendants in the United States. Due to the graphic nature of this miniseries, I have sent home permission slips [here] to inform parents that we will be participating in this view & respond to this miniseries in Language Arts/Literature from March 11th to March 22nd. This view & respond will also serve as a precursor to our Language Arts/Writing class’ Back to The Future Unit during the 4th quarter. Students will be given a viewing guide [here], and they will be expected to actively watch as well as participate in class discussions. This week students will be given Week #1′s vocabulary words on Monday, and they will have two assessments in the form of homework due on 03/25/14 as well as a quiz on 3/28/14. Students will also work on Buckle Down AIMS for various reading comprehension skills. I will also be pulling all of this year’s regularly scheduled vocabulary words from the Scripps National Spelling Bee & SAT lists for 7th Graders >>> [vocabulary guidelines & instructions]… Please make sure your student is completing their vocabulary homework every Monday because we will have a quiz assessment on those words every Friday. Continue reading

Class update #28 [Week of 03/10/14 – 03/14/14]

Week #10: Roots view & respond, journal entries, vocabulary HW, and Research Paper Assignment…

Week #10: Roots view & respond, journal entries, vocabulary HW, and Research Paper Assignment…

Greetings! Here is an update for 7th Grade Language Arts (Literature & Writing). I have a hyperlink to my lesson plans for the week of 03/10/14 to 03/14/14. If you would like to view the lesson plans in detail, please do so here >>> Lesson Plans for Week 10 – Quarter 3[click to open word document].

In Language Arts/Literature, students will view Crossing Over – How Roots Captivated an Entire Nation. I wanted the students to watch the documentary to get the background about the miniseries that we will be watching for the next 10 days. In the future, the students will be viewing an adaptation of Roots: The Saga of an American Family, a novel written by Alex Haley , first published in 1976. It tells the story of Kunta Kinte, an 18th-century African, captured as an adolescent and sold into slavery in the United States, and follows his life and the lives of his alleged descendants in the United States. Due to the graphic nature of this miniseries, I have sent home permission slips [here] to inform parents that we will be participating in this view & respond to this miniseries in Language Arts/Literature from March 11th to March 22nd. This view & respond will also serve as a precursor to our Language Arts/Writing class’ Back to The Future Unit during the 4th quarter. Students will be given a viewing guide [here], and they will be expected to actively watch as well as participate in class discussions. This week students will be given Week #10’s vocabulary words on Monday, and they will have one assessment in the form of homework due on 03/11/14. Students will also work on Buckle Down AIMS for various reading comprehension skills. I will also be pulling all of this year’s regularly scheduled vocabulary words from the Scripps National Spelling Bee & SAT lists for 7th Graders >>> [vocabulary guidelines & instructions]… Please make sure your student is completing their vocabulary homework every Monday because we will have a quiz assessment on those words every Friday. Continue reading

Martin Luther King Class Activities #TheDreamer

MLK #TheDreamer

MLK #TheDreamer

The Friday before we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday, students will get familiar with who Dr. King was and what he stood for. My main objective is that students will be able to identify several key highlights of Dr. King’s life as well as his life’s work with civil rights. I will begin class with a two part bell work prompt: “Who was Dr. Martin Luther King? What are your dreams and how will you make them come true?” I will reach my objective via a reading comprehension worksheet(s) [here & here] as well as a mini biography via YouTube (below). A little about the mini biography via Bio: “A short biography of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He is widely considered the most influential leader of the American civil rights movement. He fought to overturn Jim Crow segregation laws and eliminate social and economic differences between blacks and whites. King’s speeches and famous quotes continue to inspire millions today.”

Students will finish the lesson with a fine arts activity where they will receive two handouts. One will be of a black and white picture [here], and the other one will be filled with famous quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. [here]. Students will be asked to color in the black and white picture as well as insert their favorite quotes. We will post the finished product around the classroom… Continue reading

Back To The Future [Integrated Unit – 4th Quarter]

Back To The Future (Integrated Unit)

Back To The Future (Integrated Unit)

The last quarter of the year is upon us, and students will journey back in time during their Language Arts/Writing class in the 4th quarter of 2013. I’ve been looking forward to this unit all year. At this point of the year, there is a battle for attention going on – School vs. Summer Vacation. My goal isn’t to win that battle, as absurd as that sounds, but it is to win the war by keeping the students actively engaged during the last quarter of the year when they begin to checkout due to impending vacations;]

Students will be reintroduced to topics that they may have already had a prior knowledge to via their Social Studies classes as well as History, Language Arts/Writing & Literature, Fine Arts, and Media. The topics are very serious in nature as is the goal of this unit. The goal is simple, get students to respond via writing about incidents that changed the course of history. Students will also be posed the question, what if these events never happened in order to jump start their imagination… The theme of the unit is going back to the future. Back To The Future, a cult classic movie during the 1980’s, poses the question, what if you had the power to change history, should you do it and what are the ramifications of your actions? There will be multiple lessons via direct instruction as well as several view and respond activities using multi-media devices to give students basic background to several important events in history. Students will also be given reintroductions on how to write an informative, expository, and persuasive essay to better prepare them for the upcoming assignments in this unit. Below there are details that include curriculum maps, writing assignments, and lesson plans for your viewing pleasure.

Curriculum Map(s): Continue reading

Roots Letter Writing Assignment [Post Any Questions]

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Task: You have been tasked with writing a letter. You will have 3 options for this assignment. You are to use your imagination, creativity, and prior knowledge of how to write a letter during this assignment. Please refer to your notes that you were instructed to take during our view & responds as well as the rubric (attached below).  The students were given in-class time to begin this assignment, and they were instructed to complete the rest of assignment at home over the weekend. I also let students know that if they had any questions, comments, or concerns to post to the blog in order to get immediate feedback. If you are student reading this, and you have a question, please comment in the appropriate section (below).

Roots Letter Writing Assignment [here]

Roots Letter Writing Rubric [here]

View & Respond – Roots: The Saga of an American Family

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Today, the class worked on (7.SL.1) & (7.SL.5) common core speaking/listening standards with a view & respond about Crossing Over – How Roots Captivated an Entire Nation. I wanted the students to watch the documentary to get the background about the miniseries. In the future, the students will be viewing an adaptation of Roots: The Saga of an American Family, a novel written by Alex Haley , first published in 1976. It tells the story of Kunta Kinte, an 18th-century African, captured as an adolescent and sold into slavery in the United States, and follows his life and the lives of his alleged descendants in the United States. Due to the graphic nature of this miniseries, I have sent home permission slips [here] to inform parents that we will be participating in this view & respond to this miniseries in Language Arts/Literature from March 11th to March 22nd. This view & respond will also serve as a precursor to our Language Arts/Writing class’ Back to The Future Unit during the 4th quarter. 

We will also be using our active listening skills by using the 5W’s notes format (who, what, why, where, when). During the view & responds, students will be actively watching via an episode guide that can be viewed [here]. Once the video is complete, I will give students about 3-5 minutes to jot down any information they couldn’t during the viewing, and then I will open the floor up for discussion by asking initial reactions. Students will also participate in Journal Entries to summarize/reflect their thoughts about what was viewed for the day. This is a very mature topic. That being said, I believe the students will handle this accordingly as my students have done in the past. I’ve said this before, and I think it’s important to see what our youth is thinking and what they have to say about it all. One of my main objectives with this type of view and respond is to engage, effectively, in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) on topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own point(s) of views clearly. I hope to reach that outcome through the multimedia source presented as well as notes using 5W’s format, discussion, and journal entries. Continue reading