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.
Week #2: View & Respond – Roots, AIMS Preparation, and Introduction to Language Arts/Writing Unit 4 (Back To The Future)
Here is an update for 7th Grade Language Arts (Literature & Writing). I have a hyperlink to my lesson plans for the week of 04/03/2013 to 04/05/2013. If you would like to view the lesson plans, please do so here >>>Lesson Plans for Week 2 – Quarter 4 [click to open]. We will be coming back from Spring Break, and we will have a very short week. That being said, the students should be well rested and prepared to work upon their return…
In Language Arts/Literature, students will continue viewing an adaptation of Roots: The Saga of an American Family, a novel written by Alex Haley , first published in 1976.During the view & responds, students will be actively watching via an episode guide that can be viewed [here]. Please encourage your child to take notes during the view and respond because it helps with the journal entry used for their ticket out of class. The class will work on (7.SL.1) & (7.SL.5) common core speaking/listening standards with these view & responds [currently on episode 3 due to time constraints]. Students will participate in AIMS preparation via AIMS Buckle Down – Lesson 14: Functional Text pg. 169. Students will also have extra help with comprehension of standards via Galileo Assessment Technology practice worksheets with an emphasis on S3C3: Author’s Purpose & Persuasive Strategies. Due to the short week, students will not have vocabulary words this week. We will continue with week #3’s Vocabulary next week. I will 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 →
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 →