Friday, October 9, 2015

Partner Writing: Capitalization Rules Part One

Today I am starting a series of writing lessons designed for students to complete with a partner.  The focus of this lesson is capitalizing the first letter of names, days of the week, and month words.  Next week I will introduce what words in titles need to be capitalized.

Students fill out the questionnaire and trade with their assigned partner.  (To find out how I assign partners, click here.) 

They make sure that first and last names, days of the week, and month words are spelled and capitalized correctly.  Then, on another sheet of paper, they write three sentences with correct spelling, capitalization, and punctuation.

To download the capital letters questionnaire, please click here.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Creature Department by Robert Paul Weston

If your students liked The Imaginary Veterinary by Suzanne Selfors, they will probably like The Creature Department by Robert Paul Weston.  Elliot Von Doppler is invited to visit DENKi-3000, the town's electronic factory.  His classmate, Leslie, is invited also, because they tied in the school science fair.  What they discover there isn't quite what they imagined.

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Partner Work: Step One Choosing Partners

I plan to share several partner writing activities this month for my Friday Freebies.  Before I do that I thought I had better explain how I set up partners in my room.

Although my students beg me to let them choose their own partners, I only do that occasionally.  I expect my students to work with any other student in the room.  I find that if they choose their friends, they don't stay on task.  (I'm pretty sure if you have been in the classroom for more than five minutes you already know this.)

I have a jar with craft sticks I use to call on students in class discussion.  I use the same jar with craft sticks to create random partners and small groups.  I have even used it to create seating charts by randomly drawing and then adjusting for students with hearing or vision problems.

"The sticks choose."  This takes me out of the mix.  I am not passing judgment on who will work well together.  They have an equal chance to work with their best friend or their worst enemy.  They know I will not switch, because they are partnered with someone they "can't" work with.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Quote of the Week -- October 4, 2015

A book is like a garden carried in the pocket.

Chinese Proverb

Have a good week,

Friday, October 2, 2015

Big Footprints Writing Prompt

You take a shortcut on the way home from school and find some footprints bigger than you have ever seen before.  You decide to follow them.  What kind of creature did you find?

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Counting by 7s by Holly Sloan

Willow Chance is a twelve-year-old genius brought up by loving adoptive parents.  When faced with their loss, Willow finds herself among an unusual group of people who help her cope.  She finds out how to use her own strengths to create a new life for herself and others.

If you like character driven books like Wonder, Out of My Mind, and Mockingbird, you will like this book.  

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Fifteen Mysteries --a Round up of Reviews

I love mysteries.  Here are fifteen I have read and reviewed here on Artistry of Education (just in case you missed some.)

The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd

Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer by John Grisham

Heist Society by  Ally Carter

Enola Holmes series by Nancy Springer

The Midnight Tunnel by Angie Frazier

Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage 

The Puzzling World of Winston Breen by Eric Berlin

13 Suspicious Incidents by Lemony Snicket

Room One: A Mystery or Two by Andrew Clements

The Mystery of the Third Lucretia by Susan Runholt

The Candymakers by Wendy Mass

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Grabenstein 

Brixton Brothers series by Mac Barnett

No Place Like Holmes by Jason Lethcoe

The Case of the Missing Moonstone by Jordan Strafford

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

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