Ms. Chow's Classroom News
Students have continued to conduct research for their MGP Biography Project. They have been learning valuable skills such as summarizing, paraphrasing, and using quotations when taking notes, along with how to organize their research notes by subtopics. They are finding that when managing such a large amount information, organization is crucial! So far, students have written a news article highlighting a major event in their person’s life. They have also begun drafting a formal, five-paragraph essay detailing their person’s contributions to the world. Additionally, students are learning how to use MLA (Modern Language Association) style parenthetical citations to cite their research sources, and how to create a works cited bibliography page.
This week we also held our last Nonfiction Book Club meeting. For their culminating project, students will be reflecting on the their experience and presenting book talks to the class.
Students have completed three out of their five Nonfiction Book Club meetings. They have been strengthening their ability to dig deeper into a text, make insightful connections and analogies, and cite text evidence to support opinions!
We have also begun a Multi-Genre Biography research project, which students have referred to as “MGP” (Multi-Genre Project). Students chose a person to research whom they admire and want to learn more about, and who has contributed to the world in a meaningful way. This week they learned various research skills, such as how to use a database to access books, periodicals, websites, videos, and other sources. Our librarian Ms. Nekola created a scavenger hunt in which students had to use different research modalities to find information about a mystery aviator. Students accessed reference books, nonfiction books, biographies, online articles, and more to complete their scavenger hunt! They also learned strategies for analyzing a resource’s credibility and reliability, which is particularly useful when conducting research via the internet!
In reading, students have begun participating in Nonfiction Book Clubs. The first Book Club meeting yesterday was a great success! Students were well prepared, and they engaged in interesting and thought-provoking discussions about their books! Book clubs will meet once a week, and during each meeting, students will be responsible for different roles: (1) discussion director, (2) summarizer, (3) connector/travel tracer, (4) literary luminary, (5) investigator, and (6) vocabulary enricher. Some of the books students are reading include Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, They Called Themselves the KKK: The Birth of an American Terrorist Group, Flesh & Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire & Its Legacy, The Impossible Rescue, and Hitler Youth.
In writing, we have been focusing on vocabulary and grammar. Students created vocabulary stories, songs, and presentations with mnemonic devices to help them prepare for their quiz on roots and affixes. We will also be working on pronoun case, pronoun-antecedent agreement, and avoiding vague pronoun usage.
P.S. Baby Desmond turned four months old last Friday!