Language Arts Resources

Reading Resources

I have attempted to merge my prior Literature Circle format with our newly adopted core reading program: Scott Foresman's Reading Street. Using the pacing chart from the included Guide on the Side, I feel I teach the adopted materials with complete fidelity. The over-arching unit themes guide my Literature Circle choices, yet allow ample flexibility when choosing novels for use with the program. By utilizing the anthologies' stories to begin each week, spelling, grammar, vocabulary and comprehension strategies are in alignment with other classes across the district.
  • Literature Circle Resources from Laura Candler's amazing website. Much of my program has been developed from her resources.
  • Literature Circle Blackline Masters : these are the materials described in the previous link.
  • Multnomah County Library : Best list of titles I've found for literature circles. Each title links to a list of possible discussion questions. I use these frequently as the "Teacher Questions" for the literature packet from Laura Candler's blackline masters.
  • Correlation Guide Scott Foresman Reading Street to Scott Foresman Social Studies (K-5)

Literature Circle Discussion Questions:
The Powerpoint for each book divides the book into 3 parts, the beginning, middle, and end.

The Art of Keeping Cool

The Art of Keeping Cool
Esperanza Rising
Esperanza Rising
A Year Down Yonder
AYear Down Yonder
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
Bridge to Terabithia
Bridge to Terabithia
Number The Stars
Number the Stars

Unit 1 Resources
Unit 2 Resources
Unit 3 Resources
Unit 4 Resources
Unit 5 Resources

Writing Resources

With limited time and difficult schedules, I aim to have students write as much as possible across the curriculum. Constructed responses are my assessment of choice. Students respond in writing to prompts in Literature Circles, Reading Response Journals for Reading Street, Social Studies and in Science. We try to balance time on paper and time on computer to best meet the needs of our 21st century students. All constructed responses are scored on the same 4 point scale (rubric below). The student friendly rubric contains both hints to improve writing and specific successes. I've made labels that align to the rubric that I use while students are learning the expectations. I find it useful to highlight information or cross it off to limit narrative needed when conferencing with students (especially when I run out of time to meet with every student; at least all have received some constructive feedback on each writing opportunity.)

We also do book reviews instead of book reports. Methods were adapted from Laura Robb's Nonfiction Writing: From the Inside Out. The pre-writing form is linked below. We begin the year by reading oodles and oodles of book reviews from Stone Soup, Spaghetti Book Club, and previous year's student work. From those explored, I create a packet of some of the best examples. We use these to discuss strengths and weaknesses of each piece. Students take notes in their packets and packets are kept in their writing folders for future reference.

Each student must have a creative and relevant project to present with their review.
Book Project Ideas:

Below is the rubric I use to assess both the review, project and presentation. If you have suggestions on how to improve this tool, please leave me a message, thanks!

Grammar and Spelling Resources

This year, I'm fortunate enough to have gotten an interactive whiteboard in my classroom. I've located (and created) some resources to support our Scott Foresman: Reading Street Grammar Program:
  • Grammar Unit 1
  • Grammar Unit 2
  • Waltke's Web Resource found online. Has interactive games and PowerPoints taken directly from the Reading Street Program's Curriculum. Site also offers background building websites for the anthology stories.

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