Students have been divided into small groups this week in order to focus on a specific topic regarding extreme weather. Now that the foundation for nonfiction reading has been laid, students will focus on answering a specific research question that they want to learn about in reference to their given topic. The topics include:
Students are continuing to write an opinion essay following the structured framework called "Boxes and Bullets". Basically, "Boxes and Bullets" is a graphic organizer that helps students separate their thesis statement from the reasons that support the thesis statement. After students have completed the "Boxes and Bullets" framework, they continue the essay by giving three pieces of evidence for each given reason. Their evidence can include facts or mini-stories from personal experiences. This is a very grown-up style of writing and is proving to help the students build up their writing stamina and perseverance towards finding good and appropriate evidence. Sometimes they are finding that they don't have a solid thesis statement and are therefore having to start again.
Since last week was a short week, students will continue to work on the same choice board that they started last Wednesday. Every two weeks, they are given a new grammar skill, new roots and affixes to dissect and define, and a new word sort to learn from.