Language Arts
About Me
Recommended books:
The BFG by Roald Dahl
Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith
Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech
The Giver by Lois Lowry
Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
Holes by Louis Sachar
Kunu by Kenneth Thomasma
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
Indian and the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
Crispin by Avi
Best Shorts compiled by Avi
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
Hatchet by Gary Paulson
Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli
Loser by Jerry Spinelli
Bearstone by Will Hobbs

6 Trait writing:

Each student should develop each of these skills in his or her writing.

Voice- The student’s writing has a vibrant and interesting personality. It does not lack enthusiasm or emotion.
Ideas and Content- The student’s writing topic is thought provoking and well communicated.
Fluency- Sentence structure varies and flows well.
Organization- Ideas, content and events happen in a logical well laid out manner.
Word Choice- The student’s writing is full of rich vocabulary, clever language, metaphors, similes etc…
Conventions- The student’s writing demonstrates accepted English grammar, punctuation, spelling and form.

Practice Paragraph Template
5th Grade Writing Rubric

Reading Strategies:

Making Connections- Students will use this strategy to connect to the story. When students can find similarities in their life, their readings and their world, they are more apt to internalize and comprehend their reading.
Example: When I read The Sneetches, I thought about a time people excluded me. That helps me understand what the Sneetches without stars upon thars feel.
Determining Importance- When students read and make judgments about what is important, they are reading critically.
Example: When I read The Cat in the Hat, I thought the most important part was when the Cat came back to help the children clean up
Inferring- Inferring is best defined as “reading between the lines.” When students can engage a text, they can infer the author’s ideas and better understand what they are reading.
Example: When I read "The Sneetches" I inferred that Dr. Seuss disapproves of prejudice.
Questioning- Students can inform their reading comprehension by generating questions of purpose, action, and understanding. 
Example: When I read I constantly ask why characters do certain things or why authors include certain information.
Synthesis- While reading, students interpret, create, summarize, generalize and make conclusions about information that is read.
Example: When I read, I develop ideas about the characters, places and things.

Writing Tips:

Ralph Fletcher’s Writing Tips

Live Writing- The language that an author chooses is very important. Live writing is the opposite of dead writing or writing that is plain and bland. Live writing engages and captures the readers’ attention:
Dead writing- The cat was scared.
Live Writing- With fur standing tall and eyes glaring, the cat hunched his back in fear.
Small Moments- Writers do not always need to write about grand events like a war or princess coronation. Just writing about a summer day with vivid details can be much more engaging.
Dialogue- Good authors use authentic dialogue that supports details. Do not use too much dialogue as it can detract from the scene you wish to portray. A balance between descriptions/ details and dialogue is ideal for writing engaging pieces.
Figurative Language- Good writers use a variety of figurative language that can create images in the readers mind and enhance the writing.
Simile- When two things that are not typically associated with each other are compared using like or as.
Example: the dog lapped up water like a man lost in the desert.
Metaphor- When two things are compared without using like or as
Example- He was a gazelle on the football field.
Ontamontapeia- When a writer uses a word that sounds like it is written.
Examples: Pow, bang, whap, crick….
Personification- When an author gives an object human qualities.
Examples: The gate groaned as it opened.
The flag sang freedom.
Hyperbole- An exaggeration of information to create strong images or connections.
Example: Looking at the old man across the street, John thought he must be a thousand years old.
Alliteration- When an author repeats a consonant sound in similar syllables in different words.
Example: The lazy lizard lounged on a large leaf.

Book Reports