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<P>We've embarked on the second state module, this one studying nonfiction materials on the rainforest. So far the children have read and digested an article and an interview. One of the goals of this unit it to be able to compare and contrast informational texts and we're ready to begin that process today. They continue to practice close reads and to do a fair amount of work in small groups or with partners. <BR><BR>We are also working on "getting the gist" of a piece of writing, i.e. finding the main idea. We practice summarizing material we've read, learning how to take quick notes. The children take on every challenge with enthusiasm that is infectious. I'm enjoying them so much and am very proud of their hard work!<BR><BR><SPAN style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #00ff00">Keep reading over Thanksgiving break! We're working to earn 1000 tickets this time. </SPAN> (Thanks for supporting the McDonalds trip!) <BR><FONT color=#333399 face=Georgia><BR></FONT><FONT color=#333399 face=Georgia>As a reminder, I want to assure you that I grade the children as generously as I possibly can, allowing them to revisit answers to try to correct errors whenever possible. Still, the grades they receive for their progress reports will likely be lower than you're used to seeing. We have to be patient. The state has added a great deal of rigor to the materials they read and the expectations of mastery. It's a learning process. <BR><BR>You <EM>can</EM> help your child raise his/her grade by practicing the spelling words (Spelling tests are an easy 100%.) and by encouraging them to read for the AR points as this is part of their average and another easy 100% to help raise averages. If you have any questions or concerns you can call me or we can chat over conferences. <BR></FONT><BR><BR><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; FONT-SIZE: 12pt">The children have taken their first STAR test so they all know their reading levels and the range in which they should be reading. In my ELA class they do have reading homework every single day. They are supposed to be reading for </SPAN><SPAN style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #00ff00; FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; FONT-SIZE: 12pt">45</SPAN><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; FONT-SIZE: 12pt"> minutes each day, even on weekends! I seldom give written homework, but the reading minutes really and truly </SPAN><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; FONT-SIZE: 12pt"><EM>are</EM> their homework assignment. </SPAN> <BR><BR><SPAN style="COLOR: #008080">In my ELA class we've started collecting tickets for AR points earned. So far they have over 300 tickets for their next award! (They need 750 for their second prize.) We haven't had formal discussions of what they'd like to do, but I've heard talk of a pizza party. I have a feeling it's going to be coming soon! These kids are working hard!<BR> </SPAN><BR>\If you have any questions or concerns please don't hesitate to call me (ext. 2353) or email at: <BR><A href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">email@example.com</A>. <BR><BR><BR><BR><BR><BR><BR></P> <DIV><BR><BR><SPAN style="COLOR: #008000"><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; COLOR: #008080; FONT-SIZE: 12pt"><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: Georgia; COLOR: #008080; FONT-SIZE: 12pt"><SPAN>-</SPAN></SPAN>-</SPAN>-</SPAN></DIV> <DIV>Check out the newly added NewsFlash option on the menu.<IMG border=0 alt="" align=absMiddle src="http://teacherweb.com/controls/dhtmleditor/images/emidea.gif"><BR></DIV>
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