Choose your own Adventure

by Mrs. Nilsen on April 19th, 2013

Weekly ELA News 4/12 - 4/19

Hey 6th graders and ELA parents,

I’ve been doing a lot of researching and thinking about our reading logs these past two terms.  Reading logs are to encourage students to voraciously explore the world of reading.  For some students, they work very well, giving them a tangible way to track their successes.  For others, they are a complete chore and take all the fun out of reading.  Others still simply forget and end up faking the assignment or not turning it in. These last few are not at all what I want and negate the original purpose of the assignment.  With all of these things, and the best educational interest of our students, I’m trying something new this term.  This term’s reading is focused more individually (Term 1 = whole group with Wrinkle in Time; Term 2 = small group with Lit Circle books).  For this term’s reading logs, students will craft their own goals and their own method of tracking their progress.  

Students will choose and set their own goal for reading in class.  They will then choose their tracking method and have it signed by both myself and their parent(s).  I will want to see progress periodically and will be helping students see how to make that happen.  Students must choose at least one book from Mrs. Nilsen’s “list” of suggested 6th grade literature and will do a big final project on at least one of the books they choose to read.  (I'll post the list at the end of this blog.  The list isn't meant to be exclusive, just simply books that I have read that I feel comfortable suggesting to 6th graders at this point in the year.)

It is my hope that students are able to take more control of their learning and that this project and set of assignments allows me to cater our in class work to the individual needs of students.

I met with all of the students to create their goals last week.  This week, we spent time meeting together to see how "progress" towards their goal was being made.  I will keep checking in with students (every Wednesday for sure, and more often if needed) and we'll make adjustments as needed.  I think this term's reading goals are a great why to meet students where they are and give each of them a reachable challenge.

Let me know how progress towards these goals goes at home.  Look forward to a writing update next week.  

Here’s to fostering a love of reading!

6th Grade Independent Choice Reading List - 2013
Old Yeller
Al Capone Does My Shirts
The Westing Game
A Wind in the Door
The Hunger Games (series)
Eragon (series)
Harry Potter (series)
Chronicles of Narnia (series)
The Lightening Thief (series)
The Hobbit
The Lord of the Rings (series)
The Rangers Apprentice (series)
The Watsons go to Birmingham
Where the Red Fern Grows
The Diary of Anne Frank
The Giver
Number of the Stars
Fahrenheit 451
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIHM
Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson
Little Women
Black Beauty
James and the Giant Peach
American Born Chinese
Island of the Blue Dolphin
The Ancient One
The Invention of Hugo Cabret

Posted in 6th Grade ELA Updates    Tagged with Reading list, Goals, Novel study, Homework


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