Friday, September 23, 2011

Literature Extra Credit Opportunity

We talked in class today about two extra credit opportunities for literature.

Way #1
Write more than 6 letters per quarter in your literature journal
This is a fairly easy, straightforward way of boosting your grade: go above and beyond the minimum requirement. Write over six quality letters to classmates or to me and you'll earn one point per extra letter you write.

Way #2
Sign up for and maintain a Goodreads account
Goodreads is one of my favorite Internet websites. It allows you to keep track of the books you've read and the books you want to read. This can be a big help for you this year given your twenty book requirement. In order to earn your extra credit, you must consistently update your account - not just sign up for it and forget about it. Be sure to "friend" me too once you've signed up so I can keep track of your activity and therefore give you your extra credit.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Genre Vocabulary

Look up each term in the Handbook of Literary Terms starting on p. 938 in your literature book. Define each term (only write the definition - not all the extra stuff after the definition!) in your notebook, not your reader response journal.

  1. genre
  2. fiction
  3. realistic fiction*
  4. fantasy
  5. science fiction (leave room for extra info)
  6. historical fiction
  7. mystery*
  8. nonfiction
  9. biography
  10. autobiography
  11. essay
  12. fairy tale
  13. folk tale
  14. legend
  15. oral tradition
  16. fable
  17. memoir
  18. poetry
  19. myth
  20. drama

*These terms are not in the literature book. You need to look them up on your own (e.g., online or in the dictionary)

Due Monday at the end of literature

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Welcome 6th Graders and Parents!

Hello and welcome 6th grade families to my new class blog. I decided to move over to Blogger this year because the interface is much more user-friendly than Edublogs.

I hope this year will be a productive and exciting one for you.

So tell me 6th grade: what was something exciting you did over the summer?

As for me, my husband and I traveled to Europe and we visited Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic. Since we used to live in Germany, some of our travels were old favorites (like Salzburg, Austria and our old hometown of Schweinfurt, Germany) and others were new adventures (like Hallstatt, Austria and Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic).

Some pictures of our adventures:
In Salzburg, Austria
Hallstatt, Austria

View from our hotel balcony in Hallstatt

Another view from our balcony

My husband and I in Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic
Canoeing the Vltava River right before disaster struck: we tipped over and ruined our camera. Luckily the SD card still worked so we didn't lose our pictures, but the camera was toast.
One of the coolest parts of our trip was that I was able to meet the illustrator of the adorable and wacky duo of picture books Is Your Buffalo Ready for Kindergarten? and Teach Your Buffalo to Play Drums, Daniel Jennewein. My husband I and actually stayed with him and his wife, Lenore Appelhans, (who is a soon-to-be published author in her own right) in Frankfurt the night before I flew home. I met Lenore through a community of book bloggers and when she found out we'd be in Frankfurt she offered up their spare bed to us. I was touched by their generosity given the fact that I have family members who won't even offer their spare bed to us.

While we were there, Daniel was gracious enough to sign and sketch an impromptu picture of The Buffalo with my dogs in both of my copies of the books:

  Not only that, but he made a watercolor of my dogs for me:
This is definitely one of the best souvenirs I've ever brought home from a trip: a one-of-a-kind piece of art from a children's book illustrator. How cool is that?

So tell me what cool things you did this summer. At the very least I hope everyone read a lot of interesting books! :)