We are currently in the middle of our argument paragraph unit. Students turned in their first practice argument paragraph for a homework grade yesterday. These will be graded and returned to students by early next week. Students will spend next week drafting and working on their final summative essay for the unit. The due date for this essay will be adjusted as necessary for what is best for students. Once the final due date is set, it will be posted on the classroom calendar.
10/06/17 Important Lesson
This week students were expected to complete and turn in their very first essay assignment. The essay was due at the end of the hour today (10/6). However many students waited until the last few minutes to ask me to look over their paper. By the time they realized there were things to fix, it was too late to work on it. Because this is their first essay, I have extended the due date until Monday. Many students still finished on time and turned their papers in today. However, if a student needed the weekend to finish, they are expected to have it printed or shared with me on Google Docs by the start of class Monday (10/9).
A common occurrence in language arts is for students to expect to turn in their very first draft. I have expressed to the students that this is not accurate because the writing process should revolve around revision, and I will always give them things they can improve on. Waiting until the last minute to write only means that I have less time to help with the revision process. Students should make use of time at home to get ahead, so they have more time in class for me to offer advice and work with them. If they choose to use the class time given to draft, they will not get as much valuable advice from the person grading the paper.
In the future, I will not extend the due date. However, I am hoping that students learn a valuable lesson about procrastination the first time around.
10/05/17 End of a Unit
Students are currently working on the final project (book critique) for the independent reading unit. The final paper is due on Friday 10/6 and we will be starting the argument paragraph unit on Monday 10/9. The argument paragraph unit is a corner stone unit for this class. Even if students can't produce the perfect paragraph, they need to know and understand all of the language associated with the unit because it will be used all year.
9/22/17 Upcoming Due Dates
Please make sure to keep track of the calendar. There are a lot of due dates coming up in the next two weeks. These assignments are things that the students have had lots of time to work on in class over a period of several days. Therefore, they shouldn't be having a lot of extra homework but should be putting the finishing touches on the assignments as they finish their independent reading book.
9/14/17 Curriculum Map as Promised.
Welcome to 7th grade ELA! This week we will be working on setting classroom expectations and launching our writer's notebook. Please note that the signed syllabus is due 9/8 and notebooks are needed by 9/11. Our first unit will be the independent reading unit. Students will need to select their own books that fit the criteria discussed in class (fiction, not too long, not too short, etc...) This won't begin until next week, but it is never to early to start searching for a book to use.