Saturday, November 21, 2015

Writing Mini Lesson #33- Capitalization

After reading Mini Lesson #32, you now know that CUPS stands for Capitalization, Usage, Punctuation, Spelling. Edit those CUPS kiddos!  This lesson will focus on the C- Capitalization:

1.  Review capitalization rules.

The beginning of the sentence:          He rode the bike.

The pronoun "I":          Did I see you at the park?

Proper nouns:          Jan, New York City, Golden Gate Bridge

Titles:         Tales of the Fourth Grade Nothing

The first word of a quote:         She asked, "Why is the sky blue?"

Greeting and closing of a friendly letter:         Dear Jan, / Sincerely,

2.  As a whole group, proofread a sample together.

3.  Take Notes.  
After reviewing the basic capitalization rules and working in a whole group, then have students go back to their table and copy the rules into a notebook along with examples. If you use interactive notebooks with your students, give them a copy of a cup!!  This student cracks me up.  She was all into this "BOSS" thing.  Whatever it takes!  I was just tickled that she was excited about her learning!  Her examples inside the cup were funny too.  Love her.

4.  Last, have students work independently to practice the rules!

Now that the lesson was introduced and practiced, expect your students to use these rules in their writing across disciplines!  You don't teach Social Studies or Science?  Let those teachers know and have them expect it as well!  It takes a village!

Next writing mini lesson #34-  CUPS-  Usage!

Like always, 

If you would rather have all of the these mini lessons (over 400 pages) in one spot along with tracking forms, goal forms, prompts, practice sheets, etc, etc. Click on the pic below! Boost those test scores with a year-long writing program!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Christmas Around the World Web Quest

1.  Pick a country to research.
England (United Kingdom)
United States
Czech Republic
Alaska- U.S.
Hawaii- U.S.

2.  Research using the following websites:

Flag of the country:    FLAG

Location in the world:    LOCATION

Typical weather in that location.  Click on "Food" under that country and you will find the climate and history of the country:  CLIMATE AND HISTORY

Traditional food:  FOOD

Christmas traditions in that country:    TRADITIONS

How to say Merry Christmas in that country's language:     MERRY CHRISTMAS

3.  Decorate a doll according to that country's traditional clothing.  You must have access to Pinterest on your computer.   CLOTHING EXAMPLES

Thank you Educlips for that cute clipart on the cover!  If you are interested in having a passport and booklet to write answers that go along with this web quest, then click on the picture below!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Social Studies Ideas for Writing Across the Curriculum

How do you help embed the content of social studies into the minds of your students?   Would they rather listen to a monotone lecture and take notes about the Northwest Coast or write about raising their own totem pole on the Northwest Coast?  Click on the picture for a full blog of ideas!!!!!  Native American, Colonization, Explorers, Revolutionary War, Going West, and Civil War!!!!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Writing Mini Lesson #32- CUPS to Edit

Now that your students have a creative title from writing mini lesson #31- Crafting a Title, the revising stages are finished. It is time to start editing! This mini lesson focuses on CUPS.

When in the revising stage, we "listened" for the errors. With CUPS, we "look" for errors. Get out those magnifying glasses! Oh yeah! Use magnifying glasses in class to support this step of the writing process. Students will take 5 days to edit their papers using CUPS.

1.  What is CUPS?
2.  Capitals
3.  Usage
4.  Punctuation
5.  Spelling

For CUPS, I ask students to use a different color pen than used for revising. If they want to use multiple colors, I am ok with that too. Whatever it takes for them to be excited about revising and editing, I take it! During the editing process, have a dictionary available!

The skills that should be covered for Grades 3-5 are the following:

Capitals- beginning of the sentence, I, proper nouns, titles, inside quotes.

Usage- subject-verb agreement, double negatives, sentence fragments, run-on sentences, verb forms and tenses, pronoun case forms.

Punctuation- End of sentences, commas in a series, quotations, combine sentences

Spelling Rules-

1.  Always put a u after a q. (quack, quiet)
2.  Every syllable has a vowel.
3.  The “soft” sound of c (s sound) or g (j sound) is usually foll0wed by i, y, or e. (city, gym)
4.  Write I before e except after c or when sounded like a. (thief, believe, ceiling, receive, neighbor, weigh)
5.  Spelling Rules for Adding Inflectional Endings to Words
A. Most words- Add the ending. (talk- talked, talking)
B. Words ending in a single vowel and consonant- Double the final consonant and add the ending. (stop- stopped, stopping)
C. Words ending in silent e- Drop the e before adding the ending. (bake, baked, baking)
D. Words end in a consonant and y- Change the y to and i then add the ending unless the ending is -ing. (hurry- hurried, hurrying)
E. Words that end in ss, ch, sh, zz, or x: Add –es (foxes, wishes)

After sharing the meaning of CUPS, have students add it to their notebooks. Look at this cutie and her cup!

I love how my students like to make their own way of having an interactive notebook. I told them to cut out the front of the cup and open it up to take notes. Then I said, "Unless you have another idea!" This student decided to cut out each of the CUPS and put it in the cup.

This student just wanted to make a little hole in the cup for notes. However they want to be creative is fine with me!

I have a friendly letter freebie in my store to help with CUPS! Click on the pic below!

Next writing mini lesson #33-  CUPS-  C for Capitalization!

Like always,

If you would rather have all of the these mini lessons (over 400 pages) in one spot along with tracking forms, goal forms, prompts, practice sheets, etc, etc. Click on the pic below! Boost those test scores with a year-long writing program!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Bunnicula Review and Teaching Ideas

What is not to love this time of year?  Cool weather, colorful leaves, and the excitement of Halloween!  My favorite story for October is Bunnicula by Deborah and James Howe.  I could read it a million times and still find something funny that I may have missed the time before.

Harold, the narrator of the story, is hysterical!  He is just like my dog, Romeo, who begs for food 24-7!  And Chester, the cat, oh my.  My students and I fall off our chairs when read about his shenanigans!  He thinks that the new bunny in the house is a vampire and is determined to get rid of a vampire no matter how crazy he looks!  I've called my own cat Chester by mistake when he acts a little crazy.  He wears garlic around his neck, tries to pound the bunny with a steak..yes steak not stake, and wears a towel around his neck to look like a vampire cape to get everyone's attention.  The poor bunny can't get a break so Harold steps in to help him.  It is a must read!  Teachers, there are so many different reading skills you can pull from this book.  As far as vocabulary though, I feel like the vocabulary was pretty hard for fourth graders.  It is listed as a fourth grade level book.  I make sure to stop and explain or help students use context clues when we come across a difficult word.

For a free character chart, click on the pic below!

Here are some great ideas to use with this book!

  • Genre discussion-  Legends and Mysteries
  • Make an advertisement for a lost bunny
  • Point of view of the different characters.
  • Predict what Chester might do next.
  • Inference
  • Cause and Effect
  • Compare and Contrast characters
  • Sequence Events
  • Text Connections
  • Summarize an event using transition words
  • Persuade your parents to allow you to get a pet
  • Concrete Poem of a white tomato!
  • 5W's- Who, What, When, Where, Why
  • Homonyms- Steak/Stake
  • Write a Parody of one of the events in the story
  • Character Traits/ Feeling words
  • How did Chester's character change from the beginning of the story to the end?
  • Figurative Language- Simile, Metaphor, Alliteration, Personification, Idiom, Onomatopoeia
  • Lots of Personification!
  • Analyze quotes:  Cruel to be kind.  By hook or by crook.
  • Write a Diamante- change from one character to the next
  • Explain the name of the chapters
  • Research- Rabbit's diet, Transylvania, Animal Fangs, Vampire Bats

Do you want all of these reading skills and chapter by chapter questions along with a quiz, vocabulary test and unit test?  Click below!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Writing Mini Lesson #31- Crafting a Title

     Were your students successful adding a jammin' conclusion?  Now that the story is complete, it is time to craft an amazing title for the story!  

Crafting a title-  My Rotten Redheaded Brother by Patricia Polacco is a great example!  I also like Sarah, Plain, and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan.  The are both creative titles!  

1.  Review ideas for a crafty title:

  • Always write the paper first!
  • It should tell what the paper is about.
  • It should grab the reader's attention.  (catchy phrase or phrase of a song)
  • It should introduce the tone of the paper.
  • Don't be afraid to use a subtitle!

2.  Create a title for your class story together with your students.

3.  Have students create a title for their own stories.

Next writing mini lesson #32- CUPS to Edit!

Like always, 

If you would rather have all of the these mini lessons (over 400 pages) in one spot along with tracking forms, goal forms, prompts, practice sheets, etc, etc.  Click on the pic below!  Boost those test scores with a year-long writing program!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Tricks and Treats

{Click to Access and Download the FREE eBook and Printables for Upper Elementary Students}

I am part of an amazing group of upper elementary teachers- Upper Elementary Snapshots and we have a message for you!

Halloween is almost here and we are so excited to share a special eBook with you, created by the teachers from Upper Elementary Snapshots. It's filled with Tricks and Treats for the upper elementary classroom! 

In this eBook, you'll find lots of "Tricks" for you (teacher tips you can use now) and "Treats" for your students (free printables for Halloween and Fall) and best of all...the eBook is absolutely FREE!

Hop over to our Upper Elementary TpT store and download yours today: Click here

Thanks for stopping by and Happy Halloween from all of us at Upper Elementary Snapshots!

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