Thursday, October 20, 2016

Narratives and Analysis

6th - This week, the 6th graders are working on their performance tasks to show what they learned in Unit 1.  They have been working hard all week, and I can't wait to see their hard work pay off!  I am slowly grading the literary analysis and reflective narrative papers that they have turned in over the past couple of weeks.  They should be correcting these if they are not satisfied with their grade!  We will be starting our Mythology unit sometime next week.

5th - We are continuing to read The Sign of the Beaver.  The students have really loved learning about the pioneer days.  I hope that it is making them thankful for what they have.  At the beginning of the week, they finished up a letter that they wrote with a partner pretending that they were a pioneer.  I've really enjoyed reading those!  Some of my students have quite an imagination!

Important Dates:

October 21 - No School
October 28 - Book Talks Due
November 4 - 6th Grade Vision/Hearing Test
November 21-25 - Thanksgiving Break

Friday, October 7, 2016

Literary Analysis/Sign of the Beaver

6th Grade - We are currently in the trenches with our literary analysis!  The students amaze me each day with the insight that they are finding in the poems and stories that we are reading.  They began writing their own literary analysis yesterday after having spent some time writing one as a class, and I have been very impressed with what they have shown me so far.  I can't wait to read their final products.  We will finish with literary analysis next week and move on to reflective narratives.

5th Grade - We are really enjoying reading The Sign of the Beaver.  The story is about a young boy in the pioneer days.  The students have learned a lot about what it meant to be a pioneer.  They will be preparing next week to write their own narrative about the pioneer days.

Dates to Remember:

October 12 - All Make-up/Revised work due to Mrs. Alley
October 13 - End of first Quarter
October 21 - No School
October 28 - Book Talks Due

Friday, September 23, 2016


Both 5th and 6th graders have been working on Theme this week!  They are getting very good at picking out the bigger message in songs and short stories.  I really enjoyed hearing their first book talks today!

Next week, 6th graders will be starting literary analysis.  This is one of the more difficult concepts that we tackle in 6th grade because it really requires them to look beyond the text.  We will start very slowly and build our way up so as not to leave anyone behind!

Next week, 5th graders will begin reading The Sign of the Beaver and working on narrative writing.

Important Dates:

September 30 - Deadline to get books approved for the next book talk
October 13 - End of the first quarter
October 21 - No school for students
October 28 - Book Talks Due

Friday, September 9, 2016


Both grades worked with dialogue this week in preparation for narrative writing.  We reviewed the punctuation rules for dialogue and talked about how authors reveal character traits through dialogue.  The students wrote about family members to reveal character traits through the character's words, the character's actions, how others react to them, their private thoughts, and their physical appearance.

5th Graders will finish reading Crash on Monday.  There will be a quiz on Tuesday, but they will be allowed to use the book.  We also started talking about figurative language yesterday.  They have a study guide, and there will be a quiz on Thursday.

6th Graders finished Stargirl and completed a reading response writing assignment.

Important Dates:

September 13 - 5th Grade Crash quiz
September 15 - 5th Grade Figurative Language quiz
September 14-23 - Book Fair
September 21-22 - Parent/Teacher conferences
September 23 - Book Talks Due

Friday, September 2, 2016

Narrative Text

Both grades discussed narrative text this week.  We talked about the parts of a story, and the students took a quiz today.  I hope you saw the study guide!  One of our main focuses this week was character traits.  Talk to your student about how authors reveal character traits!  I hope everyone has a great three day weekend!

Dates to Remember:

September 5 - Labor Day - No school
September 21-22 - Parent/Teacher Conferences
September 23 - Book Talks Due

Friday, August 26, 2016

Close Reading

This week, both 5th and 6th graders have worked on close reading strategies.  Close Reading is reading a text multiple times and working with the text in different ways each time.  We have summarized, annotated, and responded to the texts "Eleven" (6th grade) and "And You Wonder Why We Get Called the Weird Watsons" (5th grade).

Next week, both grades will begin talking about the structure of narrative text, and 5th grade will begin reading Crash, by Jerry Spinelli.

Dates to Remember:

September 2 - Narrative Text/Story Elements Quiz
                        Book Order Money Due
September 5 - Labor Day - No School
September 21-22 - Parent/Teacher Conferences
September 23 - Book Talks Due

Monday, August 22, 2016

Welcome to Mrs. Alley's Class!

My name is Amanda Alley, and I am so excited to be starting my 5th year at Carl Stuart!  This year, I will be teaching 5th and 6th graders, and I am looking forward to learning about what goes on in the 5th grade!

Last week, the students and I spent some time getting to know each other.  I really enjoyed hearing about their families, friends, and all of the adventures that they had over the summer break.  I laid out my expectations for them, and I know they will all rise to the challenge!

Both Grades - We will be going to the school library on Wednesday to begin checking out books!  Your child should have already told you about their book talk that is due on September 23.  Wednesday will be a great opportunity for the students to browse the library for a book that they might like to read for their book talk.  The students need to let me know what book they will be reading by Friday.  Towards the end of the week, students will begin using MobyMax in the classroom for literacy.  Please look for these passwords to come home, and encourage your child to do MobyMax at home.  This week, we will be reviewing the writing process as well as grammar skills that have been learned in previous grades.

6th Grade -   We will also begin reading Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli.  This will be a fun read for the students since they will not be tested over the book.  I will be using this book to fuel classroom discussions and future writing assignments.

Dates to Remember -

September 2 - Scholastic Book Orders Due
September 5 - Labor Day - No school
September 21-22 - Parent Teacher Conferences in the cafeteria
September 23 - Book Talks Due