This Is the Beginning…


beginningThis is the beginning of a wonderful new school year. It seems to have gotten off to a great start. We have been very busy, which is why it has taken me so long to begin writing these daily blogs. I say daily, but in reality I will post one almost every day.  My classroom blog will contain a lot of information including: daily agenda, linked practice and work, class concerns, announcements, “good” news, supplies needed daily, and much more. All of this comes in handy for not only the student but the parents. Anyone can check the blog and find out what is happening in our classroom. If a student is absent they can check and see what they missed. Also, comments can be made concerning anything from questions to friendly check-ins. Today’s post is going to be lengthy because I want to get everyone caught up to where we are at this point. Here I go…

I will begin with the Standards Based (Proficiency) Grading System. Tonight isproficiency the parent information meeting and questions can be answered. This is definitely a different and new way to assess students abilities. Here is the flyer that will go home at the meeting: Parent Info – Grading Policy  I have also included a longer explanation you can access here: Proficiency Grading Overview school I am sure there will be questions that come up in the future, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs. Gmutza, Mr. Huff, or me and we will be happy to help at any time. The students will also have a thorough explanation, so they should be able to help too.

Next, how the class is organized and what student expectations are. All skills taught are standard based. The students are aware of the standards they will be responsible for. These are presented to them in the form of “I Can” Statements. Here is a copy of what all 8th graders will be assessed on in the 1st unit: Unit 1 I Can Statements. There are 12 total units, with 3 units per grading period. These are assessed with a formative assessment at the beginning of the unit and a summative assessment at the end of the unit. Only summative assessments will appear on RDS.

In Unit 1 the following skills have been covered; character, setting, plot, theme, summary (all of these in both fiction and informational text) and text marking. We have also covered Unit 1 vocabulary. They have also been setting the stage for future writing with ideas and practice writing. I use the workshop model for instruction. This is where I model a skill with the students using a mentor text  and then they practice using an additional text. The following are several examples of what has been covered:

character traits

character traits






theme graphic organizer






summary 1


Five W chart The Landlady



As I continue to write this blog in the future I will include the work and graphic organizer along with the agendas.


Block 3 – Periods 8-9

Only Blocks 1 and 2 have been set up, but will be in use shortly. Those classes have been busy with Achieve 3000 which is a program that tracks their Lexile Levels and gives them work and practice exactly where they need to be. The levels are updated at the end of each month.

This has been a lot of information at one time, but I wanted everyone to start to become familiar with what we do each day. I still have several areas to cover and will do that in the upcoming posts. I will begin including agendes and supplies Mnday.genius at work


This is what you will see each day in our classroom, thank you for sharing such wonderful students with me every day.

**Last thing today – we REALLY need Klennex. If anyone is willing to donate. Thanks so much!







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