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First of all, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and that you enjoyed your time with family and friends!  

PERIODS 0 and 2

This week we read an article called "Affluenza: Is it Real?" and students used two  critical reading strategies to help them comprehend the text.  Before reading, I showed the students two very short video clips about the article. Then, we marked the text,.  Next, students had to think of a way to group (also known as chunking) the paragraphs together in a way that made sense.  For example, they might choose two group the first three paragraphs together because it was the introduction. Afterwards, they summarized each chunk of information.  The students sure had to say a lot about this topic, and I encourage you to ask them about it!  We are reading this article as part of our Juvenile Justice Unit which really complements The Outsiders.  
We also finished reading The Outsiders.  Yes, I know it took us forever, but we did so many other things as we were reading the novel!  I hope that when they are my age that they will still remember reading it!  
Finally, students turned in their informational essays!  Not only did they have to research a topic related to a social issue in the novel, they had to include in-text citations and a bibliography in their essays!   I can't say that I was particularly excited about teaching them how to do either of these things (don't worry, I pretended to be excited) but I am thrilled to say that most of them nailed it!  I didn't learn about in-text citations until college!  As always, students who received a C or lower may revise their essay! 


We had a very productive week!  We are currently working on our informational essays.  Students had to choose a social issue in The Outsiders and find three articles about the topic.  Some topics that kids chose:  teen runaways, high school drop outs, teen smoking, and the effect of losing a parent on a child.  On Monday, I provided students with information about how to write the introduction,  I showed them a few examples to help them.  They then worked on them in class!  OH HOW I LOVE TECHNOLOGY!  Some students were willing to share their completed introductions with me through Google Docs.  This allowed me to project them on the big screen for the whole class to see!  As a class, we looked at about three introductions and provided the writer with feedback.  I was so thrilled that students were willing to put themselves out there like that!  In addition, I was impressed with the quality of feedback that was given.
On block days we worked on our body paragraphs.  Again, I showed examples.  I also taught them how to do in-text citations.  This was definitely something new to them, so it was a little challenging.  I didn't learn this until college!  I know there will be a bit of a learning curve, so I am not expecting perfection.  I mainly want them to understand why these citations are used and that using someone's ideas without them is plagiarism.  

As always, thank you for entrusting me with your children.  It is such a privilege!

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