English Teacher Party: A Look into the Real Life of an English Teacher

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Commas and Because September 27, 2008

Filed under: grammar,thoughts — hey2blondie @ 11:48 am
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I have spent most of the day putting in a comma and the rest of the day taking it out.

— Oscar Wilde


This quote reminds me of my students and the comma. Once taught, they want to put the comma everywhere. I would like to know about commas and the word because. I know that you use a comma with because when it starts the sentence. So, do you place a comma before the word “because” when it’s in the middle of the sentence? If yes, why?Maybe an example would be nice.


How Often? September 17, 2008

Filed under: writers' notebook — hey2blondie @ 7:09 pm
Tags: ,

How often do you take up writer’s notebooks?

I am trying to decide this b/c I have 88 students. I want to figure out a system that I can use so that I am not bogged down. It would be simple if I didn’t take up 48 response logs every week with 6th grade. I have thought about the every other week taking up response logs and then writer’s notebooks, but just want to see if there is a better way.

Any thoughts???


Getting the Hang of it September 9, 2008

Filed under: wn entry,writers' notebook,writing workshop — hey2blondie @ 6:27 pm

School seems to be going pretty smoothly for me now. We have been in school for about 4 weeks. In each 6th grade class I have 24 students, which I am used to 18-20. I am amazed of how well my new middle school students are getting the hang of “middle school.” They love writing in their writer’s notebooks and want to share more than ever. I am so excited that they are excited about writing. I can’t wait to take up their writer’s notebooks to see the creativity going on.

I have been using Aimee Buckner’s Notebook Know How to get ideas on writer’s notebooks. I love her rubric she uses to grade notebooks too. I have also used her idea of cutting and pasting notes/handouts in the notebooks–what a time saver! Her idea on how to keep notes and entries separate is priceless. Last year I got tired of thumbing through notebooks to find their entries b/c their notes were mixed. I even told my students to turn their notebook upside down if they didn’t like writing from the back of the notebook. I have learned a lot from last year’s trial and error with notebooks — I am still learning!