Mr. Varel's Literacy Blog - ARCHIVE

Mr. Varel and Ms. Anderson's literacy blog 10/17-10/21

posted Oct 17, 2016, 7:46 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Oct 17, 2016, 7:47 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

Writing- This week students will be continuing their opinion paragraphs on the topic of HOMEWORK. They have done research and reflected on their own homework experiences to come up with their opinion on the subject. They will state their key ideas to support their opinion and elaborate on those key ideas with facts and real life connections. The final draft is due on October 25th.

Reading- This week students will continue their vocabulary study of our new set of terms from chapter 8 and 9 of Bud, Not Buddy.  

This week we will continue reading our novel while exploring the reasons behind the author’s use of breaks (white space) and dialogue between characters.   We will also write our own class set of “Bud Caldwell’s Rules and Things to Having a More Fun Life.”

Tune into your Class Dojo account to keep track of your child's behavior in our literacy class.  I am using this platform to keep parents informed of both positive and negative behaviors in class so that we can work together to encourage participation, responsibility, persistence and teamwork and work towards correcting behaviors such as missing homework, talking out of turn, not prepared for class, and being off task.  

Mr. Varel's Literacy Blog September 28- October 2

posted Sep 29, 2015, 1:49 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 30, 2015, 1:20 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

This week we will not have any tests or quizzes. Each student completed comprehension questions on the first two chapters of our novel and we will be starting the third chapter this week. Each student will receive their new vocabulary words this week to be tested on next week. Students will have to create a picture dictionary with the words and their definitions this week, and they will use this to study for their test next week. Also, we are learning about adjectives and how to use them in our writing to make it more enjoyable and exciting!

Vocabulary words:


September 21-25

posted Sep 21, 2015, 3:04 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 21, 2015, 3:04 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

This week we will be continuing our novel and really digging deep into the literary device:Point of View. Betsy Byars is is wonderful at using this device to get the readers thinking about who is telling the story and who's point of view we as readers are receiving.  Our investigation of verbs also continues this week with past, present and future test verbs as well as irregular verbs. Students will have a grammar quiz on these topics this week Friday instead of a vocabulary or spelling quiz. We will also begin our lessons on sentence and paragraph structure. For most students, this is where we struggle the most, so let's get after it and improve our writing!

September 14-18

posted Sep 15, 2015, 8:28 AM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 15, 2015, 8:28 AM by Lisa Griffin ]

This week we will be starting our new novel, The Midnight Fox. We will be front loading the vocabulary words before we start reading later this week. To do this we will be using the following words in different scenarios throughout the week. We will also have a Vocabulary quiz on Thursday to ensure that all student understand the definitions of the vocabulary words. Students will be bringing their vocabulary cards home on Tuesday to begin studying for their quiz. 

Chapter 1 Vocabulary Words:

We will also be continuing our grammar study with VERBS! We will investigate how they are used in our writing and daily language. I hope that everyone has a great week!

September 8-11

posted Sep 8, 2015, 7:13 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 8, 2015, 7:13 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

I am excited to get to know each one of the new students in my literacy class! We just met on Friday and will be building on last years skills as well as building new skills that are essential to grow as a lifelong reader and learner. We will be starting our first novel later this week, The Midnight Fox. 

I cannot wait to meet everyone on Wednesday evening at curriculum night. We will discuss expectations in the classroom, expectation at home and curriculum. 

October 27- October 31

posted Oct 27, 2014, 8:43 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Oct 27, 2014, 8:43 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

We will be continuing our novel "The Midnight Fox". We are reading chapters 10,11 and 12 this week. Student will be creating a picture dictionary with their 7 new vocabulary words. Please check your child's planner for these words.the picture dictionary is due on Wednesday with our vocabulary quiz on Thursday. Each student will be required to match each word to its definition during the quiz. This week we will be focusing on using details in our writing. Students will have several opportunities to showcase their work this week.

September 29-October 3

posted Sep 29, 2014, 11:59 AM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 30, 2014, 8:31 AM by Lisa Griffin ]

Students are continuing with chapters 4-6 in their novel "The Midnight Fox". We have a new set of vocabulary words for these chapters. Students wrote the 6 words down in their planners this week. Please check this location for the words. Students will have a spelling/vocabulary quiz on Friday over these words. Students will need to know how to spell them as well as use them in a sentence. Students will be constructing a picture dictionary to help them learn their words. This will be due on Friday before they take their vocabulary quiz. Students are going to learn about analogies as well as construct their own analogies throughout the week! 


September 22-26

posted Sep 24, 2014, 3:01 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 24, 2014, 3:01 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

We will finish reading Chapters 1-3 in "The Midnight Fox". In the book, Petie suggest to Thomas that he should sell one of his life stories to LIFE Magazine. In class we are taking this to the next level. Students are writing a story about a time in their life that was exciting, adventurous, scary, etc. to "sell" to LIFE Magazine. Student will write a rough draft and type their stories. Students will also be creating a headline for their story! I can't wait to see how they turn out! Students will also be having a short quiz over the remaining words in ch.2-3 on Friday.

September 15-19

posted Sep 14, 2014, 7:04 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 14, 2014, 7:04 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

Last week we were able to introduce our first realistic fiction novel of the year, "The Midnight Fox". Students were introduced to Ch.1 vocabulary on Friday and will have a quiz on Wed., Sept. 17th. Students will match the word to the definition of that word on this particular quiz. We will start reading and discussing chapter 1 on Monday. 

September 8-12

posted Sep 9, 2014, 6:12 PM by Keith Varel   [ updated Sep 9, 2014, 6:12 PM by Lisa Griffin ]

YIPPEE! We are ready to switch for literacy! 

Curriculum night is just around the corner on Wed. evening.  I know everyone is anxiously waiting for lit and math placements.  The 3/4 team has been working extremely hard trying to get your child placed in the class that will best fit their needs.  Remember it is a fluid process and that we have an extra 24 kids to fit into the process.  We are in the process of finalizing and our plan is to switch for Lit and Math on Wed, September 10th.  Your child will be coming home with a slip of paper letting you know their Lit and Math teacher Wed. afternoon.  Be on the LOOKOUT!  We want to see you at curriculum night!

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