Sunday, September 17, 2017
The fourth, fifth, and sixth graders have been given the new homework planners to keep track of homework assignments and other reminders. Many students use these to make note of their sharing days, band practices, spelling words, sports schedules, etc. In Mrs. Vargo's class, students write homework assignments and this is checked by Mrs. Vargo (or other teachers in the room) and initialed. Parents may also use these planners to write notes to the teachers or to indicate they have seen the homework assignments.
So far, the 4/5 homeroom have started with Reading Log homework. Reading Logs are given each Friday; students return them the following Friday showing their reading. Students are asked to read at least 5 times each work, for 20 minutes each time. The students are then expected to complete the reading log, indicating the title of the book, the pages read, and a brief (2-3 sentence) summary of what they read that day. Parents are asked to initial each day. We completed a reading log as a class, so the students have a model of the expectations for this work completion.
This upcoming week, the students in the 4/5 homeroom will begin having homework using their word study words to learn the spelling patterns for the week. They receive their new words each Thursday of the week, with the assessment the following Thursday. The homework packet is given with the words, indicating the homework for the entire week. Students are expected to practice spelling and sorting their words as needed throughout the week. We practice these word sorts at school as well. On Mondays, students are asked to write "strong sentences" using 10 of their spelling words. Strong sentences indicate the word's meaning and have details in the sentence (ex: "swimming" We enjoy going swimming in the lake at camp.) On Wednesdays, the students have a review of their words to prepare for the test on Thursday, turning in the packets on Thursday.
We spend a great deal of time going over these expectations in class, repeating the expectations each week while the routine is being established. Fifth graders will find the routine very familiar, and are often role models for the fourth graders.