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Grade 6 Happenings

Follow the latest happenings in Grade 6 below.

This Week: Any Small Goodness

posted Dec 11, 2017, 5:38 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Dec 11, 2017, 5:38 AM ]

This week in Grade 6 we will be doing the usual, practicing grammar, vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing. Our story for this week in Journeys is Any Small GoodnessAny Small Goodness is the story of a school basketball team in inner-city California that gets help from an NBA star to teach them not only how to be good basketball players, but also good boys. It is a very positive and uplifting story about giving and working hard for a goal.

As part of this unit, we will also be learning how to write a formal letter, also known as a business letter. Students will learn the parts of the letter and how to organize and write it. This month they will be writing to President Tsai about their hopes and dreams for our country. We will mail the letters to the President's office, and I am optimistic we will get replies. My students have in the past.

Below is the weekly handout sheet and vocabulary slideshow for this week. Please remind your child to study the spelling and vocabulary words. Please also help your child remember to complete and turn in her WIRSFs each week. These are due Tuesdays. Thanks for your support.


This Week: Airborn

posted Dec 1, 2017, 7:07 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Dec 1, 2017, 7:10 PM ]

This week, the grade 6 class is reading a very interesting story called AirbornAirborn  is an excellent book by Kenneth Oppel that takes place in an alternate reality where the airplane hasn't been invented. Characters travel by airships which fly higher and faster than the balloons we know because of something called hydrium. The skies become like the high seas as the main character, a boy who works on a massive airship, battles pirates, sky monsters, and other dangers on his voyage though the sky. We will only be reading a small excerpt from the novel, but I suggest you head to the city library to pick it up if you like it.

Students will be finishing their essays from last week. Also this week we will continue working on pronouns as we study possessive pronouns. We will spend time on vocabulary and story structure. We will also look closely at literary conflict and the roll it plays in story telling. Students will learn the four kinds of conflict and do some work with the new concept later this week.

Don't forget WIRSFs due on Tuesday. Please be sure to study the vocabulary and spelling words using the weekly handout and the vocabulary slideshow below.

Extension Week: Persuasive Essay

posted Nov 26, 2017, 6:35 AM by Jason Brunken

This past week, the Grade 6 class has been learning the 5 paragraph essay model for writing academic essays. This is a very valuable writing skill that will apply to coursework and exams students will take in the secondary and post-secondary level, especially at international or Western schools. This week, the class gets a chance to apply what they've learned by writing their own essays in response to one of the three questions I've prepared for them. 

Students will begin by using the prewrite sheet to plan their essays before drafting. They will then complete two rough drafts before preparing a final draft that will be displayed on the wall at school and sent home later in the year. 

A review of how to write a five paragraph essay can be seen in the images below. Follow the links above to access the questions and planning materials for the assignment.


This Week: Onward

posted Nov 19, 2017, 5:29 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Nov 19, 2017, 5:30 AM ]

This week in Grade 6 we are reading the story Onward. This is a biography of a young African-American man named Matthew Henson who traveled with Col. Robert Peary to the North Pole. The two were the first recorded humans to make it to the geographic North Pole of the world. It's an amazing story of braving the frigid arctic climate, dangerous terrain, and food shortages to achieve a nearly impossible goal. I'm sure the kids will love reading this story this week. 

As usual, we will be learning and practicing vocabulary on Monday (see below), learning grammar on Tuesday (verb tenses), and reading on Thursday. There will be a spelling test on Friday, but we will spend most of the day learning about writing a persuasive essay. There will be a separate post about this information coming soon. Spelling words, vocabulary words, and grammar practice can be found on the weekly handout sheet and vocabulary slideshow below. 



This Week: Kensuke's Kingdom

posted Nov 12, 2017, 5:21 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Nov 12, 2017, 5:21 AM ]

This week in Grade 6 we will be doing the usual, practicing grammar, vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing. Our story for this week in Journeys is Kensuke's KingdomKensuke's Kingdom is the story of a boy who gets shipwrecked on an island inhabited only by an old Japanese man. The island is fraught with many dangers known to Kensuke but not the boy. There is a lot of exciting things in the this story. We pick up in the story where our main character thinks Kensuke is a bad man who doesn't let him signal a boat in the ocean. However, later Kensuke saves the boy's life from deadly jellyfish. Is Kesuke a kind of bad man? The fun of this story is finding out.

This week we will also begin our look at essay writing. On Friday, I will teach students how to write a proper five-paragraph persuasive essay. Next week the students will begin crafting their own and then finishing them the following week.

Below is the weekly handout sheet for this week and a slideshow to review the vocabulary words. Please remind your child to study the spelling and vocabulary words for this week. Also, don't forget those WIRSFs!!


This Week: Science Friction

posted Nov 5, 2017, 4:04 AM by Jason Brunken

This week the grade 6 class will be reading "Science Friction" by David Lubar. This story is a funny look at how collaborative work can work even with people with very different personalities, skills, and talents. This selection is always a popular one with the children. This story is part collection of short stories in the book Tripping Over the Lunch Lady and Other School Stories.

We will begin looking at persuasive writing this week. Little by little this month, the students will learn the basic parts, organization, and strategies for writing a standard five paragraph persuasive essay. This is a writing skill will serve them them as long as they in school. It isn't the funnest writing assignment, but it is one of the most valuable that I teach this year. I hope all of the students try their best to master it. This week students will practice supporting their opinions with facts and examples from a text. 

Below is the weekly handout for this week. You can also find a slideshow for learning the vocabulary words. Please help your child review the spelling and vocabulary words. We will have a spelling test on Friday. Also, don't forget those WIRSFs on Tuesday.

This Week: The Boy Who Saved Baseball

posted Oct 29, 2017, 3:22 AM by Jason Brunken

After wrapping up the ASLA Fun House and Haunted House on Monday, this week we will be reading John Ritter's The Boy Who Saved Baseball. This is a snippet of a longer book about a town that is facing a problem many are facing all over the world: a large corporation wants to come in and use the land that the baseball field is on to build something more profitable. Of course, the baseball field is used by the town's baseball team and is beloved by the kids. After a public outcry caused by the efforts of one boy on the baseball team, the boss of the corporation agreed not to develop that land if the town's team won the championship. We will see what happens on Thursday.

In this new unit, we will be venturing into persuasive writing this week. Our main assignment will be a college-stly five-paragraph essay later in the month. First, we will practice establishing opinions, using facts to back up opinions, and learn the format of this kind of writing. 

Our spelling and vocabulary words for the week can be found below or downloaded here and a slideshow of the vocabulary words is posted below to help kids review. Please remind your children to take some time to study them a few times this week. We will have a spelling test on Friday.


Extension Week: Preparing the Haunted House

posted Oct 21, 2017, 9:23 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 21, 2017, 9:23 AM ]

Image attributed to Flickr user lobo235.
This week is an extension week for the grade six students. They will be getting their first taste of dramatic writing this week. The assignment: Prepare a spooky story to act out for visitors to the Happy Kids ASLA Haunted House on October 30. The students will work to decorate and prepare a scenes for the younger ASLA visitors. Students working on scenes will be expected to write a short script that tells a mini story related to our theme of "Into another Dimension". Together, it should make for a fun and spooky Haunted House for our Halloween Fun House this year.

The kids have already been told about this assignment and are excited to get to work on it. During this week we will not be having a spelling test, grammar lesson, or vocabulary words. We will still have library on Tuesdays, and WIRSFs are still due on Tuesday as usual. I will not be posting video of the kids' performances, but pictures will be posted after the ASLA Halloween Fun House.

This Week: The Meyers Family

posted Oct 8, 2017, 8:37 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 8, 2017, 8:38 PM ]

This week the Grade 6 class will be reading "The Meyers Family", a biography of Walter Dean Meyers and his son, Chris Meyers. Walter Dean Meyers is a prolific black author of young adult literature. He has written such classics as Monster, Fallen Angels, and Harlem. His son, Christopher Meyers, is a talented artist who has illustrated many of his father's books. The reading is about how two people, father and son, have worked together to find success by complimenting each others' talents.

Below is the weekly handout sheet for this week. On it, you will find the spelling words, vocabulary words, and other important information for this week. A spelling test will be given on Friday. Please remind your child to study and to bring library books and WIRSFs on Tuesday. 

This Week: The ACES Phone

posted Oct 1, 2017, 3:48 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 1, 2017, 3:49 AM ]

Hello Grade 6! This week we are moving on in Journeys to The ACES Phone. This is a wonderful science fiction story by Jeanne Duprau. Duprau is a popular science fiction writer for young adults. Perhaps her most famous book is The City of Ember. We have a few of her titles in our library that I highly recommend the kids pick up. You can see a complete list of her books here.

As always we will begin the week looking at our vocabulary words, move into grammar on Tuesday, read the selection on Thursday, and then do a writing assignment on Friday. The spelling test will also be on Friday. Please remember to help your child study for the tests. Below is the weekly handout and a slideshow of the vocabulary words to help your child review and practice at home. On it you will find all of the spelling and vocabulary words along with some grammar practice.

Thank you, and as always, please contact me if you have any questions.

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