Mrs. LaForge's Home Page
I am your child's Language Arts teacher. I am very excited to start the year. Please feel free to contact me with any issues or concerns. Also please note that your child should be reading for at least 30 minutes every night and filling in their reading summaries.
Throughout this school year, the students will be involved in Reader's and Writer's Workshop. Your child should be familiar with this style of teaching/learning as it was carried out in their previous Language Arts classes.
Each unit of study will have a reading and writing component. The units of study are:
Reading Unit- Joey Pigza Loses Control Writing Unit- Narrative
Reading Unit- The Watsons Go to Birmingham Writing Unit- Persuasive
Reading Unit- Among the Hidden Writting Unit- Literary essay
Reading Unit- Out of the Dust Writing Unit- Poetry
Since the format gives students tools for selecting and comprehending literature, students who were once reluctant to read now find themselves with the skills needed to be successful readers. Over the course of the year, students read many books and are encouraged to do as good reader's do in exploring different genres, authors, and texts.
The program emphasizes the interaction between readers and text. Students learn to ask questions, make connections with prior knowledge and previously read texts, and ask questions to clarify faulty comprehension they recognize has occurred.
The program includes peer conferences and teacher conferences with students but emphasizes students' independence and allows them to become successful readers outside of the classroom.
The idea behind Writer’s Workshop is simple: if we know from experience that a
workshop approach to the teaching of writing works well for aspiring professional
writers, why shouldn’t we use this approach in our classrooms? As in a
professional writer’s workshop, each student in the class is a working author.The teacher is a writing professional and peer coach, guiding authors as they explore
their craft. Instead of spending the majority of class time on spelling tests, grammar
worksheets, handwriting practice, and other isolated sub-skills of writing, Writer’s Workshop
is designed to emphasize the act of writing itself—students spend most of their time
putting pencil to paper, not just learning about it. Over time, students learn to choose
their own topics and to manage their own development as they work through a wide variety
of writing projects in a sustained and self-directed way.
In Writer’s Workshop classrooms, full class lessons are short and tightly focused on
practical real-world issues. As in professional writing workshops, emphasis is placed on
sharing work with the class, on peer conferencing and editing, and on the collection of a
wide variety of work in a writing folder, and eventually in a portfolio. Teachers write
with their students and share their own work as well. The workshop setting encourages
students to think of themselves as writers, and to take their writing seriously.
(Taken from http://www.ttms.org/PDFs/05%20Writers%20Workshop%20v001%20%28Full%29.pdf)