mrs. yates class

A peek inside our classroom everyday!

Archive for the month “October, 2012”

The plan for the day. . .

Good morning!

Today, I am once again away from you.  However, instead of at a meeting–I am playing the mommy role today.  That said, I will still have moments where I can check my email-but it will not be immediate and I can’t promise how often that might occur.  Please try to PROBLEM SOLVE on your own today!

As always–remember the behavior expectations today.  Stay focused, on task, and do your best.  Stay in right seats today to make it easier for the sub as well.  Remember our discussion yesterday about looking like cows with your gum! Since this is a trial basis–let’s do our best and chew respectfully!






Today, the blog post that we talked about last week goes LIVE today for the world to see.  Please check this link to see if you recognize any of your comments! (It will be under Day 2) Again,  THANK YOU for all of you comments and thoughts! I was UBER impressed with your comments and have planned some changes based upon your recommendations and comments.


Today’s plan:

  1. First, you will need to take your 2nd Formative Assessment.  Remember this is a PRE-TEST–so there will be time to change your proficiency score.  This will look more at making inferences. (Remember all the passages we worked on a couple weeks ago?)
  2. While you wait for your classmates to finish, please read silently in your free reading book.
  3. IF/When the class finishes–you can take your break.
  4. Then-we need to begin editing your theme park.  First–let me clarify a few things (again) 😉
    • Your rough draft of your brochure/website is just that–a rough draft.  If this was an essay–your rough draft would still need to be finished.  At least all the pieces. You still have to have ALL the pieces finished–or you can’t move on to the next piece of the writing process.
    • You should have included MOST of the information that you wrote from your prewriting on pages 3-5 of your packet.  If you don’t have a lot of persuasion words/information–ADD IT! TODAY!
    • Do you have different fonts? Formats? Do you have pictures that ENHANCE your theme park idea? If you created a brochure–when printed will you have a front and back? (2 pages) Will it fold to look like a brochure? If you have a website–do you have all the pieces included? Is it easy to navigate?
    • Check your writing.  Do you have everything spelled correctly? Did you use good word choice? Alliteration? Adjectives? Would you want to travel to your website?
    • CHOOSE  10 things to improve on your rough draft.  Make a list somewhere on your packet of the 10 items that you changed.  Don’t just change it to change it.  Change it to make it better.  Use a critical eye.  What would your audience say? IF all else fails–think–What would Mrs. Yates say????????????

Good luck!! Stay focused.  Tomorrow we will do some more editing and reflection.  

ONCE again–PLEASE BE GOOD TODAY!!! See you tomorrow!!!

Changes are happening

Well–big changes! Can any of you see what was added?  I thoroughly enjoyed reading all your responses to the blog questions I posed today in your email.  Some of you had such kind words for the blog! Many of you told me how this has made your life so much easier! Woo Hoo! That made me so excited! Also, many of you had some great suggestions! So, I hear you and working on them.  I think I found a way to add a page to this blog that would allow me to keep the online binder requirements updated.  Right now–on the right hand side of this page–you should see a “pages” link that says about.  Soon–I hope to change that to your binder page.  I also found a way for you to see the most recent comments made and different ways to subscribe to the blog so you can see the updates easier.  If you are not getting daily email updates when I post–come see me and let me check your settings. Keep checking! And, most importantly, keep giving me your great ideas! I can’t do them if you don’t tell me!

Task Master

Since I will be upstairs in a meeting once again today–here is the plan of attack!

ONCE AGAIN–let me remind you that the expectation is to be quiet, on task, and perfect little angels! 😉 I will be in the large group instruction room upstairs–across from Mrs. Jones.  If a major crisis or issue arises–please let me know.  I will also be able to check my email throughout the day. Please stay in your assigned seats today.  No sitting on floor or moving around the room! Makes life a little easier for the people helping me out today!  These teachers are all doing me a HUGE favor by covering–so please show them the respect they deserve!

  1. Finish brainstorming.  A brainstorm is the good, bad, and the ugly.  There are no bad ideas or too many.  Just get it all out and you can always edit it down at a later date.
  2. Idea for the web
  3. Read through this powerpoint on Bias.  If you are still unsure or need more explanation–you know what to do–Google it! 😉bias-in-the-news
  4. Then, work through the next step in the writing process-PREWRITING.  This is when you start to formulate your brainstorm into more concrete/structured ideas.  I would like for you to answer the questions on pages 3-5 in your packet.  Complete sentences! Detailed and descriptive sentences.  Be thorough in your approach!
  5. If/when you finish that–look back at the propaganda techniques we discussed yesterday.  (The chart that you downloaded from the previous blog.)  Which techniques are you going to use in your brochure?  Start to make a list of the techniques you are going to add and figure out how you can BEST incorporate them into your project.  Remember–this is about your ability to persuade your audience–not about how awesome your park is.  Keep in mind the big picture!
  6. Remember–you can always go look at my website for more ideas and inspiration! (Scroll to bottom)
  7. If you somehow manage to accomplish all of this–then you may read silently for the rest of the period!

Videos not working

It seems for whatever reason that the videos are not playing for you today.

  • I have uploaded them into our class folder in My Big Campus.
  • Log on to MBC.
  • Then navigate to our classes folder.
  • Go to the resource tab.
  • There should be a folder that says persuasion/propaganda.
  • The videos are waiting there for you.

THANKS for letting me know!!!

In my absence. . .

Once again I am downtown for a meeting.  PLEASE be on your best behavior today for the substitute!

Here are the things I need you to accomplish in my absence:

  • Watch the clock.  Spend 10-15 minutes doing some free reading today.
  • Here is the inferencing PowerPoint we have been working through in class.  Please go to the end and read through the part on inferencing with mood. Making Inferences practice
  • I would like for you to practice with inferences one more time.  Please use this Inference Practice to complete the final inferencing task.  You will need to input your answers here. (should open a Google form)
  • I would like you to open this PowerPoint and read through all the slides.  Take your time and be sure you understand, before moving on.  Whose Voice Guides Your Choice-propaganda
  • Download this handout on propaganda techniques to add to your binder.  (Section RI) propaganda techniques
  • Then, watch these commercials. Please note that the video with the 25 most popular Super Bowl commercials contains 3 that have references to alcoholic beverages.  YOU  MUST FAST FORWARD THOSE COMMERCIALS. Please be HONEST and use INTEGRITY during this.  I am not there to do it for you, but trust that you are old enough to do that! As you watch the commercials–on a sheet of paper–write down product from commercial (remembering to omit ANYTHING related to alcohol!) then beside it–write down what propaganda technique was used.
  • IF you finish all the above with time leftover (which should NOT happen if you are doing your best)–you may watch the movie version of The Monkey’s Paw that is on Oct 18th post.

PLEASE be good today!!!! Email me with any questions or comments and I’ll do my best to respond when available! 


Comma Review sheets were due today-beginning of the period. Any student that failed to turn it in will need to serve Friday school next week to make up the assignment.

Today we took the first Exit ticket on Sentence Types and Commas.  (Students will have at least 2 more chances before the grade is finalized.)

We also had some free reading time and prepared for Monday.  Students should all have a set of headphones to use for Monday’s class.

HUGE thank you to all the parents that purchased Scholastic Books this month! I was able to order 9 books for our class because you are buying books for you students!!!!!

The Monkey’s Paw

Today we practiced some more with making inferences. We focused on inferring in a fantasy text. It reminded me of the story of The Lorax.

Then, we were able to listen to The Monkey’s Paw.  Sadly, there was no British accent on our recording.  The Monkey’s Paw text

Many students asked about a video to watch.  During lunch today, I found this one.

The comma review is due TOMORROW!!!

The Landlady

We spend some time making inferences again today  However we focused  on inferring time and place.  Students are getting better at finding textual evidence to support their answers
We then listened to The Landlady by Roald Dahl.  It fit perfectly with our Strange and Mysterious theme for this unit.  We made lots of inferences throughout our reading of the text.  The BEST part was that the person reading the story had a British accent! The students had fun “practicing” their accents! 😉  landlady_text

The students then had time to work on their comma review that they are creating!

Catch up

It seems this flu bug has kept me away from blogging! So sorry about the delay in posting! I’ll try to catch up with today’s post.


  • Scholastic book orders are due TOMORROW! Activation code: L7L3T
  • 8th grade ELA teachers need workers for the Book Fair during the week of Oct 29-31.  If you are available to work either 7:30-11 am or 10:30-2:30 pm-please email me right away with the time(s) you are available.
  • Grades have been updated in the computer.  With the students working on their next formative assessment (pre-test) today, I was finally able to add many grades to the grade book.  The grading period ends this week, so we will be off to a fresh start next Monday.

Class time:

  • Yesterday, we starting practicing with making inferences.  We read some sections on the board and made inferences together as a class.
  • We were also able to take our first class field trip to the library.  Students are able to check out 2 books at a time and renew them as often as needed.  We make our journey every other Monday for the rest of the year.  Students are now expected to have a free reading book with them in class at all times.
  • Finally, we talked about how to remember commas the best.  Since me providing notes and practice will only stay in their brains for a short time–I decided to make the students the teachers.  They are to follow these instructions to complete a comma review.Comma Review  They must show examples and good notes for each of the rules provided.  I also gave them this sample to look at for inspiration. Basic Comma Help
  • Today we took a formative assessment over RI 8.5, RI 8.2, & RL 8.2.

Tell Tale Heart

  • Today we started with some comma practice.
  • Then we moved in to a short activity to identify audience and purpose.
  • Then we read (and listened) to The Tell Tale Heart.
  • We also watched this short film: 
  • Students we then asked to complete this paper for homework tonight.tell tale heart

Update for tonight

Many of you seem confused by the packets from today. So-focus on your research on Edgar Allen Poe tonight. We will look at the packets tomorrow together.

In my absence

Good morning,

It seems like I can’t shake the flu bug–so I am home sick once again!  I have plenty of things for you to do today–so we won’t lose any class time in my absence.

  1. I left you some notes on the flipchart paper.  One sheet on purpose and one sheet on audience. Copy them into your notes. (Blocks 1 & 2 digitally and Block 3 on paper)
  2. If you brought in magazines, newspapers, or junk mail–add it to the pile next to the computer by the window.  Since I’m not there–we will do this project tomorrow.  Still time to bring in supplies.
  3. If you were able to bring in some kleenex–put your name on the bottom and stack them in the windowsill for us. (THANK YOU!)
  4. We need to practice some with the comma notes you took in class yesterday.  Here is the paper I want you to use.  If you can’t figure out how to make it work on the computer–the sub will have a few extra copies.  Only 10 extras per class–so PLEASE try and do it on your netbooks.  Follow the directions and see if you can draw/type in the commas using ActivInspire or something similar.  If you can get it to work–share how with your neighbor!  Comma in series and added elements practice
  5. Next we need to look at Main Idea and Topic Sentences.  We also need to read more about audience and purpose.  I have put together  some handouts that I think will be beneficial to you.  Sadly, they scanned in sideways–but you should be able to rotate the view in your edit/view toolbar.  If not–turn your computer sideways! (adapt!) 😉 Read through these handouts and follow the directions for practice at the end.  Type your answers in a Google doc–being sure to label which packet your are doing and which page your answers are coming from.Identifying main idea and theme  +  author’s point of view and purpose + topic sentences  [main idea (Block 3 ONLY–should be in paper form)]
  6. When you finish these packets–I want you to do some research on Edgar Allen Poe.  Who was he? Why did he write? What motivated him as a writer? Themes in his writing? etc. (Don’t let this list limit you.)  Find some websites.  Highlight the interesting parts. SHARE IN DIIGO group! Don’t just find the first thing you come to.  DIG DEEP! Really take some time to find something unique.  If someone else has shared it–DON’T COPY THEM! Everyone needs to submit at least 1 website with highlights/notes.

If you don’t finish–yes, it is homework! USE YOUR TIME WISELY! Have a great day! Keep up the good work! Headphones are fine while you work today! Do your best and show Husky Pride! Hopefully, I will see you tomorrow!!!

Links for Monday

Here is an online practice for sentence types.

Here is another one.

Here is yet another one.

When you finish a practice–use the snip tool to take a picture.  Paste that picture in an open office doc.  Do the next one.  Same directions.  When you finish them all–THEN, and only then, attach that doc to an email.  DO NOT send me 4 different emails! It is possible that my email might explode! 🙂

Who Dunit? ;)

The Plot Thickens!

Today we spent some time looking at plot. Students created a plot diagram for The Adventure of the Speckled Band.  Although we are still on the rising action, we had plenty to add today.  We will continue to fill out our diagram tomorrow since we will finish our story and find out “Who done it!”

Here are some plot diagram graphic organizers for students to add to their binders:


We then switched to continue with our sentence structure conversation.  Today we focused on complex and compound-complex sentences. See the notes below.  We finished today with some practice.

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: