• March-June 2020

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 4/10/2020 1:00:00 AM

    All announcements, assignments, and communication will be in Google Classroom until further notice. Thanks for your understanding.

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  • Covid Inspired Work-From-Home ideas

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 3/14/2020 12:05:00 AM

    During the work-from-home/extended Spring Break time, I want all of my students do the following:


    1. Read for 1 hour daily. This can be done in 15-20 minute increments.

    2. Complete the yellow reading log-middle row of the chart.

    3. If you need to revise or edit your Genius Hour; now is the time to do it.


    Genius Hour presentations and yellow reading logs are due on April 1. Everything you need is on Google Classroom.

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  • March 2020

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 3/10/2020 1:05:00 AM

    Students will be finishing the novel Scrawl and responding to themes in a Socratic seminar on either March. 10 or 11. 

    Students will be presenting their research from Genius Hour on Mar. 11, 12, 13, and 16. 

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  • Jan-Feb 2020

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 3/10/2020 12:15:00 AM

    During Jan. and Feb. students will be reading the novel Scrawl. During the reading they will be learning about how to identify emerging themes, literary devices, and the effects of socio-economics on social status. Students will be taking several comprehension, inference, and analysis assessments on the novel and they will be participating in a Socratic seminar at the end of the unit. The writing assessments include a piece responding to social norms and also a bully/bystander narrative.

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  • December 2019

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 12/16/2019 11:05:00 AM

    Happy December Friends!

    This month we will study literary devices and themes through short stories.

    You will demonstrate understanding of the following literary devices in a quiz, in composing short stories, and in a reading project:










    Sentence length variety



    You will be tracking these devices in the following stories:

    The Tell Tale Heart

    The Monkey's Paw

    The Monsters are due on Maple Street

    The Landlady

    The Taste of Melon

    The Kid Nobody Could Handle

    Priscilla and the Wimps

    The Christmas Truce

    The Gift of the Magi 

    3. Important Due Dates

    Dec. 20 Green Tracker and One Pager




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  • Week of Oct. 6

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 10/6/2019

    This week in Language Arts we will finish our novel All the Broken Pieces (Monday) and take a deeper look at individual characters by reviewing our notes, rereading sections of the book, and discussing with our peers. Partners will create a Two-Voice poem from the perspective of two of the characters from our novel and showing their experiences, desires, hopes, challenges and other aspects in verse.  Examples of Two-Voice poems can be found here: Two Voice Poem Examples

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  • September 16-20

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 9/6/2019

    This week we will start two new units:

         1. The 7th Grade Reading Program will start on Monday with an explanation by the teacher, the exploration of the daily "bookmark," and a run through of what students can expect in terms of SSR (Silent Sustained Reading in class), discussion protocols, and reading responses. Students will be given their first "bookmark" which is a graded assignment and requires parent signatures.

         2, We will also start our first novel unit on the book, "All the Broken Pieces" by Ann Berg. We will start by getting a foundation on the Vietnam War. We will do a "gallery walk" of images from that time period and the conflict, read articles, watch a short video and on Friday we will check out the novel and start reading. 


    Important dates to remember are Monday, when the Childhood Narrative is due in Google Classroom, and Friday when we check our our new books.

    Students need to be sure to bring their independent reading books on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday this week and all weeks.

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  • Week of Sept. 9-13

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 9/6/2019

    Hi Friends! Use this link to access a website full of Lists of books for middle schoolers . There are lists of every kind, from romance to action, realistic fiction, fantasy, and even a list of books with beverages on the cover! Take a look at the list any time you need a good book (which is all the time), and make your own wish list. 

    This week we will be taking the MAP (Measurement of Academic Progress) test in reading to get a baseline idea of our reading skills, where we are strong and where we need to build our skills. It is a low stakes measurement that is not graded but will be used to guide our decisions around reading.

    When you are done with the MAP test, you will finish and polish your Childhood Story narrative, paying close attention to writing techniques such as lists  with commas, using proper nouns (names) for specifics, adding alliteration and hyperbole.

    Also, you will have time to read your independent reading book after the test, so, be sure to bring it to class every day. This week we will introduce the 7th grade independent reading program, which is a class favorite. The entire 7th grade class will be using the same program. Donuts are involved.

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  • September 2-6, 2019

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 9/2/2019

    Happy 2nd week of school my friends!

    This week we will finish our introductory speeches and move into narrative writing.

    You will read a short story,  The Pains of Becoming a Legend by Josh Edwards. about a childhood experience. You will notice what makes it good writing.

    You will then write your own story, about a memorable event from your childhood. You will use some of the writer moves Edwards used in his narrative. 

    On Friday we will go to the library, check out a book,  and you will be introduced to the independent reading program in 7th grade Language Arts. 

    The final copy of your narrative will be submitted on Google Classroom by next Friday, Sept. 13.

    Have a lovely week!

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  • August 26-30, 2019

    Posted by Gillian Stratton on 8/26/2019


    No school for most 7th graders!

    Thanks to our Coyote Crew Leaders for helping with the 6th graders.


    Welcome my people!

    Scavenger Hunt to learn the syllabus, systems, and other students.

    The supplies you will need for this class are:

    • A section of a binder for Language Arts exclusively.
    • A journal or spiral notebook.
    • Writing utensils.
    • Your planner. 
    • An independent reading book. 
    • *I would love a donation of hand sanitizer or Kleenex. 


    Today we will continue to nurture friendships in this class through activities designed to build community. 

    We will complete side 1 of the Scavenger Hunt with our elbow partners, answer questions in table groups, and do whole class activities. 


    Today we begin our first graded assignment, the introductory speech, or, "Four Corners Speech." No need to be nervous! You will be with a small group of people and giggling will ensue, trust me. 


    Speeches, games, and candy!

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