KIMBERLY GUERRA » 6th Grade Highly Gifted Magnet English

6th Grade Highly Gifted Magnet English

Areas of Study: Narrative Writing, Expository Writing, Argumentative Writing, Grammar, Vocabulary, and Literature

Writing: In our English class, we strive to meet and exceed the requirements established in the Common Core State Standards for English. When you complete your 6th grade year, you will be accomplished at writing essays in every genre, and will have a firm grasp of the writing process. You will learn how to revise your work for clarity and communication and will become an expert at proofreading and editing your own work and that of other writers to produce a sophisticated piece of writing in every genre. You will be writing regularly and your skills will become advanced in this area. In addition to periodic essay writing, writing will be done in our English notebooks on a regular basis. A flash drive will be helpful for saving your documents as well. 

Peer Review and Editing:  Middle school, high school, and college students need to be skilled at analysis and evaluation of writing. In pursuit of this goal, we will use peer revision and editing extensively, (guided by rubric and instructor input) and will be honing our skills in editing through the use of this guided strategy.

Reading: We will be exploring a great variety of literature including novels and novellas, poetry, non-fiction and informational text, and having literary discussions using academic vocabulary. We will also be reading and responding to informational articles. In addition to reading as often as possible in class, it is expected that you will be reading independently throughout the school year, for pleasure. 

Lexile Levels:

Students will be choosing a monthly novel to read each night at home, as well as the first 10 minutes at the start of class. This novel should be above your tested lexile score. It is the student’s and parent(s)/guardian(s) responsibility to check the novel for its lexlile level. If a child chooses monthly  novels to read that are below their lexile level, their own lexile level score will more than likely suffer. To become a highly literate reader, research indicates the necessity of developing a well-established reading habit.


We will also be working towards mastery of new vocabulary this year, and will study word origins and root words, prefixes and suffixes, which will have lifelong value to you in decoding unfamiliar vocabulary. Understanding word parts will also be infinitely valuable in reading required literature in high school and beyond, as well as in facilitating a stronger foundation for learning second languages.

We will be using “VETY FLASHCARDS” flashcards to enable students to easily study prefixes, suffixes, affixes, and common root words.


My Perspective Textbook:


You have been issued a “MyPerspecrive” textbook, and a “MyPerspective” workbook. These two texts are used as curriculum for general 6th grade English; however, they are included as one of many resources in our accelerated Gifted/Highly Gifted Magnet program at Lawrence. These texts will be referenced along with a wide diversification of more accelerated materials, including novels, virtual handouts of academic essays, and texts by writers. The MyPerspectives anthology will be used as a supplementary textbook, as will the MyPerspectives workbook. These will help you to further practice mastering strategies of close reading.



Restroom Policy:

*Please use the restroom before or after our class. 


Emergencies do occasionally happen. If you must leave class, try to choose an appropriate time to leave, when you are not interrupting a lecture or missing a group activity or class discussion.

Lawrence Middle School provides a 6-minute “passing period” for students, which gives you ample time to use the restroom. Students should remember to use the restroom during passing periods and lunch.


Study Buddy: Collaboration

Exchange phone numbers if you like. I encourage you to exchange phone numbers with more than one student.

When you are absent, you are responsible for getting any missed work from your assigned study partner or Schoology. Ask about what you missed, and copy the homework and notes from your partner’s planner/Readers Writers Notebook. You must make up the missed work and submit it in a timely way so you receive credit for doing the assignment. 


Tardy Policy:

For each unexcused tardy, the student’s name will go on the attendance record. Three or more unexcused tardies in a 5-week grading period will result in a “U” in cooperation. Make it a point to be in class on time. Occasionally emergencies do occur. (A signed note of explanation from a parent or teacher is an excused tardy. No note = unexcused.) These notes are to be submitted to the attendance office by the student or parent. 

Homework Policy:

Students will often be quizzed on Fridays on what we have covered that week. You should be studying and reviewing your notes and materials from your Readers/Writers Notebooks and consumable texts on a regular basis.

Homework is due on or before the due date for credit. Homework is work from class that was not finished and needs to be completed at home, or work to practice what students have learned in class. 

**Homework will not count toward the academic grade but will count towards the student’s Work Habits and Cooperation grade.

Missing Work/Late Work:

Missing work will be accepted if it is submitted two weeks before the 5-week grading period it pertains to. Students will not lose points towards their academic grade for late work BUT their Cooperation and Work Habits grade will be affected.

Example: A student may submit three late assignments in a 5-week grading period and earn an A in the class but also have an “S” mark in Cooperation and Work Habits because they had three late assignments in the 5-week grading period. If students miss 6 assignments in a 5-week grading period, they earn a “U” in Cooperaion and Work Habits.

Late Work:

Late work due to an illness is accepted without any penalty towards the academic, Cooperation, or Work Habits grade.

Example: If you miss one day due to an illness, you have one day after returning to school to submit the missing work. If you miss two days of school due to an illness, you have two days after returning to school to submit the missed work. 


**Be sure to bring your chromebook fully charged each day as you will not be able to charge your chromebook in class. Not bringing a charged laptop will count against Cooperation and Work Habits grade.


Academic Grades:

Grades are based on total points earned from Projects, Reader’s Writer’s Notebook, Written papers, Essays, Tests, Quizzes, Class Discussion and other classroom work and projects. *Class discussions also count towards Work Habits and Participation.


Grading Scale:

 100% - 90% = A  89% - 80 % = B   79 % - 70 % = C   69%- 60% = D   59 % and below = F


Tests and Quizzes:

Tests and Quizzes can be retaken after one week of the original test date with a valid excuse note from a parent or guardian. However, tests and quizzes can only be retaken within their 5-week grading period. The student’s test score will be averaged using the first test score and the second test score.


Cooperation Grade: 

*Late work or missing work affects BOTH Cooperation and Work Habits grade


  • Be kind, be respectful, be responsible, keep a positive attitude, take notes, participate in class, and turn in all work on time =   E in Cooperation
  • Combination of 1-3 instances of not being kind, not being respectful, not being responsible, not keeping a positive attitude, not taking notes, not participating in class, and/or  late work turned in or missing work = S in Cooperation
  • Combination of 4 or more instances of not being kind, not being respectful, not being responsible, not keeping a positive attitude, not taking notes, not participating in class, and/ or late work turned in or missing work = U in Cooperation



Work Habits Grade:

*Late work or missing work affects BOTH Cooperation and Work Habits grade

  • Begin work promptly, follow directions, complete all homework, classwork, and projects, and make your best effort, and no missing or late work in a 5-week grading period = "E" in Work Habits
  • 3-4 instances of not working promptly, not following directions, not completing homework, classwork, and projects, and/or missed assignments in a 5-week grading period = "S" in work habits.
  • 5 or more instaces of not working promptly, not following directions, not completing homework, classwork, and projects, and/or missed assignments in a 5-week grading period =  "U" in work habits.


Weekly Schedule:

All students need to have their Weekly Schedule daily, and keep record of all assignments given for homework. Parents should be checking student agendas on a regular basis to be certain that homework is being written down. The class agendas will not be taken down from Schoology but I urge students to write assignments and homework down in their Weekly Schedule given to them by their homeroom teacher or in my class.  

School Supplies Needed:

Please Purchase these items.

Being prepared is part of your class participation grade!

  1.             3 x 5 flashcards (10 are needed per week the first semester)
  2.             Pencils- sharpened and ready to go.
  3.             Pens- blue or black ink. 
  4.             Lined paper. The school has provided a composition book for the fall semester but another composition book will be needed for the spring semester for English class use only.
  5.             Erasers- pencil erasers often wear out before the pencil does! Have regular erasers on hand as a back-up.
  6.             Highlighters for note-taking.
  7.   One flash drive. (Helpful not necessary) 
  8. A supply of small and medium size light -colored post-its. These will be     used for note taking and annotation throughout the year.
  9. Pencil pouch for supplies. 
  10. Monthly Reading Novel- You may choose to purchase one, loan one from your neighborhood library, or get one virtually from your neighborhood library.) 
  11. Single Pocket Folder


*****Please note that you can share many of these materials across your classes. For example, you don’t need a seperate pencil pouch for each class.*********************


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