Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Do You Want to Test Your Grammar?

Grammarly Grammar Nerd Quiz Feature Image

Thanks to grammarly.com/grammar-check for this quiz.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Year-round School Essay

Don't let this be you!



Image from grammarly.com

Friday, February 13, 2015

Are You a Good Writer?

The Grammarly Blog has an article that might help answer that question.  It starts:

Have you ever wondered if your writing is any good? It’s a common question most writers have, especially early in their careers. It’s natural to have moments of doubt; you wouldn’t be human otherwise! Here are six signs your writing is on the right track.

You can read the article HERE.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

A Test for Students

Today I am a student. I am attending the Ohio Educational Technology Conference. This is a chance for me to learn new and sometimes innovative ways to use technology in our language arts class. I will be attending many classes all focusing on different ways that teachers are using technology to help students better learn.

This is a test for Reading Workshop students. They are working on an Argumentative Essays about year-round schools. When I come back on Friday, I will see what they have accomplished while I was gone. This is always interesting to me because it shows who is motivated to be successful.

So what about it Reading Workshop students? How hard are you working? Are you driving for success? I am anxious to see how you do on your essays. Put in a great effort and make us both proud!

Monday, February 9, 2015

A Good Argument

Students recently completed an Argumentative Essay Project. The following essay was written by Emma A. She did an excellent job of organization and supporting her opinion.

I think parents should limit social media use. I think they should because too much time on social media can put teen’s mental health in jeopardy. Social media can be addictive. Studies show that 63% of people log on to Facebook daily, and about 40% log on multiple times a day.

Social media also leads to a higher risk for cyberbullying. Sixty-seven percent of cyberbullying comes from instant messaging. Peer pressure is another thing that cyberbullying leads to. That affects our mental health because too much pressure can cause teens and people of any age to make bad decisions such as smoking, doing drugs, and drinking alcohol.

Using social media can also lead to low self-esteem. This can cause depression and anxiety.  The University of Michigan collected data about Facebook users and how it changed their moods. It showed that people who use Facebook daily have shown lower satisfaction for their life and Facebook as they use it more and more. It can also lead to fear of missing out, or FOMO. It is a form of social anxiety.

Social media is sometimes a good idea, but it can be very bad in some ways. The good things about using social media, such as Facebook, Instagram and many more improves your heart rate because it relaxes you,  and increases productivity. Just a 10 minute break can make employees happier and they will get more work done. They are many more ways that social media can be good, but not bad.

In conclusion, I think that social media use should be limited not only for teens, but for everyone. Too much time on social media can cause mental disorders, social anxiety, and peer pressure, and many more. Social media can be good as well, but for the most part it is bad for teens, especially. So I think social media use should be limited not only for teens but for everyone.

Year-round Schools Argumentative Essay Organization





Reading Workshop students, your task is to write an editorial stating your position on year-round schooling.

Be sure to include:
• An engaging opening that states your opinion
• At least two separate supporting arguments/reasons, with supporting details from at least two sources
• An explanation of the other side and your reasoning against it
• A conclusion restating your opinion and a call to action (what you want people to do)
• Citation of your sources at the end of your essay

Listed below is an organizational/format aid.

Introduction
1. Statement of opinion--Students would/would not benefit from year-round schools.
2. Two or three sentences that provide background information to the reader (you may want to do this after you write paragraphs two and three).

Body First Paragraph
1. Topic sentence that tells the topic of supporting evidence you will use in this paragraph. It might sound something like, Students that attend school year-round . . .
2. Supporting sentences with facts and/or information from sources.

Body Second Paragraph
1. Topic sentence that tells the topic of supporting evidence you will use in this paragraph. It might sound something like, Another benefit/detriment of year-round school . . .
2. Supporting sentences with facts and/or information from sources.

Body Third Paragraph
1. Topic sentence that tells the opposing viewpoint. It might sound something like, Some people might say . . .
2. Supporting information of the opposing viewpoint
3. Your rebuttal--reasons that this viewpoint is wrong

Conclusion
1. Restate the statement of opinion from the introduction
2. Wrap up your essay with final points that sum up your argument. 

Year-round Schools or Not?

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Check Your Writing

Want to check your writing? Try the Hemingway App. All you have to do is copy your writing and paste it in place of the text you see in the image below and it will help with all of the things listed.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Argumentative Essay


Friday, January 16, 2015

Writing an Argumentative Essay

An Argumentative Essay:
  • Has a clear introduction 
  • States a focus/position statement clearly, precisely, and thoughtfully 
  • Uses specific evidence from the text(s) to support and develop the position, and explains that evidence logically 
  • Takes into account what people who disagree with you might think and tries to respond to that 
  • Concludes effectively
Keep in mind that an argumentative essay is based more on facts as opposed to emotion. When picking a topic you’re interested in, be sure to pick one that you can support with evidence and reasoning. You will need facts, statistics, and reports from sources you and your audience can trust.

I. Introduction
     1. Introduce the topic by giving background information that briefly explains the topic so that the reader will understand the topic to be argued. (3-4 sentences)

     2. Add the thesis statement that clearly and strongly states your opinion concerning the
topic. Writing a direct thesis by including the reasons in your thesis is optional.

II. Body Paragraphs

     1. The first two (or more) body paragraph gives a reason that supports the opinion stated in the thesis. This reason is supported with facts, data, or information.

     2. One paragraph discusses the opposite viewpoint. After you pose the counter argument, contest it. Say why the counter argument is faulty and why your argument is stronger.

III. Conclusion

     1. Use a transition signal for the conclusion such as: in conclusion, to conclude, etc.
     2. Restate the thesis in different words than you used in your introduction.
     3. Summarize your main points.
     4. End with a final comment on the topic.

Perhaps the biggest mistake people make in writing an argumentative essay is to state their opinions instead of facts. Remember that each claim you make must be supported by solid evidence if your argument is to hold up to the opposing views.






Here are some sample topics. To find the entire list, go to the RW Wiki Argumentative Topic List.

School and Kids
Is child behavior better or worse than it was years ago?
Is homework harmful or helpful?
Is Cheating Getting Worse?
Should Students Be Able to Grade Their Teachers?
Does Your School Hand Out Too Many A’s?

Technology
Are we too dependent on computers?
Are cell phones dangerous?
Do violent video games cause behavior problems?
Have people have become overly dependent on technology?
Does Technology Make Us More Alone?

Social Issues
Are Adults Hurting Young Children by Pushing Them to Achieve?
Should the Government Limit the Size of Sugary Drinks?
Which Is More Important: Talent or Hard Work?
Is Your Generation More Self-Centered Than Earlier Generations?

Sports
Does participation in sports keep teens out of trouble?
Is competition good?
Should Home-Schoolers Be Allowed to Play Public School Sports?
Does participating in team sports helps to develop good character?
If Football Is So Dangerous to Players, Should We Be Watching It?

Friday, December 12, 2014

Teamwork Informational Report

Steps for writing an informational report

1. Make a plan for the process. Think about the topic and what main points will be stressed.
2. Conduct research and take notes. Use a range of resources — from essays, articles, videos, and the Internet to do this. Take notes without copying word-for-word to reduce the risk of plagiarism. Be sure to copy websites and titles of articles so you can cite your sources.
3. Organize your paper using an outline. Decide which research and information fits best and where it should go in the essay.
4. Write the first draft of the report. Use the outline as a road map.
5. Edit and reread the report. Checking and correcting mistakes are the hallmarks of a good student.

Possible topics might be:

Teams are Built Through Cooperation
Put Your Problems Aside and Put the Team First
Drama Kills Teams
All Teammates Must Contribute
Everyone Must Give 110%
It's About the Team and not the Individual
No I in Team
Teams Work Together to Make Everyone Succeed
Team First
Helping Others Makes the Team Strong
Working Together is More Fun
Together Everyone Achieves More
Helping Makes Better Teammates
Working Together Is Easier
Working Together Helps Everyone Succeed
Team Focus is Important To Go Far
We Not Me
None of Us is Smarter Than All of Us
Teamwork Makes Dreams Work
Selfish Doesn't Work in Teams
Cooperation Counts in Teams
Teamwork is Not Something You Have, It's Something You Have to Achieve
The Whole is Greater Than the Parts
Everyone Included
A Successful Team Beats with One Heart
If No One Works on a Team, Then the Team Doesn't Work

Spurs Teamwork Drives Success

An article in The Daily Texan talks about teamwork at the highest level with NBA champions, San Antonio Spurs. 

The article begins:
This summer the San Antonio Spurs won their fifth NBA championship, crushing the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals four games to one. The 2013-2014 San Antonio Spurs are one of the great championship teams in NBA history, and their recent victory further solidified the Spurs as perhaps the best franchise in professional sports. This year’s team also personified the sacrifice of individual acclaim for a greater goal, a characteristic increasingly rare in athletics, which, even on the collegiate level, focus on profit today.






Thursday, December 11, 2014

Teamwork



An article, Benefits of Teamwork in Sports says:
No sports team is successful without working together to reach a common goal. Teamwork is essential to a good performance from any sports team, professional or not, and is a great way to teach children certain life lessons, such as cooperating well with others and taking responsibility for actions. Such lessons are applicable to life outside of sports and can be applied to work or school, such as focusing without interruption on the school paper that needs to be written or working with a less-than-pleasant colleague on a project.
You can read he rest of the article HERE.

An article from Time Management Guide says:

A team building success is when your team can accomplish something much bigger and work more effectively than a group of the same individuals working on their own. You have a strong synergy of individual contributions. But there are two critical factors in building a high performance team.
You can read the rest of the article HERE.

Sled Dog Teamwork is discussed at the Wilderness Classroom:
Every sled dog has a different personality. They are kind of like people. Some of the dogs are outgoing. Some dogs are shy. Some of the dogs are hard workers and some are lazy. The musher of a dog team needs to find the best position for every dog on their team. When the dogs are all working together as a team, they can travel far and pull a lot of weight. Teamwork is a very important part of dog sledding. Do you use teamwork at school? I bet you do!
You can read the rest of the article HERE.


Another resource with several articles can be found at The Happy Manager.