First Things First!
Cycle 1 2014 Year 7 English
Week 1 - (Administration Jan 28 - Jan 31)
Week 2 - Feb 3 -7
Week 3 - Feb 10 - 14
Table of Contents
Class 1 (70 minutes)
(intro 2 mins)
Can all students put their devices on the teacher's desk, sit quietly in a seat and remove any distractions.
I am going to ask you to sit in alphabetical order for the first two weeks (until the end of Cycle 1) until we can establish our new learning partners. Learning partners will change constantly throughout the year so you will get a chance to work with most people in the class.
The first step to learning is concentrating so look and listen attentively up the front.
Are you ready to learn?
Did you learn what the word SLANT stands for?
Listen and Learn
Ask and Answer questions
Nod your head and
Track the teacher
In other words, be ready to learn and keep your eye on the ball because without your permission to be a part of class and to learn no teacher has a hope.
Setting Up Your Book
Before we start studying English let's make sure you know how to set up your book.
Make sure your name is very clearly written on your book.
Do you have a red pen and a blue pen?
Do you have a ruler?
Please rule up the margins on your page. (teacher will demonstrate)
Put a heading on your work.
Put the date on your work.
Remember to rule off after you have completed a piece of work.
For more details see the following link
Look at the vocabulary learning strategy on the Meaningful Sentences link.
We will revisit this as we work together.
English work is to be completed in your books and not on your devise unless you have a specific reason to do so - in which case your parents will need to contact the school and let your teacher know.
Work Task 1 - Obama's Speech For High School Students
This first piece of work will give you an opportunity to rule up your page correctly, put today's date in the top right hand corner, use a heading (Obama's Speech for High School Students) and to write the answer using part of the question for your answers.The first piece of assessment for this subject will be an Introductory Speech. This will be due in the same week you will be having your Year 7 Camp - Feb 24 - 29 (?). A number of smaller tasks will also be completed before this date.
How to change a question into a partial answer
Please write the question number in red and the answer in blue (or equally contrasting colours).
Obama's Speech for High School Students
To start off the year please listen to this speech by President Obama. President Obama is well known for his excellent public speaking abilities. As you listen to this speech take note of his techniques. Read these questions in turns to the person sitting next to you before you watch the speech. This technique will guide your attention so you will know what information to look out for.
- How does Obama get everyone's attention?
- Does Obama let the audience know what he will be talking about? How does he do this?
- Does Obama restate the theme that he is going to talk about? How does he do this?
- What techniques does he use to link ideas together?
- Does Obama get side-tracked and talk off the topic?
- Provide some examples of 'appropriate language for his audience.'
- How does Obama relate this topic to himself and to others?
- What beliefs does he want to instil in his audience?
- In your mind what makes this speech 'original'?
- Does Obama maintain good eye contact with his audience or does he read his notes?
- Does he vary his pitch, speed and volume?
- How does Obama use silence or pauses in his talk?
- Does he include the audience in his talk?
- What do you think of his body language?
- Would you describe his talk as smooth and flowing? Why?
Student Pair Work
Each pair of students is asked to write an answer on the board (teacher will allocate the questions at the end of the speech).
The teacher and the class will go over these answers to make sure everyone knows how to answer a question using the question as a partial answer.
Students should check their answers against the answers on the board and answer each question in their books.
This week is all about establishing good habits and getting to know each other.
There is a lot to learn about starting high school. What's expected, how the class is organised, who the people are in the class and what kind of things you all would like to or need to learn.
It can be difficult getting to know new people but the harder you try the more you'll enjoy the other kids in the class. Each person will have a unique contribution to make and without your contribution we will all miss out on what you have to offer - so don't be shy - we need you!!
This week we will be spending time explaining how and why we do things and we will be spending time getting to know you - this will include games, conversations, assessment tasks and hopefully having as much fun as possible along the way!
Equipment check and labeling
|Student Planner Red pen Blue Pen Pencil Eraser Ruler English Note Book I-pad / PC Text Other|
If you do not have any of this equipment please make a note in your student planner and ask your parents to help you get what you need ASAP
All of the work you have done today will be available on your class wiki. This is the Blackburn High School Year 7 English Wikidot and the address is
**Write this address into your Student Planner or Student Diary so you will be able to find it for when you do homework later on tonight!
Bookmark this on your device so you can easily find it.**
How are you going with your book reading? We will expect that you have read the book Dragonkeeper before the end of the Easter holidays and we will be getting started with our work on the book as soon as we can so you will know the story well by Term 2. You should be reading about 3 chapters a week to be ready for the class work. You might find your spelling words are connected to your reading!
In order to keep track of your reading each student will be expected to download a copy of the homework booklet and to bring it to class each week to make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to reading the book.
Dragonkeeper Reading Journal.docx
Before next lesson you are to make sure you have completed the Obama questions and the homework activity below. Remember you can access your wiki at home or even at the local library if you don't have internet access.
Remember to rule off after the last activity and put a heading for the next activity.
Write the question as a partial answer and then answer the question. Revisit the techniques page if you need to.
How to Write an Answer Using a Full Sentence
3. Your favourite free time activity inside or outside your home:
4. Describe your living situation:
5. Tell about your favourite music and why it is your favourite:
6. Tell about the person you admire the most and why:
7. What country would you like to go to one day and why?
8. If you could meet anyone live or dead, who would it be and why?
9. If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
10. What do you want to do for work?
Next lesson we will check your homework, talk about classroom protocols and learn about our class mates.
- What did we learn last lesson?
- Does everyone have their books set up and ready to go?
- Open up your book and show it to your learning partner.
- Who can tell me what needs to go in the top right hand corner of your work?
- Who can tell me where the name of your mentor teacher should be written?
- Who can tell me how we answer a question using the question as a partial answer?
- Who can tell me what you should do each time you write an answer in your book?
- Who can tell me what should be at the back of your book?
- Who can tell me how wide the margin in your book should be?
- Who can tell me something they learnt about a classmate?
- Who can tell me something they learnt about speech making from watching president Obama?
- Who can tell me what the first assessment task will be?
- Who can tell me when this work needs to be completed?
- Who can tell me when you need to have completed the Dragonkeeper book?
- Who can tell me the address for the English wiki?
- Who can tell me where you can find the answers to these questions?
Homework Check / Introductions
Choose 3 of the questions you answered in your homework and share them with the class. The teacher will check that each student has completed their homework as they respond. Make sure you listen carefully because you will be asked to answer questions about what you have heard later on. Each student should talk for about 30 seconds each.
Class Protocols / Expectations
In this classroom the students and the teacher have the right to do as much work as possible.
- Students need to bring (encourage others to bring) all their equipment to class
- Students need to listen (encourage others to listen) when students are speaking
- Students need to be on time (encourage others to be on time)
- Students need to attempt (encourage others to attempt) all work
(disruption, disrespect, out of chair, late, no homework, interrupting)
The students and the teacher have the right to feel comfortable and safe in the classroom.
- Students need to pass (encourage others to pass) all objects hand to hand
- Students need to speak (encourage others to speak) to others politely
- Students need to keep (encourage others to keep) their hands to themselves
- Students need to listen to what others are saying and to allow others to listen
It is the responsibility of all students to ensure that everyone’s rights are respected.
If students don’t make the effort to respect the rights of others, the following will occur:
1. (When appropriate) the teacher will hint that someone is not doing the right thing.
2. The teacher will name the person who is not doing the right thing. The teacher will say;
(name) you are … and tell the student why the behaviour is a problem. (When you … there is a problem because …)Then the teacher will tell the student what the respectful behaviour is. (Please …)
3. If the behaviour continues the teacher will ask the student to move seats.
4. If the behaviour continues the teacher will invite the student to talk about the problem at recess, lunch time or after school. (Detention and a conversation)
The teacher will do this in a respectful manner to the student and the class will be have the right to remind the teacher to talk respectfully to the student.
As students act responsibly in class by showing creativity, participating in class, helping others, sharing ideas, completing homework, listening well, taking care to do well presented work or encouraging others to be responsible they will be awarded points and the class will be rewarded.
Students are invited to participate in a poster competition. Winners can try their luck at the lucky dip prize bag.
Draw / make a poster that can be put up in our room that will help students remember the types of actions you are expected to be responsible for. The posters need to use visual images rather than words to help students remember the expectations of our class.
Class time will only be given to students who have completed all of their work. The posters are due at the end of this cycle.
Class Responsibility Contracts
Students are asked to sign a Class Responsibility Contract and take it home to have their parents co-sign the contract. Make a note of this in your Student Planner.
Get students into their study groups.
Students will be given a Group Card. Please keep a copy of this in your Student Planner
Every card is different. Each card has a number, letter, colour, mythical creature and fruit on it. Depending on the activity students will be organised in different groups. Sometimes these groups will be used for a seating order and sometimes they will be used for turn taking.
The purpose of the card is to mix up the class as much as possible so all students can get to know one another and learn to work together as a team.
Students should stick their card in the front of their Student Planners.
It is important that students keep the information on their card somewhere safe. It would be a good idea to write the information down in your student planner (this is not a suggestion!).
For homework today each student is to answer the following questions about today's lesson. You are expected to use the question as a partial answer and follow the question answering strategies you have been taught.
- What kinds of topics were covered in the class review?
- What were some of the interesting things you learnt about your class mates today?
- What is the purpose of the class contract?
- What is the purpose of Class Dojo?
- What is the purpose of the groups?
Next lesson we will check your homework as a review piece.
Check that everyone has their class management document signed.
Role play class management.
Talk about the course outline.
Make a start on the English Basics Book.
Play some get to know you activities.
If you have some spare time at the end of this lesson students can start on their homework questions
Students, I would like you to fill in the gaps for me as I read through the classroom rules.
In this classroom the students and the teacher have the right to do as much as possible.
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) all their __ to class
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) when students are _
- Students need to be on _ (encourage others to be on _)
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) all work
(disruption, disrespect, out of chair, late, no homework, interrupting)
The students and the teacher have the right to feel __ and _ in the classroom.
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) all _ hand to hand
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) to others politely
- Students need to _ (encourage others to _) their hands to
- Students need to ___ to what others are saying and to allow others to _
It is the responsibility of _ students to ensure that __ rights are respected.
If students don’t make the _ to respect the rights of others, the following will occur:
1. (When appropriate) the teacher will _ that someone is not doing the right thing.
2. The teacher will _ the person who is not doing the right thing. The teacher will say;
(name) you are … and tell the student why the behaviour is a problem. (When you … there is a problem because …)Then the teacher will tell the student what the _ behaviour is. (Please …)
3. If the behaviour continues the teacher will ask the student to .
4. If the behaviour continues the teacher will invite the student to ___ about the problem at recess, lunch time or after school. (Detention and a conversation)
The teacher will do this in a __ manner to the student and the class will be have the _ to remind the teacher to talk __ to the student.
Who was able to change their avatar on the Class Dojo site?
Who was able to get onto the class wiki? Everyone get your devices and show me how you can get onto the class wiki.
Who completed their homework? Everyone open your books and show me your work.
Get into your study partners and show each other the answers to your homework. Put your hand up if your partner has done all of their homework.
Ask your partner if they have their English Basics Book. If anyone doesn't have it with them but have it in their locker go now and get it and next time you forget it you will automatically be on an automatic caution.
Tell your partners what the three types of groups are that we will study in. You should be in your study partners at the start of the lesson and you should move into your small study groups when we do guided practice or individual work. Find the people in your small study group.
Get back into your study pairs as we start to move into the next activity.
Class Management Role Plays
Tell your partner what would you do? (Get into groups of 2 and practice responsible actions.)
• You are on your way to class and you notice your friend doesn’t have their equipment for class.
• You get to the classroom and the teacher hasn’t arrived yet.
• The teacher has asked everyone to come into the room and get ready to do some work. Your friends are chatting about what they did on the weekend.
• You are trying to do your work but someone is chatting nearby and making it difficult for you to concentrate.
• You are chatting and the teacher or a fellow student asks you to stop talking because it is disrupting their learning.
• You are being teased by someone in the class and it is making you feel uncomfortable.
• Your friend across the room wants to use your USB drive.
• You are feeling very worried about a personal matter and you are finding it difficult to concentrate in class.
• Your friend has sent you a message on your phone but you know you are not to use your phone in class.
• The person sitting next to you is having trouble with their work and asks you to help them.
• You don’t understand what the teacher wants you to do.
• Your friend is kicking you under the table.
• The teacher asks a question and you know the answer to the question but they choose a different person.
• The person next to you is playing games on their computer instead of working in class.
• Your friend suggests you take your books back to your locker between classes but it will make you late for class.
• A student speaks to you rudely in class.
• A student who is in trouble yells out to the teacher - you always pick on me - everyone else is talking why don't they get in trouble.
Put a heading in your book - Reasons for Following Class Rules
Write a paragraph that explains why you think it is important to follow the class rules.
Introduction to the course outline
The Year 7 Course aims to build on the English skills you have developed in primary school. English lessons develop a student’s literacy, literary and communication skills. Reading, writing, listening, speaking, thinking and creative skills are all required for English. This year we will focus on technical English skills such as grammar, spelling and vocabulary, wide reading and making, recognising and comprehending a variety of texts or text types.
Each student will spend some time being tested at the start of the year. These tests are to help the teacher understand the student’s English ability. Each student will be judged on their ability to improve their own performance – not in comparison to others.
Students will be introduced to the Seven High Reliability Literacy Strategies (7HRLS).
English Basics is used to build vocabulary and comprehension.
We will read three novels, ‘Dragonkeeper', ‘Holes’ and one other text selected from the Literature Circles list for Year 7.
Students will learn about different text types – Persuasive writing, Letter Writing, Public Speaking, Imaginative Writing, Report Writing, Context Writing, Informative Writing and Script Writing
Students will undertake weekly spelling tests and homework tasks.
Students will participate in units on Communication, The Elements of Thinking, Individual Research Activity, Youth Issues, World News and Current Events, Horror Stories and more!
Students are expected to start to set academic goals for themselves and to develop the skills required to be responsible and independent / interdependent learners.
All students are encouraged to develop their self-confidence, self-discipline and ability to self-edit and self-correct.
Introduction to the English Basics Book
This lesson we will do the first chapter of English basics together. From today onwards you are to do this at home as homework and we will check your answers in class. Students are expected to complete 6 pages per week, every week. This will be checked regularly in class with your teacher. Your teacher will arrange a set time for this work to be completed.
Open your English Basics book to Chapter 1
Watch me I do it
We do it
You do it
Work in your small study groups for this task.
Okay now we have that sorted lets look at how we will check your progress each class.
(class teacher to discuss this with their students)
You should have up to page 12 completed by the end of next week and page 18 completed by the end of the week after.
Because this term is very busy with other activities it is expected that students will have completed up to page 48 by the end of the term.
Bring your English Basics book to class tomorrow and show your teacher that you have completed up to page 6.
Bring your Dragonkeeper book to class next lesson. You should be up to chapter 3 by now. If you have completed Dragonkeeper you will still need to bring it with you as we will be starting on the vocabulary section in your book.
Next lesson we will start to do a series of ability checks. You will need English Basics, The Dragonkeeper and your English note book.
How many pages of English Basics do you have to do each week?
How many pages should you have completed by the end of Term 1?
How many chapters of Dragonkeeper do you have to read each week?
Who's responsibility is class management?
Which is more important, to do the right thing or to do what you are told to do? Why?
Who can explain how we use a question to partially form an answer? What are the steps involved in this procedure?
Teaching each other / Respecting each other
Look around the classroom, how many teachers and how many students can you see? If you said there is one teacher and 25 or so students then look again. Believe it or not but your teacher is a learner too and guess who is teaching them? Look around at your fellow students - Chances are that they will also play a big role in what and how you will learn in this class - and then there is one really important person we have missed - that's right YOU!
Without your permission to be taught and without a willingness to learn the chances are that you won't learn very much, however, if you decided that each time you come to class you will learn as much as you can, share that with others and communicate your needs and questions to the teacher you will get a lot more out of this class.
Learning to teach yourself and share that knowledge with others is a very important step in becoming an independent learner. The attitude you bring to class could be just as good as a best friend.
Today you will be asked to do 5 tasks.
(15 - 20 minutes)
Each student will be given a test with some comprehension questions on it.
You are to read the text and answer the questions using the strategy we have been practicing. This is to be completed on a separate piece of A4 paper and is a comprehension test. Make sure you write your name on the paper. It is important that this is your own work and the teacher can see if you are understanding the work you have been given.
Nelson Mandela comprehension.docx
During the lesson the teacher will call each student up to the front to read to the teacher. You will read for 1 minute each. You will be called up in the order of the roll and each student should be ready to read to the teacher as soon as it is their turn.
When you go to read to the teacher show them the work you have done on your English Basics book.
When you go to the teacher show the teacher where you are up to in the Dragonkeeper book.
(20 minutes +)
Today we will start adding words to the vocabulary section at the back of your book.
Here are some words that you should have read in your Dragonkeeper book. Do you know what they mean?
Make your own list of words for each of the chapters that you have read that are new to you or you don't usually use in your writing.
Write the word in red and write the meaning in your own words.
Then you should choose 10 words from each chapter and write them into Meaningful Sentences
By the end of this week you should be finished chapter 3 of the reading and up to chapter 3 of the vocabulary. This is homework but if you have spare time in class or have completed all of your work you should continue with this task.
There is always work to do in English Class!
During the first few weeks of school your teachers have some important jobs to do. One of these is to get to know you - the students. It is important that from the word GO, we know as much about you as we can, what interests you, what challenges you and what kind of student you are on a personal and academic level.
We need to know what you need to learn so we can provide you with great lessons that will equip you to improve academically and strive for the goals you have.
This does however involve a four letter word - TEST
We know that many students don't like tests but these tests are one of the ways that we can see exactly where we need to get started in class - I like to call these tests the Starting Line Assessment Tests.
As your teachers we would like you to be the best you, you can be. We would like to see you take up a challenge - to be more capable, confident and knowledgeable than what you are now.
All we ask is that you do you best and be as cooperative as you can be to help us get an accurate picture of what you know already.
There will be a number of Starting Line Assessment Tests that you will need to do.
Hand Writing Test
On Line Testing
Introductory Class Talk
Introduce text types
Text types introduction
English teachers and English text books love to talk about text types. Text types refers to the structure and purpose of a piece of writing. There are many different text types and you will probably know a lot of them already.
Here are some useful websites to keep your mind ticking …
Put a heading in your book - Text Types
Read the Nelson Primary page notes (in the link above) and make dot point notes about the information.
Go to the back of your book and make a page that says New Words - Rule up your page neatly.
Read the following instructions and write the new words in the back of your book.
The information in this web-site is quite advanced for year 7. Students are asked to work in groups and to read through the information and make a list of new words or phrases.
When all groups have read through this PDF we will talk about what these words mean. Then take another look - by yourself and see if you can make more sense of what is written this time. New words can make it difficult for the reader to understand the meaning of what is written. The more we learn to question new words the better our understanding will be. Let's get in the habit!
Next lesson we will check your homework, find out who our study buddies are and our guided practice groups are. Make sure you bring your book - ready to go. Be on time.
Find a Friend and Check Each Other's Work Using The List Below
A check box is provided at the end of each cycle to assist students to monitor their progress and plan their time.
Cycle 1 Check List
- Book set-up and margins
- Watched and listened to Obama's speech
- Wrote and answered the Obama questions in note book
- Equipment Check
- Self-Introduction Activity
- Class Protocols
- Signed up to class dojo
- Signed responsibility contract
- Participated in responsibility role play
- Read the course outline
- Started to read Dragonkeeper
- Completed the first 6 pages of English basics
- Received a group number
- Introduced myself to the class
- Ability Check
- Came to class prepared for the English Basics homework check
- Completed notes on text types
- Started a New Word section at the back of my book with the words from the text
- Read the first 6 chapters of Dragonkeeper
- Have a list of new words from the first 6 chapters of Dragonkeeper
Are you a story teller? People tell stories all the time. We tell stories to remember, inform, celebrate and try to understand our lives. Some stories are true and other are not. Some stories are told to help us be better people and others are told to make us laugh or cry. Some stories are full of imagination and take us to far away places. Some stories say a lot about what we think is important or how we view the world.
This year we will be reading, sharing and hearing many stories together. It is a fun thing to do that people have enjoyed all through history!
Think of a time when you have felt the following feelings.
Happy Sad Angry Frustrated Relieved Lonely
Scared Brave Surprised Board Embarrassed Safe
Using graphic organisers to explore stories and to expand ideas is a common method used by many writers. You may even think of a way to combine a few different emotions together. Have you ever had mixed emotions?
Look at the link below and use a graphic organiser to order your thoughts.
This site has lots of great graphic organisers
Now that you have told your story let's play with it. Try the following - write a time line of facts from your story - now rewrite it and change the emotions / feelings in the story … How can you change the way you see an event by changing the way you feel about it … Can something sad become funny or angry or exciting.
How do your emotions influence your interpretation of events?
Each week time will be given to work on spelling in class. This is a time when you will be testing and teaching each other. It is called Peer Tutoring and means that instead of the class all doing the same spelling test with the teacher, students will be tested at their own level by their spelling buddies.
To pass a spelling test you must get 100%. If you don't get 100% you must write out the words that you didn't get correct 5 times and then retry the test. If on the third attempt you make 1 mistake you can then move on, otherwise you need to keep working on the same words until you can spell them by yourself.
Spelling words are to be written in the back of your book or kept at the back of your folder. Each time you are ready to go up a level or a colour you must get tested by the teacher who will give you a test that is taken randomly from all of the words in the level. You can only make 1 mistake or you will have to revise the words in that level.
Spelling words should be learnt using the following process
1 Identify where your level is.
2 Go to the teacher and let them know what words you are studying.
3 Write the list of words in the back of your book.
4 Put each word into a sentence. (One sentence per word)
5 With a friend on the same level or by yourself practise the words until you think you know them perfectly.
6 They should - say the word, put it in a sentence, say the word again. If they have trouble with this see the teacher.
7 Once you have completed the test the tester needs to carefully mark the test while looking at the spelling list.
8 If you have 100% go on to the next list and repeat from step 2
9 If you have made a mistake you need to write those words 5 times in the back of your book and when you are confident with the words go back to step 6.
10 Each time you go up a level you will need to show that you have tested at least 5 students during that level. This program depends on teamwork and that means you test others and get tested
It is important that you let the teacher know when you are going to move onto the next list so the teacher's records of your achievements are correct and up to date.
Cheating is taken very seriously in this activity. If you are found to be cheating as a speller or as a tester you will automatically have a lunchtime detention and you will have to write out all of your spelling words 5 times each.
When you are peer tutoring you must honestly assess your peers or they won't learn how to do the work correctly.
Some people are great at spelling they seem to just know how to spell but that is not the case for everyone. If you are a good speller then you should make sure you spend time building your vocabulary and make sure you have lots of interesting words to spell.
If you are not such a great speller then now is one of the best times to put your energy into learning how to spell better. One good thing about spelling is that there are a number of rules or patterns we can learn that will help us with our spelling and the more time you work on spelling the better your spelling will get.
If you have trouble spelling there are a number of things you can easily do to improve the quality of your work.
Ask a friend if your spelling looks correct
Check your spelling on an on line dictionary or even in a book style dictionary
Try a few different ways to spell a word and see what looks right for you
Keep a list of the words that you find difficult - keep it in the back of your English book
Spelling test 1
This week we will all do one big spelling test together. The purpose of this test is to identify which level of spelling each person needs to start at. Don't worry if you have trouble with spelling or if your teachers never give you words that really challenge you - there will be something for everyone. Just remember the only person you have to get better than is yourself!!