Monthly Archives: October 2010

Reviewing Theme 1 ~ Journeys


This week we have reviewed all four Houghton Mifflin reading selections from Theme 1:  Akiak, Grandfather’s Journey, Finding the Titanic, and By the Shores of Silver Lake. We have also reviewed the writing genres that we learned with these reading selections:  Summary, Poetry,  Persuasive Writing, and Descriptive Writing.

Our final writing assessment for Theme 1 was to write at least one paragraph, using a writing genre and a reading selection from Theme 1.

Here are just a few samples of our written work.


Jessie Wins the Descriptive Writing Contest


Congratulations to Jessie!  His descriptive writing submission received the most votes on our online poll.  To read the Top 10 descriptive writing selections, click here.  To learn more about our descriptive writing assignment, click here.   Way to go, Jessie and all our descriptive writing contestants! 🙂  Continue reading to see our PollDaddy poll results. Read the rest of this entry

Descriptive Writing ~ Ms. Rankin’s Top 10


This week, we worked on descriptive writing.  To learn about our descriptive writing assignment, click here.

Everyone wrote a descriptive-writing piece.  Then, Ms. Rankin picked her top 10. Here they are, in no particular order:

Now, it’s your chance to choose your favorite descriptive-writing piece.  Thanks for voting here:

Descriptive Writing ~ “Seeing Out Loud”


Carrie, Mary, and Laura Ingalls

In the selection By the Shores of Silver Lake, we learn that Laura’s sister is blind.  Laura must “see out loud” for her sister Mary.  Laura describes everything that she sees in great detail so that Mary can “see” in her mind’s eye what Laura sees.

A writer can do the same thing for his/her readers.  Descriptive writing vividly portrays a person, place, or thing in such a way that the reader can visualize (see in the mind’s eye) the topic and enter into the writer’s experience.

This week, we are working on our first descriptive writing piece about a train ride — much like the train ride that Laura describes in By the Shores of Silver Lake.  Check back soon to read our descriptive writing work…

“By the Shores…” ~ Resources & Games


This week, we are reading an excerpt from the book By the Shores of Silver Lake, by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  Here are some resources and games to improve your comprehension of the story.

  • To meet the author, click here.
  • To learn the answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Laura Ingalls Wilder, click here.
  • For extra-credit Think About the Story questions to answer in the comment field, click here.
  • To read a story summary, click here.
  • To learn the definitions to the vocabulary words, click here.
  • To practice this selection’s vocabulary words by playing an eWord  Game, click here.
  • To use the eGlossary, click here.
  • To download and print a Hidden Message Puzzle to support the reading, click here.
  • To take a vocabulary quiz and upload your certificate, click here.
By the Shores of Silver Lake

Persuasive Writing ~ Should We Raise the Titanic?


Photograph by Emory Kristof

An intact glass pane from the window of Captain Edward J. Smith’s cabin hangs open on the Titanic, which lies two and a half miles (four kilometers) beneath the North Atlantic Ocean.  For more photographs of the Titanic, click here.

Click on Continue Reading to read the final drafts of our persuasive writing piece. Read the rest of this entry