Monthly Archives: September 2011

“Hallowed Haiku” Poetry Exhibit


Our 4th-grade class is honored to present its annual online poetry exhibit and competition: Hallowed Haiku.  

You are invited to read our haiku submissions and vote on your favorite haiku.  Our online poll opens on Thursday, September 29 at 7PM and closes on Monday, October 3 at 7PM.

This year’s Hallowed Haiku exhibit features original haiku from twenty-nine 4th grade poets.  The submissions are traditional haiku, consisting of three short lines.  The first line contains five (5) syllables, the second line seven (7) syllables, and the third line five (5) syllables.

The starred (***) haiku submissions qualify for our online competition because they feature a simile or metaphor that helps “paint” a mental image in the reader’s mind.  This is the challenge of Haiku – to put the poem’s meaning and imagery in the reader’s mind in ONLY 17 syllables over just three (3) lines of poetry!

You may read our students’ poetry submissions by clicking and downloading the hyper-linked poems below. You may vote by using our PollDaddy poll below.  We respectfully ask that you vote only once; therefore, please read the submissions carefully and choose your favorite haiku wisely.

Thank you for your participation!!  Express!  Impress!!  Press on!!!!


Hi Haiku! Nice to Meet You!!


This week, we have been reading a story about a journey from Japan to California.   Click on our post Resources for “Grandfather’s Journey” to learn more about the story and our learning activities around it.

Our writing assignment this week is to compose an original haiku poem.  Haiku is a non-rhyming type of poetry from the Japanese culture. Haiku poets write about everyday things.  Many themes include nature, feelings, or experiences.

This week, our students will write traditional haiku.  We will then share our haiku in a class Haiku Exhibit and Competition.  We will vote for our favorite haiku poem.  Please stay tuned…

Here is Ms. Rankin’s very first Haiku:

Click here for your Haiku Template.

Express!  Press on!!

Resources for “Grandfather’s Journey”


This week, we are reading Grandfather’s Journeyin our Houghton Mifflin reading anthology.  Here are some resources to increase your comprehension and enjoyment of this reading selection.

Click on “Meet the Author” to learn about the author and illustrator.

Comprehension:  Click on Comprehension Quiz to test your understanding of the story and prepare for Friday’s Reading Test.

Vocabulary:  Click on e-Word Game to play a game while practicing this week’s vocabulary words.  Click on Flashcards to practice the vocabulary words with flashcards.  Click on Matching Game or Concentration Game or Wordsearch to play games that practice the vocabulary words.

Grammar:  Click on Subject/Predicate Practice to practice the grammar topic for this week.  Click on Subject/Predicate Video to watch a music video on subjects and predicates.

Writing:  Learn about haiku.  Write your own haiku on the Haiku Hero game!

Resources for “Akiak”


This week, we are reading “Akiak: A Tale from the Iditarod”  in our Houghton Mifflin reading anthology.  Here are some resources to increase your comprehension and enjoyment of this reading selection.

Click on “Meet the Author” to learn about the author/illustrator.    Click on Robert J. Blake’s Website to go directly to the author’s awesome website.

Click on The Official Site of the Iditarod to learn much more about the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race through videos, maps, news and articles.

Click on the video to watch a video about Syberian Huskies in the Iditarod.

Click on Flashcards to study our vocabulary words, play games, and test yourself.   Click on Matching Game to play a matching game with our vocabulary words.  Click on Word Search to complete an online word search of the vocabulary words.

Click on e-Word Game to practice the vocabulary words.

Click on Akiak Study Guide and Work Packet to download our class work for the week.

Post comments about the story, the author, and/or the Iditarod for extra credit (and earn $$ funny money $$ for Friday’s auction!).

“The Pumpkin Runner”


This first Back-to-School week, we are reading “The Pumpkin Runner,” by Marsha Diane Arnold.  While we read the story, we will practice different reading strategies that can help us read better.  These strategies are:

  1. Predict/Infer
  2. Phonics/Decoding
  3. Monitor/Clarify
  4. Question
  5. Evaluate
  6. Summarize

Click here for our Vocabulary/Spelling Words from “The Pumpkin Runner.”

We will write our thoughts about these strategies in our Practice Book pages.  We will also post comments about these strategies and the story here on our blog.

Happy reading and writing!! 🙂