Monthly Archives: December 2013

What’s the Big Idea?


The big idea is this!  We are learning how to determine central ideas or themes of a text and summarize the key supporting details and ideas.  For the next two weeks, you will practice and apply your knowledge of theme.  (Two weeks?  Why, yes, alert readers, this is your Holiday Homework.  You’re welcome!)

To begin, review this Theme PowerPoint to learn about Big Ideas, what theme is and is not, and how to evaluate theme.

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Then, watch this Theme Tutorial to increase and solidify your understanding of theme.

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Now, it is your turn to create a story and determine its theme.  Click on Creating a Theme Practice to try it out.  Fun!!!

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After viewing these tutorials, practice what you’ve learned with this Theme Worksheet.  You may check your answers here to see if you are on the right track.

Finally, you are ready to apply your knowledge of theme and supporting details with your daily reading!

Your mission over Winter Break: Write a Response to Literature paragraph about the central theme of your book.

10 Steps:

  1. Choose a fabulous AR chapter book.
  2. Read for a minimum of 45 minutes daily.
  3. As you read, think about the “Big Ideas” or themes in your book.
  4. Make a List of Themes that appear in your book.
  5. Choose one central theme.
  6. Write notes on the details that support this central theme.
  7. Review how to write a Response to Literature paragraph.
  8. Write a Response to Literature paragraph on the book’s central theme.
  9. Evaluate your writing by completing the Central Theme Writing Rubric.
  10. Submit your paragraph on Monday, January 6, 2014. 🙂

Here are a few more tools to help you:

Sweet themes, sixth-grade scholars!

Ms. Rankin


Informational Text ~ Plate Tectonics


In Science, we are studying Plate Tectonics and Earth’s Structure.  Here is your mission:

  1. You will gather, read, and integrate relevant information from multiple print sources (science book, biography, articles) and digital sources (videos, interactive websites, graphics). 
  2. You will then examine and convey the theory of plate tectonics by writing a clear and accurate informational text.
  3. You will use technology to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.  

To get us thinking about the Theory of Plate Tectonics, here are our  Standards Warm-Up PPT and Standards Warm-Up Note Taking resources. Additionally, here is a quick Informational Writing PowerPoint so you can review the differences between literary and informational writing.  Finally, here is your Science Notes Plate Tectonics template to complete as you research and pose questions on the Theory of Plate Tectonics.  Enjoy the learning process, sixth-grade scholars!

Plate Tectonic Videos

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Informational Text for Research:

Alfred Wegener

Alfred Lothar Wegener: Moving continents

Dictionary Definition of Plate Tectonics

Encyclopedia – Plate Tectonics

Plate Tectonics – Enchanted Learning

The Dynamic Earth ~ Plate Tectonics and Volcanoes

This Dynamic Earth ~ The Story of Plate Tectonics

Interactive Activities to Increase Comprehension:

Convection Currents

Global Plate Reconstructions

Plate Tectonics Interactive Animations

Plate Tectonics Puzzle

Sea-Floor Spreading


Online Vocabulary Builder:

Plate Tectonics