Thursday, October 10, 2013


ELA- Writing-  Blog posts listed below are overdue. Students need to ensure they are complete or one's ability to participate in blogging will be greatly reduced! If you can't blog, then write your answers and hand them in in Monday. You will still be expected to type them in our Kidblog account. 

AR Reading - students are expected to read novels and complete AR tests every 2-3 weeks. The focus is on reading of course and not necessity on points. Students will have a chance to set reading goals and improve their reading. 

In French, students are to ensure their Basic French handouts are complete. We will continue our lessons with "J'aime..." next week. 

School Run Fridays - be prepared! 

Note there are other assignments on the Agenda board for other teachers, therefore there is more than just this homework. Please monitor homework with the Agenda. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!! 
Ms. Stewie! 

Composing Quality Comments

This week we started blogging and sharing our thoughts on "Two Islands" and The Lorax from our Global Citizens Unit. Please see the assignment from a couple days ago on this blog. 

Blogging has many parts: the post, the comments, and the sidebar.

If you do a good job with all of the parts, your blog will be more interesting.

Today we discussed how to make a quality comment. This is especially important because blogging allows for interaction, almost like an on-line conversation. 

So to make what you say relevant to the person's post you are commenting on, there are a few tips you need to remember.

The Commenting 3C's + Q
1. Compliment - Start off positive. Compliment the person on something specific you have read or observed in the person's blog post. 

2. Comment - Comment on something relevant and meaningful about what the person wrote. Be specific about what you're commenting on. Remember your comment might not always be agreement. You can "politely and tactfully" disagree. 

3. Connect - Connect with something the person wrote. Text to self, text to text, text to world - but explain that connection with details. Try to give a complete explanation or picture to your audience of what you're talking about. Or think of it as adding information or insight - or another point of view. 

4. Question - Ask a specific question about something written or to the writer. Keep the conversation going! 

Content is key!
As a class, we will evaluate our blog comments. Each student will be expected to self and peer assess comments, as this opportunity to reflect and assess will make you a better writer.

The Quick Evaluation Guide to Comments...
A one-point comment is a general comment that doesn't add very much to the post. 
Example: I like your blog. Please visit mine! 

A two-point comment adds something to the comment conversation. A commenter might compliment the writer in a specific way or add new information.
Example: I like how you say.... I also think.... because...
Or, have you thought about....

A three point comment is when a Connection is made. Try to make a connection (text to self, text to text, text to world). Maybe the post reminds you of an experience that you've had or something you've read or seen in the news. Share that connection!  But explain the connection fully, so your audience knows what you're talking about. 
Example: In your post when you say.... It reminds me of .... (Connection explained)

Finally, for a four point comment... try to end your comment with a relevant question. That way, an interesting conversation can develop.
Example: After reading what you said about.... I wonder.... 
 Or - Why do you think that...?

Have you thought about...?

Remember, Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing!! 

If you are worried about spelling or grammar, use your tools... Your digital tools!! Type your blog post or comments in Word. Then use Spellcheck and grammar check to help catch mistakes. But be sure to revise for quality content, interesting voice and word choice - as the computer can't do all that.... Well, maybe try the thesaurus feature! After you compose in Word, copy/paste into Kidblog. 

Here is a video made by a group of young student from a class in Australia, with tips to help you take your comments to the next level!

If Vimeo is blocked, here it is on YouTube.

Pink Shirt Day on Tuesday

On Tuesday, October 15, it's PINK SHIRT DAY here at St. Francis...

So what's it all about??? Go to the link below, from a former post on my blog, on why PINK SHIRT DAY started... It has Canadian roots!

The questions we did in class...


On Tuesday, Oct. 15th ... students are asked to wear pink as a statement to stand up to bullying. The purpose is to create awareness regarding bullying and how students can stand up in solidarity to show that they actually care about this issue.

The story behind the event...

Visit for

Pink Shirt Day / Anti- Bullying Awareness Questions (I posted this last year... teachers feel free to use any of these questions... Students in my class, we will be exploring these questions in discussion...
* Write in Sentence form being sure to use the question in your answer.
This will be evaluated in ELA as part of Viewing...

Previewing questions...
1. Why do you need to take a stand against bullying?

2. Why is it worth it to take the risk and show you care?

Viewing Questions...
1. Where did the video take place?

2. Who were the two boys that started the movement, "Pink Shirt Day"?

3. a)What did they do to start the movement?

b)How did this gesture make a difference to the boy who was being bullied? To other victims? Bystanders? Bullies?
4. Why do you think that the movement has gained such popularity around the world?

5. Why is it important to note that an American News station reported on this event?

6. What would have been the consequences of doing nothing or being "apathetic"? How are bystanders almost as bad as the bullies? What do bystanders need to develop within themselves?

Post Viewing Questions...
Watch 2 other videos - you must watch the ANTI BULLYING AD (boy with red hair) plus one additional video...

1. a) What do you notice about the bullies? Are they ever alone?

b) Why do you think that the bullies targeted a person?

2. If you ever confront a bully one-on-one, they always back down, because they are __________. They lack the confidence to stand up to you because deep in their heart they know that their behaviour is wrong. Why do you think that some people bully?

What do their actions say about them?

3. What did the people who stood up to bullying do to make a positive differernce? What strategies did they employ? What challenges did they confront? What did they accomplish?

4. What responsibility do you think teenagers have to address bullying problems in their schools and communities (this includes cyber community ie: Facebook)?

5. Do teens have more, less or equal responsibilities to address these problems as the adults in the community?

Remember that with every person, even a bully, we all have reasons why we behave the way we do. The bully acts out because he or she don't feel good about themselves (sometimes they might not be willing to admit this - even themselves) so they put others down. It is for this reason, that we need to do what Jesus taught us and forgive.

It may take time... but it's important to do. If you have ever been a bully, forgive yourself - then try to make a difference and change your behaviour (and attitude) for the better. It's never too late.

6. Go to your blog ( and write a reflection on this day and what it means. Use these questions to assist you.