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Quill Pen

Writers Club
Activities and Homework
2013 -2014
Writers Club - February 12, 2014 
Great Writers Club today!  Students scored actual writing samples from previous SOL tests.  Working as a group, they scored and discussed the reasons for a particular score.  They used the actual scoring rubric as a guide and at the end their scores matched the actual scores perfectly.   

Session #3

Today the Writers Club met for the third time.  Everyone was present and worked hard.  We are still missing 2 folders – please check with your writer to make sure he knows where his folder his.  Thanks to Mrs. Avery and Mrs. Cahak for assisting with the Writers Club today.

We are about to finish up on the “Composing” Area of the scoring system.  The composing area has four parts:

Central Idea (Writing a good topic sentence based on the prompt and maintaining the central idea throughout the writing.)

Elaboration (Using adjectives and adverbs to tell more.  Details, details, details.  Using the 5 Ws – Who, What, When, Where and Why.)

Unity  (Making sure that all sentences are on the topic and no off topic information is included)

Organization (Beginning – Middle –End along with a good opening and conclusion)

Your writer should be able to explain to you what these mean. 

Each are of the 3 scoring areas (Composing, Written Expression, and Usage/Mechanics)  is scored on a 4 point scale.  A student needs to get a 3 or 4 in each area to pass the test.   You can find more information about the scoring rubric here:

Writers Club will not meet next week because of the Thanksgiving Holiday.  Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. 

If you have any questions or comments, please email. 

Session #2 – 11/13/2013

Today was the second meeting of the Writers Club.  Unfortunately we had several complications in the intervening weeks – a moveable Monday, an absence for Mrs. Neville, and a mixed up field trip date.  I think we were all glad to be back on track today for Session #2.  All students were present and everyone worked hard throughout the hour.  Mrs. Neville was assisted by Mrs. Cahak and Mrs. Avery. 

Today’s focus was to review central idea, topic sentence and writing to a prompt;  and begin to learn about elaboration.  We wrote pyramid (triangle) sentences and also expanded sentences using Who, What, When, Where, and Why (or How).  We also worked on phonetic spelling.  On the SOL Writing Test,  spelling counts, but if the reader understands what the student means, there is little or no deduction for a misspelled word. 

We also talked about strategies for writing a good topic sentence: 1.   using words from the prompt and 2.  turning a question into a statement.   We talked about how the topic sentence controls the rest of the essay. 

You may want to ask your writer the following questions.

What does elaborate mean?  Choose an object at home and “elaborate” on it!

What is a triangle (or Pyramid sentence)?  What elaboration strategy can you use with the 5 fingers on your hand?

What happens if you don’t write to the prompt on the SOL Writing test?

Please email if you have any comments or questions.  Thank you for your support.

Session #1

Today was the first meeting of the Writers Club for the 2013 - 2014 school year.  8 of the 9 members were present and what a great group they are!    They worked very hard during the entire hour and we accomplished a huge amount of work. 

We began work on our “Writers Club Folders.”  I hope you will take the time to look at your child’s folder and have them explain what we talked about today. 

You might ask these questions . . .

Who scores the 5th Grade Writing SOL tests?

What is phonetic spelling?

Does spelling count on the SOL Writing Test? 

Parents, please initial your child’s folder after you have taken a look.  In your child’s folder, you will find a copy of the 5th grade Writing SOLs.  I’m sure they’d look great hanging on your refrigerator!

Today we talked about writing to a prompt, staying on topic, spelling phonetically,

We looked at Telescopic Text:


We created Avatars:

Thanks for all your support.  If you have any questions, please email me:

Last Modified on February 12, 2014