Welcome to Ms. Samuels's 8th grade Language Arts class. Here you will find information for students and parents. Please continue to revisit this site for updates on various things occuring in class.

Friday, September 28, 2012

A better understanding

Today we received a better understanding of validity and reliability by reviewing facts and opinions. Please print out the following slides and place them in your FCAT Notes sections of your binder. No homework this weekend, but remember we have our first district writing assessment on Monday!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Today we determined the definitions for academic vocabulary words: reliable and valid. We also used the dictionary and thesaurus to define three words (macabre, camouflage, and predisposition) that we will see in our next passage, "Why Leaves turn Color in Fall."

Homework for tonight is to complete the color poem we began on Tuesday.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Using Personification in Poetry

Today we viewed student examples of personification in poetry and began our draft poem personifying a color. The criteria for the poem are as followed:

Your poem should include

  1. Five stanzas (with a minimum of 4 lines in each stanza)
  2. A metaphor or simile
  3. Sensory details
  4. Must show personification
Final poems are due this Friday. Have a great day off!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Brainstorming for Poetry

Today we began to brainstorm ideas for personifying a poem. We all picked a color of our choice and answered questions to better help us brainstorm. Below you will find the format used if you were absent today. Kudos to Period 4, they completed today's Bellwork perfectly, way to go guys!

Homework for tonight is to complete the practice handout on subjects and predicates. 

Alert: If you did not do well on Friday's test, the re-test day is tomorrow! Either in the morning @ 8:30 or during your lunch period. Please note this is the only day available to improve your score. We will review inference and take a second assessment.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Test tomorrow! Study!

reading worksheets

Print practice test results for extra credit!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Taught me Purple

Today we continued to infer meaning through poetry by looking at another poem about color. This one was written by Evelyn Tooley Hunt entitled: Taught me Purple.

Homework for tonight is to complete Activity #12 by inferring meaning of each stanza using today's poem and identifying the essential message.

Test on Friday!!!!! (Study conclusions and inferences + your 17 BAV words)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Nothing Gold Can Stay

Today we read "Nothing Gold can Stay," by Robert Frost and identified imagery and symbolism.
Here is a short biography on Robert Frost for further reading: Robert Frost Bio

Homework for tonight is to complete, paraphrasing the poem into our own words and finishing activity #11.

For students that did not complete their literary vocabulary last Thursday, below are the words and organizer that we used.


  • Couplet
  • Hue
  • Subside
  • Grief
  • Tenement

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Open House

Although I was absent today, kudos to those students that were responsible and turned in their Reflective Essay on time!

Open House this evening was AMAZING! What an awesome opportunity for me to meet the parents of such wonder students, and give some insight as to the workings of the class. Thank you parents for coming out and showing support, we have great things in-store for this year.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Building Academic Vocab

Today we complete a whopping 5! academic vocabulary words as we prepare for our next unit on poetry.

The words we accomplished were:

  1. Inference
  2. Stanza
  3. Allusion
  4. Symbolism
  5. Paraphrase

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Writing Day

Today we used our 6-box writing activity to begin our draft reflective essay. Based on what I saw in class we are off the a great start.

Final Reflective essay's are due Thursday.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Brainstorming for Reflective Essay

As we prepare to write a reflective essay about an influential person in our life, brainstorming is an essential tool. We used the 6-Box Writing activity to get our essays ready for writing.

Your final essay must be turned in no later than Thursday, September 13.

Open House is also this Thursday, the program will begin at 6, hope to see you there!

Instead of posting the rubric for the reflective essay, I will give everyone a copy in class tomorrow.

Friday, September 7, 2012

All on a Friday

Today we focused on subjects and predicates in a sentence. We watched Schoolhouse Rocks Mr. Morton and worked in our Grammar textbooks. If you did not do well on Thursday's test, you should report to my classroom during lunch with your food. We will work, eat, and retest for a better grade!

Below you will find the pages for each prep completed today.


Pg. 373 Exercise 3 (ALL)
Pg. 373 Exercise 4 (1-5)
Pg. 374 Exercise 6 (ALL)
Pg. 375 Exercise 8 (ALL)


Pg. 382 Exercise 1 (1-5)
Pg. 402 Exercise 1 (1-5)
Pg. 373 Exercise 3 (1-5)
Pg. 373 Exercise 4 (1, 3, & 5)

Homework is to complete Activity 9

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Today we completed our test on Main Idea.

Homework for tonight is:
               Grammar textbook pg 372. Exercise 2 (Even #'s only)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Poem "I Know Why the Cage Bird Sings"

Here is the link to the poem we completed our FOUR SQUARE activity on today:
I Know Why...Poem

Reminder: Test on Main Idea tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Essential Message/Main Idea

Today we began class with working on Grammar, we continued the lesson by interpreting the essential message of Maya Angelou's excerpt.

Reminder: Main Idea test on Thursday.