Grade 6: Try Something New (Blogging Edition)


This awesome list of prompts comes from TheEduBlogger.

Task: Choose to explore one of the ten creative outlets below.

You have the opportunity to demonstrate your creativity and innovative skills. You may choose to write, design, or talk about a topic that you are passionate about  (it must be school appropriate). Remember that your parents, teachers, and peers all view your blog. 

When you are finished with your new creation, please be sure to post it on your blog. 

1. Live Blog – Create a ‘Storify‘ for a topic or event that collects tweets, Instagram, links, and more into one place. Embed the story into a post and include an introductory summary and conclusion.

2. Infographic – use a tool like Canva to create an infographic and then write a post describing why you included the ideas you did.

3. Video – Produce a video with Animoto, or upload it to YouTube, embed it, and write about the decisions you made when making the video.

4. Poll – Use Google Forms or a plugin to publish a survey or poll. Follow up with a post that goes over the results, including graphs, charts and analysis.

5. Lists – Use Listly to create a list of resources, links, people, or ideas. You can even use this tool to crowdsource the list.

6. Talking Avatars – Create a speaking character using Voki to read your post or to interact with your blog’s visitors.

7. Presentations – Publish the slides, Prezi, or video of your presentation in a post. Reflect on the presentation. What is one thing that went well and one thing that could be have been improved?

8. Comics – Create a cartoon using Bitstrips and share it on your blog.

9. Audio – Record yourself speaking or reading and then use a tool like Audioboom to discuss your audio in a post.

10. VoiceThread – Embed your VoiceThread project in a post and encourage your blog readers to leave a comment with feedback on the presentation.

Grades 6-8: Independent Book Project Extended

The students have been working hard to complete the various sections of the Independent Reading Project. At this point, everyone should have submitted their Part A: vocabulary terms and two journal entries.

The due date for Part B: creative component/presentation has been extended. The creative component presentations will now begin on Wednesday, November 20th. 

Please review the rubric/creative component guidelines:

Grades 6-8: The Reading Challenge is Back!

The OJCS Reading Challenge is back, but this year it’s bigger and better!  

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The prizes this year will include:

  • An end-of-year book-based film screening in each classroom that meets their goals.  The library will provide each class with popcorn and candy treats.
  • Small prizes will be given out to each student who gets a Bingo on the genre bingo sheet (see document below)
  • The middle school class that reads the largest number of books will also earn a trip to an escape room!   

Will this year’s Grade 8 class repeat as middle school champions!?

How will we record the number of books read in each class?

For grades 6 – 8:

  • Upon completing a book, students will be required to complete an Accelerated Reader Quiz (AR Quiz) in order for their book selection to be recorded in the class total
  • To complete the quiz…follow these steps:
    • Click on Accelerated Reader (orange box)
    • Search for your book and complete the reading practice quiz

The number of pages will also impact how many books a particular novel counts for in the class total. After the AR Book quiz is complete, students will inform Mr. Washerstein and he will add the novel to the class list. 

0-300 pages will count as one book

301-600 pages will count as two books

601-900 pages will count as three books

901-1,100 pages will count as four books

We will set our class goals at the end of this week!

Grade 6: Terrific Tales Writing Assignment (Due: Monday 11/11)

Grade 6 students are preparing a written piece for their personal blogs! I can’t wait to read all of the Terrific Tales that our class composes. Today the students spent time in class reading the instructions, reviewing the requirements, brainstorming, and preparing to write their very own Terrific Tale.

Key requirements:

  • Respond to ONE of the following prompts
  • Minimum three paragraphs
  • Read the rubric and effectively edit your paper (follow techniques discussed in class/use COPS editing checklist)

Students will be given a significant amount of class time to work on this writing assignment this week. I do not want students to feel stressed about completing this assignment at home. Over the next two weeks, students should be focused on completing the various components of their Independent Reading Project at home.

Click here to access the Paragraph Planner Graphic Organizer:

Please check out the assignment details, rubric, brainstorming graphic organizer, and editing checklist below:

Grades 6-8: Independent Reading Project Check-In

I hope everyone has been enjoying reading their novels thus far! Please bring your books with you to school everyday this week. There will be time given to students throughout the week to D.E.A.R. (drop everything and read). This will provide students with an opportunity to get ahead of their nightly reading. Additionally, I will be meeting with students to check-in, offer suggestions, and provide feedback as students begin completing various parts of the project.

Please remember to complete the vocabulary portion of the project as you read! Journal entries may also be written as you are reading, depending on the response you have selected.

Here is a friendly reminder of the various due dates for the project:

  • Book completed- November 8th (Friday)
    • Check-in #2
  • Part A: Vocabulary List/Journal Entries- November 12th (Tuesday)
    • Check-in #3
  • Part B: Creative Component/Presentation-November 18th (Monday)
    • Presentations begin on November 18th, 2019
    • Please note: students will lose 10% of their mark per day late

Grades 6-8: Independent Reading Project Resources

I hope everyone is reading up a storm! Students should be reading each night in order to complete their Independent Reading Project by the assigned deadline. We have created a reading log/planning sheet to help students stay organized throughout the duration of the project.

Click the link below to view the reading log/planning sheet:

OJCS Reading Log and Planning Sheet


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Grades 6-8: Independent Reading Project

The Independent Reading Project is a chance for you to explore a novel of your choosing! You have been asked to read a minimum of 30 minutes each evening. This project is geared towards fostering a student community that appreciates reading on a regular basis. We will also be focusing on vocabulary acquisition, summarization skills, and presentation skills. 

Although there will be several work periods/check-ins throughout the duration of this project, the majority of this project will need to be completed at home. 

Independent Reading Project Due Dates:

  1. Independent Reading Project Assigned- October 23rd (Wednesday)
  2. Book approval (email/meet with Mr. Washerstein)- October 25th (Friday)
    1. Check-in #1
  3. Book completed- November 8th (Friday)
    1. Check-in #2
  4. Part A: Vocabulary List/Journal Entries- November 12th (Tuesday)
    1. Check-in #3
  5. Part B: Creative Component/Presentation-November 18th (Monday)
    1. Presentations begin on November 18th, 2019 
    2. Please note: students will lose 10% of their mark per day late


Reading Tips

  • Read with a set of sticky notes/Google Doc open to record new vocabulary terms immediately
  • Plan your weekly reading schedule at the beginning of the week
  • For those who benefit from using an audiobook, feel free to use that as a resource! Students should still be following along with the text as well.

What Should You Read?

Ideally, students should be choosing books that fall within their ZPD (zone of proximal development). I will be re-sharing your ZPD range prior to novel selection. You can use the Accelerated Reader Book Finder ( to check the level of a book. Our OJCS Library Catalogue also lists the book levels for many of the books found in our library ( 

Student interest also plays a significant role in book selection. I want each student to choose a book that will pique their interest, offer a challenge, and encourage further reading. 

Please read and review the assignment sheet below with your parents. Discuss the various choices/options that this project offers. Finally, please carefully read the rubrics to ensure comprehension. Happy reading!


Check out these digital resources! These websites can help you design your creative component for the project.

Grade 6: Egghead Update (Comprehension Questions due: Friday 10/25)

As the holidays begin to wind down…we are going to be diving back into our novel study of Egghead. Yesterday we read together as a class to ensure that everyone has reached Pg. 55. Some students have decided to read ahead which is great! Please remember not to spoil the novel for your peers.

Students have been answering comprehension questions in class after reading various chapters. Students can write or type their comprehension questions responses.

By next Thursday, students should have the following comprehension questions/journal entries complete: 

  • Devan 21-23
  • Katie 24-26
  • One Red Sock 27-28
  • Devan 29-30
  • Katie 31-34
  • Journal Reflection-Rumours and gossip
  • Devan 36-38
  • Katie 39-41
  • Devan 42-46
  • Katie 47-49
  • Devan 50-51
  • Katie 52-55
  • Journal Reflection (Choose one of the two options)
    • Please note that the journal reflections should be at least one paragraph


Grades 6-8: Creative Writing Journal

Students will spend time in class responding  to one of the following prompts. You must include a minimum of three paragraphs.

After you have completed this assignment, take time to edit your work. Check for: spelling, capitalization, grammar, and sentence structure. Students are encouraged to read all of their assignments out loud prior to submission.

Check out this editing checklist: