Welcome to Reading/Writing Workshop!

 ✹Reading/Writing Workshop✹
Ballenger Creek Middle School ✹ Mrs. Shaffer

The goal of this course is to provide short-term, intensive teaching to help students meet grade-level standards as quickly as possible. Students enrolled in this course access READ 180, which incorporates small group instruction, computer-adaptive instructional software, and independent reading with a focus on improving comprehension of complex texts. After careful consideration, your child has been selected to participate in the program in order to support his or her instructional needs. READ 180 is a research-based program with proven results in raising student reading achievement. READ 180 uses cutting-edge technology to deliver individualized reading instruction, provide valuable skills practice, and motivate students to become confident readers. In our Reading/Writing Workshop, we will work together to:

  • Build essential literacy skills for college and career readiness. Bring his or her reading proficiency up to grade level.
  • Develop multi-paragraph writing skills.
  • Apply reading and writing strategies to other subjects such as social studies, science, and math.
  • Show the student that he or she can attain reading success.

Units of Study
The Read 180 rskills book consists of nine units. The expectation is to cover three units each year. The units in the book become more challenging as they progress.

6th Grade Units 7th Grade Units  8th Grade Units
  • The New Americans
  • When Disaster Strikes
  • Identity Crisis
  • Stolen Childhoods
  • Under Pressure
  • Poe: The Master of Horror
  • Alien Invaders
  • Turning Points
  • Streets of Harlem

Reading/Writing Workshop grades will be determined by the weighted categories listed below:

  • 40% Classwork: Warm ups and Wrap Ups, whole and small group rBook completion, reading logs, quick writes and organizers for independent reading, end of workshop writing pieces and unit project.
  • 25% Quiz: Content vocabulary with each unit and Reading Counts Book Quiz for independent reading and Wrap-Up Quiz in student rBook.
  • 35% Assessment: Read 180 computer software (comprehension, vocabulary, spelling, fluency, and writing activities) and end of unit rSkills test-on computer.

Ballenger Creek Middle School encourages parents to regularly check their student's grades on HAC. The following list of codes is provided to help parents better understand the grading program. An “E” is issued to excuse work; this has no affect on a student’s grade. A blank space or a “Z” indicates the work has not yet been turned in and will show as a zero on the grade until completed. An actual “0” in the grade book signifies that a student earned a zero on the assignment.

Students are expected to read outside of the classroom for 15-20 minutes each day.
To sign up for the 6th Grade Reading/Writing Workshop Remind homework text message notification, text the message @bcmsrww6 to the number 81010.
To sign up for the 7th Grade Reading/Writing Workshop Remind homework text message notification, text the message @bcmsrww7 to the number 81010.

Late Work and Absences
Assignments are expected be completed and submitted on time. Assignments turned in after their due date may lose credit each day they are late. Per FCPS policy, students who are absent from class must request makeup work within two days of their return. The amount of time for a student to complete the work will equal the number of days he or she was absent. It is the student’s responsibility to ask the teacher about work upon returning to school. Students are welcome to contact me by phone or email to ask about assignments.

Class Expectations
Reading/Writing Workshop will offer students a chance to collaborate and work independently each day. Students are expected to participate and engage in class. No textbook will be assigned for Reading/Writing Workshop. Students will use READ 180 workbooks (rBooks) and books that are housed in the classroom. The classroom should be a place full of respect and reasonable risk-taking. It is expected that students will always conduct themselves in an academic, respectful manner when using technology in the classroom. Students should not be on apps or websites that have not been approved, should only use technology for academic purposes, and must always use the school’s wireless connection. Students should not be texting or using social media at school. The following class rules will be in place:

  • Follow all school rules.
  • Follow directions.
  • Bring all materials to class.
  • Use appropriate, respectful language.

Our class will follow the school-wide PBIS program, which is a proactive approach to establishing the behavioral supports and social culture and needed for all students in a school to achieve social, emotional, and academic success. Students who do not choose to follow class/school expectations will have the following consequences:

1. Verbal Warning
2. Reflection/Conference with student
3. Parent Contact
4. Administrative Lunch Reflection
5. Referral (Note: Automatic referral for major offenses)

Contacting Mrs. Shaffer
I welcome all students and families to contact me with questions, concerns, and ideas. The best way to reach me is by email at katherine.shaffer@fcps.org. I can be reached by telephone at 240-236-5746; please note that I will not be at my desk for the majority of the day.