Jasper Roberts - Blog

Kicking Off!

Tomorrow the students will once again fill the halls and classrooms!

This year I am teaching four different preps:

8th Grade Language Arts 1 (Reading/Writing)
8th Grade Language Arts 1 ET (Reading/Writing) *ET is our gifted program
7th Grade Language Arts 1 ET (Reading)
7th Grade Language Arts 2 ET (Writing)

Thank goodness I've actually done all these preps before. Last year was my first time with four preps, and it was a nightmare in addition to my first year as co-department chair. Thank goodness my bestie is my co-chair or I would have been a total mess! I had to give up Poms this year since I'm still directing the play and musical, so I figured I'd give myself a few months off in the winter to catch my breath, lol!

At our school we teach six periods a day, plus an SLC (small learning community), lunch period, and one prep period. I've never had a second period plan before, so I'm kind of excited to see what it's like to have my prep in the morning!

In looking at the schedule for tomorrow, I realized that I have a full period with some of my classes, mostly my LA2, and a very shortened schedule with others. I decided at the last minute that I should probably just get started with our writing curriculum immediately since I have the time, and I'll do all of the orientation stuff in their LA1 class. (I have the same students in 7th grade LA1 that I do in LA2, which is great!) So, I pulled out my Nancie Atwell book, Lessons that Change Writers, and took inventory of how many composition notebooks I already had on hand. In addition to those I'll use Kelly Gallagher, Teaching Adolescent Writers and Write Like This, Teaching Argumentative Writing by George Hillocks Jr., as well as our Grammar book. Of course the copy machine was broken, so I have a nice pile of copying to do tomorrow.

Side Note: I found this today in my bag, and it made me smile :)

In fact, I have my next novel sketched out on a Chipotle napkin right now, I'm hoping the hubster doesn't accidentally throw it away!

I located my writer's notebook from last year, and went to Walmart to pick up some notebooks for the kiddos. Why do I buy the notebooks? Because then we can start right away, they are all the same size, and have the exact same number of pages. I'm kind of a control freak, yikes~

Walmart was a madhouse, so I scooted over to target and picked up 30 (I already had about 20 at school from last year) composition notebooks, and went to check out. Turns out, they had been marked down to $.50, my lucky day!! :)

Here's what mine looked like from last year.

Tomorrow, we'll put names on the covers, number ALL of the pages (takes awhile but it's worth it), and complete the Writing Survey. This page will go in on Thursday, it's Nancie Atwell's Writing Territories guide. I'll post more about it after we do it!

Here's a look at our first couple of entries...

Finally, I ended my night by working in my Erin Condren planner, it made me feel better :)

I've got to go to bed, the alarm in seven hours will come too soon I'm sure!!


  1. Do you have another post that I'm not finding that shares more about the contents of the Writer's Notebook? I'd love to see copies of all of the things listed on your Table of Contents!

    1. I don't and I need to! I will try and get a post up soon about it!


Thanks for stopping by! JW