Do you use the College Board's SpringBoard curriculum?
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Monday began a new marking period for us.  I now have one full marking period of using SpringBoard under my belt and have been wondering:

Do you use this curriculum?

The reason I ask is because while I think it is well done, my students, all of whom have learning challenges, need more  - more structure, more review and more reinforcement.  Is this the same for anyone else?  What do you do to add on to SpringBoard?

I have recently tried something new and "added-on" with Mentor Sentences...

I have found that Mentor Sentences work so well for my students because the Mentor Sentences honestly help grammar make sense.  Plus there are so many teachable moments that come from looking at the sentence for evidence of what is happening!  Here's how it works:
  • You start with a sentence from your reading that is a good example of something  - like complex sentences.  
  • You hang this sentence on poster paper clipped to your board.
  • Students glue a copy of this sentence into their notebooks.
  • Then you elicit responses from the students as to why is a good sentence.  You write on the poster, they write in their notebooks.
  • Next, (perhaps on the next day but I do this on the first day) you and the students label the parts of speech.
  • The next day, you ask students to brainstorm synonyms for some of the verbs, adjectives and adverbs so you can revise the sentence.  You write a revision on the poster and the students copy it into their notebook.  This is a good day to do a foldable of the target (in this case - complex sentences) if you have one.
  • The following day, you invite the students to imitate the sentence.  Now they can write their own about a completely different subject using the same style.
  • On the last day you give an assessment where the students edit the mentor sentence that is missing some key items, list some of the parts of speech and identify the target (such as complex sentences).  

If you're like me, you want to see this in action.  Here is the person who started it all for me:

From this the students not only have a great sentence to refer to but you have gone over evidence, parts of speech, revising, vivid words (description), editing for conventions and whatever target you have set.  My students love it!  You can get Mentor Sentences from Jivey on Teachers Pay Teachers for all sorts of wonderful picture books if you're interested.  (This is not a paid or solicited review - I just think mentor sentences make so much sense!)

Instead of using other literature, I am using the SpringBoard literature for my mentor sentences.  I am following a similar pattern to the unit made by Jivey but obviously with a bit of my own twist.

My freebie this week is my first attempt to try my hand at SpringBoard specific mentor sentences.  It is for "How Fire came to the Six Nations."  You can get it HERE  for free on Google Docs.  

I would love to hear from you if you use SpringBoard (or even if you don't :)  )  so please take a moment to let me know what you think.

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