Welcome to Bella Vista Middle School's Language Arts Department page! Our curriculum is driven by the California Department of Education's content standards, which can be viewed using the links on the right.
With the new Common Core Standards in Language Arts, there is a shift from specific "learn for the test" standards, to a deeper critical thinking approach in areas of reading, vocabulary, writing, and language. Students will read and annotate more relevant informational texts, along with analyzing literature, using specific "signposts and notes" to identify patterns. There is an emphasis on analyzing texts for central idea based on textual evidence in non-fiction and fiction. Students will learn to marginalize their texts to create questions, comments, and understanding. Writing an argument with supporting evidence from cited sources becomes a goal. Explanatory research essays and literary responses must have supporting citations.
Learning to use collaborative conversation by employing academic language with a partner or group will be practiced using sentence frames. The goal is to have students own their learning by creating questions and ideas, discussing concepts, analyzing readings, forming an argument, comparing and contrasting ideas, and evaluating and synthesizing information from multiple sources.
Sixth grade has less time to teach the subject of Language Arts. With only a single period for instruction and practice, students will be expected to meet homework practice requirements for outside reading, finalizing writing, practicing language skills, and learning vocabulary. Teachers model all aspects of expectations to help students through their learning processes. Our DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) Period is held for 25 minutes Tuesday through Thursday. This time also allows for any necessary interventions to promote student success.
Seventh Grade Language Arts
Welcome to 7th grade! Here is an overview of what your child will learn by the end of 7th grade in English language arts and literacy. Our state has recently adopted the new Common Core State Standards, which have been adopted by more than 40 other states. These standards focus on learning how to think critically, at a deeper level; thus ensuring that students are prepared for success in college and the workforce. Your child will analyze, define, compare, and evaluate ideas when reading, writing, speaking and listening. He or she will continue to analyze how themes in fiction and nonfiction develop over the course of a book or article. Readings will include classic and contemporary pieces that represent diverse perspectives. In particular, 7th grade students' ability to cite evidence when offering an interpretation of a text matures. They will use relevant evidence when supporting their own points, making their reasoning clear and/or constructively evaluating others' use of evidence. This ability will help your child in every facet of his or her studies.
The goal of the language arts program is to enable each student, within the domains of our Common Core Standards, to become a better reader, speaker, writer and listener. Since literature provides the best model of language, it will be used as the core of the language arts curriculum. We will be using the Holt anthology and the “Daybook of Critical Reading and Writing” that our district has adopted. Your child will be critically reading, discussing, and writing about literature. Applicable skills within Hess’ Cognitive Rigor Matrix and application of Webb’s Depth-of-Knowledge Levels to Bloom’s Cognitive process will be implemented within instruction. Common Core Standards adopted by the state of California for Eighth Grade, will drive the program. Students will work both individually and cooperatively to find deeper meaning in texts and to convey meaning to others both in written and verbal expression. Above all, the goal of our program is to help students discover the joy of language.