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Each child has an assigned journal due date due every other week. For example, if your child's day was a Monday, then his/her journal would be due every other Monday. This journal should be worked on during school. When an in-class assignment is finished early, students should go directly to their journal, as independent work. However, in the case that the journal cannot be completed, this is when it should be brought home for completion. There are no exceptions, students have two weeks to finish this.




    • Your letter must be in "Letter Format"- "Dear Mrs. Gold, the date, and "Sincerely, your name"

    • The title of the book must be underlined, and the author’s name must be stated.

    • PARAGRAPH 1:
      Your letter must include a short summary (about 5-10 sentences) of the story, including problem, solution, characters, and main idea of the story.

    • PARAGRAPH 2:
      Your letter must include the current strategy we are working on in Reading. (Visualizing, Making Connections, Making Inferences, Wondering/Questioning, etc...)

    • PARAGRAPH 3:
      Your letter must answer at least one of the “Choice Questions” below.


  Journal Response Example 

October 10, 2011

Dear Mrs. Gold,
This week I read Yoko by Rosemary Wells. It’s about a Japanese kitten named Yoko, who brings sushi and red bean ice cream for lunch at school. She’s crushed when her classmates begin to make fun of her. Mrs. Jenkins, Yoko’s teacher, decides to solve this problem by holding an International Food Day at school. Everyone must bring something from their culture. Mrs. Jenkins encourages everyone to try everything. Still, Yoko’s sushi remains untouched and she’s feeling extremely sad and left out. Finally, Timothy, a raccoon, decides to try the sushi and he likes it! The next day at lunch, Yoko and Timothy shared Dragon Rolls together. (Summary)

While reading this story, it reminded me of several things in my life. I love Japanese food, and my family and I will often go out for sushi. My favorite type of sushi is a Philadelphia roll, which is made up of smoked salmon and cream cheese! Another connection I have is that Timothy reminds me of myself because I will try anything once! I really enjoy experiencing new foods. (Strategy we're working on)

If the story took place in another setting, the book would be changed slightly. For example, if the story took place in Japan, eating sushi wouldn’t be uncommon there, so perhaps a student might be eating pizza and the Japanese students wouldn’t want to try it because it seems odd or different to them. I think that the main idea of the story would be the same though- that you should be open to trying new things, and respecting others who are different. (Choice Question)

I recommend this book to you!
Mrs. Gold


  Journal Response Choice Questions 
(Students must answer at least one of these in their journals each week.)

Would you like to have a personality trait of a particular character? What is the trait and why do you like it?

What clues did the author use to help you predict what was going to happen later?

What makes you wonder in this book?

If your book took place in a different setting, how would that change the story. Why?

What are your favorite lines or quotes? Copy them into your journal and tell why you like them.

How have you changed after reading this book?

What do you know now that you didn't know before?

What questions about this book would you like answered?

Would you like to read more books by this author? Why?

What do you predict will happen next in your book? Why?

What character do you like least? Why? What character do you like best? Why?

What incident or conflict does the author use to begin the story? Why do you think the author chose this beginning?

How does the author create suspense?

If you could change the ending of the book, what would you do? Why?

Did the book end the way you thought it would? Describe what you had predicted would happen, and what really happened.

Did any characters change during the course of the book? How did they change? What caused this change?

What is the mood or tone of the book? How does the author create that mood?

Does this book seem similar to any other book you have read? In what ways are the two books similar?

What other important characters are there in the book besides the main character(s)? How are they important to the plot?

What clues did the author use to help you predict what was going to happen later?

What character would you like to be in this book? Why?

What do you think of a particular character's actions? Are they right or wrong? Why?

What confuses you in this book? Why?

What were some of the events that created conflict (a problem) in your book? What made these things happen? Why?

What is the most important part of the book? Why?

What advice would you give a particular character? Why?

If you could introduce a character from your book to your family, who would it be? Why?

Which character would you be ashamed to introduce to your family? Why?

Did this book make you laugh? Cry? Cringe? Smile? Cheer?  Explain.

What are the best parts of this book?  Why?  What are the worst parts of the book?  Why?

What parts of the book seem the most believable?  Why?  What parts seem unbelievable?  Why?

In what ways are you like any of the characters?  Explain.

Do you like the ending of this book?  Why or why not?  Do you think there is more to tell?  What do you think might happen next?

Do you think the title fits the book?  Why or why not?

What came as a surprise in this book?  Why?

How do you picture the author of this book?  Why do you picture him or her this way?

If you could change an event in this book, what would it be and why?



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