Welcome again, Level 9 friends and family!


This month has seen us start a new book, The Time Traveller’s Guide to Medieval England. This is a book all about the actual day-to-day life of people living in England in the Middle Ages. It details their culture and values, their view of the outside word, their homes, cities, towns, villages, and much, much more. It has been a fascinating follow-up to our last book, which was a stylized medieval world. We are finding a lot of crucial contrasts between the fantastic world of Redwall and the real medieval world. We have, however, found some pretty striking similarities as well. Our writing sample this month is an application of what students have learned about the cultural values of the time. The student wrote a diary entry from the perspective of a real medieval lord, and included some very interesting details about what was viewed as entertainment at that time.


In writing class, students have been working on creating atmosphere. Atmosphere in writing is not easy to define. It includes a strong voice, a convincing setting, and a well-rounded character to ground the reader in the story, as well as a lot of realistic detail to pull the reader into your world. I believe that the students have learned a lot about writing as they have been practicing this. We have also taken a little time to practice public speaking skills like volume, intonation, and prosody.


In our periodical reading class, we have been taking some time to work on our final research project. The students have done some preliminary research to help them choose what topic they will write about. We have formulated our research questions and will now begin to research in earnest, collecting a broad range of articles about their chosen topics and sifting through them for useful information to include in the final paper. I can’t wait to see the fantastic work these students will produce this year!