Students, welcome to Middle School Language Arts.  We look forward to having you in class this year! Our goal is to help you learn and grow in an environment where you feel comfortable but challenged. Most of all, we want you to experience the joy and power of the written word, both as a reader and as a writer.


    Please read this overview carefully so you know what to expect and what is expected of you.  This will be a challenging course that is both thought provoking and hopefully fun!


    - Your Language Arts Teachers



    Course Descriptions



    6th Grade

    7th Grade

    8th Grade


    Reading Units

    Reading is a lifelong practice and pleasure. This year we will read a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts. In addition, you will be reading independent novels of your choice and responding to these novels in a weekly Reading Journal.

    ·   Personal Narratives

    ·   The Novel

    ·   Fantasy Fiction

    ·   Biography

    ·   Author Study

    ·   Short Stories

    ·    Science Fiction

    ·   A Christmas Carol

    ·   Literature of the Holocaust

    ·   The Phantom Tollbooth

    ·   Free Verse Poetry

    ·   Memoir

    ·   The Short Story

    ·   Diverse Voices in Historical Fiction

    ·   Contemporary Realistic Fiction

    ·   A Midsummer Night’s Dream

    ·   Sonnets

    ·   Memoir

    ·   Literature of the Holocaust

    ·   Diverse Voices in Historical Fiction

    ·   Contemporary Realistic Fiction

    ·   A Midsummer Night’s Dream

    ·   Free Verse Poetry


    Writing is a skill that is developed over time with practice.  In our class, we will work on a wide variety of writing pieces.   With each piece, we will follow the steps of the writing process (brainstorming to publishing) during our writing period.  Any work not completed in class needs to be completed at home.  We will write a variety of pieces throughout the year, including:


    Narratives (Fiction & Memoir)  • Explanatory Essays

    Informational & Research Reports • Persuasive/Argument • Poetry


    Grammar, Spelling & Vocabulary

    We will continue to work on spelling rules, vocabulary, grammar, and punctuation on a regular basis. For vocabulary, this year’s vocabulary study will be completed online, from homework to the test.  Grammar and punctuation practice will be completed in the G.U.M. workbook, practice pages, mini projects, and in your writing pieces.








    If you’re absent, check the absent bin and the calendar to view what you missed.  It is your responsibility to check the bin and see me after you have been absent to get the assignments you missed.  If you were absent for a quiz or test, you need to promptly schedule a make up day with me. 



     It is important that you manage your time for daily homework and long-term projects.


    Homework should be ready by the date it is due. All writing assignments must be double-spaced and typed or written in blue or black ink and have a heading in MLA format.


    Homework should take you approximately 60-90 minutes a night. If your time varies widely from this guideline, come talk to us.


    Beginning and End of Class


    When you enter the classroom, silently take your assigned seat and begin the Do Now.


    I will always end class with enough time to go over homework assignments with you.  At this time, I would like you to write down your assignments in your agenda book or add them to your calendar.  Homework will always be written down on the board and can also be found on the school’s calendar.  Additional information, like directions or rubrics, can be found on my webpage or on e-backpack.


    Code of Conduct


    Our class adheres to our school’s code of conduct, which can be found in the student handbook.


    Extra Help


    See me immediately if you have a problem or if there is something you don’t understand.  I am available for extra help during OP or by appointment and will be happy to help you.  


    Grading Policy


    Grades are updated regularly on PowerSchool.  Please check your grades on a regular basis. 



    (grammar, spelling, NJASK prep, and writing assignments)

    30% Tests

    30% Projects/Essays/Reports

    20% Quizzes/Journals

    20% Homework/Classwork/Class   



    (in-class novels/stories, vocabulary, NJASK prep and independent reading)



    Independent Reading


    You have a standing homework assignment to read for 20 minutes each day on Monday – Thursday, and for ½ hour each weekend. You will always be reading either an assigned book or an independent reading choice book during the year.


    You are required to present information about your book at a Book Café and to read an excerpt from the book.


    You will be provided with a handout that will more fully explain Independent Reading and Book Cafes.


    Late Work and Test/Quiz Policy


    It is important to turn in work on time.  Any minor assignment may be turned in the next day for partial credit.  Projects and writing assignments (major assignments) will be deducted 10% off per day until the grade reaches a 50%.  At this point, the most you can earn on these types of assignments is 50%.


    If any assignment is two days late, you must email home to inform your parent(s).  If you accumulate three or more late or missing assignments, you will have your parent(s) informed by me and will be required to come in to complete the work during OP.  You will also have to start a homework calendar that needs to be signed by a parent every night for the entire marking period. 


    Test scores 50% and below must be signed by a parent or guardian within a week of return.  An email will be sent if the test is not signed and returned within a week.  Test and quiz corrections are offered for a score of less than a 60%.  Corrections or a reassessment can only raise a failing grade to a 60%.  You must schedule a retest or turn corrections back in to the teacher within a week of receiving a test/quiz back.


    Language Arts Updates


    Parents and guardians, please check your email regularly for updates informing you of upcoming assignments, topics of study, and projects.


    Parent reminders


    Parents and guardians, you are also an important part of this class.  Please let me know if you ever have any questions or concerns.  I prefer email communication, as it is the quickest and easiest way I can respond to your inquiries or concerns.  Of course, you are welcome to contact me by phone as well. 


    Contact Us


    Dr. Pope (6th & 8th Grade ELA)


    908.996.2941 ext.  701

    Mrs. Grievo (7th Grade ELA)


    908.996.2941 ext. 702

    Mrs. Bill (6th & 7th Grade ELA)


    908.996.2941 ext. 703

    Ms. Auletta (8th Grade & Honors ELA)


    908.996.2941 ext.704



    Ms. Silva (Special Educator)


    908.996.2941 ext. 608

    Mr. Matlack  (Special Educator)


    908.996.2941 ext.553

    Ms. Kucker (Special Educator)


    908.996.2941 ext.601

    Ms. Kapsimalis (Special Educator)


    908.996.2941 ext.602