Friday, February 24, 2012

Change of Plans . . .

Because of the time it took to complete the stories in class yesterday and because I need to get a real understanding of what you can do in the limited time of 45 minutes, our "A Celebration of Grandfathers" quiz will take a new shape. This has become a take-home OER quiz. Answer the following prompt in ten lines or less:

In what way does Anaya's grandfather influence his character?

Remember, this is a short response (OER) and must be no longer than ten lines. Your response should be in APE format (Answer, Proof, Evidence), and the you must TAG (provide the title, author's name, and genre of writing) it in the first line.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lessons for February 21 - 24, 2012

I apologize for the missing assignments for the last couple of weeks. I have been unable to get to the computer as much as usual. I will try to do better.

Quick Recap of Feb. 13 - 17: Because the issue paragraphs submitted did not demonstrate a full understanding of proper paragraph development and focus, we stepped back and went through the essay process, one step at a time, as a whole class. We spent this week discussing how to build an effective thesis statement, reviewing paragraph structure and how to develop ideas, preparing a proper outline for our issue essays, and composing our actual issue essays. These essays were submitted on Feb. 17th. Over the weekend, we began creating our essay bank cards to help us think through possible writing prompts.

Monday- Holiday! No school.

Tuesday - Students reviewed some basic usage errors that have been appearing in their writings. Today, they reviewed the following words: their, they're, there, its, it's, affect, effect, then, than, to, and too. For homework, students prepared sentences for lose, loose, your, you're, accept, except, who's, and whose. In class, we discussed components that make some of our most memorable readings exciting. We then compared those elements to the TEA Literary Essay rubric to demonstrate the overlap. Finally, we began reviewing a sample score 4 literary writing.

Wednesday - Today, we reviewed the homework sentences. Homework for tonight and tomorrow night was to read "A Celebration of Grandfathers" (starts on page 444 of your textbook). In class, we completed our review of the score 4 sample literary writing, reviewed the basic plot structure, and discussed strategies we could use to create an engaging plot for our literary "essays." Some of the tricks of the trade include foreshadowing, flashbacks, mood, irony, suspense, non-linear plot, and the use of dialogue. Students should try to incorporate at least three of these in their writings.

Thursday - Today, we will review once more how the score 4 writing sample incorporates various literary components to create an engaging plot and developed character. Then, students will review their "Environment" stories to see where specific strategies were used and where additional strategies can be utilized to improve the story.

Friday - Today, students will complete a quick reading quiz ("Celebration of Grandfathers") and begin writing and in-class literary "essay" which includes several of the strategies we discussed in class.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Behind one day . . .

We are behind one day because the DIDLS analysis of Anthem took longer than expected. We will begin "Beauty" tomorrow. Tonight, you need to define your new tone words.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Assignments for February 6 - 10, 2012

Monday -

  • Complete the short response started last week

  • Review revising and editing passage one in the workbook

  • Begin tone word review activity

Tuesday -

  • Complete revising and editing selection 2 (pgs. 131-132)

  • Trade and grade "Hip Hop" short responses using the STAAR OER rubric. Revise OER to improve your score.

  • Homework: Review tone words. Compose a full, properly formatted paragraph (topic: an issue about which you feel strongly). Any student who completed this as homework on Monday evening will not need to re-do this assignment.

Wednesday -

  • Complete revising and editing selection 3 (pgs. 133 - 134)

  • Complete class DIDLS analysis of Anthem excerpt

  • Homework: Write a one-page story that illustrates the impact of environment on the people within it.

Thursday -

  • Read Alice Walker's "Beauty" and discuss it's strategic use of narration woven in an expository writing

  • Homework: Complete a short response for "Beauty" (Topic: How does Walker's perspective of her blind eye shift as the essay progresses?)

Friday -

  • Complete discussion of "Beauty"