Friday, March 27, 2015

It's not spring break yet

Goal: Catch up and leap forward.


  1. Read
  2. Catch up: Below is a long list of things you might need to get done today before you get to play. 
  3. Leap ahead: Your future self will thank you.
  4. Play (maybe)

Things to be caught up on:
Some of you need to finish your rhetorical precis from yesterday.
Some of you need to finish the AOW from last week.
Some of you need to do the charting the text activity from Wednesday.
Some of you need to complete the SOAPSTone from Monday.
Are you good on ALL of that^^^^? Are you SURE?

Leap ahead:
Write a book review. You'll need two very soon. (April 22, in fact.)
Read, and be sure you have a good book for break.

Play: Only these things, and only if all the rest is done. Guess where in the world the pictures were taken. Guess what Google is thinking. Expand your vocabulary or switch to another subject.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Writing a rhetorical precis

Goal: Write a rhetorical precis about Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes

  1. Read
  2. Open your article in your Google Drive
  3. Open your English Journal
  4. Learn about rhetorical precis
  5. Write a rhetorical precis
  6. Share and vote, :)

Today you will write a rhetorical precis in your English Journal about the article you have been reading about stereotypes. Review the slides below to help you. 

Even more help:The rhetorical precis is an AP strategy for briefly and concisely analyzing the content, purpose, and persuasive strategies of an expository text. A rhetorical precis is one paragraph, and follows the pattern below:
Sentence 1: Note the name of the author, the genre and title of the work,and the publication date in parentheses; a rhetorically accurate verb; and "that clause" containing the major assertion or thesis statement in the work.

Sentence 2: An explanation of how the author develops and supports the thesis, usually in chronological order.

Sentence 3: A statement of the author’s apparent purpose, followed by an “in order to” phrase.

Sentence 4: A description of the intended audience, the relationship the author establishes with the audience, or both.

Here is a frame of what each sentence should look like. Click on either image to see it larger. 

Here is an example of a precis for Hip Hop Goes Global: 
   Writer and musician, James McBride, in his article, “Hip-Hop Planet,” (2007) argues that though hip-hop is not his favorite genre of music, it is one that demands to be heard. He supports his claim by first explaining that he avoided hip-hop throughout his life as it was first introduced to society and then made its way to becoming one of the most popular music genres of all time. He then explains how he eventually came to understand hip-hop for its message, and finally warns parents that it is here to stay and that ignoring it would be ignoring the voice of a generation. McBride’s purpose is to persuade people to keep an open mind about both hip-hop and other new experiences that may seem foreign to them at first, but in fact are worth exploring. He adopts a serious and urgent tone for the parents he addresses and warns them not to shut out the music of their children’s generation.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Charting the text

Goal: Charting the text of Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes to better understand what the author is saying and doing with the text.


  1. Read your book
  2. Open the Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes essay in your Google Drive
  3. Work with your partner and your group to complete the charting the text activity. 

How does this process help you understand the text better? 

This is the end of week three of this grading period. Have you finished at least one book? Two new book reviews due 4/22. What are you looking forward to reading over spring break? 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Close reading of Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes article

Goal: Close reading of several paragraphs of Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes for deeper understanding and analysis.


  1. Read while your computer boots. 
  2. Open the Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes article in your Google Drive.
  3. In a new tab go to and join room 6867. 

How does reading a few paragraphs really carefully help us understand the whole article better?

Monday, March 23, 2015

SOAPSTone about Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes

Goal: Review the article you read on Thursday and apply a SOAPSTone protocol with your partner. 

  1. Read while your compter boots up
  2. Debrief Thursday and Friday (briefly)
  3. Complete SOAPSTone with a partner

Today you will fill out the SOAPSTone FORM about the "Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes" article that you read on Thursday.

Work with your partner to complete the form. Submit the form only once, with both of your names on it. You will need the article from your Google Docs.

Note: You must submit the form before you leave because it will not save your work.

How does doing SOAPSTone help you understand the article better? How and when could you use this in the future?

Does the word cloud at the top of the form help you in any way?

Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday- AOW

Goal: Read your article of the week and write about it in your English Journal.

  1. Read your independent reading book (10 minutes)
  2. Read the Article of the Week: "For most women and girls, it's still a man's world"
  3. Write a TWO paragraph response in your English Journal. The first paragraph should be a summary and the second paragraph should be your thoughts and opinions on the issue from the article. 
  4. If you finish early you can read your book some more. 
I will be back with you on Monday. Be sure you are reading over the weekend. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Reading with the Say Something Protocol

Click on this picture to see it larger. 
Goal: First reading of "How a Self-Fulfilling Stereotype Can Drag Down Performance" by Shankar Vedantam using the say something protocol.

Please welcome our visiting teacher. If my plan worked out you just met Mrs. Brannen. She is a retired English teacher from PLHS, so she knows what's up.

  1. Read while your computers are booting up. 
  2. Go to your Google Drive and open the reading I shared with you yesterday. 
  3. Use the "Say Something" protocol to read and discuss the text with your partner. 
  4. This is a challenging text. It is really important that you stop and talk about what you do and don't understand with your partner. If you aren't talking about it, then you probably won't really understand it. 
  5. Write a brief summary of the article in your English Journal. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Pre-Reading for Self-Fulfilling Stereotypes

Goal: Complete pre-reading activities for our next unit on stereotypes.

  1. Read
  2. Quick write in your English Journal
  3. Pre-reading with your partner

In a few sentences explain how you would describe a party you attended to a close friend.
In a few more sentences explain how you would describe the same party to a much older relative.
What's the difference in your descriptions? Why are they different?

Find the article I have shared with you in your Google Drive called "Stereotypes Reading" (Hint: Look in "Shared with me.")
With your partner discuss and answer the questions at the top of the document, part 1 and part 2.

Tomorrow you and your partner will be reading this article using the "Say Something" protocol we have used before. I will be at a conference. You can email me if you have questions.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Preparing With Poetry

Goal: Prepare for an in class essay. You will be writing it tomorrow.

On Friday, we played "I want a better grade on my essay!" Thank you to all the contestants who contributed to the learning in our classroom. (Your essays were due Friday and they are now locked for grading.)

Today, we are preparing for your comparative analysis on-demand in-class written assessment. (Yes, I made the name really long on purpose.)

With your partner you will be reading and analyzing two poems. Tomorrow you will be writing about them. If you are absent today send me an email and ask for the poems.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Ahh the writing process...

Goal: Make progress toward finishing your comparative analysis essay.


  1. Read while your computer boots up. 
  2. You are in different seats and different places in your writing process. 
  3. If you are still working on body paragraphs try to catch up today. 
  4. Re-watch the tutorial about the mood paragraph if you are stuck. 
  5. See the yellow chart on the whiteboard for help structuring your paragraphs. 
  6. If you are DONE with your paragraphs on theme, mood and irony ask a partner to read them. (Exchange papers by sharing your Google Docs with each other. Use "Suggesting" mode and comments.)
  7. If you are ready to tackle an introduction I am giving you a list not a lesson. 

Your introduction should have: 

  1. The names of the authors and the titles of their work. 
  2. A brief summary (one sentence) of the gist of each creation, text or film.
  3. A thesis statement that explains how the author and director use similar or different techniques to create the irony, moods and themes in their works. 
Sentence Starters for your body paragraphs:

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Taking the California Healthy Kids Survey

Goal: Take the California Healthy Kids Survey

  1. Read while your computer boots up
  2. Take the Healthy Kids Survey. (I'll give you the link and access code in class.)
  3. When you finish read your book or work on your essay. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Continuing to write

Goal: Writing paragraphs on irony and theme for our comparative analysis paper.


  1. Read 
  2. If you need to you can re-watch the Mood Paragraph tutorial video, but you also need to add two more body paragraphs to your essay today, the ones about theme and irony. 

Writing Task:
Consider the short story “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe and the movie The Night of The Hunter (1955) directed by Charles Laughton. What techniques do the author and director use to create the theme and mood?

Write a comparison/contrast essay discussing the similarities and differences between these two works. Keep in mind how the author and filmmaker use various literary and cinematic techniques to create mood, theme, and irony.

Collected Evidence: The examples you submitted.
Examples of Theme Mood and Irony in Night of the Hunter

Monday, March 9, 2015

Comparing Text and Film

Goal: Getting started on our comparative analysis paper.


  1. Read
  2. Take a quick quiz to refresh your memory about Cask of Amontillado. 
  3. I have sent you a new Google Doc called "Comparing Poe and Laughton."
  4. Find it in your "Shared with me" section in Google Drive. 
  5. Read the prompt carefully to yourself and then we will write one of the paragraphs together. 
  6. Mood Paragraph tutorial video. 

Writing Task:
Consider the short story “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe and the movie The Night of The Hunter (1955) directed by Charles Laughton. What techniques do the author and director use to create the theme and mood?

Write a comparison/contrast essay discussing the similarities and differences between these two works. Keep in mind how the author and filmmaker use various literary and cinematic techniques to create mood, theme, and irony.

Collected Evidence: The examples you submitted.
Examples of Theme Mood and Irony in Night of the Hunter

Click to see this picture larger. 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Viewing Night of the Hunter, final day

Goal: Finish watching Night of the Hunter and collect evidence for writing.

  1. Read
  2. Finish watching and taking notes on Night of the Hunter. 
  3. Write up examples of theme, mood and irony. 
  4. With your partner use THIS FORM to submit your examples. 
Note: I am re-showing Night of the Hunter from the beginning at lunch today, Monday and Tuesday. If you missed any part of the film or just want to see it again you are welcome to bring your lunch and watch it here. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Viewing Night of the Hunter: Day 1

Goal: Watch the first 30 minutes of Night of the Hunter while making notes about items related to the theme, mood and irony in the film.

How could you organize your notes to look for theme, mood and irony before we begin watching the film?

  1. Open your English journal and set up a note taking system for yourself. 
  2. As we watch the film make a note of any irony you see. 
  3. Look for settings, or shots the reflect various moods in the film. 
  4. See if you can spot a reference to the theme near the very beginning. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

District Interim Assessment

Happy rainy Monday. Let's stay dry.

Today you get to try something new, an online assessment from the district. We had to take the last one on paper, but this one is digital. More and more of your assessments are going to be digital as you go through school, so this is good practice.

  1. Go to: and choose STUDENT
  2. Login with your district username and password, the same one you use to login to the netbooks. 
  3. You should see Pending Online Assessments on the right.
  4. Choose Literacy Interim Assessment 2-Grade 9.
  5. Read the directions carefully as you work through the assessment. 
  6. Read your book or work on your book review when you finish.