Friday, January 30, 2009

1-30-09: Word Choice (B Days)

Today we turned in Writer's Notebook #4, so get that in!

For our Punctual Piece we read two paragraphs and used our Word Choice Rubric to score them. Then we justified the rating we gave each paragraph and explained which one we liked best and why.

Then we had reading time.

After reading, we talked about Word Choice. How specific, accurate words make our writing much more interesting and also clear. We also talked about how when words are over-used our writing drags.

Finally we revised the essays we wrote last class for word choice. In your writing groups each person revised one paragraph for word choice and completed the Revision Sheet. Then we turned in our essays and the Revision Sheet.

If you missed class, you will need to get with other people who missed and switch papers to revise in order to make up the points for this assignment.

For Wednesday: (Yay! No School on Monday!)
1. Read, Read, Read! Get your book read!
2. Get caught up on all missing assignments.
Ideas
Organization
Voice
Writer's Notebooks

Thursday, January 29, 2009

1-29-09: Word Choice (A Days)

Today we turned in Writer's Notebook #4, so get that in!

For our Punctual Piece we read two paragraphs and used our Word Choice Rubric to score them. Then we justified the rating we gave each paragraph and explained which one we liked best and why.

Then we had reading time.

After reading, we talked about Word Choice. How specific, accurate words make our writing much more interesting and also clear. We also talked about how when words are over-used our writing drags.

Finally we revised the essays we wrote last class for word choice. In your writing groups each person revised one paragraph for word choice and completed the Revision Sheet. Then we turned in our essays and the Revision Sheet.

If you missed class, you will need to get with other people who missed and switch papers to revise in order to make up the points for this assignment.

For Tuesday: (Yay! No School on Monday!)
1. Read, Read, Read! Get your book read!
2. Get caught up on all missing assignments.
Ideas
Organization
Voice
Writer's Notebooks

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

1-28-09: Essay Writing (B Days)

Today we turned in our Voice Investigation & Revision sheets! So get those in!

We started class with our punctual piece by responding to the following question:
Should the driving age be raised to 18 or should it stay at age 16? Why? (Give at least 5 specific reasons to support your opinion.)

We spent the rest of the class writing the essay and we turned it in at the end of the class.

Here was the prompt: In Europe the driving age is 18 because those governments feel that teens are not mature enough to handle the responsibility and the rules of driving in order to avoid accidents. In most states in America the driving age is still 16. Some people would like to raise the driving age to 18. What do you think? Should the driving age be raised to 18 or should it stay at age 16? Write an essay (at least 5 paragraphs) to convince the state legislature of your opinion.

If you finished writing the essay, then you had time to catch up on the writing activities we have done on Ideas, Organization, and Voice. Or you could do a Writer's Notebook.

For Friday:
1. Bring your book!
2. Writer's Notebook #4
3. Get caught up on missing assignments!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

1-27-09: Essay Writing/Catch Up (A Days)

Today we turned in our Voice Investigation & Revision sheets! So get those in!

We started class with our punctual piece by responding to the following question:
Should the driving age be raised to 18 or should it stay at age 16? Why? (Give at least 5 specific reasons to support your opinion.)

We spent the rest of the class writing the essay and we turned it in at the end of the class.

Here was the prompt: In Europe the driving age is 18 because those governments feel that teens are not mature enough to handle the responsibility and the rules of driving in order to avoid accidents. In most states in America the driving age is still 16. Some people would like to raise the driving age to 18. What do you think? Should the driving age be raised to 18 or should it stay at age 16? Write an essay (at least 5 paragraphs) to convince the state legislature of your opinion.

If you finished writing the essay, then you had time to catch up on the writing activities we have done on Ideas, Organization, and Voice. Or you could do a Writer's Notebook.

For Thursday:
1. Bring your book!
2. Writer's Notebook #4
3. Get caught up on missing assignments!

Monday, January 26, 2009

1-26-09: Voice (B Days)

Today we turned in the following:
Introductory paragraph and Outline for the essay you will eventually write on the driving age.
Punctual Pieces 1/13-1/26 (6 total)

For our punctual piece today, we rewrote a portion of President Obama's Inaugural Address as if either Miss Teen South Carolina or Sarah Palin would have said it.


video

Here is the portion of President Obama's speech:

"For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do."

After we completed our Punctual Piece, we had reading time.

Then we talked about how important Voice is in our writing. Voice should help you feel the author behind the writing. It should help you connect with the author or speaker. Voice should also be appropriate to the situation. If Miss South Carolina gave President Obama's speech, we wouldn't take her very seriously, would we. So if we are writing a paper in an academic setting, we need to be more formal in our tone.

You were given the rest of the period to read and score two essays. Just like we have done with the Ideas and Organization, you read though the essays and used your rubric on VOICE to give each of the two essays a score--justifying the score you gave each essay.

Then you had time to complete the Investigation sheet for the essay on Iago and the Revision sheet for the essay on food. If you didn't finish, this assignment will be due on Tuesday.

For Wednesday:
1. Complete the Investigation and Revision Sheets for the Voice Essays
2. Get caught up if you are behind!

Friday, January 23, 2009

1-23-09: Voice (A Days)

Today we turned in the following:
Introductory paragraph and Outline for the essay you will eventually write on the driving age.
Writer's Notebook #3
Punctual Pieces 1/12-1/23 (6 total)

For our punctual piece today, we rewrote a portion of President Obama's Inaugural Address as if either Miss Teen South Carolina or Sarah Palin would have said it.


video

Here is the portion of President Obama's speech:

"For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do."

After we completed our Punctual Piece, we had reading time.

Then we talked about how important Voice is in our writing. Voice should help you feel the author behind the writing. It should help you connect with the author or speaker. Voice should also be appropriate to the situation. If Miss South Carolina gave President Obama's speech, we wouldn't take her very seriously, would we. So if we are writing a paper in an academic setting, we need to be more formal in our tone.

You were given the rest of the period to read and score two essays. Just like we have done with the Ideas and Organization, you read though the essays and used your rubric on VOICE to give each of the two essays a score--justifying the score you gave each essay.

Then you had time to complete the Investigation sheet for the essay on Iago and the Revision sheet for the essay on food. If you didn't finish, this assignment will be due on Tuesday.

For Tuesday:
1. Complete the Investigation and Revision Sheets for the Voice Essays
2. Get caught up if you are behind!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

1-22-08: Introductions & Outlines (B Days)

Today we turned in: The Organization Investigation and Revision Sheets

Today we began our punctual piece with a writing prompt: In Europe the driving age is 18 because those governments feel that teens are not mature enough to handle the responsibility and the rules of driving in order to avoid accidents. In most states in America, the driving age is still 16. Some people would like to raise the driving age in America to 18. What do you think? Should the driving age be raised to 18? Write an essay to convince the legislature of your position in the matter of raising the driving age to 18.

Using the prompt above brainstorm 3 specific classes this topic could fit under. Then describe the topic in terms of one of the classes you listed.

After we completed the punctual piece we quickly reviewed essay structure and organization.

Then we talked through the punctual piece. As a class, we made a list of classes that the topic of teenage driving could fit under. From there we talked about the different kinds of essays that would result from the different classes that relate to teenage driving.

Next we used two or three classes to build our thesis statement. We talked through the details of teenage driving in connection to the class we chose and then stated the relevance:

Topic + Description (three supports) + Relevance = Thesis

From there we brainstormed catchy sentences that could draw the reader into our essays and shared them with the class.

I modeled the thinking process of writing an introductory paragraph with you and then you wrote one of your own.

Finally we started outlining our essay using the Organization Outline sheet. This is what is due next time. Remember you need to make sure your introductory paragraph has a thesis statement and three supporting details!

For Monday:
1. Finish the Organization Outline

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

1-21-08: Essay Brainstorming (A Days)

Today we turned in: The Organization Investigation and Revision Sheets

Today we began our punctual piece with a writing prompt: In Europe the driving age is 18 because those governments feel that teens are not mature enough to handle the responsibility and the rules of driving in order to avoid accidents. In most states in America, the driving age is still 16. Some people would like to raise the driving age in America to 18. What do you think? Should the driving age be raised to 18? Write an essay to convince the legislature of your position in the matter of raising the driving age to 18.

Using the prompt above brainstorm 3 specific classes this topic could fit under. Then describe the topic in terms of one of the classes you listed.

After we completed the punctual piece we quickly reviewed essay structure and organization.

Then we talked through the punctual piece. As a class, we made a list of classes that the topic of teenage driving could fit under. From there we talked about the different kinds of essays that would result from the different classes that relate to teenage driving.

Next we used two or three classes to build our thesis statement. We talked through the details of teenage driving in connection to the class we chose and then stated the relevance:

Topic + Description (three supports) + Relevance = Thesis

From there we brainstormed catchy sentences that could draw the reader into our essays and shared them with the class.

I modeled the thinking process of writing an introductory paragraph with you and then you wrote one of your own.

Finally we started outlining our essay using the Organization Outline sheet. This is what is due next time. Remember you need to make sure your introductory paragraph has a thesis statement and three supporting details!

For Friday:
1. Finish the Organization Outline
2. Writer's Notebook #3
3. Don't forget your book!

1-20-08: Organization (B Days)

We started with our punctual piece. For the PP you were to organize a list of seemingly random words. There were lots of ways to do it: alphabetically, in categories, etc. I hope you see how important organization is both for you as a writer and a reader. When you read the list of words, it didn't make sense. It seemed random. And it may have even been a bit daunting or overwhelming. But once they are organized it is easier to follow. It makes the purpose clear. This is just how organization works in our writing. We need to tell our readers where our paper will go, so they know what to expect and so that they won't be confused.

Next we played a "game" in which you were to piece together two essays. One of the essays--even though it was really long was easier to organize because it had a thesis statement that told you exactly what the essay would be about. The shorter essay--although it was short--didn't have a thesis statement and the paragraphs could have been in any order and it wouldn't have changed much. It just felt like random paragraphs strewn across the page (like an arch that's missing its keystone).

Then you read through the two essays. You used the Organization Rubric to evaluate each essay. Next you completed the Investigation sheet for the essay on Keeping Music in the Public Schools, and then completed the Revision sheet for the essay on Writing.

For Thursday:
1. Finish Organization Investigation & Revision Sheets
2. Remember to bring your outside reading book
3. Writer's Notebook #3

1-16-08: Organization (A Days)

Today I missed you. Thank you for getting things accomplished with Mrs. Graham!

We turned in Writer's Notebook #2

We also had Reading time. If you can't find a book, let me know ASAP!

We started with our punctual piece. For the PP you were to organize a list of seemingly random words. There were lots of ways to do it: alphabetically, in categories, etc. I hope you see how important organization is both for you as a writer and a reader. When you read the list of words, it didn't make sense. It seemed random. And it may have even been a bit daunting or overwhelming. But once they are organized it is easier to follow. It makes the purpose clear. This is just how organization works in our writing. We need to tell our readers where our paper will go, so they know what to expect and so that they won't be confused.

Next we played a "game" in which you were to piece together two essays. One of the essays--even though it was really long was easier to organize because it had a thesis statement that told you exactly what the essay would be about. The shorter essay--although it was short--didn't have a thesis statement and the paragraphs could have been in any order and it wouldn't have changed much. It just felt like random paragraphs strewn across the page (like an arch that's missing its keystone).

Then you read through the two essays. You used the Organization Rubric to evaluate each essay. Next you completed the Investigation sheet for the essay on Keeping Music in the Public Schools, and then completed the Revision sheet for the essay on Writing.

For Wednesday:
1. Finish Organization Investigation & Revision Sheets

Thursday, January 15, 2009

1-15-08: Introductory Paragraphs (B Days)

Today we started our punctual piece by looking at a poem called "Marginalia" by Billy Collins (The poet laureate of the United States).

You were asked to try and figure out a reading strategy the poem is talking about.

We found that marginalia is the notes that are written in the margins of books or articles. So the reading strategy is annotating. Remember annotating is very effective in helping you both understand and remember what you read. It is a great strategy that saves you time when you will be quizzed or tested on material. If you take notes while you read, you can quickly review your notes, instead of re-reading long chapters.

Then we applied our practice with both thesis statements and annotating as we evaluated two introductory paragraphs. We used the 6-Traits Rubric for IDEAS to score the two paragraphs, and we provided a detailed annotated explanation justifying the score we gave each paragraph.

Finally after talking through each paragraph, we completed the Investigation Sheet for the "Keeping Music Secure in Public Schools" paragraph, and the Revision Sheet for the "Identity Theft" paragraph.

For Tuesday:
1. Finish the Investigation and Revision Sheets if you didn't in class.
2. Get your outside reading book!

Have a great long weekend!
3. Writer's Notebook #2(if you didn't turn it in today!)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

1-14-08: Introductory Paragraphs (A Days)

Today we started our punctual piece by looking at a poem called "Marginalia" by Billy Collins (The poet laureate of the United States).

You were asked to try and figure out a reading strategy the poem is talking about.

We found that marginalia is the notes that are written in the margins of books or articles. So the reading strategy is annotating. Remember annotating is very effective in helping you both understand and remember what you read. It is a great strategy that saves you time when you will be quizzed or tested on material. If you take notes while you read, you can quickly review your notes, instead of re-reading long chapters.

After the punctual piece we reviewed TCDR and talked about how TCDR applies to Thesis Statements and Introductory paragraphs. Remember Topic+Description+Relevance = a Thesis!
And the Class portion will come as part of the background information in the introductory paragraph.

To practice looking at good/bad thesis statements, we completed the Thesis Statement Practice Sheet.

Then we applied our practice with both thesis statements and annotating as we evaluated two introductory paragraphs. We used the 6-Traits Rubric for IDEAS to score the two paragraphs, and we provided a detailed annotated explanation justifying the score we gave each paragraph.

Finally after talking through each paragraph, we completed the Investigation Sheet for the "Keeping Music Secure in Public Schools" paragraph, and the Revision Sheet for the "Identity Theft" paragraph.

For Friday:
1. Finish the Investigation and Revision Sheets if you didn't in class.
2. Get your outside reading book!
3. Writer's Notebook #2

1-13-08: TCDR Strategy & Essay Format (B Days)

Today we started class with our punctual piece: You were asked to list all of the components of an essay (at least six!).

Next we played Jeopardy to review our class policies and procedures...
What we do everyday at the beginning of class.
Where you can find me when you need me.
What to do if you miss class.
Just to name a few.

Then we started talked through our punctual piece and began talking through the TCDR strategy. This strategy is very helpful for writing an essay. Writing essays is usually hard not because of the actual writing, but because of the thinking behind the writing. The TCDR strategy will help you with the thinking, so the writing will be much easier.

We talked through the strategy and started practicing with the Practice Worksheets. This worksheet if it wasn't completed by the end of class is due next time!

After this, we discussed effective Thesis Statements. You completed an exercise in which you examined both good and bad Thesis Statements and explained what was missing from them. If you didn't finish, this is due next time!

For Thursday:
1. Complete the TCDR Packet & Thesis Statement Examination
2. Remember to get your Outside Reading Book
3. Complete Writer's Notebook #2

Monday, January 12, 2009

1/12/08: TCDR (A Days)

Today we started class with our punctual piece: You were asked to list all of the components of an essay (at least six!).

Next we played Jeopardy to review our class policies and procedures...
What we do everyday at the beginning of class.
Where you can find me when you need me.
What to do if you miss class.
Just to name a few.

Then we started talked through our punctual piece and began talking through the TCDR strategy. This strategy is very helpful for writing an essay. Writing essays is usually hard not because of the actual writing, but because of the thinking behind the writing. The TCDR strategy will help you with the thinking, so the writing will be much easier.

We talked through the strategy and started practicing with the Practice Worksheets. This worksheet if it wasn't completed by the end of class is due next time!

For Wednesday:
1. Complete the TCDR Packet
2. Remember to get your Outside Reading Book

1/6/08 & 1/8/08 (A Days)

Because this week has been a little bit more relaxed, I have decided to just write up one post for the week.

On Tuesday we continued watching Twelfth Night and turned in our Family Folklore Projects. This assignment will go on Third Term's grade.

Finally, on Thursday we completed our punctual piece:

Examine the following sentences (both the examples and the non-examples). Then determine what the example sentences have in common. Which type of sentence do you like better (example or non-example)? Why?

Examples:
-Nathan dropped the spaghetti dramatically and purposefully.
-The wind overturned the flamingoes on the lawn.
-You are eating the whole box of Cheezits!

Non-Examples:
-The spaghetti was dropped by Nathan dramatically and purposefully.
-The flamingoes on the lawn were overturned by the wind.
-The whole box of Cheezits is being eaten!


After that we practiced Reading like a Writer for our Writer's Notebook Assignment for Term 3.

We read an article in the NY Times to practice, and completed Writer's Notebook #1 and turned it in.

Then we talked through our Outside Reading Assignment for Term 3 and went to the Library to check out books.

If you missed class....
1. Complete Writer's Notebook #1
2. Get a book for your Reading assignment--make sure it fits the criteria!!
3. Turn in your Family Folklore if you haven't

Friday, January 9, 2009

1/5/09-1/9/09: This week (B days)

Because this week has been a little bit more relaxed, I have decided to just write up one post for the week.

On Monday we watched Twelfth Night. Wednesday we continued watching Twelfth Night and turned in our Family Folklore Projects. This assignment will go on Third Term's grade.

Finally, on Friday we completed our punctual piece:

Examine the following sentences (both the examples and the non-examples). Then determine what the example sentences have in common. Which type of sentence do you like better (example or non-example)? Why?

Examples:
-Nathan dropped the spaghetti dramatically and purposefully.
-The wind overturned the flamingoes on the lawn.
-You are eating the whole box of Cheezits!

Non-Examples:
-The spaghetti was dropped by Nathan dramatically and purposefully.
-The flamingoes on the lawn were overturned by the wind.
-The whole box of Cheezits is being eaten!


After that we practiced Reading like a Writer for our Writer's Notebook Assignment for Term 3.

We read an article in the NY Times to practice, and completed Writer's Notebook #1 and turned it in.

Then we talked through our Outside Reading Assignment for Term 3 and went to the Library to check out books.

If you missed class....
1. Complete Writer's Notebook #1
2. Get a book for your Reading assignment--make sure it fits the criteria!!
3. Turn in your Family Folklore if you haven't