Students were given 45 minutes of class time to work on their research notecards. We then discussed bibliographies and how students will submit their bibliographies for the research assessment. Students spent the remaining class time reading and annotating sections of an article on the Missouri incident entitled, “University of Missouri chancellor and president step down amid race row.” I split the article up into four sections, and students were each assigned different sections to read. Students were asked to summarize the sections of the article that they read as well as to try and connect their section to the novel and their research. After students completed this step, they were placed into groups of four to share their findings with their peers. Homework: read ch 19–20 in TKAM.
This class is an opportunity for students to develop and practice their skills in reading and analysis of literature as well as writing. Our various texts will be the vehicles through which they will hone their critical thinking abilities, and our writing exercises will be an outlet of expression for these abilities. We will be reading poetry, short fiction, novels, and dramatic texts. Our objectives are to master the elements of literature, practice the writing process, and improve organization of writing.
We spent the beginning half of class discussing how a criminal case moves through the court system (beginning with arrest, and ending at sentencing), in order to better understand the events surrounding Tom Robinson’s trial in To Kill a Mockingbird. Students used the web quests that they completed last class in order to assist them with the discussion. After this, we took small and medium questions from the assigned reading. Students spent the remainder of time completing research for their assessments. Homework: read ch 18 in TKAM.
Students spent the first 45 minutes of class time completing research for their research projects. After this, students were introduced to the To Kill a Mockingbird Courtroom Witness Guide, then spent the remainder of class time completing a web quest on how criminal cases move through the court system. Homework: read ch. 17 in TKAM.
Today, students helped me calculate how many notecards everyone should be completing in class each day between now and the due date, depending on what grade they are hoping to receive on the assessment. After this, they were given the first 40 minutes of class to work on their research projects. [We then watched a short video on/discussed the Caste System in India][slides], and placed the families in To Kill a Mockingbird into the Caste System model. We discussed where students ranked each of the families, and answered small and medium questions for chapters 13, 14, and 15. Homework: read ch. 16 in TKAM.
Mr. Everson began class by passing back the Wall-E Power-Paragraphs, and discussing grades with students. Mr. Gardner came in afterward to discuss finals with the students, as they are fast-approaching. Then, we discussed code-switching in chapter 13 of the novel by completing a quick-write, watching a video clip, and relating both of these exercises back to the content of the story. Students were given the last 45 minutes of class to work on the research project. Homework: read ch. 14–15 in TKAM.
Today in class, we went over the small and medium questions that students had about chapters 10 and 11 in the novel. We then discussed paraphrasing. Students took notes on paraphrasing, and we practiced paraphrasing an excerpt from an article in the Longmont Times-Call together. After that, I presented the notecard format for the assessment to students, which they copied into their notebooks. Students were left with the last half an hour of class time to finish the notecards that they started last class with Ms. Dailey, and begin their second notecards for the research project. Homework: read ch. 12–13 in TKAM.
After discussing small questions from ch. 9 and a short amount of reading time for the next reading guide, students were introduced to the research project for this semester. Everyone will be attempting to answer the question “What was life like for black people in the American South between the end of the Civil War and the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement?” Students were assigned different topics within this time period and Ms. Dailey visited from the library to introduce research databases and EasyBib to students. Students received instruction on how to take notes (which will eventually be done on notecards), and began with a handout. Homework: read ch. 10–11 in To Kill a Mockingbird.
We started class by discussing the racist language in the novel — why we read a book like this and how we should handle such language when discussing and writing about the text. Then students had reading time before doing some more practice with summary. Homework: read ch. 9 in To Kill a Mockingbird.
Today, we began class by giving the students about 30 minutes of reading time. They used this time to either catch up on the reading that they were assigned over the weekend, or to work ahead on their reading for Wendesday’s class. Then, students completed a character map activity for Walter Cunningham and Burris Ewell. and we used this activity to begin a discussion about class within the novel. We finished by taking a few quick notes on summarization. Homework: read ch. 6–8 in TKAM.
After discussing small and medium questions from To Kill a Mockingbird ch. 2–3, students completed a handout asking them to identify some of the people and places from the start of the novel. Students who finished early had time to begin reading ch. 4–5 and completing the reading guide. Homework: complete reading ch. 4–5 and finish the reading guide.
Students turned in their annotated copies of To Kill a Mockingbird ch. 1 at the start of class. We provided everyone with a copy of the reading schedule formatted as a bookmark, and students had the first half of class to begin reading in earnest. After returning the homework, we discussed students small questions from ch. 1. Homework: read ch. 2–3 in To Kill a Mockingbird for class on Thursday.
We talked about perception today in anticipation of beginning our reading of To Kill a Mockingbird. This is an idea that will be central to this novel. We spent time looking at some optical illusions, discussing the different things we saw in them, and then journalling about what is perception and what can affect our perception of tangible and intangible things. Students then received photocopies of ch. 1 of the novel to read and annotate. Homework: finish your reading and annotation of ch. 1 for class next Tuesday.
After giving a district wellness inventory today, students took part two of the first quarter assessment — a test over the story “Liberty” which students should have read for homework.
Today was part 1 of our mid-term assessment. Students finished their power paragraphs about the themes in Wall-E. Students who finished early checked out copies of To Kill a Mockingbird and got a head start on our first novel of the year. And at the end of class, everyone received a copy of the story “Liberty” — part 2 of the assessment will be on Tuesday and will cover this story. Homework: read and annotate (for plot elements, character motivations and changes, setting/mood/tone, resolution of conflicts, possible subjects/topics) the story “Liberty;” *don’t neglect this homework as you will not have time to read and take the test on Tuesday.
We had a short class today due to late start. We continued our discussion of the film and students augmented their notes from our discussion before writing five possible theme-related claims. Next class, students will outline and write the Power Paragraph supporting the favorite of their claims using evidence from the film as their first summative assessment of the year.
We used “The Sniper” to review elements of lit together. Then I introduced our last elements of lit notes: setting, mood, and tone. We identified these in “The Sniper,” and then students watched the first five minutes of the film Wall-E as another example of interesting setting, mood, and tone. Students began a Power Paragraph outline exploring the clip.
We started class today with the ACT Aspire — a pre-assessment the administration is using to prepare ninth- and tenth-graders to take their ACT in 11th grade and also for achievement data over the course of this year. After finishing this practice test, students read the short story “The Sniper” in preparation for an elements of fiction review next week.
After reviewing Dr. Seuss’s “The Zax” and our notes on theme, students received a handout to help them get to theme and we practiced with another Seuss story, “The Sneetches.” Then with a similar handout, students worked in groups to try and figure out the theme of “Souvenir.” Everyone turned this in by the end of class.