Fourth period had a test on the parts of speech. They claim it was difficult; the results so far belie their claims.

First, second, and seventh periods all worked on their first poem for their poetry project portfolio. It was modeled on “Cat!”. As such, it was to include onomatopoeia and meter. (I added a few new pictures to the Classwork 2009/10 gallery.)

Homework
  • First, second, and seventh: finish first draft of poem.
  • Fourth period: read through chapter 4 of To Kill a Mockingbird.

First and seventh periods worked on rhythm in poetry, using “Cat!” to discover the patterns that create meter.

Cat!
Atter her, atter her,
Sleeky flatterer,
Spitfire chatterer,
Scatter her, scatter her
Wuff!
Wuff!
Treat her rough!
Git her, git her,
Whiskery spitter!
Catch her, catch her,
Green-eyed scratcher!
Slathery
Slithery
Hisser,
Don’t miss her!
Run till you’re dithery,
Hithery
Thithery
Pfitts! pfitts!
How she spits!
Spitch! Spatch!
Can’t she scratch!
Scritching the bark
Of the sycamore-tree,
She’s reached her ark
And’s hissing at me
Pfitts!Pfitts!
Wuff! Wuff!
Scat,
Cat!
That’s
That!

With a little work and some rapping, students were able to see two distinct patterns:

Patter 1
Pattern 2
dithery,
Hithery
Thithery
Git her, git her,
hard-hard-soft hard-soft

Second period moved on to the poem “Silver” by Walter de la Mare. We began paraphrasing this somewhat challenging poem.

Fourth period began To Kill a Mockingbird. We will be having a test tomorrow on the parts of speech.

Homework
  • First periods: paraphrase the first four lines of “Silver.”
  • Second period: finish paraphrasing “Silver.”
  • Fourth period: read chapters 1-3 of To Kill a Mockingbird (pages 1-32).
  • Seventh period: none.

First and second period worked on sound devices, focusing on the use of rhythm and onomatopoeia in a poem titled “Cat.”

Second period finished up the ballad selection and poetry unit. We discussed a bit the portfolio (which will be turned in 2 December).

Seventh period finished up the test on The Diary of Anne Frank (we didn’t have class yesterday because of Career Day).

Homework
  • First period: none.
  • Second period:
    • re-read poems until mastered;
    • analyze “Drum” for onomatopoeia and meter;
    • analyze “Cat” and “Drum” for instances of  alliteration.
  • Fourth period:
    • parts of speech test Friday (November 13);
    • work on poetry portfolio.
  • Seventh period:
    • practice reading the poem until you’ve mastered it;
    • find the two passages that are most rap-like.

First and seventh periods had an essay test on The Diary of Anne Frank. The question was assigned Friday:

Write a letter to a theater manager asking him or her to stage The Diary of Anne Frank for your community. To persuade the theater manager, follow these steps:

  • Connect the events in the play to current events and attitudes.
  • Explain why the theme is important and how you think the community will benefit from seeing the play.

Second period began the poetry unit. We went over the difference between poetry and prose, looking at Howard Nemerov’s “Because you Asked about the Line between Prose and Poetry.” We went over the graphic organizer to trace the use of figurative language and sound devices in the poems we will read.

Fourth period completed the last of the poetry project presentations and began a final lesson on the ballad form.

Homework
  • First, second, and seventh periods: none.
  • Fourth period: complete the stanza of “Boots of Spanish Leather.”

First and seventh periods completed work on the Diary of Anne Frank. We went over homework and did some work to review the play individually and in small groups.

We will be having a test on Monday in first and seventh periods. It will be an open book essay test, and I have already shared the question with students.

Write a letter to a theater manager asking him or her to stage The Diary of Anne Frank for your community. To persuade the theater manager, follow these steps:

  • Connect the events in the play to current events and attitudes.
  • Explain why the theme is important and how you think the community will benefit from seeing the play.

Second period took their essay test for the Diary of Anne Frank as well. They had a choice of two essay questions

  1. You decide to make a recommendation to the school board that The Diary of Anne Frank be required reading for all eighth graders. You want to stress how it is a selection that all students can relate to and learn something from. Write a letter presenting your case. Use at least three episodes from the book that
    1. Can relate to students’ own experiences and
    2. Teach students something significant and important
  2. Read I.4 (which we didn’t read in class). Select three characters and discuss how I.4 further develops them. What type of people are they, and how do the actions of I.4 confirm or change our impressions of them?

Fourth period continued work on the poetry unit. The group covering alliteration and assonance completed their presentation today.

Homework
  • First and seventh periods: plan and prepare for test.
  • Second period: none.
  • Fourth period: revise second quatrain of sonnet to ensure it is in iambic pentameter.

First and seventh periods finished the Diary of Anne Frank. We will be having a test on the material early next week.

Second period went over the final bits of the play and tied up loose ends.

Fourth period finished the sonnet and the group presenting about rhyme completed most of their presentation.

Homework
  • First and seventh periods: questions 1-4 on page 870.
  • Second period: study for essay test tomorrow on Anne Frank’s diary.
  • Fourth period: revise the first four lines of the sonnets to be in iambic pentameter and the appropriate rhyme scheme.

First and seventh periods went over act II scene 3. We looked in detail at the consequences of the theft. We’ll be finishing up the play tomorrow.

Second period completed the play today. We’re scheduled to start a new unit — on poetry — on Monday, with a small open-note, open-book test on the play Friday.

Fourth period finished up meter. Now students can explain with “iambic pentameter” means, as well as dactylic trimeter, anapestic dimeter, and other imaginary and real meters.

Homework
  • First period and seventh periods: read II.4 of Diary of Anne Frank.
  • Second period:
    • complete questions 1-4 on page 870;
    • read Anne Frank Remembered (906-911)
  • Fourth period: make a first attempt at using iambic pentameter by writing a sonnet rough draft.

Fourth period worked on meter, learning what iambs, trochees, anapests, dactyls, and spondees are. It was tough going, but I believe everyone will get it tomorrow.

First and seventh period completed the second scene of the Diary of Anne Frank‘s second act. We saw the kiss and discussed briefly how social attitudes have changes regarding intimacy between males and females, using the text of the play as a point of comparison.

Second period completed II.3 of the Diary of Anne Frank. We looked at characters’ actions and their motivations.

Homework
  • First and seventh period: read act 2, scene 3 of the Diary of Anne Frank; we’ll be having a quiz on it tomorrow.
  • Second period: read II.4 of the Diary of Anne Frank; a quiz is likely.
  • Fourth period: revise the poetry turned in yesterday.

First and seventh periods began with vocabulary for completing the Diary of Anne Frank. Afterward, we completed the first scene of the second act. We know that “Carl” has proposed a raise after suggesting there was a door in Mr. Kraler’s office to the attic.  We did some journaling about what we were reading.

Second period completed the second scene in Anne Frank act two. We also did some work with our two-sided journal as we read and discussed.

Fourth period completed its second group’s presentations.

Homework
  • First and seventh periods:
    • read act 2, scene 2 of Diary of Anne Frank;
    • complete vocabulary (either writing example sentences or illustrustrating them) from page 834.
  • Second period:
    • read act 2, scene 3 of Diary of Anne Frank;
    • two-sided journal: Culture has changed since Anne’s times.
  • Fourth period:
    • brainstorm a list of poetry topics covered in class;
    • write a poem using one of those linguistic devices.
ASD and Halloween Friday

First and seventh periods had a quiz on the Diary of Anne Frank to close out the week; they will have an opportunity to correct the quiz (for credit) on Monday. Hopefully, those who didn’t do as well as they should will take this chance to improve their grade.

Additionally, I ended a few with a quick overview of what’s going on in Poland this time of year. Last year, I included a description of All Saints’ Day here as well.

Homework
  • First and seventh period: revise one of the diary entries from a different character’s perspective.
  • Second period: re-read II.1; read II.2

Students in first and seventh periods used a graphic organizer to learn what tone is and how characters in the Diary of Anne Frank exhibit it.

Fourth period completed the sonnet and lyric poem forms today.

Homework
  • First and seventh periods: none.
  • Fourth: revise presentations to incorporate more class praticipation (see the presentation basics page).
  • Second period:
    • finish the journal entries (as necessary);
    • read II.1 from Diary of Anne Frank.

First, second, and seventh periods wrapped up the first act of Anne Frank. We’ll be doing the second act in a much shorter time, finishing by the middle of next week.

Fourth period continued its poetry unit, with students teaching today about imagery and the sonnet form.

Homework
  • First and seventh periods: vocab questions (page 833).
  • Second period:
    • vocab questions (page 833);
    • two journal entries from different characters on the same event.

First, second, and seventh periods completed the first act of the Diary of Anne Frank. We’ll wrap up loose ends tomorrow and probably have a quiz on it Wednesday before starting act two.

Fourth period began their poetry projects. The first pair almost completed their work: it was something of a learning experience for everyone, so we took our time examining what makes a good presentation afterward.

Homework
  • First, second, and seventh: complete questions 1-4 (page 832)
  • Second: complete the “Milestones” graphic organizer for the final scene.

First, second, and seventh periods completed the Diary of Anne Frank I.3 today.  We used a two-sided journal to parse out some of the implications of select portions of the dialogue.

Fourth period had a final day of preparation for the poetry presentations next week. Students who completed the work early continued working on the quarter-long parts of speech review, looking at adverbs and conjunctions. We will likely be having a final parts of speech test some time within the next few weeks.

Homework
  • First period:
    • finish reading scene 3, and
    • complete journal entry.
  • Second period:
  • Fourth period: complete graphic organizers; mail to team leader for consolidation.
  • Seventh period: none.