argument

First Day Back

English I Honors students continued with To Kill a Mockingbird by starting to look at two different arguments regarding the derogatory term for African Americans that some characters in Mockingbird use. We’ll be looking at another perspective tomorrow and using the two to look at a more complex argument form than what we’ve been using in the past.

English I Studies students spent time looking at their group-decided poem for Glory Field and answering some questions to prepare for the next section of the unit, in which they will put together all the pieces they’ve created now in their lit circles.

English I Strategies began the second half of the Glory Field unit.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: 
    • prepare for tomorrow’s test on the 1964 section of The Glory Field;
    • for Wednesday, re-read today’s poem and be able to answer the questions we went over in class (see below);
    • complete this week’s article of the week.
  • English 8 Studies: 
    • prepare for tomorrow’s quiz on your second section of The Glory Field;
    • complete this week’s article of the week.
  • English I Honors: 
    • re-read today’s argument and look for the second argument embedded within it (the argument for which the article is actually a large counterclaim);
    • complete this week’s article of the week.

English Studies had their first of two debate preparations. They worked on claims, reasons, counterclaims, and rebuttals. We’ll have the debate on Friday, and it should be exciting.

English Strategies (fourth period) finished up the film version of Nightjohn. We’ll have a quick, short application of the work tomorrow and Friday and then move on to the next unit on Monday.

English I Honors students continued with yesterday’s work, determining what a lyric moment is and how it relates to a poem’s tonal shift. We went over several poems we’d looked at earlier in order to determine the tonal shift and lyric moment before heading off to apply it ourselves to “The Lanyard” by Billy Collins.

Homework
Sound Devices, Argument, and Comparison

English I Honors students worked on sound devices with poetry. We focused on a couple of poems, including the famous “My Papa’s Waltz.”

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We’ll finish up tomorrow before moving on to tone.

English Studies (fifth period) began a final activity that involves argument combined with the film and book version of Nightjohn. We will be having a debate — using actual debate rules, which means no one will know the side they are arguing until the day of the debate itself — as a culminating project.

English Strategies (fourth period) began the film comparison that English Studies just finished up.

Fourth period English I Honors students completed work on the first informational text for the Lord of the Flies writing project. It was a text on Maslow’s hierarchy, which we will begin applying to the novel tomorrow.

Sixth period English I Honors students completed the work on Southern voice in the opening pages of To Kill a Mockingbird, comparing it to a passage from The Old Man and the Sea. This will be the basis for the first argumentative project option later in the unit.

English 8 Strategies students continued with their peer conferencing practice, looking with their partner at a second example piece. We will continue this tomorrow before moving on to their first actual peer editing session.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • both classes: use this form to assess your starters by Thursday.
    • fourth period students:
      • continue working on the Lord of the Flies vocabulary work;
      • complete the Mockingbird project by Friday.
    • sixth period students:
      • begin assessing the final Lord of the Flies writing assignment (due Friday);
      • read through chapter four of Mockingbird.
  • Journalism: none.

English 8 Strategies students had their weekly Friday writing session. We’re finishing up our argumentative writing review and will begin our ACT-Aspire test preparation shortly.

Fourth period and sixth period English I Honors students finished up different jig saw activities as they began two new units.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • fourth period:
      • read through chapter two of Lord of the Flies by Tuesday;
      • look for vocabulary words as you read (words are available at the Moodle site, and we’ll be learning how we’ll use them them Monday).
    • sixth period:
      • complete the assessment of the mob psychology piece by this evening (more likely tomorrow morning, for I will not stay up until midnight to switch it over).
      • complete the final writing assignment on the conch shell by Monday. (All materials at the Moodle site.)
  • Journalism: none.

Both periods of English I Honors worked on their respective cumulative projects, with fourth period taking a final day to complete their group planning. Fourth period students also need to take into consideration the fact that they will not have access to their copies of To Kill a Mockingbird during the whole time they’re working on their papers, so they should take that into consideration when planning their time.

English 8 Strategies students made corrections to their argument analysis summaries from last week.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • fourth period students: begin working on your To Kill a Mockingbird projects.
    • sixth period students:
    • (Sixth period students might want to install this extension to help with their Lord of the Flies evaluations. This is for the Chrome browser, and once you install it, you only have to highlight text and right click on it to get a word count and writing analysis.)
  • Journalism: none.
Temptation, Mrunas, and Argument Consolidation

English 8 Strategies students, having completed five Mondays of argument analysis, spent the first part of the class consolidating their work into a graphic organizer as we begin to use the work for a larger project regarding the boundary between childhood and adulthood.

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Fourth period English I Honors students continued with To Kill A Mockingbird, finishing up our day-and-a-half look at the curious chapter twenty four.

Sixth period English I Honors students began working on their fourth writing assignment for Lord of the Flies, this time looking at Simon’s odd encounter at the end of chapter eight.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • fourth period: read chapters 25-28 for tomorrow.
    • sixth period:
      • evaluate the paragraph on authority;
      • read chapter 9 and 10 by Wednesday.
  • Journalism: none.
A Model, Tension, and Authority

English I Honors students in fourth period returned to the passages from Mockingbird that we were working on yesterday to begin establishing, with the help of an informational text, how Harper Lee builds the tension in the courtroom scene. We’ll finish up tomorrow.

Students who have English I Honors during sixth period had a day to work on the more recent writing assignment for Lord of the Flies.

As things begin to deteriorate, Piggy urges Ralph (at the end of chapter 5) to blow the conch shell once to bring everyone together. Ralph refuses, concerned about whether or not the boys heed the call of the conch.

Use what you know about authority from the Milgram experiment to consider the following questions:Why is Ralph concerned about whether they heed the conch?What will happen if he blows the shell and no one comes? What larger implications would this have for Ralph’s authority? If Ralph loses authority, who gains it? How might that be abused?

Students in English 8 Strategies returned to the model writing assignment I provided Monday to look carefully at just how I’d crafted my essay.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: anyone who has not completed two drafts is now behind and you need to catch up at home.
  • English I Honors: 
  • Journalism: none.
Writing, Socratic Seminar, and Jig Saw Prep

English 8 Strategies students worked on their regular Tuesday writing schedule. We’re still working on our argumentative writing. Today, students were to complete the second of their three first drafts. The remaining deadlines are below:

  • Friday 6 March: 3 first drafts complete
  • Tuesday 10 March: 3 first drafts complete and one of those turned into a revised second draft

English I Honors fourth period completed yesterday’s moral hierarchy work for the minor characters of Mockingbird. It is the fourth possible project topic for the unit.

Sixth period English I Honors students had a bit of time to review their verbals before switching groups tomorrow for the completion of the jig saw work tomorrow. After their review work, they had a chance to begin preparing their third writing assignment for the Lord of the Flies unit.

Homework

English 8 Strategies began working on the fifth and final argument example in their project concerning when kids become adults. We used a modified version of this New York Times article and examined it for the claim and evidence provided.

Fourth period English I Honors students continued working on To Kill a Mockingbird and the accompanying work on the argument in the unit. Students worked to create a moral ranking of various characters before sharing and arguing with other students about their various rankings. We’ll be finishing this up tomorrow.

Sixth period students, who are working on Lord of the Flies, began the third topic we will be using to examine the book, in this case, Milgram’s famous Stanford experiment regarding authority and moral autonomy.

Homework

English 8 Strategies students returned to informational texts today, looking at the fourth of five argumentative articles and examining it for claim and evidence.

Fourth period English I students continued with To Kill a Mockingbird by practicing argumentative thinking and writing with a short mini-project based on the case of Emmett Till and the role his brutal murder played in the Civil Rights movement. We’ll be continuing this tomorrow.

Sixth period English I students continued working on Lord of the Flies. We had a vocabulary quiz before looking at the rubric for the on-going writing project we’ll be doing for the unit. In addition, we went briefly over the sentence variety element of the rubric and a couple of the sentence types within that.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • fourth period: read through chapter 8 by Wednesday;
    • sixth period: read through chapter 4 by Wednesday;
    • all students: continue working on the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack project (due 17 February).
  • Journalism: none.

English I Honors students split in two today, with fourth period beginning To Kill a Mockingbird and sixth period beginning Lord of the Flies. We’ll be switching selections in a few weeks when both classes are done, so for the next few weeks, I will be updating English I Honors classes by the period instead of the class.

English 8 Strategies students received their third argument in the series “When Does an Adolescent Become an Adult?” We marked the text and analyzed it for the claim and evidence. We’ll continue working on this tomorrow. We will also be having a short quiz based on selected vocabulary in the article as well as vocabulary for the article of last week.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: study for the vocabulary quiz tomorrow.
  • English I Honors: continue working on your Romeo and Juliet soundtrack project.
  • Journalism: none.
Searching for Evidence and a Tough Prompt

English I Honors finished up (almost) all our work on fate and Romeo and Juliet in general with a short look at how to deal with some of the insane prompts they’ll encounter in high school. We went over Kelly Gallagher’s “ABCs (and D) of On-Demand Writing” before applying it to a tricky prompt that, we determined, had eighteen possible ways of responding correctly.

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Notes from English I Honors

English 8 Strategies completed a very challenging text, looking for argumentative elements as we work our way through the second, more advanced unit on argumentative writing.

Creative writing students worked on their teacher class profile projects and/or their audio projects.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: the sentence-fragment work from last Wednesday is due tomorrow.
  • English I Honors: 
    • continue working on the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack project;
    • be prepared to bring in the practice ACT-Aspire test, evaluated, on Friday.
  • Journalism: none.

English I Honors students turned the final moments of Romeo and Juliet to finish the examination of the play for references in any way to fate. We’ll be using these copious notes from Friday and today when we look at tomorrow’s work, which will deal with a rather tough essay prompt similar to the one they will get regularly in high school. It’s time they learn how to make heads and tails of such prompts, so we’ll be doing that tomorrow.

English 8 Strategies students returned to the argument, as it is Monday, and looked at a second argumentative informational text about the line between adulthood and adolescence. This text is based on a New York Times article that I simplified a bit. We’ll continue working with the text, but tomorrow, we’ll begin with a quiz on the vocabulary terms at the bottom of the text.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: 
    • study for tomorrow’s short vocabulary quiz;
    • complete the sentence fragment work from last week by Wednesday.
  • English I Honors: 
    • continue working on your practice test evaluation, which will be due tomorrow;
    • continue working on the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack project, which will be due in approximately three weeks.

English I Honors students completed their Socratic Seminars for the question of who was responsible for Juliet’s faked death. Students also turned in their planning sheets for this discussion.

English 8 Strategies students finished up tracing the argument put forth in a text about brain development and adulthood.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: any student who has not do so thus far needs to use the Act-Aspire rubric to score your practice test from last Thursday (I’m giving everyone a bit more time on this).
  • Journalism: none.