close reading

English I Honors students worked on 1.3, looking a little at the hidden stage directions Shakespeare embeds in his work as well as the new characters’ views of love and marriage, finishing up from Friday.

English 8 had a Socratic Seminar to conclude “The Lottery.” I would have posted some pictures, but I didn’t take any because we were all so busy discussing the issues at hand.

Homework
  • English 8 Strategies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • by Monday, read 1.4;
    • re-read the Queen Mab speech an additional two times (three times in total);
    • complete the Love Connection graphic organizer.
Friday Work and Love Connections

English I Honors students looked at a few passages in Romeo and Juliet to determine various characters’ views of love. Working in groups, students examined Capulet’s, Benvolio’s, and Romeo’s views on love in the first act.

English 8 students began with their 100% club pictures.

Fifth period
Sixth period

Afterward, we did our typical first-semester Friday work (lesson plan at right) on inferences and article of the week, with the added bonus of a bit of gamified stems practice

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: read 1.3.

English I Honors went over 1.1 of Romeo and Juliet, working in Quizlet to see how well they’re understanding the text and then acting out a few select sections.

English 8 students began preparing for a discussion of “The Lottery” by going over some discussion and comprehension questions in their lit groups.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • read 1.2;
    • reread this passage from 1.1 and determine what literary device is being used repeatedly here: Here’s much to do with hate, but more with love. Why, then, O brawling love! O loving hate! O any thing, of nothing first create! O heavy lightness! serious vanity! Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms! Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health! Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!
Friday Update

English I Honors students continued working on their very close reading and diagramming of the case against Tom Robinson.

English 8 students completed their normal Friday inference and article of the week work.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • complete the diagramming of Mayella Ewell’s testimony;
    • read chapter 19, Tom’s testimony.

English I Honors students worked on their diagrams of the testimony within the case against Tom Robinson. The first day’s work is available here at the Moodle site for students who were absent.

English 8 students worked on the Harriet Tubman text, with fifth period students working through the material old-school style and sixth period working through the material using lit circles.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: work on article of the week as necessary.
  • English I Honors: 
    • complete diagramming of chapter 17;
    • read chapter 18;
    • work on article of the week as necessary.

English I Honors continued with the lit circles for To Kill a Mockingbird, looking at two issues (whether or not Atticus made a good decision in representing Robinson considering the potential risk to his family and what the role of Calpurnia is in the novel) in groups that they then shared with partners from the other group.

English 8 students worked on lit circles. Fifth period ended their lit circle cycle, but sixth period will be continuing.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: read chapter 17 (either twice or once taking very good notes).

All classes worked on lit circles today. English I students continued with the Mockingbird circles. We’ll be moving on to the next section of readings shortly, but we’ll be taking them one chapter at a time as we’ve reached the trial scene — the most critical scene in the book.

English 8 students worked on their first lit circles, with a class-wide practice/modeling session for the text we’ll be working on.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: work on article of the week as necessary.
  • English I Honors: work on article of the week as necessary.

English I Honors students returned to Mockingbird to look at some tough word choices that appear because of its nature as a Southern novel.

English 8 students returned for the final text portion of the Frederick Douglass autobiography we’ve been reading.

Homework

English 8 students finished up their practice of determining the main idea of a text. English I Honors students worked on their first lit circle, debriefing in a forum afterward to make sure things improve the next time.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: 
    • read chapters 5 and 6 for tomorrow;
    • begin preparing for the next lit circle (choosing the job and preparing the material).

English I Honors students began To Kill a Mockingbird today, looking at the question of voice in the opening pages after completing our Socratic Seminar.

English 8 students finished up the selection they’ve been reading from Frederick Douglass’s autobiography.

Homework

Ironically, all classes in one form or another prepared for a Socratic Seminar tomorrow. English I Honors will be working off the reading we had in class today about Jim Crow laws as we begin To Kill a Mockingbird while English 8 students will be working with topics gleaned from our latest passage of Frederick Douglass’s autobiography.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: work on the article of the week as necessary.
  • English I Honors: 
    • complete the reading about Jim Crow laws for tomorrow;
    • prepare for a discussion on the following question (among others): What do you think the total effect of Jim Crow laws was meant to be?
Finishing and Starting

English I Honors began the final stages of the Odyssey project.

English 8 students began their new unit, a STEAM unit with social studies and math.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: continue with the poetry project.
  • English I Honors: read the final section of the Odyssey (to page 416 — not sure about the hundreds in that, but it is definitely x16).

English I Honors worked on mastering the Homeric simile, something that’s initially fairly but deceptively straightforward. Close reading, in other words.

English 8 students had a final day of practice with figurative language. We’ll finish up poetry in the next week or so.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: complete the article of the week as necessary.
  • English I Honors: 
    • re-read the Cyclops section, finding two ten- to fifteen-line segments that are challenging for comprehension (i.e., either you struggled to understand it the first time you read it, or you still don’t understand it);
    • complete the article of the week as necessary.

English I Honors students looked at one final version of Calypso, a song by Suzanne Vega:

We’ll be wrapping up Calypso tomorrow with a brief discussion — probably Socratic-seminar-ish.

English 8 students continued with figurative language by having some individual practice after reviewing some group work we recently finished.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: read 372-385 for tomorrow.

English 8 students worked on their Friday inference work. English I Honors students finished up the opening of the Odyssey, seeing in the process that it is a prayer to the Muse for inspiration as well as a prologue.

Homework
  • English 8 Studies: none.
  • English I Honors: read the “Kalypso” excerpt.