Tuesday, August 26, 2014


Model how to approach Writing a New Chapter in A's Life assignment using samples from pages 11 and 121 of the text: identify instances of narration, description, dialogue, figurative language and hallmarks of A's style within the text excerpts. Review the scoring guide for the assignment and answer questions.

Monday, August 25, 2014


Approve and sign off on Classroom Norms:
Period 3
Period 4
Period 5

Finish up group work on A's Life if needed
Prepare for and conduct (ungraded) Two-circle seminar
Quickwrite: ranking
 Two-Circle seminar procedures:
1) Choose a partner
2) Decide who will speak first
3) That person forms a circle with other "first-speakers"
4) Partners sit directly behind their speaking partner (outer circle)
5) Partners check in with each other to share ideas first (turn around)
6) Inner circle speaks for about 8 minutes, sharing ideas, questions, comments, opinions, textual references, etc.
7) Partners check in with each other--what did you still want to say?
8) Partners switch and the new inner circle continues the discussion for several minutes
9) Partners reflect with each other: What was the most interesting idea shared today? What's still worth discussing? What do you understand more fully now? What did we do well?
10) Return desks quietly to original position

Seminar Norms:
Try to avoid raising hands
Take turns and listen closely/carefully
Build on each other's comments and anchor comments in the text
Invite others to participate/promote sharing of ideas

HW: Continue to review for Grapes of Wrath quiz tomorrow

Friday, August 22, 2014


Share drafts of Classroom Norms and revise with students' help:
Period 3
Period 4
Period 5

Complete group activity: Reflection on A's Life graphic organizer

HW: Complete prewriting only for Writing a New Chapter in A's Life assignment: you can use this graphic organizer, or simply answer the bulleted questions on the assignment directions.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Quickwrite: Generating Classroom Norms

Respond in writing, then conduct classroom whip-around to share ideas. I will capture thoughts from everyone, then shape into draft of classroom norms tonight.

HW: Review Grapes of Wrath--reading quiz Tuesday.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Journaling in prep for discussion: The World According to A
Turn in one-pager on your core value
Affix your value card to our class poster

Begin to introduce vocabulary from Every Day and The Grapes of Wrath
Pass out vocabulary charts - add a synonym under the word, add an antonym under the definition, then use the third box to either write a sample sentence illustrating the word's meaning in context, or draw an image to show the word's meaning (you can switch off from word to word). You are highly encouraged to work ahead on this assignment, but it won't be due until next week sometime when we've introduced and talked about all of the words on the list. For every new word, you'll ultimately be responsible for knowing how to pronounce it, how to spell it, how to write a sentence using the word that shows that word's meaning-in-context, how to define it and give both synonyms and antonyms, and how to draw a picture to show the word's meaning. Don't panic: a quiz won't happen for at least a week and a half.

HW: Begin to work on the vocabulary assignment. You're welcome to work ahead--this won't be due until we have discussed all of the words in class. Please bring Every Day again tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


Welcome, Juniors!!!!

First Day Letter and Homework for Parents
PPT: Course Intro and Values, Morals, and Ethics
Activity: What is your core value? Using values cards, select 5 and write them on the index cards provided

Carousel: Examining and identifying our shared values
Column sort & discussing our weakest value and room for growth

HW: My Most Important Core Value. Select 1 of your 5 core values. Write a 1-page reflection (typed or in blue or black ink) explaining why this value is so important to you. Feel free to tell a story! What experience or experiences have shaped your value system? (For example, when I was seven, _____ happened, which showed me the importance of honesty...)