Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Finding Theme

Good morning,
 We are still working on figuring out what a story says about life. Just to recap we have looked at three short stories so far to help us with this task.
The Flowers
The Masque of the Red Death 
and On the Bridge (You read this one on paper while I was gone.)

You are now quite good at having an opinion about what the story says about life, but can you back it up?
Can you give me evidence from the story to prove your point?
View this page as we work on it together.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Continuing Theme

Monday I shared a folder with you and we read The Flowers by Alice Walker. We used that story to practice our knowledge of the plot graph and character motivation. We learned that understanding character motivation is an important step to figuring out the theme.

Tuesday we used our shared folder again and you made your own copy of "The Masque of the Red Death". We are reading it together and you are adding annotations to yours as we go. Links to my version of the document are below. You can look at mine, but you need to do your own notes on your own copy.
3__ __ Masque of the Red Death
4__ __ Masque of the Red Death

We already know that the main character is Prince Prospero and that his motivation is to escape the Red Death while having fun with his friends. Today we will read more.

Thursday and Friday I will be gone to the BIG English teacher convention in Florida. Ms. Creighton will be here with you. You'll have more stories to read and questions to answer about theme. Use the steps on our chart in class to figure out the theme.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Getting Started with Theme

Good morning,

We need to do some work in docs this week and I need to share a folder with you all. You will only be able to view the documents in the folder and then make your own copy to write on.

I need an updated list of your e-mail addresses that you use with Google Docs. Please use this form to submit your e-mail address.  Thanks.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Week Ahead

I know you won't forget that your Crucible Project is due on Wednesday. Remember the library is open after school if you need a computer to work on.

CAHSEE is Tuesday and Wednesday. A third of my students need to take the English or Math section or both. Please make sure to be on time and bring your ID.

Don't forget to change your Facebook privacy settings and LIKE the Mrs. Roberts Class page. I won't be able to see your status updates IF you have your privacy settings set correctly to "Friends Only". Parents can LIKE the page too if they want to know what's happening in our class.

Thursday there is no school, and Friday I thought might be the perfect day to show you the last part of The Crucible film.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Thesis Statement Frames

This was the presentation I showed you today about ways you can write your thesis statement.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Thesis statement practice

Recently, looking at your drafts I found we have an unexpected problem. Similar to the great run-on sentence crisis we had with our Orgins stories, we now have a crisis of Thesis Statements. Despite all the talk I hear from 9th grade teachers about teaching thesis statement, you, my students, still do not know what they are, how to create them or what to do with them. (There is plenty of evidence for this in your drafts.)

Today in class we looked at 11 statements.  I asked you to respond to each one by writing, "This is/is not a thesis statement because." All of the statements I showed you came from your drafts. At the end we reviewed them and then you wrote your own thesis statement.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Google Books

Good morning,
 Yesterday our work was focused on those of you needing to add evidence to your essays. We looked at how quoted evidence makes your argument stronger and also at some of the sentence starters you can use to follow a quote.

Today I want to give a little help to those of you working on project option 1, but the rest of you will also likely find some time soon when this will be helpful to you. We are going to look at Google Books.

With Google Books you can search by title or topic. And then, once you have found the book you can even search INSIDE the book. Try it. Search for "salem witch trials", pick a book and then use the search box on the left that says "search in this book". Try typing in the name of a person you are interested in, Proctor for example.

Why would it be helpful to be able to find a book like this on-line? Why would it be helpful to be able to search inside the book? How would you cite your source? Is this a primary or secondary source? (trick question)

A few of you still need to share your Crucible Project with me in Google Docs. Please make sure you do that today.  Your draft is due tomorrow.