Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Day 78!

Okay, today we will spend some time discussing the entries from November 14, 15, and 19th.

  • How does the driver try to bait Griffin? Why would he do this?
  • Griffin explains why these white men feel comfortable discussing sex openly with him as a black man, explain why. Explain how this further degrades the human life of black people in this time period. 
  • According to Griffin, what actually causes "social differences" summarize his explanation in your own words. 
Then, you will have time to read the next section: November 21- the end of November 28.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Day 73!

Good Tuesday morning!

I apologize that I cannot be in class with you this morning; I am sure you are all very disappointed that I am gone as well. :)

Today, I want you to start by finishing up the questions from yesterday's blog post. Once you have them finished, please share your answers with me.

After you have finished these questions; please talk through your answers with a partner. Feel free to change your answers as necessary.

Once you have discussed all of the questions, please read the November 10-12 entry of the book. It's only about 4 pages long, so it shouldn't take you too much time! Answer the questions on this DOCUMENT as/after you read. Feel free to complete the reading and questions with a partner.

Please be ready to discuss your answers with the class tomorrow!

Day 72!

Today will be a sort of "catch up" day so that we can work to get everyone back in the same place.

You will have the period to read up to November 10-12 in Black Like Me. Once you have finished reading, please fill out these questions for discussion. Click HERE to access them!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Day 67!

“An understanding of racism as a system of advantage presents a serous challenge to the notion of the United States as  just society where rewards are based solely on one’s merits.” Beverly Daniel Tatum, Harvard Educational Review, (1992, p.6)

What does this statement mean to you? What is your reaction to this thought? Does meritocracy exist in the United States; is the “American Dream” an attainable goal for everyone? Reflect on this in a brief journal entry. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Day 64!

Happy Monday!

Today we will view any projects that we did not see on Friday.

Then, we will begin work with our Civil Rights unit!

We will be watching A Class Divided which is a documentary about an experiment performed in an Iowa classroom in 1968; the year of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's assassination.

A Class Divided

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Day 61!

Today is your final work day on your Fahrenheit 451 projects! Make sure you're using your time wisely!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Day 60!

Happy day 60!!! Congratulations and good work on making it 1/3 of the way through the school year!

Today will be another work day on your Fahrenheit 451 projects. Please let me know if you have any questions!

I'd like to thank all of you for your helpful comments on the teacher report card yesterday. I saw several comments more than once, and I will do my best to improve in as many areas as possible!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Day 59!

Today will be a project work day! But FIRST, I would like for all of you to take a few minutes to give me some feedback on how I am doing. Please fill out the "Report Card" below, then you have the rest of the hour to work on your projects!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Day 58!

1. How is the campfire different from the burning fire with which Montag is familiar?
2. What is so remarkable to Montag about the voices around the campfire he hears as he hides in the trees?
 3.How is Montag like the men he encounters gathered around the campfire?
 4. How do the old men hope to use the books they have memorized, and what do they think will happen?
5. What makes the war and its end so unreal to Montag and his companions?
6. What do Montag’s imaginings about Mildred’s fate when the bombs fall indicate about him?
7. What, according to Granger, makes humans different from the Phoenix? How will this help humankind finally?
8. Why do you think that the old men fall in behind Montag on their journey back to the city. Why has he become the

9. What is the significance of the quote that Montag will save for noon when they reach the city?
10. What is the theme of this book, in your opinion?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Day 57!

1.  What is fitting about Montag’s planting books in Fireman Black’s home?
2. What insight about himself does Montag gain as he reflects on his violent actions?
3.. Even though war has been declared, the news media focuses on the Mechanical Hound’s tracking of Montag. What does this say about the function of the media in society?
4.. If Montag were caught and dying, what single word or phrase do you think he could say to the TV cameras that would wake the people up to the enforced triviality of their lives?
5.. What insight about time and the sun and his actions as a fireman does Montag get during his leisurely float on the river? What does Montag understand humans must do to counter the effects of the time-burning sun?

Reading assignment: FINISH the book! Add 2 vocabulary words to finish up your list! 

Day 56! Discussion Questions

1. What do you think caused Mildred to bring about the destruction of her own house by reporting that her husband had hidden books?

2. Why does Beatty want Montag to wield the flame thrower to destroy his own house and why does Montag do it?

3. Almost without knowing it, Montag’s hands switch off the safety on the flame thrower aimed at Beatty. What does this show about Montag’s state of awareness or consciousness?

4. Why do you think Beatty mockingly tells Montag to “pull the trigger” (p. 113) on the flame thrower Montag has aimed at him?

5. Is Montag justified in killing Beatty? Why or why not?

6. Why do the teenagers in the car try to kill Montag as he crosses the avenue? How do their actions reflect what is happening in society?

Reading assignment: 123-138 & 2 vocabulary words

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Day 55!

Today we will begin by sharing the 6 Word Memoirs that you created on Friday!

After that, you will have time to read pages 107-123 in Part 3: Burning Bright.

As you read, please pick 2 more vocabulary words.

If you finish early, please use that time to make sure your vocabulary list is up to date!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Day 54!

1.Why is Faber so discouraged about changing society for the better even if a war wipes out the current culture in their country?

2. Why does Montag not heed Faber’s warnings and instead confronts the women in his house with a reading of “Dover Beach”?

3. When Montag returns to the firehouse for work, he is divided. What are the divisions within himself that he experiences?

4. The Captain recounts his dream in which he defeats Montag’s argument for the importance of books. Choose one of the Captain’s quotes that directly argues against the power of books and explain what the quote means.

5. How does Montag feel about himself as he rides the fire truck with the other men to burn more books?

6. How do you think the book is going to end?

Throughout the second half of "The Sieve and the Sand" we see everything that Montag is doing, but we never really get to see what he is feeling in his head. Review the second part of this chapter and think about what Montag is probably feeling and thinking. Then, create a 6 word memoir that you feel expresses everything that Montag is feeling, be sure to also include graphics and pictures that portray his point of view and emotions. 

Below you will find some examples of 6 Word Memoirs. Be sure that you include graphics or pictures with yours; be creative! 

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Day 53!

1. How does Montag answer Mildred when she asks why she should read? What does their exchange indicate about the differences between them?

2. Although Montag’s country has won “two atomic wars since 2022” (p. 69), the threat of another war grows stronger. What reason does Montag give for the country being hated so much? How might books help Montag’s countrymen relate to peoples of other countries?

3. How does the sieve and the sand analogy apply to Montag?

4. When Montag visits Faber, Faber calls himself a coward. Why? In what way has he acted cowardly?

5. Faber tells Montag; “It’s not books you need, it’s some of the things that once were in books” (p.78). What is it that Montag needs and is searching for?

6. According to Faber, what three things are necessary to the pursuit of happiness? To what degree has Montag gained each of these three factors in his life at this point of the novel?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Day 51!

Review pages 51-65. Then, in a few brief paragraphs on a Google Doc, answer the questions below.

According to Beatty, how did books become the enemy of mankind? What forces contributed to the changes in books and magazines? What role did different minorities have in causing controversy about books? How did the society try to eliminate the controversy and how effective are they in achieving this goal? Ultimately, how do fireman act as "...custodians of our peace of mind" (56)? How did the society end up where they are and what is your reaction to their logic? Use evidence from the book to support your answer. 

When you have finished, please submit your response using this form.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Day 50 Discussion Questions

  1.  On page 21, after Montag and Clarisse finish talking, Montag turns his head up into the rain and opens his mouth. What does this suggest about Montag?
  2. Why does the mechanical hound growl and threaten Montag?
  3. What is the significance of the Phoenix on Beatty's helmet? What about the number 451?
  4.  Clarisse says, “I haven’t any friends. That’s supposed to prove I’m abnormal” (27). Is Clarisse abnormal?What does she do that keeps people her own age from relating to her?
  5. There is a list of a million forbidden books (31) on the firehouse wall. What type of books are probably on this list, and why?
  6.  In a book in the house he has come to burn, Montag reads,“Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine”  (34). How does this line affect him, and why?
  7. What is the difference for Montag during this particular fire call? 
  8.  Why does Beatty call books a “Tower of Babel” (35)?
  9. Several times throughout the book so far, Montag has mentioned the ventilator grill outside his house. What does he think about each time he looks at or thinks about the grill? 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Day 48!

Discussion Questions :

1. Why does Montag grin with a “fierce grin” (p. 2) before and after he is fighting fires?

2. Describe Clarisse—how does she look and act? How is her face like a candle in the light it gives off?
Give specific details.

3. What is the effect of Clarisse’s questions on Montag? Why do her questions have this effect?

4. Compare Montag’s wife, Mildred, with Clarisse. Are they alike in any way? How are they different?

5. What is Montag’s reaction when he discovers his wife has taken an overdose of sleeping pills? Why does he react this way? Does he love his wife?

6. What is the effect of the wall-sized TVs on Mildred? What kinds of programs are playing on them?

7. Why are Clarisse and Montag fascinated with each other? What do they find attractive; what do they findupsetting about each other?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Fahrenheit 451 Vocabulary

Here are the vocabulary words for today in Fahrenheit 451 (you've already done the first three). Make sure you have the word, part of speech, definition, and an example sentence:


pick 2 more as you read 18-38

Words that you chose for pages 18-38: 

Pages 38-65
Pick 4 words as you read

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Day 40!

Good morning! Happy 40th day of school!

To begin class today, please discuss your primary sources notes you took on Friday with a partner.

If you were gone Friday, please read pages 1002-1006 in your text book and complete the notes first.

After that, you will have the rest of the class period to create your own editorial, editorial cartoon, or advertisement poster (see book for definitions if you have forgotten which each thing is).

Your main task is to create a political editorial, editorial cartoon, or advertisement poster about an issue that is happening in the US today. Your  goal is to clearly portray your opinion on the matter in the same fashion that they did in the 1940s, and try to persuade people to think or act the way you do.

You may select any cause that you think is important. This will be due tomorrow. You are welcome to use any materials you need. The supplies are in that back cabinet; help yourselves to what you need, but please clean up after yourselves!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Peer editing steps!

Step 1: Make a copy of your partner's essay (do NOT edit on their original copy)
Step 2: Read for spelling, grammar, and mechanical mistakes. Highlight any mistakes you see.
Step 3: Write 1 compliment and 1 suggestion for revision for each paragraph. You may place these comments in the margins of the document using the "comment" function.
Step 4: Assign a score based on the essay rubric.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Day 19!

Chapter 9 Focus Questions

1. What makes Nick assume responsibility for the funeral arrangements? Specify the things he did.
2. What version of the tragedy appeared in the newspapers? How would you account for the fact that this version went unchallenged and uncorrected?
3. How had Gatsby’s father learned of the tragedy? To what extent does the father know his son?
4. Discuss the significance of Gatsby’s boyhood program for self-improvement.
5. What is the irony of Gatsby’s funeral?
6. What is the significance of the scene including Jordan Baker?
7. What moral judgment does Nick make about Tom and Daisy? Discuss.

8. Explain the significance of the last page of the novel in relation to Gatsby’s dream and to the American Dream.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Day 17!

Today, we will discuss the questions from last week, and then we will move right along to Chapter 8! 

Here are the focus questions for Chapter 8, please have them prepared for class tomorrow! 

1. What had prompted Gatsby to talk freely to Nick now, when he was unwilling to do so in the past?
2. What further information do we learn about Gatsby?
3. Explain Nick’s meaning when he balances Gatsby’s supposed “corruption” against his “incorruptible dream.”
4. How does Wilson view the “eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg”? Does Wilson’s statement have a symbolic level for the novel as a whole? Explain.

5. Trace the movements of Gatsby and Wilson at the end of Chapter 8. What is Nick’s meaning when he says, “…the holocaust was complete”?

Friday, September 6, 2013

Day 16!

Yeah for getting to best parts of the book (even though it's all so awesome), and yay for Friday!

Today will be a relaxing reading day (after you turn in your writing assignment from yesterday, that is). You will read chapters 6 & 7 for Monday. Not a spoiler alert: you're going to love it. It's about to get more awesome!

Once you have finished, please answer the focus questions:

Chapter 6

1. What was Gatsby’s real name? Why and when had he changed it?
2. In what way was Dan Cody involved in Gatsby’s destiny?
3. Why does Tom attend Gatsby’s party? How does this scene reveal the contrast between Gatsby and Tom?
4. What is deeply ironic in Tom’s statement, “…I may be old-fashioned in my ideas, but women run around too much these days to suit me”?
5. Note the reactions of Tom and Daisy at different times during Gatsby’s part. Did they enjoy themselves? Explain.
6. What suspicions does Tom have about Gatsby? What does he vow to do?
7. What do Nick and Gatsby talk about after the party?
8. What is Gatsby expecting of Daisy that prompts Nick to warn him, “I wouldn’t ask too much of her… You can’t repeat the past”?

Chapter 7

1. Analyze Daisy’s attitude toward her child as evidenced in this chapter and in chapter 1. Is she a good mother? Explain why Gatsby looked “at the child
with surprise.”
2. With whom does Tom talk on the telephone early in the chapter? About what?
3. What does Gatsby mean when he says that Daisy’s voice is “full of money”? Why does Fitzgerald put those words in Gatsby’s mouth and not Nick’s?
4. What arrangements are made regarding the passengers of each car on the trip to the city? Why?
5. What does Gatsby do that makes Nick want “to get up and slap him on the back”? Why does Nick feel this way?
6. Does Daisy know what love is? Whom does she really love?
7. Is there any significance in the fact that the day is Nick’s birthday?
8. At the end of Chapter 7 Nick observes Gatsby, Tom, and Daisy after the accident. What conclusions does he reach?

9. Explain the last paragraph of Chapter 7.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Day 15! Chapter 5

Good morning!

Today we will take some time to discuss Chapter 5 of The Great Gatsby. Our discussion will be based on the following focus questions:

1. Gatsby’s actions in preparing for Daisy’s arrival seem both flamboyant and absurd. What does he do? Why?
2. Discuss Gatsby’s actions once Daisy arrives. How do we know he is nervous? How does he try to impress her?
3. Toward the end of the chapter, Nick attempts to explain “the expression of bewilderment that had come back into Gatsby’s face.” What explanation does Nick give? Why, in his opinion, is Daisy not at fault?

4. Has Nick been affected by the meeting between Gatsby and Daisy? In what way?

After we have finished discussing the questions, we will do a writing activity! 

Your assignment: 

Re-write this chapter from Daisy's point of view. What is she thinking and feeling throughout? What is her initial impression of the meeting upon arriving at Nick's house? How does she feel when she sees Gatsby for the first time? What do she and Gatsby talk about when Nick leaves? Be sure to use the events of the chapter as a guide and language that is characteristic of Daisy! Also, really push yourself to create an image for the reader. Do as Fitzgerald does, and make use of figurative language. Include at least 2 similes and 2 metaphors. Your chapter should be 1-2 pages in length. This will be due at the beginning of class tomorrow! 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Day 14!

Well, apparently I've been slacking on the posts!

Today we will discuss Chapter 4 of The Great Gatsby. We will base our discussion on these questions:

  1.  The introductory section of Chapter 4 gives a long roster of those who attended Gatsby’s parties. How do they behave toward their host? Why, then, do they accept his hospitality?
  2. Describe Gatsby’s car.
  3. Discuss the details that Gatsby shares with Nick about his past.
  4. Does Nick believe Gatsby’s story? Why or why not?
  5. Who is Meyer Wolfsheim? What seems to be his connection with Gatsby?
  6. Jordan Baker tells Nick about Daisy, Gatsby, and Tom. Summarize the story.
  7. Explain the epigraph on the title page of the novel . What does it reveal about Gatsby and his love for Daisy? "Then wear the gold hat, if that will move her; If you can bounce high, bounce for her too, Till she cry "lover, gold-hatted, high-bouncing lover, I must have you!" - Thomas Parke D'Invilliers. 
  8. Do we know why Gatsby has so many parties? Why did he buy the house? Explain.
  9. When Gatsby spoke to Jordan in his library in Chapter 3, he had devised a plan involving Nick. What was it? Why did he not ask Nick directly?
Once we have finished discussing our focus questions for the day, you will have time to read Chapter 5! It's getting so good! 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Day 6!

We get to start reading The Great Gatsby today!! Yay!!

First, we will share what each group learned from the articles that they read yesterday. While each group is sharing, the other groups should take notes on what is important to remember about F. Scott Fitzgerald's life, writing, and era.

Then you'll have the rest of the period to begin reading!! Your assignment for tomorrow is to read chapter one pages 1-21. Pay special attention to Fitzgerald's use of figurative language and imagery.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Day 5!

We get to start The Great Gatsby (unit) today!!

We'll start with some background information about F. Scott Fitzgerald (the author) today, and will start reading Chapter 1 tomorrow! We'll start by listening to a podcast about Fitzgerald's life, and then do a short activity in small groups!

Can't wait!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Day 4!!

4 days have come...only 176 to go!

Today, we will share our TWIST work that you did with Langston Hughes' poems. We will keep track of the topics he covers, and then see what his main focus was.

If we get time, we will TWIST "A Dream Deferred", one of his most famous poems, together and analyze what he was actually saying.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Day 3!

Friday! Today we will spend some time talking about the research you did yesterday, and go over your answers. Then, we will spend some time discussing The Roaring Twenties and what the country looked like at that time. 

Then, I will have you pick two Langston Hughes poems from this site. As you read the poems, use the TWIST method to analyze each. Be prepared to share your findings with the class on Monday! 

TWIST Method of Poetry Analysis 

T= Title Read the title and stop. Predict what the poem will be about. Consider connotations of the wording. 

W= What is it about? Paraphrase each LINE of the poem. Tell it in your own words

I= Imagery Look for any imagery, symbolism, metaphors, similes, personifications, irony, understatement, allusions, the tone shift, poet's attitude toward the subject, etc. These will help you understand the poem

S= Structure Look for tone shift, punctuation, stanza division, layout of poem, capitalized words. Discuss how these elements relate to the meaning of the poem

T= Theme Look at the title again from an interpretive level. Do you see anything new? What is the subject of the poem? Then determine what the poet is saying about each of the subjects which is your theme. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Thursday, August 15!

And we're to day 2!

Today we will be taking a look at some of your essays from last year. You will spend some time re-reading what you wrote so that you can get a closer look at your writing. After you have read your essay and the comments that I made on it, I will have you complete a short written reflection about your writing skills. This reflection will help me get a better idea of where you think you stand with your writing, and what you aim to accomplish before you leave class this year.

THEN, we will go ahead and jump into our learning! You will spend some time researching background information on the Harlem Renaissance (What it is, where/ when it happened, who it involved, etc). If we get some time, we will talk about what you found, if not, we'll pick it up there tomorrow!


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Wednesday, August 14. FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!!

Welcome back to school! I hope you all had great summers and that you are excited to be back to classes! I am so pumped to see you in class today!

Today, we'll just take care of some basic house keeping things. It's going to be super entertaining!
We'll talk about the class syllabus and expectations, our class blog, and then we'll spend some time getting to know each other!

See you soon!