Friday, May 17, 2019

Daily Agenda: Tuesday, May 14 - Friday, May 17

Tuesday, May 14
MCAS mathematics was today, and A, B, and C classes had time to read To Kill a Mockingbird through the end of the trial (chapter twenty-one).

HW Eng: Read and enjoy your quarter four choice text.

Wednesday, May 15, Thursday, May 16, and Friday, May 17

words of the day: eureka and unmitigated

We watched the trial scene in To Kill a Mockingbird, and students wrote a sentence to describe Scout's behavior with a connotative adjective and connotative adverb and completed a primer on interjections.

Students had a fishbowl discussion in A, B, and C classes, using the completed, written analysis of how the trial is deeply unjust.

The fishbowl questions are as follows:

  • What are signs in the text and in the film that Tom Robinson's trial is deeply unjust?
  • What is one word describing any aspect of the sham trial that stands out to you about the history and language?  And what is the part of speech of that word?  My example is the adjective unmitigated.
With additional time for reading TKAM, here are some essential reader focuses to hold in mind as you complete the novel.

HW Eng: Pace your reading to finish TKAM by Tuesday, May 21.  Keep in mind the reader focuses on the blog (above).

Monday, May 13, 2019

Daily Agenda: Monday, May 13

HW Eng: Read the quarter four choice book tonight for at least 30 minutes and bring your quarter four choice book with you to MCAS math tomorrow. 

Friday, May 10, 2019

Daily Agenda: Friday, May 10

word of the day: we used our literary vocabulary to give our reformers booktalks

Booktalks continue as classmates read chapters 19, 20, and 21 for Monday in To Kill a Mockingbird.  We will watch the lead-up to the trial and will begin watching the trial that day.

We discussed what makes the trial deeply unjust.

Discuss and verify with a dictionary what the words homage and watershed mean in these two related articles:
  • PBS Newshour article and interview from last night on the new Broadway adaptation of Lee's novel, with two comments highlighted from writer Aaron Sorkin and lead actor Jeff Daniels
  • History.com article on Loving vs. State of Virginia 
HW Eng: Finish reading on chapters 19, 20, and 21 in To Kill a Mockingbird for Monday, when we will continue watching the film.  We will continue the booktalks on Monday.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Daily Agenda: Monday, May 6 - Thursday, May 9

Monday, May 6
word of the day: venerable

Read chapters 14 and 15 of To Kill a Mockingbird (pages 180-207).  As you read, notice how Scout does not fully understand the history and language she is hearing:
  • Put your name on the double entry chart notes.
  • Jot down BRIEF examples of how well Scout does or does not understand the history and language Scout is hearing in chapters 14 and 15 on those double entry notes.
HW Eng: Finish reading chapters 14 and 15 in TKAM and jot quick notes of examples of how well Scout does or does not understand the history and language she is hearing in chapters 14 and 15.  The booktalks are due on Thursday.  Please take some time to plan your reformers booktalk if you did not do so over the weekend.

Tuesday, May 7
word of the day: varmints 

Each student briefly checked in yesterday's double entry notes homework with Ms. Hodgens.  

We read chapter 16 in class (208-222).

HW Eng: Finish reading chapter 16. Please take some time to plan your reformers booktalk if you did not do so over the weekend.

Wednesday, May 8
word of the day: we used our original word of the day, perspicacious, as a connotative adjective 

Today's lesson focused on elevating writing and speaking voice and style in academic ELA language.  We learned how to embellish nouns with specific, connotative adjectives and how to enhance vivid verbs with specific, connotative adverbs.  Our model sentence is here, along with our analysis of the grammatical structures which create a mature prose style.  
  • The sentence begins with a prepositional phrase which includes a connotative adjective and repetition of the same vowel in side-by-side words (inquiring innocence).
  • The sentence transforms a known adjective, perspicacious, into an adverb by adding -ly and uses that high diction, connotative diction choice to tell us how Scout questions -- perspicaciously.   Remember that adverbs tell us how, where, when, and to what extent.
Next, we pair-shared and talked as a whole class about how and what Scout questions perspicaciously.  She questions norms of class, gender, white supremacy, treatment of children, structures of marriage, privilege, and "heritage".  Our notes are here.

We then had significant reading time to get started on chapter 17 (pages 222-238).

HW Eng: Finish reading chapter 17 (222-238).  If you have not done so already, please take some time to plan your reformers booktalk, which you will give to a small group of classmates and to Ms. H. tomorrow in class.  Bring your reformers book with you to class tomorrow.

Thursday, May 9
word of the day: we used our literary vocabulary to give our reformers booktalks

Each classmate gave a reformers booktalk to a small group.  Ms. Hodgens will continue to hear each booktalk on Friday and Monday.

We then had significant reading time to get started on chapter 18 (239-253).

HW Eng: Finish reading chapter 18 (239-253).  Bring your reformers book with you to class tomorrow if you did not leave it in your locker or in the classroom overnight.


Sunday, May 5, 2019

Daily Agenda: Friday, May 3

Today we went to the Harvard Public Library for our final visit of the year.  Each student checked out a quarter four choice book if they did not already have one - and the emphasis was on choosing a book which is manageable and enjoyable.

Each student will give a five minute booktalk with informal notes next Thursday, May 9. 

  • Please do not prepare a slideshow and keep the emphasis on the literary elements we have established in the remarks from those quarter two presentations.  
  • The directions and rubric found here.  
  • The sample booktalk I gave on The Diary of a Young Girl quarter two is here.
  • Bring your reformers book and informal notes with you next Thursday, May 9 to give the booktalk to a small circle of classmates and to Ms. Hodgens.
  • Do you recommend your reformers book?  What would you rate it from 1-10?


HW Eng:
1. Begin reading your quarter four choice book, and if you do not enjoy it this weekend, please find another manageable, high interest book which you would like to read over the next six weeks. 
2. The quarter three booktalk will be due on Thursday.  The directions and information you need for that booktalk are found on today's blogpost.

Daily Agenda: Thursday, May 2

word of the day: aesthetic

We spoke about Chapter 12 - the first in section two in To Kill a Mockingbird.  What stands out about Calpurnia's church?  What did you think was memorable?

What are some places, pictures, graphics, or landscapes you find aesthetically pleasing? We shared some responses from Van Gogh's "Starry Night" to San Diego's Balboa Park.  Vintage cat posters,  bookstores around the world and in Saratoga Springsglassblowing creations and the Cliffs of Moher -- they all earned praise.

With aesthetics in mind, we finally watched the first twenty-five minutes of To Kill A Mockingbird and then spoke about this question: did you find the film aesthetically pleasing? What was included and what was left out?  What are the effects of those choices?

HW Eng: Read Chapter 13 of To Kill a Mockingbird.


Daily Agenda: Wednesday, May 1

word of the day: virulent

In section one of To Kill a Mockingbird, we focus on history.

According to WGBH, Harper Lee wanted to be an American Jane Austen.  As Austen wrote Pride and Prejudice by looking out her parlor window, Lee wrote about the "virulent prejudice" in her small, Southern community.

Today, we reviewed a timeline of events from Finch's Landing to 2019, including the inception of Simon Finch's slave plantation (around 1830 or 1840), the end of the Civil War (1865), the rise of the Jim Crow era (1877), the Atticus Finch's law school start (around 1900), Maycomb as we know it in the novel (1930s), the burgeoning civil rights movement and immediate written and filmic success of To Kill a Mockingbird (1960-1963), and the #1 status of the novel among individuals polled around the U.S. (2019).

What are signs of virulent racism under the Jim Crow system in 1930s Maycomb?
  • body language and insults on the streets
  • unsafe on the street -- be it a country road, private property, or downtown Maycomb -- for a person of color
  • segregated neighborhoods
  • segregated schools
  • conflict "solving" with fights at school suggests that the aura of Maycomb is fundamentally unsafe
  • the use of the n-word from Mrs. Dubose, Cecil Jacobs, Cecil's parents, and Francis Hancock, to name some instances.
As we begin section two, we wrote and discussed about these questions about history, literature, and the n-word.

HW Eng: Finish reading chapter 11 and read chapter 12 in TKAM.