Thursday, January 27, 2011

Act I of Romeo and Juliet: outer circle responses

While your classmates discuss Act I in the inner circle, post your wonderings and responses.  Consider your writing prompt:  what questions are you left with, comprehension or otherwise?  What do you want to know more about?  Also, use your classmates' inner circle responses and questions for discussion fodder, responding to one another's questions and ideas.

Some ground rules:
This is for English class, not a Facebook post.  It is also attached to my name as well as Arapahoe's.  I expect, then, school appropriate, grammatically correct, proofread responses.  I also expect that you'll be respectful as you speak to one another.  I expect that you'll contribute on at least a few occasions as well.

Helpful hints:
Refresh your screen every few minutes.
Address a person if you're responding to anyone in particular, i.e. "Todd, I thought..."

Happy blogging to you!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What is love?

As we study Romeo and Juliet, we'll focus on the relationship between love and violence, the 2 predominant motifs on which we'll focus our study. Let's consider just the former...

What is love? Do opposite genders think of love differently? Why or why not? How do you know? Can teenagers be in love? To what extent is true love possible in this day and age?

Choose one or multiple questions to respond to in a paragraph, employing effective writing skills (beginning with a topic sentence, supporting your ideas, proofreading, etc.) Consider, as you post, the advantages of blogs: this is a discussion outside of class. Read each other's ideas and respond to them, challenging yourself to even turn back to the blog later in the evening to see where the conversation went and to respond a second time.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Big Picture Questions with All Quiet motifs

Using the example on the overhead, between you and your partner, record a motif-inspired question over All Quiet on the Western Front.  Be sure to indicate the motif from which your question originated, i.e. "Chance--to what extent does chance govern our survival?".

Be sure to record both you and your partners' names (just first name and last initial) below your question. 

Also, DO NOT repeat someone else's question.

When you finish, continue reading ch. 7.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Your Last Supper

Since people started eating--in other words, since the beginning of mankind--sharing a meal has been a social activity.  Today we're going to think about why and so what:  why is eating something we share? how does the dining experience a important part of the things we read?

So here's how we'll start today...
In a paragraph, capture your last social dining experience.  With whom did you share it?  Why?  Would you share this same experience with someone you dislike?  Why or why not?

When you finish capturing your own thinking, peruse the responses of your classmates.  What do you notice about what your experiences have in common?  Record your thinking in your notes.

I'll start...
Every night, my husband and I share dinner; (we love to cook).  My last social dining experience though was with my family on Sunday night.  Nearly every weekend, we collect to enjoy good food and each others' company.  We are privileged to have parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and siblings all in one place, so we try to get together often because we value family.  Last Sunday, we enjoyed green chile stew, some World Series baseball, and passing out candy to trick-or-treaters.  It was kind of funny to think about this question though because I am not sure why we specifically choose to get together over food--not a movie, or an event, or anything else.  And no, I don't believe I'd choose to share dinner with someone I disliked.

Now you go...

Friday, September 17, 2010

Riddle me this, riddle me that...

Today we talked about asking good questions about literature using the handout I distributed in class.  Post a comment which includes 3 questions over Poe's "A Cask of Amontillado".  These questions should come from 3 different levels.  Please label them according to the level from which they come, (i.e. Interpretive--What is the significance of...etc).
Be sure you read the posts ahead of yours so your questions are redundant.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Good, the bad, and the ugly...

Today we talked about why "good" people do bad things, the question we'll seek to answer during our short fiction unit. To further your thinking about this question, describe a time when you or someone else you consider "good" did something detrimental, something that was out of character for him or her. Apply the feedback from last week's post as you craft your response.

I'll start...

When I was in high school, my grandmother went to visit her sister in Texas and asked me to housesit for her. I happily agreed, excited to have a parent-free place to hang out with friends. She agreed that I could invite a few friends over, so I did. Unfortunately, a few friends each brought a few friends and their friends brought more friends, and before I knew it, her house was wall-to-wall with people. I knew there were more people there than what my grandma would want, but I felt completely out of control.

When she returned, her neighbors told her how many people had come in and out of her house and she confronted me about her dissapointment in my behavior and her inability to trust me any longer since I had violated our agreement. I felt so ashamed and still, twelve years later, often think about what a terrible thing this was to do.

I know now that I violated my grandma's trust because of peer pressure. I had transferred to my school and wanted people to like me, wanted to be "cool". Not thinking about the consequences of my behavior, I did a bad thing and acted completely out of character.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Summer Reading Fun

Over the summer, Arapahoe High School asked you to read at least two novels of your choice.

Briefly tell me what you read, including titles and authors.  I want to know what you liked about the books, what you learned and, more importantly, what matters to you about the book's content.  Keep in mind we will begin independent reading next week; tell your classmates who you think would enjoy this book.  Use specifics about characters, setting, conflicts, action details, etc. to make your response meaningful and be sure to adhere to proper conventions and proofread your response.

If you enrolled belatedly and weren't aware of the summer reading, do the same with two books you have read.

I'll start...

This summer, I read many books, but two of my favorites were We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates and Capote's Breakfast at Tiffany's.   My favorite of the two was the former, which I so enjoyed that while I was on vacation in Mexico, I took it to the beach, to the pool, and enjoyed it on my ocean-facing balcony.  The story details the tragedy of a family living in rural New York who, for all intents and purposes, seem to enjoy a perfect life.  When a serious tragedy strikes the teenage daughter of this family, it reels and destruction, in one way shape or form, ensues for all of the family's members.  I found it heart-breaking and gripping and really enjoyed Oates's style, as I always do.  I would recommend this book to anyone who can stomach a bit of tragedy before they reach the happy ending. 

I also enjoyed Capote's novel, which follows the story of a seemingly independent New York City woman whose eccentrities seem to make her romantic.  Capote, however, reveals that she is more of a tragic figure than she seems.  This is a great work for someone who enjoys a briefer piece of fiction and some delicious Capote prose.  I also found some of the thematic ideas, like the facade of the glamorous, meaningful.