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Davis School District

January 19-23, 2009: Third Term Begins!

Monday, January 19

  • Human Rights Day
  • Thank you, Dr. King!
    (And not just for the day off!)

Tuesday, January 20

  • No School for Students
  • Lots of Meetings for Teachers :-(

Wednesday, January 21: Welcome to the Third Term!

  • New Classes/New Seats
  • Hall Passes/Reading Practice Contracts
  • Copy "The Road Not Taken" (MPT p. 315) into your journal.
  • Journal #3: You are now standing at the place where two roads diverge. Which road are you planning to follow? Explain your metaphors and symbols. (100+)
  • Persuasive Writing Pre-test
  • Term Writing Assignment: Persuasive Writing
  • Finding a Thesis: What do you care about?

Thursday, January 22

  • Journal #4: What do you think of your new surroundings, new classes, and new classmates? Are you ready to begin the last half of your last year of junior high school? What, if any, changes are you planning to make this semester?
  • Rage Against the Machines: Poison for Sale
  • MPT : Prep for Essay Tomorrow in Lab
  • Persuasive Writing Step #1: So, what's your Opinion Statement?
  • Homework (due tomorrow): Decide on your opinion statement for your own persuasive essay.

Friday, January 23: Computer Lab 202

  • Persuasive Writing Step #1: Submit Opinion Statement
  • Online Essay Scoring: Second Persuasive Essay
  • Using Word, write an essay on this topic: Your principal is considering a new grading policy that replaces letter or number grades on report cards with pass or fail. What is your position concerning this issue? Write a letter to your principal stating your position and supporting it with convincing reasons. Be sure to explain your reasons in detail.
  • Save your essay, but don't close it.
  • Login to the Online Textbook
  • Select "Online Essay Scoring" >>> "Next" >>>"Persuasive">>> Topic #10
  • Copy your essay from Word and paste it into the box.
  • Select "Get Your Score"
  • Read the evaluations.
  • Log out.
  • Was this score better than your last one? It should be!

January 26-30, 2009

Monday, January 26

Tuesday, January 27

Wednesday, January 28: Computer Lab

Thursday, January 29: Computer Lab

  • Persuasive Writing Step #3: Finish Drafting Persuasive Essay
  • Use Citation Machine to create a Works Cited for the end of your paper. (It doesn't have to be on a separate page.)
  • And don't forget to address the counterclaims!
  • Turn in these items in this order:

Friday, January 30

  • Intro to The Bard: Shakespeare in the Classroom (Video)

February 2-6, 2009

Monday, February 2

  • Bad Signs: Summer's Comin' (?), but the apostrophes aren't.
  • Journal #6 -- Copy and discuss this quote:
    "If all the year were playing holidays,
    To sport would be as tedious as to work."
    -- Henry IV, Part 2: Act II, Scene 1
  • Return Persuasive Essay Drafts
  • See "Writer's Model" (pp. 323-24) of the Massive Puple Text: Label your essay in the margins just as that writer did.
  • Suggestions for Solving Common Problems in Persuasive Essays
  • Finish Shakespeare in the Classroom (Video)

Tuesday, February 3: Computer Lab

  • Based on the suggestions from yesterday and the Editor's Checklist, write a clean second draft of your persuasive essay.
  • Be sure to include a Works Cited at the end of the paper. (It doesn't have to be a separate page, but it should be properly done: Use Citation Machine.)
  • Common problems that need to be addressed include the following:
    • Catchy and Appropriate Title (not "Persuasive Essay")
    • At least two (2) pieces of specific evidence to support each reason
    • Expert opinions need to be quoted properly, and we need to know why the person is an expert.
    • Counterclaims must be addressed! (See me if you can't think of any.)
    • Properly formatted Works Cited at the end of the paper
  • Final Draft with Signed Editor's Checklist due February 11!

Wednesday, February 4: Computer Lab

Thursday, February 5

  • Bad Signs: Before and After
  • Journal #7 -- Copy and discuss this quote:
    "O, it is excellent
    To have a giant's strength,
    but it is tyrannous
    To use it like a giant."
    --Measure for Measure: Act II, Scene 2
  • Begin Romeo and Juliet: The Prologue
  • Assignment: Translate The Prologue into Modern English
  • Why is Shakespeare Hard?
  • Three Ways to Present The Prologue: Audio/Video

Friday, February 6


February 9-13, 2009

Monday, Februrary 9

  • Review List: Gigantic All-Inclusive Word "Cells" List (100+ cells)
  • Journal #9 -- Copy and discuss this quote:
    "Talkers are no good doers: be assured
    We go to use our hands and not our tongues."
    Richard III, Act I, Scene 3
  • Shakespeare Packets: Do Not Lose Them!
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act I, Scenes 1 & 2
  • Begin Romeo & Juliet Packets/Study Guides

Tuesday, February 10

Wednesday, February 11: Final Draft of Persuasive Essay Due!

  • Term Writing Assignment (Persuasive Essay) due now. Staple in this order:
    • Top: Final Draft
    • Completed Editor's Checklist with Parent Signature
    • Second Draft with Parent Comments/Suggestions
    • First (Rough) Draft from Lab with Peer Comments/Suggestions
    • Outline
    • Bottom: Planning the First Draft
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act I, Scene 5
  • Massive Purple Text, pp. 781-2: How to Read Shakespeare (Aloud)
  • Journal #10: Copy this passage from Romeo and Juliet; count the syllables in each line; mark the stressed and unstressed syllables.

    Juliet:
    What storm is this that blows so contrary?
    Is Romeo slaughter'd and is Tybalt dead?
    My dear-lov'd cousin, and my dearer lord?
    Then, dreadful trumpet, sound the general doom!
    For who is living if these two are gone?

    Nurse:
    Tybalt is gone, and Romeo banishèd;
    Romeo that kill'd him, he is banishèd.

  • R & J Memorization Assignment: Sign up ASAP!

Thursday, February 12

  • Posttest: Elements of the Persuasive Essay
    (This is a lot like the sort of passage that will appear on the CRT tests, where you will have to analyze and revise rough drafts.)
  • Journal #11: Within 14 lines of dialogue and two quick kisses, Romeo and Juliet fall passionately in love. Can this actually happen? Do you believe in "love at first sight"? Why or why not? Is there a difference between the sort of love Romeo and Juliet seem to feel and the kind of love that will result in a happy, long-lasting marriage? Discuss. (100+)
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act II, Scenes 1 & 2 ("The balcony scene")
    R & J Memorization Assignments: Get copies of your speech (written & audio)

Friday, February 13

  • "The Balcony Scene" -- Some ways it has been presented (Video)
  • Update R & J Study Guide

February 16-20, 2009

Monday, Februrary 16: Presidents' Day

  • No School

Tuesday, February 17

  • Persuasive Writing Pre/Post Test Results: Analyze and explain your results. Red paper = pretest, yellow paper = posttest, passing score = 7/10. Ideally, you would score higher on the posttest, indicating you learned something during this unit. There were, however, an alarming number of people who scored lower on the posttest. This could mean that you guessed; it could mean that you cheated on the pretest; it could mean that somehow I did something during this unit of study that actually sucked knowledge out of your brain, thus making me the worst teacher in the world (because I not only didn't teach you anything, but I actually made you dumber!) Write a half-page analysis and explanation of your personal results. Why did you score as you did? Did you learn anything? If so, what? If not, why not? What concepts about persuasive writing do you still not understand? Explain. Staple your tests to the explanation and turn in.
    Romeo and Juliet: Act II, Scenes 3 & 4

Wednesday, February 18

  • Romeo and Juliet: Act II, Scenes 5 & 6 and Act III, Scene 1
  • Journal Scoring: Use handout to self-score journals and write a justification of your score.
  • The Death of Mercutio (One version on video)

Thursday, February 19

  • The Death of Mercutio (Another version on video)
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act III, Scenes 2 & 3
    Journal #1: Find and copy three lines/passages from Romeo and Juliet that are still true or applicable to people or things in today's world. Explain how each relates to today as well as Shakespeare's time. The friar's long monologue in Scene 3 is a good place to look! (100+ words)
  • Study Word Cells Tonight!

Friday, February 20


February 23-27, 2009

Monday, Februrary 23

  • Return/Discuss Persuasive Papers (scored) & Put 'em in Portfolios
  • Journal #2: What has been your favorite part of the Shakespeare unit and why? Is it as bad as you thought it would be? Do you think that knowing something about Shakespeare can ever benefit you in life? Does he entertain you at all, or is it just drudgery? Discuss and explain. (100+)
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act III, Scene 4 & 5

Tuesday, February 24: Mock Job Interviews

  • Look sharp!
  • (5th Period: "The Interview Sketch")

Wednesday, February 25: Parent-Teacher Conferences

Thursday, February 26

  • Finish Romeo and Juliet (???): Act V
  • Finish Study Guides
  • Review Word Cells Exams (???)

Friday, February 27: Computer Lab

  • Online Essay Scoring: Third and Final Practice Essay for DWA
    Using Word, write an essay on this topic: Your state legislature is considering a bill that would require a person to earn a high school diploma before he or she could receive a driver’s license. What is your position on this issue? Write an essay to convince your state legislature to accept your point of view.
  • Save your essay, but don't close it.
  • Login to the Online Textbook
  • Select "Online Essay Scoring" >>> "Next" >>> "Persuasive" >>> Topic #4
  • Copy your essay from Word and paste it into the box.
  • Select "Get Your Score"
  • Read the evaluations.
  • Log out.
  • If you can score a 5 on this one, you are ready for the Direct Writing Assessment, which will be on March 3rd!
  • Review for DWA

March 2-6, 2009: DWA Week

Monday, March 2

  • Journal #4: "We live in an amazing, amazing world, and it's wasted on the crappiest generation of spoiled idiots." Do you agree with this guy? Discuss. (100+)
  • Grammar Punk: Roll the Bones
  • Review These Abominations: Comma Splices and Run Ons! Avoid them on the DWA tomorrow!
  • Lookin' for Extra Credit? One last chance: pp. 926-933 in MPT (due March 13th)

Tuesday, March 3: Direct Writing Assessment (Great Freakin' Day for a Band Tour of the Elementary Schools! Was This on the Calendar?!? Oh, That's Okay. It's Only a State-Mandated Writing Test. No Biggie. It's Just the Assessment By Which High Schools Make Placement Decisions and 9th Grade English Teachers Get Crucified. Yeah, No Problem at All!)

  • Write like Devil's on your tail!

Wednesday, March 4

Thursday, March 5

  • Finish Presentations
  • Bad Signs and/or Grammar Punk
  • Romeo and Juliet Abridged: Fun with Shakespeare (video)
  • Review Word Cells Tests (??)

Friday, March 6: Computer Lab


March 9-13, 2009

Monday, March 9

  • Journal #5: Copy "George Gray" into your journal. Space and punctuate properly.
  • Intro to Spoon River Anthology & Literary Devices
  • "The Hill" (Study Questions) from Spoon River Anthology
    • Circle and define unfamiliar words.
    • What literary device is used at the beginning of stanzas 1, 3, 5, and 7?
    • Find and label three examples of repitition.
    • Find and label two examples of alliteration.
    • Find and label an allusion.
    • What is the Hill, and who are the people "sleeping" there?
    • What do you think the town of Spoon River was like? Why?
  • Meet Aragog! (And read his epitaph!)

Tuesday, March 10

  • Journal #6: Free Choice -- Write 100+ words about whatever you want. (This journal has been brought to you by Angela Strand.)
  • Spoon River Anthology: The Rhodes Affair
  • Read each of these epitaphs carefully: Eugene Carman, Clarence Fawcett, Mrs. George Reece, Jack McGuire, Nicholas Bindle, Henry Phipps, Ralph Rhodes, Thomas Rhodes
  • Read each epitaph and write a brief description of the character. Explain what part the character played in "The Rhodes Affair," and include the character's voice (tone). How does the character feel about his/her life? How do you feel about the character?
  • Sample: Eugene Carman is bitter and resentful. For 14 years he worked long hours for little pay in a store owned by Thomas Rhodes. Because Rhodes was influential in the church, Carman had to attend services twice a week to keep up appearances. Overcome by rage and resentment for spending so much of his life as "Rhodes' slave," he starts screaming at his reflection, which causes him to have a brain aneurysm and die. I feel sorry for Eugene Carman because he believed he was powerless; he felt that he was controlled by Thomas Rhodes. Maybe he really was.
  • When you have finished, consider what all the cross-references in these epitaphs tell you about Thomas Rhodes. What kind of a man was he, and what influence did he have on the town of Spoon River?

Wednesday, March 11: Sub.

  • Journal #7: List 10 journal topics (written as complete sentences, with follow-up questions) that you would like to respond to. Number them clearly.
  • Finish Yesterday's Assignment: The Rhodes Affair
  • Fun with Language Assignment

Thursday, March 12

Friday, March 13: Ms. Twitchell's in the House!

  • Journal #9: Write 100+ words in response to topic #7 from Wednesday''s journal.
  • Extra Credit Essays due today!
  • Literary Devices: Extended metaphors, rhetorical questions, parallel structure
  • Epitaphs for the Classroom Graveyard

March 16-20, 2009

Monday, March 16: Computer Lab

  • Turn in Spoon River Packets (All of last week's work): "The Hill," The Rhodes Affair, Two-fers, Epitaph Outline
  • Interactive Fiction: What is it?
  • Example of Interactive Fiction: Zork
  • Begin The Voices of Spoon River
    • Keep your map updated!
    • Learn the commands and shortcuts!
    • Try eveything!

Tuesday, March 17: Computer Lab

  • VOSR: How many issues have you resolved? Keep going!
  • Return Spoon River Packets
  • Epitaphs for the Classroom Graveyard due Friday!
  • Optional Shakespeare Field Trip: April 14th (5th-7th periods)
    Permission forms and $3.00 for bus due Thursday. Seats are limited!

Wednesday, March 18

Thursday, March 19: Computer Lab (Reading Practice Points due!)

Friday, March 20: End of Third Term


"Did I miss anything?" This is the most annoying question students who have been absent can ask. My usual sarcastic reply is something like this: "Oh, heck no! We knew you were gone, so we just sat around all day and looked at each other. You don't really think I'm going to assign work on a day you're not here, do you?" So, in order to keep everyone (students and their parents) apprised of what exactly is going on each day in class, I am going to put it here. Check back often!


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This page is maintained according to the DSD Internet Publishing Guidelines by FFJH Webmasters.

2009 Michael Thompson - All rights reserved.
*<%^)