I thought having a forum to post the great assignments and ideas you've all been working on would be a good idea. Feel free to start other threads, ask questions you've got...whatever. I can't promise that I'm going to be a good forum moderator, though, and I think it probably goes without saying that we should keep things positive and constructive here.
For every essay reading in the textbook, the student should write down three words on three index cards. So if four profile essays are read in the St. Martin’s Guide to Writing, then there would be 12 index cards. On one side of the index card, the student writes down the word, which essay the word came from, the sentence where the word was used in the essay, and the page number. On the back of the card, student should indicate the word’s part of speech / variations, and definition.
(Front of index card)
Word (visual optional)
Name of essay; include the sentence from the reading in the textbook that the word came from; page number where the word was found.
(Back of index card)
Part of speech / variations
After student completes the readings, the index cards are submitted to the teacher. Teacher records completion of this portion of the assignment. For every essay, student will be required to use five of the new words in their essay writing. Lastly, the student should staple the five index cards to the essay.
Hello! Here's the Expository Reading and Writing Course (ERWC) template. It shows how the reading-writing process can be one seamless process and gives ideas for each stage of the process. The ERWC offers FREE 3-day workshops (with free food and materials!) as well. ERWC website: http://www.calstate.edu/eap/englishcourse/overview.shtml
I plan on using a few readings from the textbook Everything's an Argument to launch class discussions and an essay assignment. These readings are in a unit entitled "How Does Popular Culture Stereotype You?" To begin with, I will introduce the concept of stereotyping to the class. I will then have the class answer a few pre-reading questions about the topic; these questions will encourage students to think about their own definitions of stereotyping, how they have been stereotyped, and how popular culture, the media, contributes to creating and maintaining stereotypes. We will then discuss these topics in class. Students will then read the assigned readings for homework and write down their thoughts on the readings. We will then discuss the student comments and readings in class, focusing on examples from the texts and student comments. We will also look at any examples from the media that portray a stereotype. This usually involves looking at a commercial on Youtube. After our discussion, I will handout and review the essay assignment. For this essay assignment, students will need to interview a friend or family member with the goal of finding out how popular culture steretypes them. In their essay, students will need to discuss the ways the interviewee is stereotyped, include an example of a time the interviewee was stereotyped, and discuss how poplular culture, the media, contributes to and maintains the stereotype. We will wrap up the unit by discussing our findings in class.
Summarize the essay in a single sentence. Make sure to do the following—and only the following—in your summary sentence.
1) Introduce essay, author, and main topic [What?]
2) Identify the technique(s) the author uses [How?]
3) Identify the author’s purpose in writing the essay [Why?]
In her essay, “The Ways We Lie” (1991), Stephanie Ericsson uses division and classification, examples, and narration to inform her reader about the dangers of lying.
In his essay, “Black Men and Public Space” (1986), Brent Staples employs examples, narration and cause and effect to explain the difficulties contemporary black men face due to the assumptions of others.
In his reflective essay, “Once More to the Lake” (1941), E.B. White uses narration, description, exemplification, process analysis and comparison and contrast to share the experience of returning as an adult to a childhood vacation spot.
Take students through an article, going through every stage of the reading process, and use that as a platform for students to write a response to the article, taking them through every stage of the writing process.
Afterwards, have a class discussion (a meta-analysis) of how the two processes are connected.
1. Hand out “My Daughter, Myself –A Girly Girl Raising a Girl” by Sarah Sophie Flicker
a. Make a prediction. What do you think, just based on the title, the text will be about?
b. What do you already know about this topic? (What did you put in your free-write?)
2. Read the article to yourself.
i. As you read, assess whether your initial prediction was correct.
i. Take notes on things you find to be important (or think might be important)
i. Ask questions and identify places you felt confused or caused you to pause
i. Do you agree or disagree with the piece? What is your personal reaction to the piece?
e. Making Connections
i. Discussion afterwards: What connections can you make to the reading?
3. Write a Response
a. First, write a summary of the article. What is the author’s purpose?
b. Pick an invention strategy that we discussed last class:
i. Use that strategy to brainstorm the following question:
1. Flicker writes that she loves make-up and fashion and style, but she’s also a “feminist”. Do you think those things contradict each other the way she thinks they do? Why or why not?
c. Draft a thesis statement based on your pre-write
4. Class Discussion (if time allows): Can you recap the process we used to read and respond to the article? What steps did we take?
Here are some possible journal or essay prompts that I am building to make connections between the reading of The Things They Carried and students' understanding of the symbolism of their own revered objects:
1. The Things You Carried
After reading the story, The Things They Carried, write an essay about your “things.” Choose your backpack, purse, car, or wallet. Describe its contents in great detail and explain the significance of those contents in your life. Narrate a lesson-learning event related to one of those carried objects. At the resolution of your narrative, connect your carrying narrative with that of one of the soldiers in The Things They Carried. Reflect on the similarities between
• you and the soldier
• your story and the soldier’s story
• your carried object and the soldier’s carried object
Be sure to cite page numbers when you quote from, paraphrase, or summarize from the novel.
2. Hanging on to Things = Hanging on to Ideas
Every night, one of the soldiers in The Things They Carried unfolds a letter from a young woman back home. Write an essay about an important object that you carry or have kept even though it has no direct practical purpose for you. What sensory experiences flood your memory when you think about it? What does it remind you of? What does it represent or symbolize to you? What would it mean to you if you lost it? What memories, ideas, or emotional states would you fear losing if you lost this object?
Be sure to cite page numbers when you quote from, paraphrase, or summarize from the novel.
Tuesdays with Morrie Reading and Writing (Rough) Ideas
Some Reading Strategies
o Look at the front cover (evaluate and make predictions)
o Read the back cover (make predictions and react/evaluate)
o Picture of Morrie (what impression of Morrie do you get from this photo? Why?)
o Table of contents (How organized? Make predictions.)
• Chapters (add skills throughout semester):
o Turn titles and headings into questions (e.g., What is the curriculum? What curriculum? Curriculum for what? Etc.)
o Make predictions
o Circle unfamiliar words
• Context clues
• Word analysis
o Making connections
• Does this How is this similar to classes you’ve taken? How is it different?
o Reacting and responding
• What do you think of Morrie’s advice?
⎯ Finding explicit and implicit main ideas
⎯ Finding supporting details
⎯ Writing summaries
⎯ Reading chart (main ideas, key quotes, vocabulary, etc.)
⎯ Golden lines
⎯ Reading commentary
⎯ Videos about the author, concepts, etc.
⎯ What Would You Do? clips (?)
⎯ Interview someone you consider wise. Ask them for what advice they have on life. (create questions as a class together)
o Interview questions
o Interviewing skills (questions beforehand, schedule appointment, note-taking/recorder, etc.)
o What to do after the interview
⎯ “Pay it Forward”/ “Random Acts of Kindness”/”
o Reflect on a time someone has done a random act of kindness for you
o Go out and do a random act of kindness for a stranger
• What did you do?
• What was the person’s reaction?
• How do you think that act affected that person’s day?
• How do you think that will affect others (larger society)?
⎯ Create your own aphorism
PREDICT How has the emergence of digital cameras/video recorders changed our lives? Do you have a video record feature on your phone? If so, what are some of the ways you use it? Do we, as a society, value amateur video? Why or why not?
CONNECT How would you feel if vulnerable moments of your life were captured on video by a stranger and posted on YouTube and or a social media network? What is some video footage you have seen multiple times and why did you watch it so many times?
QUESTION Construct questions that you may regarding this text. One such question could be why does Delillo use the second person?
CLARIFY Identify a passage within the text that you feel represents the main point Delillo is making about our fascination with watching violence along with supporting ideas?
VISUALIZE Illustrate the main point you identified in Delillo’s text, creating a visual representation of the characters in this essay/story. This includes “you”—the viewer, your spouse, the videographer and the shooting victim.
EVALUATE After identifying his main point, state if you agree or disagree.
I will assign "Reading Maps" for selected readings. This is a five-part assignment designed to serve several purposes: (1) it provides a sample of the essays on which students are working; (2) it allows me to assess students' level of engagement with the text; (3) it enhances the students' reading-writing skills as well as their critical-thinking skills; (4) it is designed to help students have a better understanding of the text; and (5) it allows them to activate all parts of the reading process (BDA) and cite, summarize, learn new vocabulary, annotate, activate prior knowledge, etc.
This I Believe is an international organization engaging people in writing and sharing essays describing the core values that guide their daily lives.
Students will read the text This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women, ed. John Gregory
Students will contribute to the “This I Believe” project by writing and submitting a personal statement of belief.