I post here daily about what we accomplished in class each day, including handouts and links available to students on my CANVAS site.
Day 27, Sem. 1
After reviewing vocabulary words 6-10 on the 2nd Oedipus Vocabulary list, our groups presented scenes from the play. First period was able to present scenes 5-8, but third and fourth period classes only got through scenes 5-7. The remaining scenes (8-9) will present tomorrow to finish up the play! I've been incredibly impressed with the overall quality of readings -- the emotion/tone of the speakers has been exactly what I had hoped. We definitely have some true thespians in the classes -- send them down to Mr. Cox asap! :-) As was the case yesterday, students listening to the presentations were practicing their listening skills to hear and note evidence for specific ideas in Parts I and II. At the end of class, students had time to update those notes with line numbers from the text and to search for an include additional evidence by re-reading the scene in the textbook.
Homework: Complete notes on tracking charts for all scenes covered through class today. Revised Gilgamesh ACES paragraphs are due BEFORE CLASS TOMORROW!
Day 26, Sem. 1
Working on our latest vocabulary list, we went over words 1-5 and then moved directly into Oedipus Live scene presentations. Groups/Scenes 1-4 presented today. While listening to the scenes, students in the audience were "tracking" evidence for several concepts in these scenes: Oedipus is a well-respected leader, Oedipus has character flaws, dramatic irony occurs frequently in the play, Sophocles develops a motif of a ship, Sophocles develops a motif of light/darkness and sight/blindness. Tracking involves noting the speaker and a snippet of the line. After the presentations (homework if necessary) involves finding line numbers for that evidence and filling out a more complete phrase/line for the actual evidence.
Day 25, Sem. 1
We started class with our grammar quiz on agreement. I hope to have those graded and posted to Power School within a couple of days. I could tell those who had studied; they had great questions before the quiz and finished quickly and confidently! Next, we moved on to our Day 3 activities for Oedipus Live! Groups rehearsed their scenes today. We took advantage of the great weather and moved out to the courtyard so groups could spread out, stand up, and use as much volume as needed to practice their scenes! I'm really looking forward to these presentations tomorrow because I've been impressed with how well the last two days of preparation have gone. In the final 15 minutes of class, groups returned to the classroom and worked out a theme statement for their scene. That was due in the group folder by the end of class.
Tomorrow we begin the presentations of our scenes! Homework tonight is to rehearse lines with emotion and tone, practicing movement as well. In addition, all students should be working on the revision to the Gilgamesh ACES paragraph. Revised paragraphs are due IN THE PORTFOLIO (Google Doc) before Friday.
Day 24, Semester 1
After 10 minutes of independent reading, our groups went right to work preparing to present a scene from Oedipus to the class (presentations begin on Wednesday). The day's required work included:
Homework: Study for Grammar Unit 1 quiz by reviewing rules for agreement and completing practice exercises (using handout from class or Grammar Bytes options). Practice reading lines with appropriate volume, tone, and movement.
Day 23, Sem. 1
Early release = short class today. We had a vocabulary quiz, and in some classes that took up the majority of our time. For students who finished early, they had lots of IRT reading time to make up for days this week when we didn't have any. I also talked to each class about taking time this weekend and next week to revise the Gilgamesh ACES based on the peer reviews in Turnitin.com. I extended that deadline so students could meet with me during Smart Lunch next Tuesday with questions about the peer reviews. In addition, our PCHS Writing Center with peer tutors opens next week and will be open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday during A half of Smart Lunch.
Homework: Read over both peer reviews in Turnitin.com and work on revision to your Gilgamesh ACES in the Google portfolio document. Revision must be finalized in the portfolio by Friday, Oct. 6.
Day 22, Sem. 1
We reviewed the rules of pronoun/antecedent agreement in the first part of class today, using practice sentences to help us figure out the rules that govern pronoun agreement. Students can get extra practice with pronoun agreement at the Grammar Bytes website (www.chompchomp.com). They can complete 2 Pronoun Agreement exercises on that website and receive a Smart Lunch credit OR credit towards a missing/less desirable homework grade.
Next, I asked each group to create a "cartoon tragic hero" to visually depict each of the six characteristics of a tragic hero that they paraphrased for homework Wed. night. They made some great, creative, symbolic illustrations that I expect will help them remember the characteristics even better. See some of my favorites below!
For the last 20+ minutes of class, groups worked to finish Day 1 requirements for the Oedipus Live! assignment, which included a written summary of the scene, a list of vocabulary words & meanings from the scene, questions about the scene, and character assignments for the class presentation. Those who completed Day 1 requirements got started on Day 2a, which is to read your assigned lines and make notes (use sticky notes) about what tone/emotions and motions the character should use with those lines.
Homework: Vocabulary quiz on the Oedipus List is tomorrow! Study for a quiz that requires you to remember the word for a definition, synonym, or antonym. There is also a written portion of the quiz that requires you to use some of the words in response to a question.
Update: I have postponned the due date for the revised Gilgamesh ACES paragraph. We needed to work out some kinks in our use of Turnitin.com to view peer reviews, and we're not ready for the 3rd prompt yet, so we have some time. Some students may also want to meet with me next week to answer questions based on the feedback in their peer review.
Day 21, Sem. 1
Interim Day (Halfway through the first quarter!)
Today, we finally delved into the story of Oedipus Rex, after several days of introductory work and preparation. First, we read the Prologue together as a class, practicing close reading/annotation on the Prologue as a model for how to read the individually assigned scenes. Then, each group learned its scene assignment and began to work on Day 1 assignments (reading entire scene for basic overview, writing a summary, identifying words to define). Tomorrow, we will complete Day 1 assignments and move on to Day 2.
Homework: Finish paraphrasing Aristotle's 6 characteristics of a tragic hero. Study vocabulary, and begin to work on the revision of your Gilgamesh ACES.
We started class with our 10 minutes of independent reading and then briefly discussed good/bad peer review responses. (Peer reviews are due tomorrow by the beginning of class.) Next, we wrapped up vocabulary word introductions and subject verb agreement rules. After that, we used a (admittedly very corny) video to introduce/explain the main concepts of a tragedy/tragic hero. Students have a handout with Aristotle's explanations of the 6 characteristics of a tragic hero, which we used to paraphrase each concept after viewing its explanation on the video. They will need to finish the paraphrase activity by Thursday. At the end of class, we previewed the scene/performance assignment that begins in earnest tomorrow.
Homework: Complete both peer reviews before class tomorrow. Vocabulary quiz moved to Friday, but start studying a little each day now!
Day 19, Sem. 1
Every now and then, we end up having a really boring day in English II Honors. Today was one of those days. We started off with a short benchmark assessment to check students' reading comprehension skills (emphasis on vocabulary in context, inferences, and comprehension of explicit statements in the text). The benchmark consisted of three reading passages similar to ones we have studied so far this quarter (an essay, literary fiction, and epic poetry) with 5 questions per section for a total of 15 questions. This assessment is 1/2 of a major test grade this quarter; the other half is another benchmark assessment and will come along near the end of the quarter. After students finished the benchmark, most of them had time to read independently until our testing window ran out.
Next, we reviewed grammar rules for subject/verb agreement and practice sentences for each rule. That left us only a few minutes at the end of class to squeeze in as many of our remaining vocabulary words from the current list as possible (11-15).
Homework: Complete at least one peer review on Turnitin.com (only available to those who turned in a Gilgamesh ACES by the end of the day Friday, 9/22). Both peer reviews are due by Wednesday (beginning of class), 9/27. Begin studying vocabulary words we've covered. Our quiz will occur sometime this week (Thursday, I'm betting).
Day 18, Sem. 1
So, I skipped Thursday since it was a teacher workday. And then somehow I didn't remember to update Friday's class activities until today (Sunday). My apologies to anyone looking!
We started class on Friday with some technical stuff: Students had to register and/or login to Turnitin.com and join my class there. The login information is available on my Canvas page as an Announcement. Once logged in, each student opened the Gilgamesh ACES assignment (click the blue Submit button), selected Cut/Paste Upload and copied their Gilgamesh ACES draft from the portfolio Google doc into the text box in Turnitin. This process allows us to anonymously share ACES for peer editing. Each student now needs to open the PeerMark assignment to review Gilgamesh ACES paragraphs by two other students. Those two reviews must be submitted by Wednesday, 9/27 (before class).
After getting everyone through the Turnitin process, students had approximately 40-45 minutes to work together at their tables to create the "textbook pages" on Greek drama and Tragedy using the sources provided. The handout explaining this assignment is available on Canvas. Each group must finish the textbook pages and each member must print his/her own copy for class on Monday to prove completion. The printed notes are essential for each student for study/testing purposes.
In the final 15 minutes of class, I gave instructions for completing the Subject/Verb agreement rules handout. In essence, students are to use context clues to figure out the missing words in the rules and supply an appropriate verb for each example sentence in #1-5. They are to complete this handout for homework.
Last, we reviewed definitions, synonyms, and antonyms for vocabulary words 6-10 on the new list from Oedipus Rex.
Homework: 1. Finalize revision of Hero ACES in Portfolio (due Friday night)
2. Complete Subject/Verb Agreement rules 1-5
3. Peer Review of 2 Gilgamesh ACES due on Wednesday, 9/27.
Allison Houck, MAT