Week 13: April 10th-14th

What am I learning this week?

-We will start with the timed writing assessment on Destiny of the Republic.

-This week we will begin with micro-debates to have a scaffold  discussion of the argument essay.  We will start by completing a debate sheet from the critical viewing we had of “Into the Wild” as well as our reading of the article “Death of an Innocent” before Spring Break.  As a class we will have the debate the end to further discuss the role of debate protocol, the facilitator, and timekeeper for the micro-debates we will do later this week.

-We will critically view and discuss “Grizzly Man” and how this relates to the last unit.  You will begin creating debate points around this film before having the micro-debate.  This activity will take two classes.

-We will begin the last unit by engaging in Philosophical Chairs, using the anticipatory guide for The Great Gatsby as the basis for this discussion.

-We will begin with a direct lecture and note-taking session on the essential characteristics of American Modernism.  RAFT and narrative writing will follow-up an understanding of the class and economic gap in the Gilded Age.

-We will perform popcorn in-class readings of “Winter Dreams” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.  Critical reading questions will assess an understanding of how this early work provides a framework for The Great Gatsby.

How am I learning this?

-Our first class back from break will be spent doing some timed writing.  I am trying to give you a sense of the timing you will need for both the EOC and AP exam.  We also need to put the prior unit in our rear view mirror.

-Using the Debate Points handout, we will collaboratively discuss both sides of the given claim, provide evidence from recent class texts, and shape counterlaims and call to action statements.

-We will review debate protocols and roles before enaging in a class wide debate.

-We will critically view and discuss “Grizzly Man” while filling out the second Debate Points handout.  Students will engage in micro-debates as a follow up activity.

-Using foldable or Cornell-style notes, you will be taking notes on the essential characteristics of Modernism.  As a follow-up we will be viewing a short clip to illustrate the economic realities of early 20th century American life.  You will be using the remainder of class time completing the narrative RAFT writing assignment.

-As a class we will perform popcorn readings of “Winter Dreams.”  This will be a reading punctuated with important discussion points.  The focus will be on the themes of disillusionment, especially concerning notions of traditional romantic love.  Students will complete narrative writing as an Exit Ticket on this day.

How am I being assessed?

Destiny of the Republic final essay (summative)

-Debate Points Handouts (2) (formative)

-Micro-debate (formative)

-“Winter Dreams” Critical Reading questions (formative)


Week 12: March 27th-31st

What am I learning this week?

-This week we will be taking a break from our normal multiple choice practice to focus on the principles of argumentation.  This learning standard is an important part of the AP exam, as it forms one of the free response essay questions you will face on the exam.

-I also would like to continue our individual grade conferences.  In these conferences we will be discussing your grade, how many tutoring sessions you will need to attend to exempt the final exam, dates for these sessions, and the status of your AP exam payment.  During your conference you will also use the PBL rubric to self-grade your Usher pamphlet.

-We will be discussing the essential characteristics of American modernism, as well as looking at the short story, “Winter Dreams” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

-Finally, we’ll be setting aside time for you to finish your reading of Candace Millard’s Destiny of the Republic.  After taking the final essay test on this, we will view and discuss the 1976 version of “The Great Gatsby” before going on Spring Break.

How am I learning this?

-In order to discuss the principles of argumentation, we will be doing micro-debates.  The focus will be on the formalized and structured uses of claims, counterclaims, and evidence in an argument.  As such, a moderator will be providing facilitation of claims and rebuttals.

-Concurrently, I will be holding individual grade conferences with you to determine a variety of requirements you will need prior to tutoring sessions, the mock test, and exempting the final.  Further details for this can be found in the previous section.

-You will be taking Cornell-style on the direct instruction lecture on the characteristics of modernism.  In order to illustrate these characteristics we’ll be viewing and discussing the 1976 version of “The Great Gatsby.”

How am I being assessed?

-Individual grade conferences (formative)

-Micro-debates (formative)

-Notes on modernism (formative)

Week 11: March 20th-24th

What am I learning this week?

-This week’s activities are centered on test prep for the EOC, as well as completion of your parallel reading novel Destiny of the Republic.  You will be required to bring this novel to class each day this week.

-We will complete our tasks for our AP exam prep Monday as we work in the lab.  You will be doing reading passages 13 (which we skipped accidentally last week) and 16 for your AP multiple choice practice.

-We will be accessing USA Test Prep Monday as well to complete the small test version of the EOC practice test.

-You will be given two classes to complete reading of Destiny of the Republic.  You will be given a final essay test on this novel to complete with your reading.

-We will end this week with a critical screening of the 2005 documentary, Grizzly Man.  You will have a viewing guide to accompany the film.  I will be in HIP training this coming Thursday and Friday, so the substitute will administer this material.

How am I learning this?

-We will be in the lab to complete AP and EOC test prep.  You will be using the usual reading passages from the green trimmer workbook for your AP practice, and use the lab computers to complete the USA Test Prep activities.

-You will be given two class blocks to complete reading of Destiny of the Republic.  The final essay test prompt will be provided to you in order to complete as you read Part Four of this parallel reading novel.

-You will be provided a viewing guide to complete as we screen the 2005 documentary Grizzly Man.  The substitute will administer the assessment for this documentary.

How am I being assessed?

-AP and EOC Test Prep (formative)

Destiny of the Republic essay test (summative)

Grizzly Man viewing guide and assessment (summative)

Today’s Lab Work

Please respond to all assessment questions on your blog.  Label each response.

  1. William Root Assessment– Describe at least FIVE things you learned about early 19th century life as a result of Friday’s field trip.
  2. The Life and Death of Edgar Allen Poe Assessment– Please choose TEN questions from the following assessment.  Copy and paste the question to appear before your responses. Edgar Allan Poe Biography Quiz
  3. Register and pay for your AP Exam– Go to the following link to register and pay for your AP exam.  If you cannot pay today the very latest you can pay for this exam is by next Wednesday. Total Registration-Pebblebrook
  4. Preview Transcendentalism– Read the following excerpt from Walden.  Be sure to record your answers to the assessment (upper right hand tab) on your own blog.  Henry David Thoreau’s Walden
  5. In order to complete the project for the “Usher House For Sale” (due at the beginning of class this Wednesday) you will need a copy of the short story, “The Fall of the House of Usher.”  You can find the entirety of the text at the former link.

Week 10: March 13th-17th

What am I learning this week?

-We will be starting the week with further multiple choice practice for the AP exam.  This week we will be reflecting on the last two readings and doing passages 13 and 14.

Related to our recent field trip to the William Root House and Garden Museum, I would like to assess your understanding of early 19th century life before continuing our discussion of this fascinating literary era.

-We will be having micro-seminars based on your recent writing responses to part three of Candace Millard’s Destiny of the Republic.

-We will be looking at the essential characteristics of transcendentalism and the earliest examples of American ecological writing by looking at primary documents from Ralph Waldo Emerson (“Self-Reliance” and “Nature”), Henry David Thoreau (“Civil Disobedience” and an excerpt from Walden), Annie Dillard (chapter from A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek), and Rachel Carson (excerpt from Silent Spring).

-If weather permits, we will be taking a nature hike to the green spaces on campus.  This walk will end with microcosmic descriptive writing pieces that will serve as a foundation for a whole class discussion.

-Finally, we will begin a critical screening and discussion of the Sean Penn directed film “Into the Wild.”

How will I be learning this?

-Our multiple choice practice will follow our weekly ritual.  You will be given 30 minutes to complete passages 13 and 14.  When you finish you will write a reflection based on your performance on last week’s practice set.

-I will be providing you with a blueprint of the Root house for an assessment of the field trip learning objectives.  You will identify three objects you found in three of the five stations you went through during your visit.  Your observations, what you learned about the object, and any questions you still have about anything you saw will be expressed in this assessment.

-You will be taking notes from my lecture on the literary importance, and essential characteristics, of the New England Renaissance.  We will be exploring early ecological writing starting with an excerpt from Henry David Thoreau’s Walden.  You will be working collaboratively on a critical and rhetorical analysis of your group’s choice of the remaining primary documents.

-We will be discussing the microcosmic writing encapsulated in Thoreau’s work before going on the campus nature walk.  You will be pre-writing your opinion on the relevance of nature in our contemporary world before beginning this walk.

-You will be returning from your walk with a leaf from any of the trees or shrubs in the campus green space.  Using the provided taxonomy key, you will identify your samples and fill out the accompanying worksheet.  This will be the cover sheet for the microcosmic writing you will complete for this project.

-If time remains in the week we will begin a critical and discussion of the film “Into the Wild.”  We will be doing a concurrent seminar with this screening.

How am I being assessed?

-AP multiple choice practice reading passages 13 and 14 (formative)

-William Root assessment (summative)

-Taxonomy and Microcosmic writing (summative)