Thursday, March 31, 2011

Poetry Presentations started today!

Dear Juniors,
If you missed class, we completed the following:
1. Every student submitted their "Book Report" and their visual representations.
2. Each group passed out their handout for the particular poet they researched.
3. We then began the poetry presentations:
                 a. We completed Dickinson and Sandburg for A1
                 b. We completed Dickinson and started on Frost for A4

Monday, March 28, 2011

Work day for "BOOK REPORT!"

Dear Juniors,

Today was a minimal day, so we used that time to work on our book report assignment.

1. Your "BOOK REPORT" is due on WED.
             a. Remember that your written portion AND your visual are both due on Wed.
2. Your POETRY PRESENTATION is also due on WED.
             a. Remember your handouts, your USB and your Works Cited

Please let me know if you need assistance.


Friday, March 25, 2011

Work Day for our Poetry Presentations

Dear Juniors,

If you missed class, we completed the following:

1. We went to the lab to work on our poetry presentations. Please remember the following:
a. Remember that Monday is a work day for your book reports.
b. Poetry Presentations are due on WED. You must have the following:
               1. Your Power Point saved to a USB
               2. Enough copies of your handout for each class member. Please make sure that your signature poem
                   is included on the handout, as you will follow the TP CASTT method with the class.
               3. Please remember to have a copy of the Works Cited to give to me.


Saturday, March 19, 2011

We went to the library today to work on your American poets research assignment!

Dear Juniors,
If you missed class, we completed the following:

1. I returned your "Crucible Theme Essays!" Well done, Juniors! For the most part you did so well on this assignment. Your writing has improved so much from the beginning of the year. If you missed class, please let me know, so that I can return your essay to you.

2. We then went to the library to obtain a book source for the particular poet you are researching. If you missed class, you must locate a hard copy of a book source detailing information about your poet. PLEASE read/annotate/notate/7-10/using ORANGE!

3. The information you located in the library must be submitted on Tuesday.  Please let the librarians know that you need assistance locating information on your particular poet, and they would be happy to assist you.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Make sure you have watched your film, so that you can move on.......

Dear Juniors,
I hope you had a great weekend. If you missed class, we completed the following:

1. We reviewed the TP CASTT method using several different pieces of poetry. Students were placed in groups and the following poems were evaluated. I AM SO PROUD OF YOU! Well done with the evaluations using the TP CASTT FORMAT! If you missed class, you are welcome to complete a TP CASTT evaluation on one of the following poems. 

American Hero
Essex Hemphill

I have nothing to lose tonight.
All my men surround me, panting,
as I spin the ball above our heads
on my middle finger.
It’s a shimmering club light
and I’m dancing, slick in my sweat.
Squinting, I aim at the hole
fifty feet away. I let the tension go.
Shoot for the net. Choke it.
I never hear the ball
slap the backboard. I slam it
through the net. The crowd goes wild
for our win. I scored
thirty-two points this game
and they love me for it.
Everyone hollering
is a friend tonight.
But there are towns,
certain neighborhoods
where I’d be hard pressed
to hear them cheer
if I move on the block.
by William Stafford 

Freedom is not following a river. Freedom is following a river, though, if you want to.

It is deciding now by what happens now.

It is knowing that luck makes a difference.

No leader is free, no follower is free - the rest of us can often be free.

Most of the world are living by creeds too odd, chancy and habit forming to be worth arguing about by reason.

If you are oppressed, wake up about four in the morning; most places you can usually be free some of the time if you wake up before other people.
The Beep, Beep Poem
By Nicki Giovanni
I should write a poem
but there's almost nothing
that hasn't been said
and said and said
beautifully, ugly, blandly
   stay in school
   make love not war
   death to all tyrants
   where have all the flowers gone
and don't they understand at kent state
the troopers will shoot . . . again

i could write a poem
because i love walking
in the rain
and the solace of my naked
body in a tub of water
cleanliness may not be next

to godliness but it sure feels

i wrote a poem
for my father but it was so constant
i burned it up
he hates change
and i'm baffled by sameness

i composed a ditty
about encore american and worldwide news
but the editorial board
said no one would understand it
as it people  have to be tricked
into sensitivity
though of course they do

i love to drive my car
hours on end
along back country roads
i love to stop for cider and apples and acorn squash
three for a dollar
i love my CB when the truckers talk
and the hum of the diesel in my ear
i love the aloneness of the road
when i ascent descending curves
the power within my toe delights me
and i fling my spirit down the highway
i love the way i feel
when i pass the moon and i loller to the stars
i'm coming through    Beep Beep

Leningrad Cemetery, Winter of 1941
 by Sharon Olds
That winter, the dead could not be buried.
The ground was frozen, the gravediggers weak from hunger,
the coffin wood used for fuel.  So they were covered with something
and taken on a child's sled to the cemetery
in the sub-zero air.  They lay on the soil,
some of them wrapped in dark cloth
bound with rope like the tree's ball of roots
when it waits to be planted; others wound in sheets,
their pale, gauze, tapered shapes
stiff as cocoons that will split down the center
when the new life inside is prepared;
but most lay like corpses, their coverings
coming undone, naked calves
hard as corded wood spilling
from under a cloak, a hand reaching out
with no sign of peace, wanting to come back
even to the bread made of glue and sawdust,
even to the icy winter, and the siege.

by Julio Noboa Polanco

Let them be as flowers,
always watered, fed, guarded, admired,
but harnessed to a pot of dirt.

I'd rather be a tall, ugly weed,
clinging on cliffs, like an eagle
wind-wavering above high, jagged rocks.

To have broken through the surface of stone,
to live, to feel exposed to the madness
of the vast, eternal sky.
To be swayed by the breezes of an ancient sea,
carrying my soul, my seed,
beyond the mountains of time or into the abyss of the bizarre.

I'd rather be unseen, and if
then shunned by everyone,
than to be a pleasant-smelling flower,
growing in clusters in the fertile valley,
where they're praised, handled, and plucked
by greedy, human hands.

I'd rather smell of musty, green stench
than of sweet, fragrant lilac.
If I could stand alone, strong and free,
I'd rather be a tall, ugly weed.


1. Make sure you have seen the film that correlates with your independent reading book.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Dear Juniors,
Please remember to check the blog when you are gone, so that when you return to class, you aren't lost!

We completed the following in class today:
1. I explained the "FOUND POEM" assignment. Please see the explanation below. This is due on WED.
2. We then proceeded to review for the quiz covering figurative language and sound elements.
3. Students completed the quiz and we started correcting it. We will complete correcting it on WED.


 1. Complete your "FOUND POEM" for WED. Please see the explanation below.

Found Poem
Rope Experience

Instructions:  Now that you have the figurative language elements created by your classmates for the “rope experience,” it is time to create your own Found Poem.

1. Your poem must include the following:
  • A simile
  • A metaphor
  • An implied metaphor
  • Personification
  • Onomatopoeia
  • Alliteration
  • Sibilance
  • Assonance
  • Anaphora

2. The order you incorporate the above figurative language and sound elements is up to you.
3. Your poem must be a minimum of 20 lines. Seventeen of the lines are the examples given to you by your peers. Your lines must have some logical progression to them.  So, do not place the required elements in a random order. THINK…..
4. The three examples of figurative language and/or sound elements that you created as part of your journal entry must be included within your poem.
5. If you do not have one of the above examples on your list, then you will need to create one of your own.
6. Each required element must be identified within your poem.
For example: The rope wrapped itself around my hand, as if it were my security blanket. (Personification and metaphor)
5. Create an appropriate title based upon the experience. Please do not title your poem “ROPE POEM." Please think on a higher level, my young friends.
6. Please TYPE, single space your poem.
7. Include your name following the MLA structure.

2. Remember that your book needs to be completed by FRIDAY. Your reading log for your book and The Crucible are both due on Friday.  The film for your corresponding book needs to be viewed by the 16th. Focus on the following aspects:
 a. What obvious differences did you observe between the film and the book (characters omitted, scenes change and/or omitted, etc).?
b. Identify two constant themes prevalent within the book and the film.
c. Identify two themes present in the book, but not included within the film.

Friday, March 4, 2011

ROPE EXPERIENCE...using poetic elements

This is what happened to several students during our "Rope" experience on Thursday......It is hard to see a wall without your eyes, right! If you missed class, I am so sorry, as we had fun. You won't be able to make up the experience, and the corresponding assignment that goes with it will be difficult for you to complete, but you will be able to finish some of it. Before returning to class, I would obtain ALL the figurative language examples from someone in class. They are included as part of Journal #3! The assignment that goes with the rope experience will be explained to you on MONDAY!

1. You will have an official quiz covering all the figurative language and sound examples we have reviewed over the last two weeks on MONDAY!Please do not miss class!


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

We completed pink information sheet today in class!

Dear Juniors,

If you missed class, we completed the following:

We began class with a journal entry regarding Pirates of The Carribean.  I asked students to locate as many figurative language examples as possible from the clip.
1. We discussed the elements of sound associated with poetry. These include:
Please obtain the information about the above elements prior to returning to class. You may visit with a friend in class or locate the information from the Internet.

These elements were illustrated through the use of storybooks. Once we completed your pink sheet, we worked in groups and located a minimum of five figurative language examples. This activity was recorded as "participation points;" therefore, if you missed class, you will need to stop by during Flex and complete the activity on your own.

1. Remember that your "Figurative Language Find" is due on THURSDAY. This assignment was given to you on Friday of last week. Review the previous post if you need review.
2. Your book needs to be completed on or by MARCH 11th! You also need to have seen the corresponding film. I would complete your Reading Log, as you progress through your book.