Monthly Archives: August 2015

Friday, August 28

We spent the first part of the class discussing the Superman and Me essay – students had lots of sharp insights, and I enjoyed our conversation. Then I gave students the last part of the class to work on their name essays.

Some important dates to keep in mind:

Monday, August 31: Students will get their laptops! The Alchemist essay is also due (please have your rubric to turn in with it), and students will take their first vocabulary quiz.

Tuesday, September 1: Essay on your name is due (typed and printed – although if you can’t type or print for some reason, let me know ahead of time).

Wednesday, September 2: Yearbook picture day! Please wear something that your parents will approve of. Also, if your parents would like to order pictures, please return the order form I gave you on Wednesday to give to the photographer.

I had a fun first week with you! Enjoy your weekend, and I’ll look forward to seeing you on Monday.

Thursday, August 27

We began today’s class by going over what you found out about words through the Google Etymology assignment. Then we read several selections of text that discussed the importance of names. Students had a chance to begin pre-writing for an essay about their name (due on Tuesday, September 1 – must be typed). My Name Writing Assignment

Homework for tonight was to read and answer the questions about an essay called Superman and Me: The Joy of Reading and Writing, which will be due tomorrow. The Joy of Reading and Writing – Sherman Alexie

Wednesday, August 26

Today in class, we talked about the syllabus, which is posted under the syllabus section of the website. I asked you to please return the signed back page to me tomorrow (Thursday) – please keep the front part of the packet for your records.

We went over a PowerPoint about vocabulary: Vocabularying

Then we talked about this week’s vocabulary words (the Superman and Me list, posted under the Vocabulary section of the website). You’ll have a quiz over these on Monday.

Homework for tonight was to complete the Google Etymology assignment: Google Etymology Homework

See you tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 25

I really enjoyed our second day together!

Students discussed literary devices, with a focus on hyperbole. We read and analyzed two pieces of hyperbolic writing – a college admissions essay and a poem – and then students started writing their own piece of hyperbole. (To recap – the big lesson that I wanted you to learn today is, “the paradox of hyperbole is that by lying, you get closer to the truth.”)

Homework is to finish your hyperbole writing. Here is that assignment: Hyperbole paragraph instructions

August 24, 2015 – Welcome to Pre-AP English 1!

Hello, students! I am excited to have you in class.

To recap, today we talked about some important policies and procedures:

  • I will give you a syllabus later this week (I don’t like doing that on the first day, because I think that’s what you will probably be doing in all of your classes). It will have lots of information about grades, procedures, contact information, etc. It will also have a form for you to fill out and have your parents sign. I really need you to return that form to me.
  • YOU MUST HAVE A SCHOOL LAPTOP FOR THIS CLASS (as well as many other classes at Bellaire). To get a laptop, you need to bring a permission slip and $25 to the MPR (Multi-Purpose Room) during lunch on any day this week. You have probably already received a permission slip, but if not, ask me and I’ll give you one. I will ask you every day whether you have turned in your money and form for the laptop. If you do not turn your money and your form in by Friday, you will not get your laptop on Monday, August 31, with everyone else, and you will have to wait a long time before you can get one. If you are having a problem that is preventing you from getting a laptop, please come talk to me.
  • I run two class websites for each of the levels of English that I teach.
  1. for Academic classes:
  2. for Pre-AP classes:

Please be careful to go to the correct website. These websites will have everything that you will need over the course of the year – summaries of what we did in class every day (in case you were absent, or if your parents want to check), copies of assignments and homework, additional resources to help you study, and so on. If you already have a computer at home, I would like for you to try going to the website tonight, just to see what it’s like.

  • Please make sure that you do your homework for tonight!

Homework for tonight was to finish up your letter to me. Here is an electronic copy of that assignment: Letter Introduction Homework Assignment – 2015