I have decided to combine these pages to save people a click.

The homework will now be listed under the Class Notes for each day!
Here is the rubric for the last three tasks that relate to our remaining topics:

June 6:

Today we had a whip-around of summer plans. Then we got our projects back. Then we watched more of 'Wrinkle in Time'. Homework includes turning in books, taking home projects, and reading independently.
People who still have books missing:
'Write Source 2000': Madihah, Corben, Jeramiah, Milan, Sakib, Aayushi, Emaad, Alan, Sky, Caroline M., Osama, Catherine, Tim, and Grant. There is a $50.00+ charge for lost textbooks.
'History Alive!': Katrina and Sky

June 4:

I hope everybody enjoyed the party and beginning to "Wrinkle in Time" on Thursday. We will finish the movie on Sunday.
Please make sure you turn in your text books, both the "History Alive" and "Write Source 2000" as soon as possible!
We should also have time to play games this week; several of you mentioned in your reflections that you woule have liked more time on the games building unit!

June 1:

Today we opened by reading two essays in small groups, and then we evaluated them using the 6 traits rubric. After we finished, we turned in our rubrics for our Science Fiction projects and then had time to work on them or to build/play review games.

Homework: Your projects are due tomorrow! Two grammar groups still need to present, either tomorrow or Thursday, and on Thursday, June 3rd we will have a party with treats that we would traditionally enjoy during a holiday.

May 31:

Today we opened by playing tic taco toe with questions about the two versions of 'The Hitch Hiker'. Then we worked with partners or in small groups to either re-construct an essay that compared and contrasted the play and the TV show or to write paragraphs that matched an outline that was provided. When groups finished these activities, students worked on their games to review various topics from the entire year. Class ended by returning projects, giving feedback about using resources, and choosing rubric criteria wisely.

Homework for June 1:

Bring in planning/prewriting for projects and completed rubrics. Projects are due on Wednesday.

May 30:

Today the activities in each class were a little different due to buddy visits. In D block we began by reading the news article about the Vatican and Extraterrestials. In block A we read the web article about "War of the Worlds" aloud. In block D we then went over our answers to the questions about 'The Hitch Hiker' and then we worked on building games. In block A, we watched the rest of the 'Twilight Zone' version of the radio play 'The Hitch Hiker' and then we went to visit our buddies.

Homework is to complete the last project (Science Fiction or Supernatural focus) by Wednesday, June 2. On Thursday, June 3 we will have a party with foods that we traditionally have when celebrating religious festivals or alien cookies. There are two grammar groups left: Anahita, Aayushi, and Nikhil and then Alex, Corben and Sarina. These are due by Wednesday at the latest!

May 27:

Today we opened by writing a summary of the ending of the book, along with our opinions, in our in-class journals.

Then we discussed the novels in our groups, and then we self-evaluated again.

(F block had buddies first)

E block watched the Twilight Zone version of the movie in preparation for completing a Venn diagram to compare it to the play we read.
Homework: This weekend you should begin planning and working on your last project, due June 2. You may work with a partner. There are some different choices for the Science Fiction projects, but your focus should be different beliefs, supernatural happenings, ghosts, things like that:
Science Fiction
Write an expository essay or make a comic strip that tells people about the essential features of a science fiction novel.
Compile a collection of news articles that share information about UFO's or supernatural occurrences. Write paragraphs to explain the articles. Include a bibliography!
Prepare an ABC book (flip style or another style) of words that relate to supernatural happenings and science fiction.
Write a sci-fi skit or radio play. Use the format we learned about while reading our sample skits.
Free choice
No matter which task you choose, you must write a paragraph in which you reflect upon the Essential Questions that are answered by/ addressed by your assignment.

You should not repeat a style of writing!
Here is a link to an interesting article that relates to our topic: http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2009-11-10-vatican-aliens_N.htm

May 26:
In D block, we watched 'The Twilight Zone' version of 'The 'Hitch Hiker' and read the play, and then began comparing the versions. In A block, we read the bulletin, read 'The HItch Hiker', and had Mark's presentation since he was absent on the day the projects were due.

May 25:

Today we shared out projects about various aspects of religion. There was a lot of creativity, combined with some really interesting facts in the room! Great job! Then we read the definition of science fiction together, and had our small group novel discussions. The last novel discussion will be on Thursday. Each students will have some individual work assigned during class on that day, as well as the discussion. We are reading some drama with supernatural twists as we begin thinking about 'alternative beliefs' and our last projects are due on June 2. These may be completed with a partner.

Homework for Thursday: Finish "Into the Dream" and prepare your role. Start looking at project ideas. Grammar groups will present on this Thursday and next Thursday.

May 24:

Today we opened by reading the epilogue of 'Waiting for Odysseus' and then wrote questions and answers for our games. We looked at the website for building our games, and saw an example of a reading response that was thoughtful and thorough, and then we re-divided into Film Award groups to read the play 'In the Fog'. Then we worked on our games or projects in block D, but in block A we had a mini-grammar lesson.

Homework: Your projects are due, as are the rubrics (which were due yesterday, if you look below!). You should be prepared to discuss chapters 6 and 7 of 'Into the Dream' as well.

May 23:

Because some of you hadn't handed in your field trip papers, we will build our games tomorrow. Today we opened by finishing 'Waiting for Odysseus". After the read-aloud, we had mini grammar lessons. Then we had our literature discussions, which were scored using the same rubric you self-evaluated with last week. Then, if there was time left, we worked on our projects.

Homework: Bring in your work on your project tomorrow and the completed rubric. The project is due on Tuesday now, no extensions! We will also have our literature discussions about chapters 6 and 7 on Tuesday, and we will complete the book for Thursday.

Grammar groups for this week are: (May 27th) Emaad and Tim, Aayushi, Ana, and NIkhil, and Amal and Ishita

May 20:

I hope everybody enjoyed the field trip. We will use the information you gathered to play a game on Sunday, after we discuss our novels, watch our mini grammar lessons, and finish reading "Waiting".

Homework: Read chapters 4 and 5 of "Into the Dream" and complete your role thoroughly for Sunday. Continue working on your project (due Monday). Grammar groups will present on Sunday (Madihah and Noel, and Caroline B. and Tasnim, Ariyana and Mark).

May 19:

Today we opened by reading about the three sites we will visit while on our field trip tomorrow and discussed the plan (go to D block for attendance, then start getting on buses). Dress appropriately, bring a water bottle. Then we read "Waiting for Odysseus" aloud. Then we went over the basic ideas of a comparison/contrast essay, and had a whiparound of our project ideas. Projects should be a different style of writing from your last one, and if you choose your own religion, it should be compared to another one. D/F block met with buddies and then had time to work, A/E block worked on projects. Everybody got their projects back.

Homework: Read chapters 4 and 5 of "Into the Dream" and complete your role thoroughly for Sunday. Continue working on your project (due Monday). Grammar groups will present on Sunday (Madihah and Noel, and Caroline B. and Tasnim, Ariyana and Mark).


Your permission slips for Thursday's field trip and your 500 taka were due today (May 18th). Please bring it in ASAP. Remember to dress appropriately for our field trip--no short shorts, no boxers showing, for girls, salwar kameez preferably. Thank you!

May 18:

Today we opened by reading 'Waiting for Odysseus' together. Then we had our literature discussions. Each group was given the evaluation list to fill in as a self evaluation. Next Sunday's discussions will be scored and entered into PowerSchool (10 pts.) Some groups were NOT prepared. After the discussions were finished, people had time to work on projects.

Homework is to have your plans completed for your project (to be shared tomorrow) and to read chapters 4-5 inclusively for Sunday, and to prepare your role.

Grammar groups will present on Sunday, May 23rd. Projects are due on Monday, May 24th.

May 17:

Today we opened with a card sorting activity, putting terms and definitions together that related to four major religions. Then we shared some of the key facts. We then read the introductory ideas in the 'Usborne Book of World Religions' and made a 'top ten' list of facts. After we finished the reading, we had time to work on our projects or read until everybody had finished. (past perfect tense) Then we read aloud in 'Waiting for Odysseus'.

Homework is to work on projects and have the first three chapters of 'Into the Dream' read, and roles prepared.

May 16:

Today our opener was to read the last section of Athena's perspective in 'Waiting for Odysseus' aloud.
Then we read a short story by Ray Bradbury in our Daybook, and then we listened to a podcast that reviewed science fiction novels for teens, including Neal Schusterman's 'Unwind', M. T. Anderson's 'Feed', and Edward Bloor's 'Taken'. These are all options for the challenge for quarter 4.
Then we shared our dream paragraph homework with our reading groups, and received our novels. We chose our roles for the first three chapters, due for sharing on Tuesday: Summarizer, Vocabulary Builder, Passage Picker, Connector, Predictor. Nobody should read ahead for this novel!

For vocabulary, choose five good words, list the page number and the definition. For the other jobs, pick three passages or connections (text-text, text-world, text-self). For predictor, make one logical prediction for hte next section.

You must have written evidence, but it doesn't have to be extensive!

For tomorrow, please get your field trip permission slip signed and turn it in with your money (500 taka) for lunch. Thanks!

May 13:

Today we read a comic strip version of the King Midas myth, and then we shared our projects. Afterward, we listened to the grammar lessons, and then D/F read aloud. A/E read a penpal letter on the reader, thanks for sharing, Anahita!


is to write a paragraph in which you describe a dream you've had. Do you ever have a recurring dream? Nightmares?
This can be a rough draft in your notebook; be ready to share as we start our science fiction novel, it's due Sunday.

May 12:

I'm sorry, I could not get this to open to edit yesterday. We read the Icarus myth, read "Waiting for Odysseus" and then had project time. A/E block visited their 2nd grade buddies.

No new homework, PROJECTS are due tomorrow!
Grammar groups: George and Milan, Maimuna, Catherine, Osama

May 11:

Today we opened by playing charades with the scenes from myths that we had written down earlier in the week. A/E block: We read aloud in "Waiting for Odysseus" and then we went over the paragraph structure for our reflection about our project. Introduce the question that your project addresses, then give three details or reasons how it addresses the question, and then write a conclusion to your paragraph, as in our 'hamburger' model. Then A/E had project time. D/F block played charades, looked at the paragraph model, and then went to see our 2nd grade buddies. Tomorrow there will be more project time for D/F, since A/E will meet their buddies.

Homework: Continue working on your projects, Due Thursday! Paragraph must be word-processed.
Grammar grops: George and Milan, Maimuna, Catherine, and Osama.

May 10:

Today we opened by answering questions related to chapter 37, which we had read aloud yesterday during class. Then we read aloud "Waiting for Odysseus", and finally, students had time to work on their projects, which are due Thursday. Tomorrow, each student must show the two extra sections of the rubric that they have tailored to their individual projects.

There is a paragraph about which essential questions are answered by the project, also due Thursday. This should be typed.

Here is the BU and the EQ's:
Beliefs influence culture and individual actions.

1. How do students' personal beliefs make them the people they are?
2. What does it mean to be a believer?
3. Why do people have alternative beliefs?
4. How do the origins of major belief systems affect their development?

May 9:

Today we worked with a partner to come up with a scene from a myth that somebody could act out in Charades. Then we read aloud from "Waiting", and then we read chapter 37 aloud together. The rest of class was for project work.
Students should hand in their completed squares of their rubric by Tuesday.
For Thursday, projects are due.
Grammar groups are: Catherine, Osama, and Maimuna, and George and Milan.

May 4:

Today we played Greek mythology Bingo. Then students worked independently, reading pages 106-107 and then page 123 in the 'Elements of Literature' textbook. This reading was in preparation of our next in-class writing activities (comparison-contrast essays). We will work on this essay technique in-class next week. While people were working in the textbook, students continued their self-evaluation of their readings of the 'Beliefs' essays. If people had completed their textbook work, they could work on their projects. It is crucial to gather ideas, and then make plans and pre-write for the projects!

HW: Have Ch. 36 read and be ready to respond to questions in your in-class journal tomorrow. This will be timed, so that I can evaluate how well you have read. You will have access to your textbook, but there won't be enough time to read it in-class.

Other homework is the grammar group Jeramiah and Sakib, (note Caroline B. and Tasnim have been postponed), and the current events presenters: Tim, Grant, Alan, and Maimuna, and Sarina, Milan, Sky and Marta.
Over the weekend there will be no new homework beyond working on your mythology projects (due Thursday).

May 3:

Today we watched a brainpop video about the Greek Gods, and then took the quiz using whiteboards. We shared our ideas for our projects about mythology. Pre-writing and planning are required! Then students had four readings to complete: the two versions of Perseus from yesterday (if needed), and two versions of 'Arachne'; one was a myth and one was a skit. Students could then work on projects. Students were given time to watch the video of their reading aloud, and could self- evaluate during class. Block F continued reading aloud and also had buddies. Block E will read aloud tomorrow and have buddies.


Read chapter 36 in 'History Alive!' by Wednesday. Read carefully so that you will be able to answer questions in your in-class notebook at the beginning of class.

May 2:

Today we opened by listing five facts from our reading for each religion: Hinduism and Buddhism. We handed in our homework.
Then we reviewed pre-reading strategies (read heading, subheadings, look at graphics, look at definitions and bolded words, and then we read silently in our blue Literature anthology while people watched their essay read-aloud to self-evaluate. At the end, we read one chapter of "Waiting for Odysseus" aloud.


Choose your project about mythology from the smorgasbord of choices. First project will be due May 13th. Throughout the next several classes, we'll be looking at different versions of various myths that have been written using several different techniques (stories, comic strips, skits), in order to help everybody understand the ideas and to get ideas for projects.

Current Events and Grammar groups for Thursday!

Tim, Grant, Alan, and Maimuna

Caroline B and Tasnim, Jeramiah and Sakib.

April 29:

Thursday, we had current events and mini-grammar lessons. Then we handed out the smorgasbord paper copies, and looked at our essays. I kept the copies so we could self-evaluate the reading aloud presentations.
Homework for Sunday is to read chapter 15 and 16 in "HA!" and to answer the questions in the attached document. (assigned on Wednesday!)

April 28:

Today, block D opened by finding the definitions that matched the terms from chapter 11 of 'History Alive!' on their tables, and then they shared them. We read aloud from 'Waiting for Odysseus', and then it was free choice time: ready myths, read supplementary information about religions, or work on grammar groups.

Homework for tomorrow is current events from: Noel, Sakib, Amal, and Sidd, and from E block: Caroline B., Ana, Mark, and Katrina.
Grammar groups to present tomorrow are: Marta and Ani and Sky and Sidd, and Zoheb, Katrina, and Alan, Caroline M. and Grant.
Questions for Ch. 15 & 16:

Today we began with a visit to math presentations in block F. Block E opened with a discussion of 'Sneetches' and then we shared our homework (poetry). Then we went over the tasks for the rest of the year, and then we began listening to 'Waiting for Odysseus'.

Homework questions over chapter 11 in 'History Alive!' Please read the chapter carefully and then complete this work in your notebook or email it to me. Due on Wednesday!

Chapter 11: The Ancient Hebrews and the Origins of Judaism

Please answer the questions below in complete sentences. Make sure to use information from the text to support your response. (14 points, total!)

What should a historian keep in mind when using the Torah as an artifact?

What did David provide for the Jewish people that they had not had before?
According to Jewish belief, what was God promising by changing Abram’s name to Abraham?

Please fill in the chart below.

One Action
Contribution to Judaism




April 26:

Today block D opened with by finding their matches: a god/goddess with the description, and then the partners sat together to watch a video about ancient Greece. At tables, we went through ideas that were similar between the video and chapter 25 in the 'History Alive!' book. Block D then had time to read different myths from the anthology and/or to read about different religions. At the end, we went over an example of a poem that used forced rhymes instead of trying some of the techniques we learned about in the Daybook. Block A flip-flopped this work since they then visited their buddies.


is to either write a new poem trying to use the techniques and avoiding rhyme schemes or to revise your sports poems, using the feedback given on your sticky note (due tomorrow).

Group Homework / Special Assignments:

Current events due on Thursday, May 29:
A/E: Caroline B. Anahita, Mark, Katrina;
D/F: Noel, Sakib, Amal, Sidd
Grammar groups: A/E: Alan, Caroline M, Grant; Zoheb, Katrina
D/F: Marta and Ani, Sky and Sidd
Scroll down for instructions; 10-15 minutes maximum. Remember to incorporate some of Marcia Tate's strategiess! The grammar lesson overview is listed under April 13!

April 25:

Today we opened by matching the names of Greek gods and goddesses with the Roman names and with their descriptions/characteristics. Then we read an essay that explained the basics of mythology and the gods/goddesses.

Homework: Read Chapter 25 and answer the questions posted here:

Chapter 25: Geography and the Settlement of Greece

Please answer the questions below in complete sentences. Make sure to use information from the text to support your response.

The ancient Greeks worshiped the sea god Poseidon. What does this tell you about Greek civilization?

You have read about many ways Greece’s geography affected aspects of ancient Greeks’ lives. Now respond to the following questions.

What were the effects of Greece’s geography on the food ancient Greeks ate?

What were the effects of Greece’s geography on travel?

What were the effects of Greece’s geography on their relations with others?

April 22:

We finished our essays and then watched SAISA. No new homework, so read independently and support SAISA!

April 21st:

Happy Earth Day:
Block F did not meet due to Earth-Flex Day.
In Block E we worked on parts of speech by working through review sentences with jumping jacks. then we watched a snippet from 'Modern Family'.

Here are the sentences:
1. Wow! That was fun.

2. Caroline never talks to Mrs. Cover.

3. They work quickly.

4. Nikhil often tips his chair.

5. Flowers grow well.

6. Flowers are pretty.

7. I am rather plump.

8. She is quite tired.

9. Mark dances really well.

10. Aayushi needs her glasses.

11. Madihah, Katrina, Sky, and Alex will run tomorrow.

Can you name the parts of speech in the sentences above?
Homework was to polish your drafts, because Thursday is the final due date. If you didn't read your essay on Tuesday, you will read yours on Thursday.
Weekend homework is to read independently.

April 20:

Our opener was a group 'brainpop' quiz about yesterday's video. Then we had 15-20 minutes to prepare for reading our essays aloud. The goals of reading aloud were to hear everybody's ideas, practice good audience behavior including eye contact and attentive posture, and to have the chance to practice smooth delivery of written text. Each student will watch his or her own presentation, since Mr. Daud videotaped for us. Thank you, Mr. Daud!

There is no new homework. Tomorrow is our special Flex Day in honor of Earth week, you should continue to polish your drafts if you'd like (or if I don't have what you consider your final copy), and read independently.
The second groups will present on Thursday.

April 19:

Today we watched a 'brainpop' video that gave an overview of religion. We completed a vocabulary worksheet based on its ideas, then we read the sample essay from below together. The rest of the class time was devoted to working on our essays.

Homework is to have your essay ready to turn in by Thursday.
Presenters for Tuesday:
Alex, Sky, Madihah, Sarina, Marta, Ishita, and Corben, Katrina, Tasnim, Zoheb, Emaad, Aayushi, Nikhil, Maimuna, Alan, Ana.
Presenters for Thursday: Amal, Noel, Ani, Sidd, Sakib, Jeramiah, Milan, George, and Grant, Mark, Tim, Osama, Catherine, Caroline B, Caroline M, Ariyana.

April 18:

We opened by listening to "This is Just to Say", a poem by William Carlos Williams. Then we tried to emulate the style using the form in our Daybooks on page 177.
Poetry does not have to rhyme. If we force the rhyme scheme, sometimes we weaken the poems. We will work on using the techniques of poetry by going over some people's rough drafts of the sports poems, and then we will either polish our rough drafts or try again--after our essays are completed. Right now, the focus is on your essays!
We then reviewed the rubric for our essays and worked in small groups to read and revise our essays. We emailed our feedback to our partners and to Mrs. Cover, and made sure that everybody attached their rough draft as a document. If this is not done, this is part of your homework.
Block A had buddies, Block D had a little time to work on their essays.

Homework: continue to polish and revise (and format!) your essays. Due Tuesday (preferably) or Thursday at the latest. We will begin sharing them on Tuesday; tomorrow will be sign-up day for these presentations. If you are in SAISA, you will present on Tuesday. If you want to, you can turn in your final by Thursday, but you will read your essay on Tuesday.

Here is a sample essay with revision comments:
Apr.16, 2010
Block D+F

What I Believe In

My name is__ and I was born in Montevideo, Uruguay. My mom and my dad are from Mexico. I have an older sister that is also from Mexico. So everybody in my family is from Mexico except me. After we lived in Uruguay we moved to Bolivia. I lived in Bolivia for 6 years and now I am living in Dhaka,Bangladesh. In Dhaka I go to a nice school where I like to be with my friends. Sometimes on the weekends my friends and me meet there and play sports.
You could be more specific about which sports!
My family and I are Jewish. Judaism is a very old religion that believesin only one god. A place where the Jewish people go to is the Synagogue. The Synagogue for the Jewish is like the Church for the Christians. People go to the Synagogue on Shabbat to pray. Shabbat starts on Friday evening and itgoes onto Saturday, when the sun goes down. On Shabbat you cannot work or use electricity, it is your relaxing day. I think this is a good idea because you should always have a day when you can just relax, but I think you should be able to use electricity because maybe your idea of relaxing includes electricity. Since Dhaka doesn’t have many Jews there isn’t (arent') that many Synagogues. In Bolivia where I used tolive before coming to Dhaka I used to go to a Synagogue every Friday. In Dhaka I don’t have a special Synagogue where I can go to every Friday, but instead just pray at home. At home every Friday since we don’t go to Synagogue we have like a special Shabbat dinner.
What do you eat for a Shabbat meal? Does your family turn off all of its electricity for Shabbat?
For the paragraph under this note: you should start the paragraph with some sort of sentence that signals to the reader that you are going to describe some rituals that are important to you and your religion. Adding a topic sentence will help with your organization.

One of the most important events that occur in a Jewish boys live is there (their) Bar Mitzvah. According to the Jewish Tradition when a boy turns 13 he becomes a man, so you are considered like an adult in the community. The Bar Mitzvah ceremony consists of you standing in front of the whole community and reading off the Torah. This is a big ceremony and most kids really look forward to it.In one year I will turn 13 so I will have my Bar Mitzvah in Mexico. I really look forward to being considered part of the community and getting to read the Torah with the adults. Anothervery important event in the life of a Jewish adult is when they get married. Inthe Jewish tradition the couple that gets married stands under a canapé andwhen the rabbi concludes the ceremony the groom steps on a cup. When the groomsteps on the cup this symbolizes good luck. After they have a big party whereeverybody dances. Something I really like about when they are dancing is thatthey put the wife and the husband on chairs and then they raise the chairs inthe air.

You could wrap up the paragraph above with a sentence about rituals again--perhaps something that says that these are two of the rituals you find most interesting?

I only believe in one God. I believe that this God is in everything and is everywhere. This is one of the characteristics of the Jewish people that they only believe in one God. They were one of the first religions to be monotheistic. Like the Jewish people I believe that you cannot picture God because nobody knows what he looks like. So everybody has a different image of what God looks like. He/She has no gender. The main book of the Jews is the Torah, which was given by God to Moses. According to the Torah God created the world in six days and in the seventh day he rested. * God first created Heaven and Earth,then he created the ocean, the light, the plants, the animals, and finally thehumans. I believe that God created the World so that us humans could live in it and enjoy it.

*Another thing that is in the Torah is the Ten Commandments. The TenCommandments are the ten rules that God gave us that we should live by. The TenCommandments are: 1. I am the lord your God. 2. You shall have no other Godbefore me. 3.You shall not make wrongful use of the name of your God. 4.Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy. 5. Honor your father and mother. 6. Youshall not murder. 7. You shall not commit adultery. 8. You shall not steal. 9.You shall not bear false witness against other people. 10. You shall not covet.I think these Ten Commandments are important because they tell us about ourrelationship not only with man and God, but also with man and man.
*This paragraph in red fits after the red *
I believe that when a person dies his soul goes to heaven. In heaven hissoul is judged and if he has done good over his lifetime he will have a good after life in heaven. The better he has lived his life; the better will be his afterlife. On the contrary if he has done bad things during his life like killing and stealing then he will bepunished in hell. The more evil a person the more he will be punished. I am trying my best to live a good life so that I can have a good after one.

I think Judaism is a good religion and I am proud to be a Jew. I really like how many things go about in the religion. Of course I also disagree with many things because since many things were written many years ago, so they are much different now than what hey were before, but of course maybe if I were there at that time then I would understand why they put those things. Maybe I don’t understand why they put many things in the religion, but I will always know that they put it because they wanted the best for their religion.
Look for word choice issues--how many times did you use 'good'?
Overall, this is a strong essay, good job!

April 15:

We opened with sharing Bangla words at our tables, then we tried to go through the whole room without repeating. Then we shared our current events about Bangladesh and discussed newspaper article types. We read another essay about a teen's religion, written by Min. Then we shared our notes and got some verbal feedback. Many students need to put more thought into their brainstorming and to add more details in order to have enough information for their own essays. Students received information and rubrics for the essay. The rough drafts are due on Sunday. Students must type their essays. They can bring them in on a pen drive, or email them to me, as an attachment. We are trying to go paperless next week in honor of Earth Week. We will have peer revisions and more feedback on Sunday.

HW due Sunday:
Typed rough draft, 5-12 paragraphs, based on the model essays we have read. These essays should reflect your own beliefs, not tell about a religion.

April 13:

Today we opened by trying to list the techniques for writing effective poetry that were shared in the Daybook. Then we worked with a partner to revise/look for examples of these techniques in the rough drafts of sports poems that the other class had written. We shared some poems aloud, and then we worked on the vocabulary from April 7. (See below). We need to keep working on the meanings of these words and on knowing which part of speech each one is. Then we split into our grammar groups and started planning our mini-teaching units. These will be held on Thursdays between April 29 and May 3. They will be worth 10-15 points, with the goal being to share important facts about your topic and to incorporate the learning strategies posted in the room, in order to help your classmates understand the key points.
HW: Bring in an article about BD to share, and make sure you have taken notes to answer the questions that were assigned on Monday.

April 12:

Today we opened by watching the "Karate Kid" poetry group present one more time, since the class voted for them as the best performance yesterday. Then we handed in our Daybooks with our sports poem rough drafts. Then we began working on our BU's and EQ's for Quarter 4. We then shared answers to the following questions round-robin style:
1. Why is there so much suffering?
2. What happens after death?
3. How should people live?
4. Why was the world created?
After a brief sharing of these ideas and our collective answers, we looked at 6 posters that represent major world religions and tried to identify the six. We then worked with different partners to put the sections of an essay together using an outline to guide us. We read the essay aloud in our groups, and then we copied down the questions above to help us start taking notes for our own essays about what we believe.

HW: Bring in a current event about Bangladesh to share on Thursday as part of our Bengali New Year Celebrations, bring in your notes about the questions above and the ideas of "rituals", "place of worship", and "higher beings". These notes and the beginning of an outline are due on Thursday, April 15.

April 11:

Today we opened by trying to form groups with 3-5 classmates who responded to different poems as their homework. Then we sat together and shared our ideas. We re-grouped to be with people who had the same poem and then practiced acting out our poems, to share with the class.
We brainstormed our own sport ideas as a starting point for our homework, which is to write a sport poem using the ideas we learned about in the Daybook.

HW: Write a sports poem. The rough draft is due tomorrow! Everybody should bring in a current event from Bangladesh on Thursday (Bengali New Year Celebrations).

April 7:

Today the opener was to read OR re-read 'Olympic Glory' in the lit. book and to answer the seven "Applying your Skills" questions in the notebooks. We then went over the questions/answers, and discussed the essay with a partner. Then, partners re-grouped to share answers and complete an Olympic Challenge (boys vs. girls). We went over the following vocabulary ideas:

revive--- (verb)




Another one that is similar but not exactly the same is:


E block did not watch Grammar Rock, they went to their reading buddies, F block watched some Grammar Rock.

The homework is to read all of the poems in Unit 5 of the Daybook and to choose one to respond to carefully and completely.

April 6:

Today we began by sharing our poetry and discussing the characteristics of poems, such as rhyme schemes, literal/figurative language, and mood. We then read 'Olympic Glory' in the literature book in block A, while block D went over the strategies listed below. In block A we watched some 'Grammar Rock' to begin thinking about our grammar work.

Homework is to read independently.

April 5:

Welcome back! It was great that everybody returned on time. Today we opened by sharing our holidays in small groups and then with the larger group. We then went over our fall and spring writing prompts and discussed our Student-Led Conference portfolio pieces briefly. D/F block had buddies today, so they didn't complete the last activities. We will continue with these tomorrow. We had a brief introduction to the main ideas of quarter 4, which include poetry, beliefs, and mythology. Then I shared Marcia Tate's 20 Learning Strategies with the class. I learned about them at the NESA Teachers' Conference which I attended during Spring Break. Students will try to incorporate some of the strategies into their grammar lessons, which will be held throughout April. April is also Poetry month!

Homework: Bring in a poem to share (in a book, from the internet, you can also choose to share a poem you have written yourself).
Bonus question: What is the name of the chemical used during the Vietnam War?

March 24:

Today we opened by brainstorming with a partner to try to list all of the activities/tasks/topics we have looked at during the 3rd quarter. We shared these lists several times around the room. The purpose was to jump-start our brains for our 3rd quarter reflections. We completed sheets showing what we liked, what we disliked, what we were looking forward to for the fourth quarter, and we set some goals for ourselves. As we finished these reflections, we began working on finding out about our grammar topics. We used resources in the room from the 'WriteSource2000' textbook, and from the Language Handbook at the back of the literature anthology. Then could look online for resources to help us teach/share the information. This sharing will be assigned after spring break; it's not homework.

Homework: Send an typed, properly formatted (according to the formatting essay) attachment of either your narrative essay or your leprechaun story. My address is slcover@ais-dhaka.net
If you would like to bring in treats to share during our last class period of 3rd quarter, you are welcomed to do so! We will be playing current events BINGO and other educational/grammar games.

No homework over the spring holiday, have a relaxing time! (Independent reading is, as always, encouraged!) Maybe you could try a novel written as poems in honor of April's poetry month. Don't forget, if you'd like to write a poem and present it at the Poetry night at the library after the break, it's the first week after spring break. See the library website!

March 23:

Today we opened with a word chain trying to choose vocabulary that related to the topic of 'Culture'. In block F we looked at presentations from the other block, (in block E, we finished our presentations) and then we handed back essays and papers. Students were assigned to a specific grammar area to begin looking for information to share with the rest of the class.

*Homework: Choose one of your returned essays, either the narrative or the leprechaun story. Polish it/edit it/ format it properly, and bring it to class on Thursday so we have it for an e-book after the break.

March 22:

Sorry about yesterday, there was no internet all day. The homework did not change. Class time was mainly devoted to preparing for our presentations, with a short reading comprehension check at the beginning. Today we played a round of 'What are you doing?" as a warm-up and then had 15 minutes to prepare for our presentations. Our buddies came to watch. A/E has five left. D/F finished. The homework is to reflect on your projects using the sheet that was provided, neatly, completely, and thoughtfully.

March 18:

Today we made bingo board and then read a compare/contrast essay that discussed the differences between cricket and baseball. We looked at and discussed the structures and how we might apply the techniques to our projects: either block all of the ideas about the novel in one part of the project, and then block all of the ideas about ourselves (using the same order) or use point-by-point organization: one idea about culture followed by your culture and then the novel's, then another idea about culture followed by your culture and then your novel's. You should have a complete plan for your project and plan to meet with partners, if needed.
Due March 22nd!

March 17: Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Today we opened with inner circle/outer circle sharing of our leprechaun stories.
After we shared and discussed the elements in our stories, we had a "Sham-rock" vocabulary contest. Students worked with a partner to find the missing vocabulary words for each definition on a worksheet (all words had the word 'rock' in them.) Then we pulled random discussion cards and found our matching partner for a brief novel discussion. Sample topics included: Respond Emotionally; Make Connections; Be the Character; Questions I have Before, During, and After Reading; Compare and Contrast; Character Study; Visualizing.

After we finished with our partner, we shared with the larger group. At the end of class, everybody had time to work on their novel projects (five more nights to work!) and the winners were announced for the 'Sham-rock' contest!

March 17 HW:

If you didn't get your quiz signed, do so and turn it in to be filed. Work on your projects, due Monday, March 22!