Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year!

I hope your break has been a fun, relaxing, and restful one!

Here's to a great 2009!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Our Revised Schedule

No school on Wednesday, December 17!

According to an email sent out by Mr. Campbell today, our semester test schedule will be as follows:
  • Thursday: All "A" classes
  • Friday: All "B" classes

Also due on your test day for our class is...

  • Your The Crucible essay
  • Your Writer's Notebook

Reminder: Blogs are due!

I hope you have enjoyed your break...before the Christmas Break!


See you on Thursday!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Tales of Beedle the Bard

Attention all you Muggles: I have four copies of J.K. Rowling's latest book...a children's book. Thank goodness, there is a kid in us all!
If you are a Harry Potter fan, please see me to check out a copy!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Go, Pioneers!

Good luck to the Pioneers as they compete against Greenwood!

Good luck to the band as they play splendidly and represent good ol' Batesville High in such a grand fashion!

I will not be attending the game...working on homework! Boo hoo! Have a HUGE project due on Monday. Yes, being a student is stressful!

Drop me a comment and let me know how the game goes. Okay?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Look Ahead!

This week , we begin the fourth week in this nine weeks...wow! This year is quickly slipping by us!

What shall we accomplish this week?

The Crucible:
  1. We will be reading the drama in class. Glance over the character list and determine which character you would like to portray.
  2. Project: Yes, one is on its way. I am stilling deciding which one we will do...more on that later!
  3. Vocabulary: Study! Upon completion of the word list, we will take a test on all the words. Keep studying all of them!

Outside-of-Class Novel:

  1. Keep reading! Novels need to be completed next Monday/Tuesday. I know some of you have completed the novel! You have not? Keeping reading!
  2. Blog post is due! The first on this novel is due now! Check the wiki for the assigned posts this nine weeks. These blog posts will be worth a test grade this nine weeks.


  1. This week we need to review prepositional and appositive phrases.
  2. Do you like to diagram? Let's see if you do!

The week of Nov. 16-22 is Bullying Awareness Week. What can we do, as a class, to promote awareness of bullying throughout that week? Help me brainstorm some ideas...I'll be sharing some I have found online also.

Are you thinking?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Staying Safe Online

Please go to this link and read another English teacher's (Dana Huff from Georgia) comments about Internet Safety.

Just could not say this any better myself!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

You're Invited!

I will have a guest speaker the last part of 3B and the first part of 4B giving a book talk on Th1rteen R3asons Why and other novels on Wednesday, Nov. 5. If would like to attend and have a class where your teacher would considering letting you visit with me again then, I will be glad to write you a note.

I am sure the elections results will also be a topic!

Just let me know if I can assist with this!

A Published Author!

Your Letters to the Next President are published!

Want to see your writing in print? Click here to access all the published letters. Then click on Arkansas. See Batesville?

Great job!

How does it feel to see your writing another screen besides your own blog?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Go Fly a Kite?

This week brings us to a discussion of Amir...who can't fly a kite, who can't be a friend, who can't take a stand.

Although fearful of bullies, Amir himself is a bully. A bullied bully?

Begin to think. What do you think will happen now?

Infer. Draw some conclusions and be prepare to make some predictions.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Why Do They Bully?

Dictionary.com defines bullying as: "a blustering, quarrelsome, overbearing person who habitually badgers and intimidates smaller or weaker people." Definitely not a person I want to know or even meet.

But...we both know that bullies are not always so obvious. They are more like wolves in sheeps' clothing at times. (I almost hestitate to use that phrase since some of you do not know what "brown-nosing" means! Am I dating myself again? No, not going out on a date with myself, but showing my age!)

These bullies to whom I am referring are subtle and sneaky and sly, which is often more hurtful than if the bully were open and overt and obstinate. Do you agree?

Tell me: why do you think bullies bully?

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Do Pioneers Bully?

As we bring our "A Pioneer Never Quits" unit to a close, let's begin thinking about our next unit: "Just Say No...to Bullying."

This next unit will take us on a journey to Salem...to the Salem witch trials, as we read Arthur Miller's The Crucible and other young adult novels that deal with the issue of bullying.

Before then, though, we have two other projects we need to complete:
  1. Letter to the Next President
  2. Three blog posts

Have you turned in your Digital Identity worksheet? Please do!

Reminder: study for the test on Thursday/Friday!

Meet you in class!

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Are you caught up?

Here is where you should be in this class!

  • Touching Spirit Bear: Chapters 11-18
  • Work on your totem pole: 1B due Monday;1A due Tuesday
  • Research your selected issue for your Letter to the Next President
  • Blog post for lit circle novel: color-code, circle verbs and transitions, and insert "add-on's" (appositive phrases)
  • Study for a re-take of the four sentence types. 1B on Monday; 1A on Tuesday.

Keep up the good work!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Loyal Pioneer

Below is my paragraph for the blog assignment in which we analyzed our first lit circle book for the assigned literary term.

Please note as you read, the embedded "chunks" of info.

In Carol Brink’s novel Caddie Woodlawn, loyalty is a dominant theme. First, the reader develops a greater respect for Caddie, a fourteen-year-old living in Wisconsin in 1864, when she remains true to her dog Nero when her uncle Edmund convinces Caddie’s mom to allow him to take Nero to be trained as a bird dog. Through floods of tears and an abundance of sad memories, Caddie never gives up on the hope of Nero’s return, and return he does, looking worn and thin but, oh, so happy to see Caddie. Another echo of loyalty runs through Caddie’s relationship with her father. Always a favorite, Caddie realizes that her relationship with her father is a special one, one that she appreciates even more as he begins to share his hobby, his second income…the repairing of watches with his daughter, his newfound “partner.” For many more examples of loyalty to family, to the land, to the Native Americans, go with Caddie on her many adventures as she pioneers…and never ever quits.

Remember...we do not reveal spoilers!

Also, novels need to be hyperlinked to the book on amazon.com.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Uh, oh! Teacher is absent!

That's right! I will not be here Tuesday, so here is your assignment.
  1. Writer's Notebook: Continue to draft your totem pole sections.
  2. Go to the mini-computer lab and load our Class Wiki.
  3. Read both articles on sentence structures/patterns. Follow the directions on the wiki for each article. Complete the handout. Turn in. Why are we reviewing this again?
  4. Then draft your post in Microsoft Word for the novel you just completed explaining how the author used the assigned term within your novel:
    Theme: Jordan, Miles, RaechelSetting: Mildren, Maisie, Kelsey
    Internal Conflict: Susie, Heather, Caitlin
    External Conflict: Shanna, Donovan
    Characterization: Cindy, Taresa, Kayla
    Run out of time? We'll finish this next time.
  5. If completed, print your post and turn in.
  6. 9:00: Complete the questions about your novel. Must be turned in today!
  7. Turn in lit circle packet.
  8. Turn in novel...unless you did not complete your post and think you might need your novel to do so.

Homework: Read this post to review other posts you need to draft.

A look at our near future:

  • Posting is now just a click away!
  • On Thursday, you will each receive a copy of Touching Spirit Bear.
  • Totem Poles will be due next week.


Sunday with Ike

Please check out this site to see our theme in action: A Pioneer Never Quits.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Linking Together

I need your help! Please paste your blog URL into an email, along with your blog title, and send this info to me.

Then I will paste your info onto the wiki so you can check out each other's blogs.

Reminder...read this for blog topic assignments on which to be pondering.

Have a great weekend!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Put Your Thinking Caps On!

Your blogs are created; now the time has arrived to decide about what to post first!

Never fear, the teacher is never far away with just the right blog assignment close in hand!

Blog Topic 1:

As you draft your letter to the next President, plan an excerpt or summary of your thoughts to place in a post.

Blog Topic 2:

We know a pioneer as one who perseveres, one who does not quit. Think of someone in your life that is an example of this definition and begin drafting your presentation, your thank-you, about and to this person.

Then as we subscribe to your classmates' blogs, take advantage of your Reader and comment on one or two blogs. Remember through comments comes the confirmation that you are a published writer!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Blogger Is the Winner!

After some deliberation and debate, Mrs. Huff and I have decided to use Blogger as the class blog type.

If you have created a Edublog or a Wordpress blog....I do apologize, but Blogger is adding some features that will work great for us. For example, soon our Readers can feed right into our blog! I know...the excitement will come as your understanding of these Web 2.0 tools develops. It will...I promise.

So let's all set up a Blogger. (My apologies for the lack of pics...I only have Paint to work with here at home, and the quality is just not good enough. Sorry!)

Step 1: Go to your gmail account and click on "more"; then scroll down to "blog."

Step 2: Click on "my account" in the upper right corner.

Step 3: Select Blogger.

Step 4: Proceed to set up a blog.

CAUTION: Remember, this is a class blog, for class assignments, for a grade. Okay? If you want to publish personal posts, please set up another blog in what is now called your "dashboard."

Congratulations you have now left your digital fingerprint on the web! You are about to be a published author!

I look forward to reading your entries and watching you grow as a writer...and reader!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Pioneer Never Quits

What pioneers do you know?

Do you know a George Washington? A Bill Gates?

Over the next month, we will study a thematic unit entitled "A Pioneer Never Quits," and one of your assignments will be to research two pioneers and submit two articles on your chosen ones. From all that are submitted, we, as a class, will choose two with which to conclude our thematic unit.

So be pondering on this...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Your Digital Identity

The decision is yours: you determine who you are, who you will become. What is your digital identity?

As you hand in your metaphorical project, let's begin to ponder whether you will use this metaphor as a theme for your blog or whether you want choose another extended metaphor that will digitally represent you.

Remember your blog title and user name are a part of your URL, your title; it's your digital "fingerprint." Therefore, choose carefully, thoughtfully.

Other cautions:
  1. Protect your identity. Do not use your name as your blog title/URL. Be cautious about what personal information you reveal throughout our blog. Will a reader be able to connect information and discern your first and last name or where you live or go to school?
  2. Is your blog visually appealing? Use colors and fonts to enhance...not to distract your readers. Remember these choices, too, are a reflection of who you are. Your public is judging you based on such decisions.

So let me ask again...digitally, who will you become?

Whoever that might be, remember this: you are unique. Please let your blog represent that quality.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Your Writing Style

You know how you are...right? Or should I say..."write"?

Think about how you feel when you are assigned a paper to write. Now what steps do you take to complete that assignment? Is this a simple process? A trying process? A rewarding process?

Now consider the level of stress a writing assignment places upon you. A lot? Some? None? Why not?

Does writing bring you enjoyment? Pride? Joy? Anxiety?

Now you are beginning to understand your writing style.

May we think metaphorically?

Having considered the process you experience to publish a paper, now think about something to which you might compare this process.

I like to compare my writing style to the story of The Ugly Duckling...it's just not a pretty sight as I draft and scribble and brainstorm my ideas on a piece of notebook paper, but by the time I am ready to submit...well, just maybe, some of my swan-like characteristics are beginning to "feather" out...so to speak.

To what might you compare your writing style?

Just a reminder...please choose a metaphor that you know something about! Had I never heard the story of The Ugly Duckling, this metaphor would not have worked for me!

So think...be creative...begin that metaphorical process!

Good luck. I know you can write right!

(This post also published at Writing Right.)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Welcome to English 11!

Today we begin writing Pioneer Style!

On your mark...get set...here we go!