Monday, November 28, 2016

November 29/30, 2016

Announcements and Reminders:
Finish, revise, and edit your argument essays as soon as possible.   You are able to work on them from home or anywhere you have Internet access.  Submit and submit for scoring.

We will be writing Santa letters for the Macy's Believe Campaign.
For every letter we write, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-a-Wish, up to $1,000,000!
You can write asking for your Christmas wish list, write asking for gifts for someone else,
 or write a thank you to Santa!

We are trying to beat the record number of letters for our school! 
So join in. 
You can write a letter on the Macy's Site, and print it. 
Or you can pick up a form at school and write a letter there.
Turn it in to your English teacher!  
By the way, you can write MULTIPLE letters!  

Here is an example of a letter typed online and saved to print: 
Macy's Make-A-Wish Believe Campaign: #SantaProject 1A.pdf

Mrs. Mace had her baby on the 29th.  
His name is Hyrum. 
He was born on 11/29 at 2:36 pm
weighing 7 lbs. 9 oz, and measuring 20.5 inches long.

Targets for Today:

  • Writing Standard 7.1   Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence.
  • Writing Standard 7.9   Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • Language Standard 7.2  Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
  •   Reading: Informational Text Standard 10 
By the end of the year, read and comprehend literary nonfiction in the grades 6–8 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.

Today’s  Agenda:

Pick up your composition books.

1.  Watch the video at
and write a thesis sentence to answer this question about it:

Should this sort of extreme biking be encouraged as a sporting event? 

Remember that your thesis sentence needs to include the claim and two reasons why the claim is true.  Write the thesis sentence in your composition book under  ____NOTES___.
Date it with today's date.
Receive a ticket for sharing an effective thesis!  

2. Finish the practice Article of the Week.  Pokeman Go!.docx
You will not have a take-home article of the week yet because you should be spending time finishing, revising and editing your argument essay.

3.  About finishing your argument essay and preparing to take your essay post-test
Does your essay have all of its parts?    

The parts your argument essay should have:


←Body Paragraph

←Body Paragraph

←Counterclaim Paragraph with the "But. . . "

←  Conclusion

Let's look at some
Sample Outsiders Essays.

Check your RAFTS, ARMS, and SMILES!

A1, A2 -- Media Center  for Nonfiction:  biography, autobiography, literary nonfiction
9:00, 10:25
  • Presentation by Mrs. Jones
  • Look for nonfiction books.  
  • If you already have yours, read it. 
  • If you do not have it with you, look for nonfiction books you might want to read in the future. 
B5, B6 -- Mrs. Jones will come to our room.
We will spend some time in the media center at the end of class.

To find Literary Nonfiction on Alexandria: 
  1. Alexandria (On school website find Resources, find Alexandria on the drop-down menu.)
  2. Look at the right for a drop-down labeled "Simple."
  3. Change Simple to Advanced.
  4. Click on Bibliography. 
  5. Then type in "Literary Nonfiction."

If You Were Absent:

See above. 

Some book suggestions:

Mrs. Jones' recommendations:
Bootleg -- about prohibition
With a Little Luck -- about inventions
Bomb -- the making of the atomic bomb
Left for Dead -- the sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and how a junior high student uncovered the real truth!
I Am Malala --  young activist for educating girls is shot in the head by the Taliban
Behind the Drive -- about Larry Miller and the Jazz
The Finest Hours --  a ship breaks in half
Unbroken -- stranded at sea, prisoner of war


Friday, November 18, 2016

Extra Credit - Poems About Death - For How They Croaked

If you'd like to earn extra credit with these,
earn 1 point per line for memorization.
You do NOT have to memorize a whole poem.
You could memorize portions -- sets of lines that go together well. 
   -- Poems found on

John Donne

72. "Death be not proud, though some have called thee"

DEATH be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not so,
For, those, whom thou think'st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell'st thou then;
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.

Emily Dickinson (1830–86).  Complete Poems.  1924.

Part Four: Time and Eternity


THE BUSTLE in a house
The morning after death
Is solemnest of industries
Enacted upon earth,—

The sweeping up the heart,        5
And putting love away
We shall not want to use again
Until eternity.


Out of the night that covers me, 
      Black as the pit from pole to pole, 
I thank whatever gods may be 
      For my unconquerable soul. 

In the fell clutch of circumstance 
      I have not winced nor cried aloud. 
Under the bludgeonings of chance 
      My head is bloody, but unbowed. 

Beyond this place of wrath and tears 
      Looms but the Horror of the shade, 
And yet the menace of the years 
      Finds and shall find me unafraid. 

It matters not how strait the gate, 
      How charged with punishments the scroll, 
I am the master of my fate, 
      I am the captain of my soul. 

* * * * * * * * * *
This is a short poem about King Tut:

* * * * * * * * * * *

Speech: “Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears

Related Poem Content Details

If you'd like to earn extra credit with these,
earn 1 point per line for memorization.
   -- Poems found on

How They Croaked: Day 1

Begin reading How They Croaked 

Authors make choices!

  • The tone/attitude they have toward their subject.
  • The facts they chose. 
  • The conclusions they make based on  those facts

Excerpt:  Ludwig van Beethoven

                             What sort of book is How They Croaked -- what genre? 

                                 What makes a book nonfiction?  

Notice the TONE of the book
How They Croaked.
What is TONE?
How did you know what the TONE is for this book?
What effect does the TONE have on you?
Watch another day for the difference between

Utah State Core RI.4

Tone:  "Yes, M'am."

Famous Last Words 
Chapter 1: King Tut

This tangled "lock" remained unbroken for 3,245 years. It guarded King Tut's tomb until 1923.

Watch for this: 
Why do you think the author would have subtitled this chapter as she did? 

What evidence do you see that the author is NOT writing in a formal style? (She's not taking this entirely seriously.) 
page 4 Tut jerky?!
p. 5 “He was still dead.”


More about Tone and Mood

Notice these Words and phrases:
Do you know what it means to "hit pay dirt"?
What words does the author define for you?  (context clues)
Poof is both an interjection and onomatopoeia.

Interesting notes on this chapter:
The phrase “his next excellent adventure” is probably an allusion to Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure -- a movie from 1989.

This story has a strong connection to the television program
Downton Abbey!

The Earl of Carnarvon, who owned the mansion that is
used in the television show, was the paying parter
in Carter's expedition that uncovered King Tut.
When Carnarvon died soon after visiting the dig, 

stories of a deadly mummy's curse spread around the world.
Interestingly, Carnarvon died from an infected mosquito bite.

How do we look at death?
What is the tone of this video? 


How They Croaked 

Extra Resources:

    This is about why King Tut was physically impaired:  (and lets us know that they've pulled him out again!)

    Book Trailer:

    How They Croaked

    Poe -- Simpsons The Raven
    Marie Antoinette -- When I Ruled the World music video