Thursday, January 30, 2014

Day 107!

Happy Thursday!

Today will be another drafting day for your first short story! Remember, your story must include the five basic elements of a short story that we have discussed in class!

Please be sure to share your stories with me so I can see them as you are developing them.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Monday, January 27, 2014

Day 104!

Since many of you were gone on Friday, I decided to make Friday a study hall!

Today, we will continue with what were going to do on Friday!  (See below).

Friday, January 24, 2014

Day 103!

Happy Friday!

Today we will spend the first part of class continuing to create our presentation of your respective literary elements!

After that, you will pick at least 1 of the 3 elements to use as you create to write a story of your own. To begin with, you will need to fill out the Brainstorming Map.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Day 102!

Today we will continue to talk about the elements of a short story that were presented in the video yesterday.

Then, we will take some time to read the story "The Vendetta". We will talk about how de Maupassant incorporates the elements of short fiction into his story. We will also talk about what elements were not mentioned in the video that you will often find in a short story.

After that, we will break down into three groups. Each group will be assigned a literary element to develop. You will be assigned, character, conflict, or setting. In your group you will create a brief visual presentation of your element.

Your presentations should answer the following questions:

  • Who are the main characters in this story?
  • What are their name(s)?
  • Age(s)
  • What is unusual about them?
  • What do they look like?
  • Where?
  • When?
  • What does it look like?
  • How many people live there?
  • What are the people like who live there?
  • What does the primary setting (house, building, etc) look like?
  • What is the main conflict?
  • What type of conflict is it (person vs person, society, nature, self)?
  • How does the conflict come to the reader's attention? 
  • What are some possible ways the problem could be solved? (provide at least 2 options)
Each visual presentation should include answers to all questions for your element, include pictures, and should be interesting to the listener. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Day 100!

Happy day 100!

Today we will finish sharing our figurative language extra practice writings with the class. We will discuss what is working and what can be better after each piece is shared.

After that, we will move on to the basics of short stories. We will watch a brief video and take notes on what they say are the main elements of a short story.

Then, we will take a look at the short story "The Vendetta" and discuss how those elements are represented in the story.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Day 99!

Happy Monday!

Today, we will take the first part of class to finish up with the figurative language card activity that we started before the bell rang on Friday!

After that, we are going to practice sharing our work with the entire class, and we will talk about what is good with each piece, and how we can make each piece even better! It's going to be a blast!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Day 97!

Good afternoon!

Today we will continue with our activity from yesterday. If you remember correctly, you selected three cards at the end of the class period. One card had your main character on it, another had your setting, and the last had your basic problem.

Your next task will be to start planning a potential story using the document linked below. Yesterday, I had it in a Google Form, but I changed my mind and decided to have it as a doc, so that you can keep your answers. If you have already answered on the form, I will send you what you turned in so that you can transfer it to the doc. I have also added a few questions, so you will have a few more to answer. Click the link below to access the document. Make a copy for yourself and get to work!

Brainstorming Map Doc

I will give you a good chunk of the period to work on this (20-25 minutes). Once everyone is complete, we will group up (groups will be selected at random), and we will share our ideas with the other members of the group.

As you are listening to other people's brainstorming presentations, think about ways that you can give your group mate some feedback. Some example feedback starters are:

"I really like that you did_____________, did you think about adding _________________?"
"Why did you choose to do ____________________ the way you did?"
"I was a little confused by ______________________, can you explain it a little more?"

The idea of this exercise is to get you to think in new ways and to be open to new ideas. As you listen to the feedback you get from your group, feel free to add their ideas to your story if you like them. This exercise will also give you an idea of why mapping out (or at least jotting down your ideas) will help to make a better story down the road.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Day 96!

Happy Wednesday!

Today we will start by turning in our free-writes with the sensory details/ figurative language highlights. Then, we will take a few minutes to complete the "check in" below. I want to see how well you understand what we have talked about so far in this class.

After that, we will work on how to start a story. Where do author's get their ideas from, and we will brainstorm a few stories together!

With whatever time is remaining, you will use your assigned brainstorm cards to start the initial planning stages of a story!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Day 95!

Good Tuesday to you all!

We will talk a little more today about the notes you took yesterday. Together we will redefine any terms that may have been confusing to you, and we will come up with examples.

Then, you will have an opportunity to work more on your free-write. You should be aiming to add sensory details and at least four examples of figurative language. Once you have finished (or feel that you have finished writing, make a copy of your free-write and share it with a partner (without highlights). Your partner will then read through what you have written and identify the sensory details and the figurative language (see if they get them all right)!

In addition, each partner is responsible for providing some feedback on the writing itself:

  • What is your partner doing well in his/her writing? 
  • How could they make it even better?

Monday, January 13, 2014

Day 94!

Happy Monday!

I am sorry that I won't be seeing you today!

Today, you will continue your work with sensory details, and then you will begin working with figurative language.

To start, discuss the following questions about Ray Bradbury's story "The Pedestrian" as a class:

  • What did you notice about Bradbury's use of sensory details?
  • Which sense did he most often appeal to? 
  • Do you notice any common patterns in how he appeals to the senses?
Then, please watch this video about figurative language: Flocabulary: Figurative Language Video

As you watch the video, please define the terms on this Notes Sheet. You may need to watch this more than once to catch all of the terms. You may do this in partners. 

After you are done with that, I want you to go back to your free writes from last week (you were to choose one of five prompts to write a story about). Please go through and add sensory details, also, pick 4 of the terms from your notes sheet and use that type of figurative language in your story. Highlight anywhere that you add sensory details and figurative language. This will be due tomorrow! 

Friday, January 10, 2014

Day 93!

Happy Friday!

Today we will continue to do some work with sensory details! We will take a look at Ray Bradbury's story "The Pedestrian", and identify the sensory details in that.

Then, you will have some time to add some details to your free write that you completed earlier this week.

If we get some time after that, we will move on to our next focus topic: figurative language!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Day 92!

Good Thursday to you all!

I know you are all SUPER pumped to be back in class! :)

Today, we are going to spend some time figuring out how to make our readers really experience what is happening in our writing. We want to make our stories come alive, so just how do writers do that?

What does "show rather than tell" mean?

We'll do some work together as a group, and then we will once again return to our writing prompts from Tuesday!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Day 91!

Happy Wednesday!

Today, we are going to start by talking about your journal entries from yesterday--the ones meant to introduce me to you as writers. You guys had some awesome insights about your own writing, and you set some pretty great goals for yourselves.

We'll talk for a little bit about the writing prompts that I gave you yesterday; we'll talk about what you struggled with and what went well.

Then, I want to have a pretty basic conversation. I will pose a question to you, then give you a couple of minutes to reflect on it, type it out, share your ideas with a partner, then share your ideas with the class.

With whatever time is remaining, we'll take another crack at what we started yesterday. If you finished your prompt, and you feel that is the best thing EVER written on the face of the planet and in the entire universe, I want you to try another one! The only way to get better at creative writing is to make writing a part of your every day lives. Don't be afraid to scratch your initial writing and start all over--that's the beauty of writing!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Day 90!

Welcome back from your extended weekend! I hope that you all survived the Polar Vortex without any major issues!

We will begin today by finishing up our 6-Word Memoir presentations. Remember, we are using the "Say Something" method to generate feedback for each presenter.

Once we have finished that, we will have some time for some reflective journaling. The purpose of this journal entry will be to help me get an understanding of how you feel as a writer. 
In your journal (Google Doc format, please), I want you to reflect on the following prompt: 
  • How do you feel about yourself as a creative writer? How much practice have you had with story/poem writing? What topics interest you the most? What are you strengths and what are some areas that you can improve? Set 2 goals you want to focus on for your writing this semester. 
  • Your answer should be approximately 2-4 paragraphs long
Once you have completed your journal entry, please submit is using the form below: 

After that, we will work on generating ideas for where to start when it comes to writing. This can be the hardest part for some writers. So, pick one of the following prompts and start writing a story. The goal here is to get your creativity flowing. See where your ideas take you!

  1. When I daydream, I daydream about..
  2. Write about an emotion without stating the emotion...
  3. Weird News story 1: "Man Plays Hide-And-Seek, Gets Stuck In Washing Machine"
  4. Everything you know about ________________ is a lie...
  5. Weird news story 2: Brain Samples Stolen from Indiana Medical Museum

Friday, January 3, 2014

Class: Day 2 (Day 89 of School)

Happy Friday and welcome back!

We will take the first part of class today to finish working on our 6-word memoirs. You will have about 15ish minutes to create/ find images and to format your 6-word memoir.

After that, we will practice sharing out to the class.

In order to practice giving feedback to each other, we are going to try the "Say Something" technique. After each person presents their 6-Word Memoir to the class, each of you is responsible for doing one of the following:

  • Ask a question
  • Clarify something you misunderstood
  • Make a comment
  • Make a connection
Remember, all comments, questions, etc. are to be respectfully stated and about the writing. Comments directed toward the person made with negative intentions will not be tolerated! 

When we have finished that, you will have some time to do some reflective journal writing. The purpose of this journal entry will be to help me get an understanding of how you feel as a writer. 
In your journal, I want you to reflect on the following prompt: 
  • How do you feel about yourself as a creative writer? How much practice have you had with story/poem writing? What topics interest you the most? What are you strengths and what are some areas that you can improve? Set 2 goals you want to focus on for your writing this semester. 
  • Your answer should be approximately 2-4 paragraphs long
Once you have completed your journal entry, please submit is using the form below: