Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Standing in the

...wind.

KGB has got her face to the wind, taking on whatever comes her way. I hope you too had your "face to the wind" today, taking on the challenge of learning how to take notecards for research papers.


For me? It's May and so many of us teachers are struggling with the behavior and lack of effort in learning that we're seeing. But, then, I have the last two days, seeing so many of you working hard to find the quote, stat or fact that should be footnoted, and I think, "Wow! They're doing great!"


So, like KGB, metaphorically, of course, smile, puff your chest out and go for it!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Carrying a thread through

...The Diary of Anne Frank. Last week when we had to grade the state tests, one gentleman from Ithaca talked about how introductions, something the state doesn't specifically require, do give a 'voice' to the paper. That made me think. I don't call it a voice as much as I see an intro starting a thread that will go through the whole paper. You have an idea you want to develop and a way you want to develop that idea. It starts in the intro and then the thread weaves itself through your whole paper, at least that's what seems to happen in the best papers, the A+ papers (A for answer, remember?). Read some of these. Do you get a feeling that the writer had something to say and that they developed that thought in an organized way? Do the writers use detail to develop that thread, and do they tie those details to the thread through explanations?
I think a lot of them do.

That's the type of writing I want you to take to high school. Have something to say; organize it; use detail and tie it in with good explanations.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Our final

...poem.

Courtney took me up on the Windy Walk and wrote a poem from the pictures. A huge thank you goes out to her. She did a great job, didn't she?

This year I had almost been wondering if it was really worth it to do a poem a week; by the end of last year I just hadn't felt that that many students had really tried. Thank goodness I didn't quit. You have been a wonderful, wonderful class of poetry writers. I have so many good poems, not just here on the blog, but I have so many great poems up in my head, thanks to you.
I know that poetry writing won't be on the state test or on a regents, but poetry writing is good for the soul. Please keep it up. When you're feeling blue, when you're feeling happy, when you're wondering and learning, put it down as a poem.

Thank you for a great year of poetry; it's sooooooooooooooo appreciated!