Friday, October 31, 2014

Pop Culture: Movie Festivals

We are going to focus our energy on movie festivals today.

There are resources in your Pop Culture 2014 OUT folder on Google Drive.

AP Lit: Quarter Review Discussion

Today we discuss the year thus far, exploring the ideas with which we've been grappling and the manners in which we've been grappling with them.

A great day for constructive criticism and adjustments we can make to the class to improve moving forward.


Indie Book Discussion: Next Class!
Due: Tuesday, November 4

Indie Book Projects: No More Dumpster Projects! Woot!
Due: Thursday, November 6
Complete: Design thinking process packet (don't wait until the end! That defeats the point!  It becomes busy work!)
DT Packet: Look for the packet in the AP Lit 2014 OUT folder

Humanities: Speak, Music, Manliness, Empathy & Discussion

Today, we grapple with the final pages of Speak.

And we are going to revisit some of the issues we brought up the other day, after learning of what Andy Evans did to Melinda.  Rather than just sit and talk, we are going to explore three different texts: a TED talk video and two songs.

Transcript here.

"Sic Transit Gloria" lyrics here.

"Face Down" lyrics here

Then we are going to use a discussion format called an Inside/Outside Circle.  There are lots of versions of this.  In ours it will work like this.

Half the class will sit in the middle and discuss the topic at hand, while the other half of the class sit around the outside with copies of the lyrics, the books, and the transcript of the TED talk in hand.

The outside circle listens and searches for evidence in the texts to back up what they are hearing in discussion.

When the circles switch, the outside circle must make connections to what the inside circle said and back it up with connections to the texts.

For Example: "I like what Randolph said about Melinda struggling with expressing herself.  It reminded me of "Sic Transit Gloria" where it says, "He's holding back from telling her exactly what it really feels like."

The cycle switches back and forth until each group has been in both locations multiple times.


Graded Class Discussion on Monday.  Inside/Outside Circle
Bring moments from Speak, the songs, the TED talk, that you want to discuss.
Questions you want answered.
Points you want to make.

Refresh.  Catch Up.
Gear Up for Q2.
Choose your focus for our design thinking project: fidget or signage.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

AP Lit: Prufrockin Remixes Begin

Design Challenge: Prufrockian Remixing.

How might we remix “Prufrock” into a derivative work (meaning, it is based on/inspired by an original) that reflects the poetic and design qualities and intentions of T.S. Eliot’s original?


Last class you did just this.  You spent a day exploring Prufrock and discussing and figuring.

Today, before you start empathizing and experimenting, take a moment to refresh your thinking with this spidea web.
Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 8.58.42 AM.png

Recreate this on paper in front of you.  When you think of what you’ve done with “Prufrock” so far, what immediately springs to mind.  5 min.  No more.

Follow this up quickly with an I NOTICE/I WISH/I WONDER over “Prufrock.”  Again, quick.  5 min.  Rekindle what you’ve already discovered.  

Work in pairs or triads.  Someone has to volunteer to be interviewed about their thoughts and feelings about “Prufrock.”  Here’s the thing.  It isn’t a lecture on Prufrock.  They must be asked questions by the other members of the class.  5 min interviewing one student.  
Then choose another.  Grand total.  10 minutes.

As you are taking notes during the interview, use this empathy map tool.  Consider what they are saying and doing as they are talking, and imagine what they might be thinking and feeling based on that.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 9.07.20 AM.png


Print off copies of “Prufrock.”   Cut it up.  Make it bigger.   Rewrite.  Move it around.  Remember in a remix you can add layers upon layers, bring in new, add your own.

There’s butcher paper in the lockers in the hallway.  Use it.  There’s stuff in the closet.  Use it.  There are LEGOs and Jenga blocks and who knows what?

The key?  Making sure it embodies the spirit and intention of the original while still seeming like a whole new work.

Inform your experimentation with what others have told you, what you’ve discovered about Prufrock.

Be wild.  Be free.  Try things.  See what happens.  Take lots and lots of pictures.  Put them on your blog.  Not because it is required but because it matters and it helps.  Please share them with me as well.

(No pics because I got caught up in the million other things in the room. Gah. Too much awesome.)


For next class, bring a finished iteration of your remix for discussion, feedback, exploration.  We’ll be using the feedback wheel.

Also, read and annotate the articles I will be sending to you about Prufrock and Eliot.  What do they uncover that we hadn’t?  How does your remixing experience lend itself to that sorts of thinking?


PRODUCE: Finish your “Prufrock” Remix.
Due: Next Class

Due: Next Class.

REVISE: Revise any revision that I give back to you this week by SUNDAY, if you so choose.  
What?!  I know.  Yes.

Humanities: Kahoot, Speak & Empathy Building


We started with Kahoot and Mr. Mason, guiding us through a review of Roots 1 - 3 before Thursday's quiz, as well as the Whole New Mind senses.

Then we turn to some serious content with . . .


We will do an activity to help us better understand Melinda, as well as Andy Evans, with regards to the development in last night's reading of Speak.   We'll put up some pictures today of our work.

Our goal?  To build our capacity for empathy with Melinda and better understand why she has been doing what she's been doing throughout Speak.  And also to better understand the mindset of someone like Andy Evans so that we can work to change it in the people around us.


Read: Speak.

Complete:  STEAL Characterization Graphic Organizer for Speak.
Note: No options on this one.
Due: Friday. Oct 31

Study: Roots Quiz 3 (Roots 1 to 3)
Complete: Roots Product 3
Due:  Thursday, Oct 30th.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

AP Lit: Design Thinking & Book Projects

Tuesday and Wednesday were intended to be DEEP design thinking FlashLab experiences for us to get more familiar with the DEEP design thinking strategies and how to apply them to our work in class. Tuesday went well, while Wednesday was thrown off by us having a short class and my having to leave early unexpectedly.

I wanted to connect some of the dots for folks here in advance of you digging into your book projects.  The projects themselves are due on November 6 or 7, depending upon your class.  HOWEVER, you must have your books finished by the beginning of the week (Nov 3 & 4) so we can have our last graded class discussion for Q1.


By now you should have started your award winning/finalist (of last 20 years) OR AP Lit test suggested title.  There's a list in the Google Drive if you have yet to decide.  Also, our library has several of the titles in stock.

When you embark on creating your project this time, consider it a design challenge:  How might we demonstrate the qualities that earned that work its accolades?

You will be expected to complete the design thinking packet I've provided before -- and I'll provide again -- and submit alongside your project on the due date.

Key:  empathy.  Think about your user. What will engage them?  What will they understand?  What will draw them in and convey your thinking?  And think beyond your immediate user.

No more dumpster projects.  Create something that matters, that will reach your user and that demonstrates genuine understanding.  Consider the myriad possibilities.

AND . . . TRUST THE PROCESS.  Use the design process.  Interview people.  Ideate.  Brainstorm.  Find out what your users want to see, what makes them think, and then align that with your skill sets.


We'll be looking at "Prufrock" on Thursday and Friday with our first graded class discussions.  We'll be using this rubric to assess your discussions.  Key here?  Pointing to specifics in the texts -- citing specific lines --  and building on, as well as refuting or challenging, others' points of view.

We are going to use slightly different formats in the two classes because one is so small.


Read & Annotate: "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot

Read: Indie Reading Book.
Design: Project
Due: 1st Week of November

Complete: Synthesis Essay Revisions
Due: Friday!
(If you have submitted a revision this week, you will get one more shot at it.  It will be assessed this weekend.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Humanities: More Work w 3x3s, Speak & Freaks & Geeks

Today we'll start with making sure folks have turned in their WNM portfolios.

Then we'll do some work with the 3x3s we did over Speak and the first ranking period.  There will be some sorting, then some remixing, some mashing up, and some connections to Freaks & Geeks.

Then we'll watch some more Freaks & Geeks.

And finally, return to Speak to finish the day.


Read: Speak (End of 2nd Ranking Period)
Due: Tomorrow.

Complete: Speak Ranking Period 2 Graphic Organizer (Choose between Notice/Wish/Wonder and Three 4 Thinking.
Due: Tomorrow! Thursday, Oct 23rd

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Humanities: Speak, Freaks & Geeks & New Vocab

Today, we dig into Roots 3.  Quiz next Thursday (Roots 1, 2 & 3).  Roots-based word product due next Thursday as well.

Then we return to Freaks & Geeks and practicing our understanding of characterization with the graphic organizer we started in with yesterday.

And then it's on to Speak where we will be using a technique called the literary 3x3 to help us recap what's happened in the novel so far and focus in on the big ideas.


Read: Speak 61-72
Due: Tomorrow

Complete: Organizer 2
Due: Thursday

Monday, October 20, 2014

AP Lit: Rose, Bud, Thorn & Synthesis Essays

Today we'll be doing just as last Friday's class did.

We'll be using the Rose/Bud/Thorn DT strategy to explore first, the food court, and then, our synthesis essays.

You  can see some of what the other section came up with here.

This will lead to a synthesis essay workshop to help us with this last week for revisions.  (Pinning Frankenstein revisions can come in next week because not everyone has them back yet.)


Blog: Graded blogs are done for the quarter.
Revise/make up/enhance

Read: T.S. Eliot's Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
Due: Friday, Oct 24th.

Check AP Lit Due Dates doc.

Humanities: Speak & Characterization

We'll start today with an LNG.

LNG View
Rather than using the form, however, we're going to ask that you post your thinking on your blog.  A) This should help folks who keep losing their responses.  B) You are writing so much good stuff, we're actually finding it harder to read through Google Forms than we thought.

STEAL Characterization

We'll do a little activity to familiarize ourselves with characterization and the STEAL methods of characterization.  I made this doodle to help you out.

Effect on Others

From there, we'll watch the first ten minutes of the pilot episode of Freaks & Geeks so we can practice applying our new STEAL knowledge.  We'll use this graphic organizer, doodling, and our own brain pieces to make this happen.

We'll use the rest of time to read Speak and either complete the graphic organizer due today, or start working on your next.  Tomorrow we'll do an activity to help us make sure we know what's happening in Speak so far as well as the big ideas coming up.


Blog: Catch Up.  No New Posts Required.  Be Certain to Post Links in Blog Tracker.

Read: Speak 49-61

Complete: Graphic Organizer 2.
Focus: On characterization.  How might you work in STEAL through your responses?
Due: Thursday, October 23rd.

Friday, October 17, 2014

AP Lit 3B: Rose Bud Thorn & Synthesis Essay Revision

On Friday, we're going to try something a little different.

We're going to use the Rose/Bud/Thorn strategy -- we use it in design thinking all the time -- to open up opportunities and problem solving with our synthesis essay revisions.

It should make for some interesting thinking.


Revise.  Catch up.  Breathe.

Check the AP Lit Major Due Dates Schedule.

Humanities: Speak & Understanding

Today we'll be focusing on Speak and the  graphic organizers you are using to demonstrate your understanding of the characters and events of the book.  

We're going to try something a little different though.

You'll need your design kits and white paper and I'll have copies printed of the graphic organizers.  Before filling out the organizers online, we are going to try note taking and doodling on paper, first.  The idea is to try and eliminate some of the distractions working only digitally might be cause. Doodle and note on paper.  THEN, use those notes to fill out the graphic organizers online.

So first, we'll break up the work areas into four-seat desks, three people at each desk with an open seat for Ryder/Brackett.  Speak books, paper, design kits, graphic organizers.  The teachers will bounce around and help you out, check for understanding.

With about twenty minutes to go in class, I'll start reading from the beginning of tonight's reading assignment.


Read: Speak 36 - 46 (End of the 1st Ranking Period) (Full Schedule Here)
Complete: 1st Graphic Organizer (Choice of Notice/Wish/Wonder or Three 4 Thinking)
Due: Monday, Oct 20

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Humanities: Digging into Speak, Lies & Graphic Organizers

Yesterday we wrote about our first experiences of walking through the door of Mt. Blue Campus as students.  We then mapped the trends of emotions people felt as we try to build some empathy for one another.  This is going to be important as we move into our design challenges next week around Speak.


Roots Quiz 2 (over lists 1 & 2) is right out the gate today.  Roots Product 2 is due as well.


Today we'll read a little chunk of last night's reading in class.  And then we'll do an activity around the First 10 Lies They Tell You in High School.

That will lead to introduction of your graphic organizer choices for Speak.  

You need to complete a graphic for each ranking period in the novel.  The novel is divided into four ranking periods . . . thus . . .

The reading schedule and graphic organizer schedule is available to you in the Google Drive Humanities OUT folder.  And it's linked here.

You'll have a few minutes to get started on your first organizer and then we'll do a little more read-a-loud of Speak.


Blog: 3+ Posts
Req'd: Create a 3 song playlist for Mt. Blue Campus that plays as we walk from class to class.  Explain each of your choices.
Due: Friday, Oct 17th

Read:Speak pg 20-26
Due: Friday, Oct 17th (tomorrow)

Complete: Speak Graphic Organizer 1
Choose: Either Three 4 Thinking OR Notice/Wish/Wonder
Due: Monday, Oct 20

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

AP Lit 4G: Time to Work

Today, time to work.  

I'm going to make a point of providing a couple of class periods in a row each quarter for time to get caught up, ask for help, workshop with peers and otherwise freestyle your day.

Today was the first of those days this week.

You've quite a collection of due dates on the horizon, including today.

Remember that they are all available on the AP Lit Major Due Dates schedule.


Blog: 3+ Posts
Req'd Post: Read Foster's "Is That a Symbol?" and then complete one of the following two tasks:

Apply one of the symbols Foster uses to your own life.  To what extent does it hold true to your experiences with that symbol?
Identify a motif in your life that Foster would apply to literature with great aplomb.  Make a case why this is so.

Complete: Frankenstein Pinned
Due: Today!

Revise: Synthesis Essay
Complete: Revision Form
Due: Last Day for Revisions - Fri, Oct 24th

Design: Power Guide: Composition
Due: Oct 27th/28th

Read & Complete: Indie Book Project Q1
Due: November 3rd/4th

Humanities: Reset & Gear Up for New Unit

Today, we'll take a day to reset after a long weekend, get our mental workshops cleaned up, take care of those lingering projects, and get ready to start something powerful and new.


Thursday, you have Roots 2 Quiz and a Roots 2 Product due.  Use the following slideshow to help you prepare.  Also, check out the link to the Quizlets over in the right sidebar.



Tomorrow we start Speak and our first big design challenge: How might we improv the climate and culture of Mt. Blue Campus?

Blog: 3+ Posts
Req'd Post: Create a 3 song playlist/soundtrack for Mt. Blue Campus.  Imagine these three songs are played between every class; why have you chosen these three songs?  Justify your choices.
Due: Friday, Oct 17th

Roots: Roots 2
Study: Quiz Over Roots 1 & 2
Create: Roots Product (Uses at least 5 root based words effectively)
Due: Thursday, Oct 16th

Complete: Whole New Mind Portfolio
PAST DUE: Thursday, Oct 9th

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Pop Culture: Food Culture Begins & Design Challenge: Franklin County Eatery Pitch

Today we started our food culture mini-unit and our next design challenge to follow up on our Soundtrack A-Side/B-Side design project.

We started by quickly looking at food advertisements in magazines of yesteryear, particularly National Geographics of the 1940s and LIFE of the early 1970s.  Not the most scientific work, mind you, but I wanted you using physical magazines and not just flipping through the complete run of LIFE on Google Books. (Yet.)

We identified the food we saw advertised, then sorted that information to look for trends.  We discovered a strong presence of alcohol ads in the early 1970s and then I speculated, by playing some connect the dots between cultural experiences, intended targets of the ads, and content of the ads themselves why that might be the case.  (Middle age white male + cultural revolution = self medication?)

After that, we created food maps of RSU 10.  Where can you buy food in our district.  We discovered some interesting trends around local food vs chains, quality vs quantity, and a preponderance of pizza places.  

This lead to our next design challenge: How might we design a successful pitch for a new eatery for Franklin County?

Consider the steps.

DISCOVER. Your challenge.  What are you creating.  What do you need to know in order to develop a successful pitch for an eatery?  Unpack it.  What are the terms in there  you need to know.  What does that make you consider?

EMPATHIZE.  Interview.  Get out there and find out what people what.  What would people flock to and in how many droves? What DON'T they want to see?

EXPERIMENT.  Create some low-rez prototypes of what this place might look like.  At the same time, what might the pitch sound like?  Function like?  What media could you use to support your pitch?  Presentation slides?  Video?  Signage?  Something else?

PRODUCE.  Create the pitch.  Try it out.  Get some feedback before the final version.

You'll be using the DEEP DT process to design and then pitch this idea to your investors i.e. the rest of the class and perhaps even some members of our admin team here.  We'll also deliver these pitches in the Forum.  A proper space for such intensity.

The rubric is not yet ready.  But it will be.  It will be....


Blog: 3+ Posts.  (Tracker is fixed.  Post last week's links please.)
Req'd Post:  For this week's blog post, discuss the food culture in your family.  What does your family typically eat?  What traditions do you maintain?  What, if any, ethnic/regional/heritage foods inform your family's eating?  

Have fun.  Do some exploring.  And if possible, include some pictures.  Maybe even some highlighting those traditions.

Design: How might we design a successful pitch for a new eatery for Franklin County?
Form: Team of 1, 2 or 3 members
Complete: DEEPdt Process Packet.  EVERY MEMBER MUST COMPLETE AN INDIE PACKET.  Combine your data and info for team-based mighty power thinking.
PITCH DUE:  Thursday, Oct 23rd.
Research: How to successfully pitch an idea.  (Got Netflix or cable?  Hunt up The Pitch.  Got HuluPlus?  Hunt up some Shark Tank.  Got an internet?  Look up "elevator pitches," "PIXAR pitch," and "Art of the Pitch."  Here's a slideshow with some good intel as well.)

Humanities: Whole New Mind Portfolio Work & Review & Tips on Better Presentations

Hey folks,

On Monday, we reviewed the Whole New Mind senses by first putting the definitions in our own words (using the 3 second pause to check for understanding), then putting the senses on notecards to create maps that help us connect the dots between the senses we understand and the ones we don't, and then used doodle to think skills to create doodle representations of each sense on the cards.  We put those decks in our books for easy access and remembering later.  (That was a huge run-on sentence back there.  Sorry for that.)

Tuesday, we worked.  We also ate sweet blueberry kielbasa from Gavin.

On Tuesday, we forgot to assign Roots List #2.  There will be a quiz next Thursday over both Roots #1 & #2.  Also, a Roots Product #2.  It needs to use at least 5 roots-based words from Roots List #2.

Here's a GREAT slide deck to help you with your portfolios.  Don't feel like you have to read every slide, especially if you don't understand the wording.  There are tons of great examples and tons of TERRIBLE examples.  Just be sure you know if you are looking at  good examples or bad examples.

Here's another one.  Each slide pairing is a bad one, then a better one.


Blog: 3+ Posts
Req'd Blog Post:  #showyourwork. Share some of the images and ideas of your Whole New Mind portfolio as you are working on it.  What are you struggling with?  What are you proud of so far?

Roots: Roots 2
Study: Quiz Over Roots 1 & 2
Create: Roots Product
Due: Thursday, Oct 16th

Complete: Whole New Mind Portfolio
Due: Thursday, Oct 9th