Friday, January 31, 2014

Humanities: Speak & New Design Challenge: How Might We Improve 8th Grade Orientation?

A few weeks ago, Guidance asked Mr. Dunbar and Mr. Ryder if our students would be interested in redesigning eighth graders' high school orientation experience.  We said yes.  (We did not consult you folks; we just figured you'd be keen on doing a project around something that actually matters, will actually happen, and for which you have a lot of expertise as you went though it all yourselves.

All of the work we do for the next several weeks will be about the following design challenge:

How might we improve the eight grader's orientation to the high school?

We did some writing in the lobby, the food court, and the forum, three places were the current ninth grade spent a lot of time last spring and fall.   We tried to recapture our experiences in those places.   We've done some examining of that writing, and will finish off that work on Friday -- for now.

This week, we started Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.  One reason we are reading it now?  It's all about a girl and her transition into ninth grade and dealing with very grown up situations.  We are going to be using the "reciprocating questions" strategy a great deal -- where you folks as Mr. Ryder questions that stem from the reading.

And finally we started on Roots 9.

This blog post is a bit of a messy catchall for the week.  We will get back on more proper track next week with the blog.


Blog: 3+ posts
Req'd Post: "Ten Lies."  Make up a your own list of "Ten Lies" inspired by the list in Speak.  You may want to come with "Ten Lies They Tell You About Freshman Year" or "Ten Lies They Told Me on the First Day that I Found Out Weren't True on the Second."  How creative and insightful can you be?

Vocab: Roots 9
Study & Complete: Word Map or Roots Product
Roots Quiz: Thursday Feb 6 over 6 to 9

PACE: Introducing the Pitching Power Project & More Introducing of Macbeth

We'll start with a MUGS quiz over Commonly Confused Words #1.

Remember, if you are not satisfied with the degree of your understanding, study, come to me for extra help and explanation, look for examples online, show me evidence of practice and I will let you retake the quiz to show your growth.

From there, we will explore Macbeth by looking at some famous lines from the play in one of the tools in the Google Drive.  We'll try to determine what the line might be saying without having seen or read the rest of the play.  The idea is to make a prediction based on an interpretation of the words and then see if it bears out.   These are fairly famous lines -- let's see if we can figure out why.

You will then have time to work on your teaser posters.  Think about how using a line of dialogue could transform those posters.

Finally, we can talk more about the projects.  There are some more parts and pieces in the Google Drive to look at - show bible examples and such. And you can see the rubric that will be updated next week here.

Blog: 3+ Posts

Req'd Blog Post: Create a teaser poster for a new film version of Macbeth.  Look at these examples of teaser posters, posters intended to generate interest well in advance of a movie coming out.  They tend to be very minimal and only hint and suggest as what is to come in the film.  They also tend to rely and on people already being somewhat familiar with the characters and/or story.

Examples of teaser posters here.