Thursday, February 5, 2015

Brit Lit CPI: Blogging, Bragging & Beowulf

We start with this today.

We'll make some predictions about why we opened with this and how it might relate to what's coming next.

Today we start building our routines and diving into the first of the texts we're going to read this semester: Beowulf.


We'll be using this semester to help with our MUGS: Mechanics, Usage, Grammar, Spelling.  You'll be taking a pre-test today for me to get a baseline of your strengths and weaknesses in those areas.  We'll also be doing some goal setting.

I know I have a goal for you folks: complete sentences, proper capitalization, and commonly mistaken words. If you can wrangle these three things, you can navigate most any writing and communication situation: job applications, official letters, e-mails to people that aren't your friends, etc.

So, we'll get started with the Semester PreTest.


After No Red Ink & MUGS, we'll review our sketchnotes from the Guidelines & Expectations quickly.  I want to make sure people understand what is being asked of everyone in the room the semester including me.


Then we'll talk about bragging, about smack talk, about running our mouths, about rumors, about getting in people's faces, about how we handle them, and then taking a look at how long this has been a problem by looking at ancient and modern poetry.

We'll be breaking up the reading into group chunks with a few key questions for each.  We'll use this time to get a sense of what the heck is going on in Beowulf, the central characters, and then we'll look at the language more specifically.

We'll be using a graphic organizer to keep track of our thinking.

All of this leads to . . .

Req'd Blog Post for the Week:  Letting Fly the Taunts and Volleys of a Thousand Suns Upon the Ears of the Meek Before Us a.k.a. Running Our Mouths

Boast, brag, run yer mouth about anything you like -- just keep it relatively school friendly.  It could be aggressive and calling someone or something out or it could be talking about how great you are at knitting.  I trust you to use your best judgement there.  Remember: swearing is lazy.  It can be fun.  And it's lazy.   Your boast

Write or audio/video record two versions:
One. Your style.  Your words.
Two.  Beowulf style.  His words.

Your goal?  To show me you understand how the language used in Beowulf, the style and format, isn't all that different from today by using it yourself.

Option.  Not feeling like bragging about anything particular about yourself?  Do what the bards & the scops did back in the day: make up a character.  Just let me know whether it is invented or real.

AP Lit: Projects & On Demands & Projects


We'll start with two project shares.

From there, we complete the On Demand: Discuss Shakespeare's use of a literary device such as allusion, symbolism and characterization to develop a theme of power and control.  15 min.  One powerful paragraph.

We'll use these On Demands as well as our last rounds for an On Demand workshop, focusing on the design of an analytical paragraph.  It will also give us an opportunity to discuss Hamlet.


Finally, I'd like us to do some rapid prototyping of the character card idea so we can build some congruency.  We'll take a look at considerations we should be giving when staging our "To Be or Not To Be's" and develop a deeper list of criteria i.e. costumes, portrayal, color palette, physical setting, music (I think I'm getting a lot of it here already . . .)


Blog. 3+ Posts.
Req'd Post. How to Read Lit Like a Professor. "When In Doubt . . . Shakespeare . . ."
How might Foster's position on Shakespeare inform our reading of Hamlet and/or our design of "To Be or Not to Be?"
Due. Friday, 2/6

Complete.  Hamlet.
Read/Watch.  (Clips on Google Drive.)
Due. Monday, 2/9

Start Designing.  "To Be or Not to Be"
Dramatic Presentation & One Page Analysis/Justification
Due.  Thursday/Friday after Feb break. 

Humanities: Roots Quiz, Culture & Theme Songs


We kick off with our Roots Quiz 7.  You are all over this.  Worry not.  Do your best.  And if you are struggling with quizzes, remember that FrankenWord and other vocab work can demonstrate your understanding just as well.

You've got five minutes to make the playlist you will carry with you for the rest of your life.  What goes on it?  Make it now.

Here's mine.  This was stressful.


We've got a way to pull all the culture work you've been doing these past couple of weeks together.

Check Google Classroom for this assignment.


HMW express the reasons why particular songs serve as our theme songs?

We're going to tackle this essay as we have any of our design work because really, writing an essay is a piece of design.

Discovery. (What song might serve as my theme song? Why? Might it connect to an experience?  Might the sounds relate to me?  What might I focus on?  How might I hook the reader?)
Empathize.  (Consider your reader.  Consider your audience. What do they need to know?)
Experiment.  (Drafts.  Play around with order.  Play around with details.  Make maps.  Make sketchnotes.)
Produce.  (Complete a 1st Submission Draft.  Get Feedback.  Revise.  Reiterate.)

Today we will use a couple of brainstorming & ideating techniques including our 5 Min. Playlist  to help get us started.  Friday, we kick into introductions and thesis statements.


Blog. 3+ Posts
Req'd Post. Drum Kit Post.  (See this week.)

Complete. Culture Graphic Organizer (Google Classroom.)  The new one.

Brainstorm. Theme song essay.