Diagramming Sentences – Coordinating Conjunctions

Before you can effectively write using the English language, or even analyze how others use writing effectively, you need to be familiar with the basic parts and components of the English language. I know grammar isn’t your favorite subject to study and learn (hey, it isn’t my favorite either), BUT knowing and being able to identify these smaller component of your own language will allow you to write more effectively and assess and improve your own writing as the year progresses.

This week we will be examining how to correctly diagram sentences with conjunctions.

We structure each compound element different in our sentence diagrams. Here are examples of how to diagram compound subjects, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and objects of the preposition.

The following sentences will only contain compound words that you will need to diagram.

  1. Mr. Travers teaches at the school and plays outside at recces.
  2. Matt and Dina learn from Mr. Tavers.
  3. Lori’s blue and green dress has been drying on the clothesline in the yard.
  4. I looked for the jacket in the house and the car.
  5. Scott jogged quickly and quietly onto the soccer field.

Phrases are groups of words that function as a single part of speech. We studied prepositional phrases last week, and now you will learn to diagram sentences with prepositional phrases and conjunctions.

The following sentences will contain compound phrases you will need to diagram:

  1. The students were running in the halls and were sent to the principals office.
  2. My sister drove around the block and up the hill.
  3. The crazy little dog ran out the door and toward the stranger.
  4. Lori and Lisa were laughing and howling at the funny movie.
  5. Jason looked in the garage and around the house.

A sentence is a group of words that express a complete thought. We can make sentences compound by putting two or more independent clauses together with coordinating conjunctions.

The following sentences will have two independent clauses connected by a conjunction:

  1. The little kitty in the basket meowed, and the small girl smiled.
  2. He drove across town, but she walked.
  3. Have you tried, or did you just ask for help?
  4. The man in the backyard cried, for he  fell from the tall ladder.
  5. Should you have been running towards the dog, or should you have been running away from it?
11th Grade American Literature Spring 2018

Modern Political Rhetoric – ‘What is the relationship between the citizen and The State’?

As we continue our examination of the question ‘What is the relationship between the citizen and The State’, we turn our attention to modern political rhetoric. You guys will need to continue improving and building your analytic skills, as well as making connections between texts, ideologies, history and politics.

In our last series of rhetorical analysis, you will first examine the speeches of President Donald Trump and former President Barack Obama, former President Ronald Reagan, and the Amendments to the Constitution.

Next, using reliable research sources, you need to find an example of a speech from a US President or elected official that most closely defines or represents the relationship between the citizen and the state as you interpret it. You will need to annotate the speech and note where the language and rhetoric of the document connects to the Amendments or compares/contrasts with the speeches you analyzed this week for Socratic Seminar. As you analyze the speech you’ve picked, focus on the following questions:

  1. What is the speaker’s purpose?
  2. Do they achieve their purpose effectively through rhetoric?
  3. How does their rhetoric define the relationship between the citizen and the state?
  4. How does the speaker’s rhetoric align with that of our founding documents?
  5. How do the speaker’s rhetoric encourage, or not encourage, citizens to be active in their relationship with the state?

You should then write a reflection discussing how the interpretation of  our founding documents, or our Nation’s ideals, or the relationship between the citizen and the state, changes over time. You should reference the speeches you’ve analyzed in this reflection – the one you’ve selected, and the three I provided to you (Reagan, Trump, Obama). You should also reflect on how culture/technology/and beliefs influence that interpretation. At the end of this reflection, hypothesize what elements of our modern culture most impact our interpretation of our founding documents.

You will submit the annotated speech, and submit the typed reflection in the Google Classroom.

 

AP Language and Composition Spring 2018

The Shape of Stories

In the next two weeks  we will be reading and examining a series of short stories, and discussing the ‘shape’ of short stories – their plots.

 

Many of you are probably familiar with a simplified version of Freytag’s Pyramid :middle-school-plot-diagram (1)

plot-shape-conflict-2-638However, while this is an easy way to remember the typical form of plot progression in Western storytelling, it is not completely accurate. Not all, not most, stories follow this plot progress. Stories have their own ‘shape’ – and the more interesting the plot of the story, the more interesting the shape.

Listen to amazing short story writer Kurt Vonnegut explain the ‘shape of stories’ by clicking the link below.

Click here to listen to Kurt Vonnegut’s ‘The Shape of Stories’.

Vonnegut explains that stories are much more complex that the typical Freytag’s Pyramid.

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Think of movies you’ve watched – what type of ‘shape’ did the plot create? Think about tv shows – each episode has its own plot, and then all the episodes in a season create a larger plot as well.

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As we read through the short stories in this unit I want you to consider the ‘shape’ of these stories. You will need to keep track of them – and decide which ‘shape’ make for the most interesting story.

Also remember that we’re looking at the shape of Western stories (stories from American or Europe) – stories from other cultures in Asian and the Middle East follow a much different plot structure. Stories in Asian culture are often told in a cyclical or spiral manner:

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If you’ve ever watched an Asian movie or tv show (Dragon Ball Z) and felt like so much information was being repeated, or that the story took a really long time to ‘get going’, it was probably because their storytelling structure is so different from ours.

Some modern storytellers and movie-makers like Christopher Nolan are trying to use new and interesting plot structures – if you’ve seen these movies and have been confused about what’s happen, that’s probably why!

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10th Grade Literature Spring 2018

Conducting Research – Determining the Reliability of Sources

As we being our unit on World Literature, you will be deciding which culture you would like to research and explore in your groups. You will also need to brainstorm six questions about this culture or literature you would like to find the answers to.

Once you have decided which culture’s literature you’re focusing on, and have determine which set of questions you want to research the answers to, you will need to make sure you use only RELIABLE SOURCES!

Remember, reliable sources are those that can be trusted to provide unbiased, factual information. Reliable sources include .org, .gov or .edu websites, books, news organizations, educational journals or publications.

Unreliable sources cannot be trusted for accuracy or for an unbiased perspective. Unreliable sources include Wikipedia, Yahoo Answers, any .net or .com website, blogs, editorials from newspapers, or forums.

Click here to view the worksheet from class on reliable vs unreliable sources.

Remember, if you have a hard time determine if a source is reliable or not, you can always ask us to check it with you!

You will need to gather information from reliable sources to answer the questions you’ve selected from above, and be sure to paste the information in your GoogleDocs. You will need to use this information throughout the week to write an extended essay response, so please save your research!

10th Grade Literature Spring 2018

Diagramming Sentence: Compound Direct and Indirect Objects

Before you can effectively write using the English language, or even analyze how others use writing effectively, you need to be familiar with the basic parts and components of the English language. I know grammar isn’t your favorite subject to study and learn (hey, it isn’t my favorite either), BUT knowing and being able to identify these smaller component of your own language will allow you to write more effectively and assess and improve your own writing as the year progresses.

This week we will be examining how to correctly diagram indirect objects and direct object compounds.

Now practice with the following sentences:

  1. I smelled the delicious, buttery pecan pie and cookies.
  2. WHOA! Hurricane Maria violently landed in Puerto Rico and destroyed the infrastructure.
  3. The shopper gave Cythnia the payment, and she gave them the change.
  4. I reluctantly gave the teacher the note.
  5. My brother and I walked into the haunted woods and picked Mother flowers.
11th Grade American Literature Spring 2018

Revolutionary Women: Phyllis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley

 

Throughout our study of the literature of the American Revolution we have been primarily reading the texts of the founding fathers and other men of the period. However, women played an important role in the founding of our country and contributed greatly to its literature and political texts. Two women that made significant contributions to the arts and politics are Phyllis Wheatley and Abigail Adams.

 

Brought from Africa on the slave trade, Phyllis Wheatley was given a formal education by her masters, and went on to write some of the most beautiful poetry of early America. Hidden in her poems were criticism of race, religion, and the institution of slavery in America.

In class today we began analyzing her poem ‘On Being Brought from Africa to America’. Please watch the video below of this analysis if you need to review!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

11th Grade American Literature Spring 2018

The Declaration of Independence

We are examining our founding document – an amazing piece of text that brought us to where we are today, and inspired other nations to declare those own free and independent states.

The original Declaration of Independence, ink on parchment. It has been damaged by light and improper storage, and the text has almost faded completely over the past 241 years.

A facsimile copy of The Declaration of Independence, struck in the 19th century. Copies, posters and prints of the document are made from this copy, not the original.

 

Click here to view the real Declaration of Independence at the National Archive.

As we read, analyze and discuss this document please remember that we are looking at not only its importance historically but also its use of effective syntax, its appeals to rhetoric, and even the flaws of 18th century bias that it includes. Many of the ideals exposed in our founding document are held dear to us, but know the irony in that these ideals as we see them today were not extended to all people living in the new United States.

Please see the videos below over the history of the document and a performance of the Declaration.

Today we also learned how to take DoodleNotes, using The Declaration as an example. Please click here to access the notes.

As we analyze the text, remember to look for the appeals to rhetoric and be able to explain how the syntax of the document make its more effective. Be sure to read The National Archive’s analysis of The Declaration of Independence to inform your own analysis and understanding of the text:

“The text of the Declaration can be divided into five sections–the introduction, the preamble, the indictment of George III, the denunciation of the British people, and the conclusion. Because space does not permit us to explicate each section in full detail, we shall select features from each that illustrate the stylistic artistry of the Declaration as a whole.3

 

11th Grade American Literature Spring 2018