Tag Archive for children’s books

The Rhythm of Tuesday


  • ELAGSE9-10L3 Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading or listening, and to write and to edit so that it conforms to the guidelines in a style manual (e.g., MLA Handbook, APA Handbook, Turabian’s Manual for Writers) appropriate for the discipline and writing type.

Learning Target: I will apply knowledge of language to write about Dante’s Inferno, making effective choices for writing style so that I conform to the format of a limerick.


Did anyone ever play that game, DJ Hero? No lie, when I was in college I was a mega fan of Rock Band. I had a group of friends that would get together and we’d play Rock Band all the time… I was the vocalist. Y’all, I cannot carry a tune in a bucket, but I was freaking awesome at Rock Band, because I’m such a visual person, and Rock Band allowed me to SEE when I wasn’t hitting the correct notes and change my pitch accordingly.

Don’t ask me to sing. No.

Anyway, there was a similar game called DJ Hero that I thought might be helpful in talking about poetry, as you can see above.

Work Session: Today we are going to be discussing the poetry of Dante. We haven’t discussed it too much so far, but while we’re mired in circle 5 (lol. ’cause it’s a murky river. geddit?) I thought it would be a chance to take some time to learn about it.

We’re going to watch this video of a reading of the poem in the original Italian:

What’s my point here? I know y’all don’t speak Italian. My point is that even when you don’t understand the words, you can still hear the rhythm and the poetry of the words.

Another experiment? Let’s play a little clapping game… And let’s read a book you might be familiar with….

So, after hearing the story out loud, we’re going to talk (in English) about what’s going on in Circle 5. WRATHFUL >:( and sullen :(….. Let me grab emojis for that, sec…

And with that said, let’s talk limerick. Today you’re going to be writing a limerick about Dante’s Inferno. Here’s an example:

The limerick packs laughs anatomical
Into space that is quite economical.
But the good ones I’ve seen
So seldom are clean
And the clean ones so seldom are comical

Yeah I pulled that from wikipedia. But the point is, a limerick is a 5 line poem with a specific rhyme scheme and meter that goes like this:

da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM

da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM

da DUM da da DUM

da DUM da da DUM

da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM

Here’s a math one:


This is read as follows:

A dozen, a gross, and a score
Plus three times the square root of four
Divided by seven
Plus five times eleven
Is nine squared and not a bit more

Another wikisteal. I’m on a roll. A limerick always follow this very specific meter, and they’re always funny.

Anyway, after discussing this and talking about meter, I want you guys to try writing a limerick about the Inferno! Remember, a limerick must:

  • Follow the specific meter as best you can
  • Follow the AABBA rhyme scheme exactly
  • Be FUNNY!

That’s it for today, y’all! See you tomorrow for circle 6!!!

Closing Session: Collaborative poster project activity.

Differentiation: Learning style (visual, auditory); product (choice in poster activity).

Assessment: Limerick will be assessed.

Picture books are DUE TODAY!!!


  • RL.9-10.9. Analyze how an author draws on and transforms source material in a specific work (e.g., how Shakespeare treats a theme or topic from Ovid or the Bible or how a later author draws on a play by Shakespeare).

Learning Target: Students will finish their picture books and turn them in for assessment.

Activator: We love this book at my house 🙂

HEY!!!! Your picture books are due TODAY!!!!!


Closing Session: Picture book check in – anyone care to read their story aloud to the class?

Differentiation: Process – students can work on different aspects of the book; content – differentiated groupings.

Assessment: Checks for understanding throughout, picture book will be a major project grade.

Workday Thursday


  • ELAGSE9-10W3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
Learning Target: I will work with my group to write a narrative, ensuring that my technique is effective and my details well-chosen.

Activator: I’m pretty sure this song is ridiculous and I love it.

Work Session: Today you guys are going to have a whole work day to make some headway on your picture books. I can send students 5 at a time to the media center to type – so that means one from half the groups can go during the first half of class, and one from the other half of the groups can go during the second half of class. (You ever write a word so much it starts to look wrong? That just happened to me with “half”.) You can only go after you show me your hand-written draft! I’m not sending people to the media center just to fiddle around 😛

For those who are here, I’ll pass out the art supplies and your papers and show you how to fold them to make the pages of your books. I’ll be laminating them when all is said and done, so you don’t need to worry about gluing the pages together or anything 🙂

Don’t forget to work on your cover art! Make it awesome!!

Closing Session: Picture book check in – anyone care to read their story aloud to the class?

Differentiation: Process – students can work on different aspects of the book; content – differentiated groupings.

Assessment: Checks for understanding throughout, picture book will be a major project grade.

Permission forms! Permission forms!!

Welcome to Tuesday!


  • ELAGSE9-10W5 Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience.

Learning Target: I will write a strong rough draft with my group for my picture book project by focusing on what is most significant for an audience of children.06

Activator: Alien trailer! This is the movie we’re going to watch next week!

Work Session: First things first, I’m going to pass out your permission forms to watch Alien next week! Remember, these have GOT to be signed by mom or dad or whoever you stay with, otherwise you can’t watch the movie, because it is rated R.

Next up…

Today we’re going to read the first half of part III in the book. YAY!! This means we’re ALMOST DONE! For this reading, we’re going to use the questions-by-pages strategy. You guys will read to the bottom of the page (you have 6 minutes per page – they’re longer pages than last time we did this) and then I’ll have a question on the board for you to answer.

When we finish that, you guys should get to work with your groups on the picture book project! By the end of the day today, I expect you should be able to turn in either the rough draft or the storyboard (obviously, you can’t have the very last bit done because you haven’t finished the book, but you should certainly be almost done!). You can also start working on drawing your pages, and those of you who would like to type can send a group member over to the computers.

Closing Session: Picture Book Check In – I would like to meet with every group and check off each of your storyboards or rough drafts!

Assessment: Picture books will be graded, questions can be formatively checked for completion and understanding.

Differentiation: Leveled grouping strategy based on ability/achievement; visual/kinesthetic activity (picture book); chunking

Picture it: Monday


  • ELAGSE9-10RL7 Analyze the representation of a subject or a key scene in two different artistic mediums (e.g., Auden’s poem “Musée de Beaux Arts” and Breughel’s painting Landscape with the Fall of Icarus), including what is emphasized or absent in each treatment.

Learning Target: I will look at children’s books and “The Metamorphosis” and analyze how I might transform “The Metamorphosis” into a story for children.

Opening Session: Metamorphosis 2012 official trailer:

Work Session: Okay, nobody panic, but I’m about to put you into assigned groups. Don’t freak out! I do know who your friends are, generally! So get with your groups…

BUT FIRST. Today we’re going to be finishing up the second half of part II of The Metamorphosis. We’re going to continue with our reading strategy from last Friday, which was the alternating one where I read a paragraph, one of you reads a paragraph, and so on.

NEXT UP….I’ll give you guys a big group assignment, which is….

A picture book!!!

Here’s the skinny:

The Picture Book Project!

For this project, you will plan, write, illustrate, and produce your own original children’s picture book.

You will be working in pre-assigned groups of 3. Your picture book should meet the following requirements:

  • The story must be a retelling of Franz Kafka’s story The Metamorphosis, written for children.
    • You must use the same characters as The Metamorphosis.
    • The story must follow the plot of The Metamorphosis.
  •  Your story should be 300-500 words.
  • Your book should be at least 10 pages, but no more than 20 pages.
  • The text of your book should reflect proper grammar, conventions, and spelling. The text may be typed or hand-written.
  • The illustrations should be fully colored and show effort, creativity, and neatness. I understand that not everyone is Rembrandt, but everyone is capable of putting time and energy into his or her artwork.
  • You must complete and turn in the following components:
    • Story Draft (20 points) – Due tomorrow, Tuesday, September 13th
    • Storyboard (20 points) – Due tomorrow, Tuesday, September 13th
    • Finished Product (60 points) – Due Friday, September 16th
  • The Picture Book Project – metamorphosis.docx

Closing Session: TOTD: How is the picture book project going so far? Comments/concerns?

Assessment: Reading ticket, informal assessment of picture book work/brainstorming/drafting.

Differentiation: Students will be placed in groups of varied ability level, talent, and learning style. Students will read in small group to account for differences in reading levels.