Tag Archive for disney

World Lit: Writing About My Cultural Identity, Day 1

Standard: ELAGSE9-10W2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

Learning Target: I can write a reflective essay explaining my cultural identity.

Opening Session: Moana – I Am Moana: Moana understands her own cultural identity, in song form!

Work Session: Today you’re going to be starting your first embedded assessment! This assessment will be writing a cultural identity essay about yourself. Let’s go over the prewriting, drafting, and editing steps in the book; then let’s double check the rubric on page 58 to make sure we’re all aware of what I’m asking.

Once we’ve done that, I’m going to give you the rest of class to compose your personal essay. I’ve got lined paper if you need it (there’s not enough room in the textbook to write this one, sorry!) and we will be typing them up, revising, and editing tomorrow!

If you don’t finish a draft in class today, you will need to do so for homework, so work hard!

Closing Session: Take a deep breath, take a highlighter, and give a quick once-over to your fresh draft. Make any quick edits, put them in the basket, and then have a great day!

Also, vocab!

  1. Precarious
  2. Intimidated
  3. Provincial
  4. Monsoon
  5. Insular
  6. Palpitating
  7. Veranda
  8. Wizened
  9. Derogatory
  10. Predominantly

Assessment: Formal – Embedded Assessment 1 is a major grade

Differentiation: Process (scaffolding); product (varied length essays as needed).

The Epic Flood of Thursdays!

Standard: RI.9-10.8. Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning.

Learning Target: Students will read a nonfiction article comparing the Genesis flood to the flood in Gilgamesh, and learn about bias and finding reliable sources.

Activator: Noah’s Ark

Welcome to a shiny new Thursday, everyone! Today we’re going to be continuing with our discussion of Gilgamesh, and reading a lil bit of nonfiction about it I found this article online that compares the flood we read about in Gilgamesh to the flood that’s written in the book of Genesis in the Bible…but….

..before we get into that, let’s actually do some comparison in our own minds, shall we? I know a lot of you guys are familiar with Noah’s story from the Bible, but just in case we need a refresher, I will read the story aloud to y’all while you follow along in the textbook (it starts on page 44). Now, with that read, let’s talk about comparing the two!

There is a lot of controversy over which story came first – Gilgamesh or Genesis – and this article talks a little about why it’s so important to so many people. However, one thing we need to consider when we read articles – especially ones from the internet – is something called bias.



Prejudice in favor of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair.
Show prejudice for or against (someone or something) unfairly: “the tests were biased against women”; “a biased view of the world”.
Synonyms: noun. prejudice – inclination – partiality – tendency

verb. influence – prejudice

Interesting concept, right? If an author is prejudiced, or biased, towards one side or another, sometimes that belief comes across in their writing. It’s important for us, as scholars, to realize when an author is biased. Just because an author is biased does not mean they’re wrong – so don’t think I’m saying that – but it does mean that they’re unwilling to consider another point of view, or at least that they’re not considering another point of view in this particular piece.

Do you think an author can really make a good argument if they refuse to consider any other points of view? Do you think the author of this article is willing to look at the other side of things?

We’ll talk about what this means today while we read the article together and answer some questions

Some Animals Are More Equal Than Others

Standard: RL.9-10.5. Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure a text, order events within it (e.g., parallel plots), and manipulate time (e.g., pacing, flashbacks) create such effects as mystery, tension, or surprise.

Learning Target: Students will finish reading Animal Farm.

Activator: Rumor In St. Petersberg

Today we’re going to be finishing Animal Farm. That’s right finishing! We are going to do the recording this time, because that seems to go a little quicker than popcorn reading and we somehow managed to get crunched for time. I want you guys to have ample time to work on next week’s Project (oh, yes, it deserves the capital P, trust me :) ) and so we really have got to finish up this week. So, let’s get right down to it!!

As we finish up the story, I want you guys to consider the following question: In Animal Farm, who was the “good guy” and who was the “bad guy”? If you say Napoleon is the bad guy, how do you justify his role in overthrowing Jones and establishing Animal Farm in the first place? If you say Jones is the bad guy, how do you explain his kindnesses towards Mollie and the dogs? If you say Snowball is the good guy, how do you explain his role in the rebellion? How do you explain the various crimes he allegedly committed around the farm? Carefully choose 1 character to be your “good guy” and one character to be your “bad guy” and write a short paragraph explaining why you feel this way.

And that’s it for the week! Tomorrow,we are going to do a little essay revision (Throwback Wednesday?) and Thursday, we get started on our Big Project for this unit WHOOOO!

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Today we’re going to watch the awesomeness that is The Legend of Sleepy Hollow! This is a really cool short story that has been adapted into film many times over the years, including a Disney version and a really horrid Johnny Depp version. But today we’re reading the original short story, which you can find online here, and we’re watching an awesome old-school Disney version, which you can download and watch for yourself right here.

But before we do the video, we’re going to read the legend itself, and answer a few questions. I’ll give you guys most of the class to work on this – yes, it is going to be graded – and then with half an hour left to go we’ll swap over to the video. If you’re working from home, here are the questions we’re doing!

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow Questions


Reading Comprehension



Summarizing.  Choose the best phrase to complete each sentence.  Then write the complete statements on your paper.


1.  Ichabod often got to spend time with Katrina because _____ (he helped her with her spelling, she took singing lessons from him, he was very good looking).

2.  When Ichabod left the Van Tassels’ party, he was very sad because _____ (he thought parties shouldn’t end, something had gone wrong between him and Katrina, Brom Bones had threatened him).

3.  After the party, Ichabod met what he thought was the Headless Horseman, and Ichabod _____ (disappeared, died of fright, threw a pumpkin at the rider).


Interpreting.  Write the answer to each question on your paper.


1.  What was one possible explanation for why the people of Sleepy Hollow acted as if they were in a dream?

2.  What does the behavior of Katrina Van Tassel tell you about her?

3.  What probably really happened to Ichabod on his way home from the Van Tassels’ party?


For Thinking and Discussing.  What were some of the humorous details that Washington Irving included in his supernatural story, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”?

Understanding Literature



Point of View.  “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” like many other legends, is told from the third-person point of view.  This “all knowing” or omniscient point of view allows the story teller to include everything he or she wants the reader or listener to know, and to be objective as possible.


Here are some statements from, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.”  On your paper, identify those that would not have been included if Ichabod himself had been telling the story.


1.  “His feet looked as big as shovels.  His head was small, and flat on top.”

2.  “He was thought to know more than most of the men around, and to be more of a gentleman.”

3.  “She was just 18, round and red-checked and pretty.  She dressed to show off her beauty.”

4.  “From the moment Ichabod saw the Van Tassel farm, his peace of mind was over.”

5.  “Brom…liked to dash through the valley on horses at midnight.”

6.  “Next morning, the old horse was found eating grass at his mater’s gate.”






Imagine that you are Ichabod Crane.  Write a paragraph using the first-person point of view o explain your disappearance.


Welcome Back to Legends!

I’ve turned this text orange in honor of our new unit, Legends! Our focus for this unit will be Arthurian Legend, which I think is pretty cool – all Camelot and Knights of the Round Table and Guinevere and Dragons and junk. FUN!

Standard: ELA10RL3 The student deepens understanding of literary works by relating them to contemporary context or historical background, as well as to works from other time periods.

Learning Target: Students will learn about the historical background surrounding Arthurian legends, and see a brief PowerPoint about creating in multiple genres. Students will also understand the requirements of their Pick Three project.

Activator: Daily video! You can’t go wrong with this classic Disney video!

The Sword in the Stone: Arthur Becomes King

So, today in class we kicked off our Arthurian Legend unit by looking at the history of the legend and where it came from! King Arthur actually was a real guy – here’s the Wikipedia article to prove it – but the legends that sprang up around him have eclipsed the history in the centuries between his rule and now.

In a few minutes, we’re gonna get into the historical Arthur story, but before we do that, let’s look at your Big Writing Assignment for this unit. It should be a lot of fun – It’s called the King Arthur Pick Three! Project.


You will choose three of the boxes listed on the chart below. Your choices must meet the following requirements:

  1. Your choices must come from three different rows. You cannot choose two boxes from the same row.
  2. Some of the boxes (marked with a †) must be completed at home. You may choose one of these boxes.

We will have time in the computer lab to complete your research and work on your choices. Your completed project is due on Tuesday, May 1st.
Each of your choices will be worth 33% of your grade. Therefore, if you fail to turn in one of your three boxes, you will automatically fail the assignment.
Boxes marked with a ‡ are digital projects that will not have a hard copy to turn in. You will fill out a short form if you choose one of these, so that I know where to look to find it.

tl;dr – Pick three boxes from different rows. One can have a †.






Write a short story about a Knight in King Arthur’s Court, or an essay that answers the question: “Was King Arthur a real, historical person, or just a legend?”

Research medieval fashion and dress up as a character from a legend or as a Knight.

Draw a comic or make a webcomic using StripGenerator (www.stripgenerator.com) starring a Knight of the Round Table, King Arthur, Guinevere, etc.

Make a diorama of a scene from one of the legends, or a model or sculpture. †


Write a series of blog posts, tweets, an email exchange or diary entries as though you are a Knight of the Round Table. You can make a real blog online at www.blogger.com

Act out a scene for the class / do a monologue / make a video of a skit (this one may be completed with a group, but you will be graded individually.)

Research food from King Arthur’s time and cook for the class. You will need to type up and turn in your recipe!

Make a poster or collage of pictures, quotes, information, etc. about King Arthur, his Knights, Camelot, etc. †


Make a quiz on www.quibblo.com that asks questions about King Arthur/Camelot, or a “personality test” (eg., “Which Knight are You?”)

Make a Facebook wall for a character or Knight of the Round Table using the PowerPoint template found on the class blog (www.osborne10thlit.com)

Compose song using a program such as Soundation (www.soundation.com) or AudioTool (www.audiotool.com).

Make a Delicious Stack (www.delicious.com) or a Symbaloo board (www.symbaloo.com) with resources about King Arthur.


Make a fake magazine cover (www.fakemagazinecover.com) about King Arthur, one of the Knights, Guinevere, a dragon, etc. and then write an “article” in which you interview that character.

Make a VoiceThread (www.voicethread.com), Animoto (www.animoto.com) or TimeToast (www.timetoast.com) about King Arthur, his Knights, Dragons, Camelot, etc.

Make a digital film or Flash animation (www.doink.com) starring a Knight of the Round Table, King Arthur, Guinevere, etc. to show to the class.

Research Dragons, King Arthur, Guinevere, Camelot, Medieval lifestyle or fashion, etc. and make a PowerPoint or Prezi (www.prezi.com) presentation for the class.

Yay! Project directions, ftw! After we got the nuts and bolts out of the way, we learned about some history of King Arthur. But first, because you guys are SO STINKIN’ SMART, I bet you already know some about King Arthur. Let’s use a thinking map, shall we? We made a tree map of what we know, want to learn, and what we think we will learn during this unit :)

After that, looked at some cool King Arthur background info in PowerPoint. The first:

King Arthur

…and the second. This one isn’t so much about history as it is to show you examples of how King Arthur exists in many genres already, so that when you work on your multi-genre Pick Three! Project, you know you’re not out alone in the world :)

King Arthur in Different Genres

…and that’s all, folks! I’ll see ya back here tomorrow for Day 2, when we start reading our first Arthurian Legend!!