Thursday, October 31, 2013

Block 5 Scribe of October 31, 2013


Interesting fact, did you know that the word of the day is phantasmagoric: having a fantastic or deceptive appearance. Class started with the always famous agenda. Remember about the SAT quiz tomorrow and the exercises. In addition, work on your essay by writing the second body paragraph, and rewrite the intro and body paragraphs. After we worked out what our homework is, we answered questions about the SAT exercises. In section 1 part 1 9th sentence, the answer is idiosyncrasy. For exercise 3 part 3, the second sentence, the first word is verbose and the second is kill a word. Also in section three, in part one A. means to measure across, and in Identifying Sentence Errors part 5 the answer is B. because there needs to be a colon to introduce the list.  we peer edited and talked about what our paragraph’s format should look like. To visit specific requirements, please go to The Agenda. Make sure to finish your body paragraphs and intro. To start the format remember to have MLA format (however you will not lose points for not using it), ex:
Your Name
English Nine Honors
7 October, 2013
Title: Should Be Creative
Paper starts here....Double spaced
There is also two important pieces of your writing you need to know,
  • correct internal documentation
  • works cited
  • citations by (author, number) with the number being the page number, and, if from google, (first word from works cited)
To start your into remember:
  • an attention getter: Have a good quote about your topic
  • never use “this quote means” in your transition
  • never describe as “is a book, is a play, is about”
  • make sure first sentences flow together and ideas
  • A good thesis: is it clear or specific?
In your body paragraphs remember that:
  • the first sentence should contain overarching ideas, a sub point, and why
  • set up should be before quote
  • put context in quote
  • proper citations
  • what does the quote say? (ex: Ishmaels words Othello direction), how does it connect to subpoint?, and how does it connect to overarching idea?
  • final synthesis: So What? Connect points and lead it to a broader connected point
  • analysis is thinking on what you just said. Make it understandable.
  • and overall to refer to Ishmael as Beah
-Official Scribe of Halloween, John Griffin

10/31/13 Period 3 Scribe

Today in class we went over the questions we had on our SAT 9 exercises along with a peer review on our intro and first body paragraphs. If you were not in class today but would still like to review your paper all of what we reviewed today is on the agenda for this week. The link to the agenda is this:

Our homework for tonight is to write the second body paragraph, rewrite our intro and first body paragraphs according to what the review said to do, and to study for the SAT quiz tomorrow. Remember to use the outline while writing your second body paragraph. The test for tomorrow will be on the words, definitions, parts of speech, and synonyms for week 9. The link below will help you to prepare for the test, although it does not have the synonyms or parts of speech for each word.

For further details please check the agenda which has all that you need to know!
Have a great Halloween!

10/30 Scribe - Period 5

We started off class with questions about the essay, then shared our thesis statements out loud.


  • Remember that there has to be a point to your writing! As Mrs. Smith says, "So what?" Ask yourself that when reading your thesis.
  • Avoid being too wordy!
  • Be clear and concise with it!
For the rest of class, we worked on our first body paragraphs.

Make sure to review this rubric as you're writing, and tomorrow when you peer review.

  • SAT words
  • intro and first body paragraph for peer review for tomorrow

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

English 9 Honors 10/29/13 Scribe

We are starting on our second essay. Building off foundation of our Othello essay. This form of writing we will use in college
Make copy of outline: Essay Outline
In class today we went over how to fill out the outline on the upcoming paper, and went through some examples. THERE ARE EXAMPLES OF WHAT TO DO IN THE AGENDA!

Things she said:

We can stay on the essential question of if you want you can use something else. We must use a long way gone in the essay.
We our practicing outlines. Outlines should be simple like I know I’m gonna make this point, this point, and this point.

Trying to prove and argue something
Don’t separated by book but by idea

If you use all 3 texts be sure to put them all in the background information in the intro paragraph

Monday, October 28, 2013

Scribe 10/28/13

Today in English the final fishbowl took place. Here are some of the important questions asked:
  1. “Why do you think Beah’s talent for the arts, speaking and singing, is so important in the book?”
Student’s reply: “While dancing and rapping within the rehabilitation center it really made the workers realize that the soldiers could be helped and be announced to society once again.”
    2. “When Esther gave Beah the cassette with the Bob Marley song, Everything Is Going to Be Alright, what does this symbolize?”
Student’s reply: “I think the song symbolized a message that Esther was sending to Beah, that everything will eventually be okay.”
    3. “If you were in the position of the hunter, what would you do?”
Student’s response: “I think that the point Beah was making in the book was that he would kill the monkey so another hunter wouldn't be tricked, this surprised me because I thought he was going to say he was going to shoot himself to avoid the question.”
Another response: “At first, I didn't think much of this because I didn't think it was significant, but you would really have to think of this in order to find an answer.”
   4. “One of Beah’s friends were sent back to the front line, how would this affect a child further?”
Peer response: “Just as I was beginning to get better, I think it would upset me going  back to  the war, because I would feel like my second chance was taken from me. I think the soldiers would be extremely frustrated.”
   5. “Couldn't Beah take his family with him to escape the war, and why”
Student reply: “I think Beah didn't bring his family to escape because they would bring along  the burden of remembering the war and all the bad things that occurred in Sierra Leone.”
Another Student reply: “Also, Beah could have known that his family would refuse if he did ask because there beloved Uncle is buried there but Sierra Leone is their home, despite everything.”
   6. “As Beah’s Uncle dies, he mentions the lost of hope in his eyes, how may this affect physical health?”
Student response: “Once a person looses hope, they don’t have anything to fight for anymore, so it doesn't really matter to a person if they do die or not.”
Another reply: “There is nothing to do when a person loses hope, they don’t want to eat, walk, talk, there is basically nothing for a person to do without hope, so there is nothing to do but die.”
Student in Online Discussion: “I think that if you lose hope, your entire drive as a human being disappears.”
  7. “Why do you think Beah ended the book the way he did?”
Student reply: “I think it is the significance of his answer, so he could show that nobody really knows what it is like to be a child soldier and he knows who he is and he accepts it.”
         8. “Why do you think that like the lady at the airport, no one in America knows of the war in Sierra Leone or about Africa’s hardships?”
Student response: “Americans main concern is what is going on with America and we build a wall around ourselves and we are concerned with our own matters.”
Student: “Our lives are so fast paced that we don’t sit down and try to discover the atrocities being committed around the world.”
Student: “I think the media is a major reason why Americans are not aware of Africa’s troubles.”

The homework this evening is to read over the outline and synthesis explanation: setup synthesis essay, outline. Also come with 3-4 topics for thesis statements. If tomorrow is a busy day and you know there is no time in your schedule start preparing essay tonight. The essay is due November 4th. In addition, SAT 9 exercises, due Friday. The vocab test will be on Friday, so study throughout the week. Another reminder with exercises is to complete exercise 5 identifying sentence errors and improving sentences.

LWG 18-end Fishbowl Period 5


LWG 18-end Fishbowl Period 3


Saturday, October 26, 2013

English 9 Honors- 10/25/13 Scribe Period 3

We started off class listening to the announcements. Mrs. Smith would like more people to volunteer for the AHS tech team (like an Apple genius bar), the link to sign up is here as well as on her daily agenda for Week 10 on her page. 
HOMEWORK IS: Read and annotate Long Way Gone chapters 20-21, 5 questions over 18-end, higher level thinking questions/connections to Othello, etc., and (the last) Fishbowl on Monday.
Note: If you would like to work ahead on our next essay, you can work on the Othello/ A Long Way Gone Synthesis Overview and Othello/LWG Synthesis Essay Outline papers, which were handed out in class.

After homework was announced, we took the SAT 8 test with words, parts of speech, synonyms, and definitions. When we were done with the quiz, we had free time for reading, poster quotes, questions, annotating, and making a CoverItLive account (with lpsk12 email account.) Have a great weekend!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Homework- Finish reading and annotating A Long Way Gone. The last fishbowl is on Monday over the rest of the book. 5 questions over chapter 18 to the end of the book, higher level thinking questions/connections to Othello, etc...

In class we will make a Cover It Live account for the Fishbowl which should take 5-10 minutes. Go to and use your LPS account. We received to papers on A Long Way Gone, one was a synthesis overview (2 body paragraphs and one was an outline (There's a link to the online one on the class power point). You are allowed to use A Long Way Gone and Othello or A Long Way Gone and Lord Of the Flies. The essay is due November 4th which is a Monday.

Smith then talked about the AHS tech team which is sort of like our own Apple genius bar. So, if you're good with technology and are willing to help others the link to join is on the class power point. You would help during lunch or an unscheduled hour at the tech bar.

We then turned in our SAT 8 exercises and took the quiz.

The rest of the class period we had time to read, start our outline, or create the Cover It Live Account.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Scribe of Period 5, Honors English 9 (10-24-13)

Honors English 9 Scribe-Period 5
Today in class we had our 3’rd fishbowl over chapters 12-17. At the beginning we started with

Assignment Notebooks:  
  • By Friday, 10-25-13, we need to read chapters 18-19 from a long way gone Memoirs of a Boy Soldier. However, if you need to prolong the reading, then it will be OK to read it over the weekend.
  • Remember 5 good-thinking-questions over the chapters 18-End.
  • Study and finish SAT words and exercises (remember to study the word’s spelling, definition, synonyms, and part of speech)
Today Mrs. Hancock joined us for a few minutes to observe fishbowl. For fishbowl, since we have lots of discussers and presenters in the next couple of fishbowls, unfortunately, outer circle people won’t be able to come into the inner circle to talk. Everyone needs to present and discuss that signed up for it. This leads to another situation. Mrs. Smith reminded us that inner circle people need to watch for how many times they talk and to invite others to speak. The main reason for the fishbowl is to conduct a dinner table conversation. Some new features that have been added and will be tested is on coveritlive. There will be some students will be testing these features, pinnits that post comments up above and a program called skins, by trying it out. You can get on to Period 5's fishbowl at

Example of pin it from period 3

Little clips from Fishbowl:

     Peter Constas:  
     Could drugs be a benefit for maintaining your mental stance? Was it in the right to give them drugs?
Comment From Sam
question: Why do you think the soldiers used so many drugs?

Comment From Josie Lee
If beah watched his actions from his previously innocent self, would he still be smiling after he killed people? What would his thoughts be?

Comment From John Griffin
Do you trust Esther?

From pin it:
Comment From Josie Lee
When they constantly take drugs, do you think its because they realize without the drugs it would be harder to do the things they are doing? And why does Beah hate when they say 'its not your fault'?
Question: On page 145, Ishmael said, “Whenever I turned on the tap water, all I could see was blood gushing out”. Do you think that he actually thought it was there, or that he couldn’t wipe the memory of all the bloodspill during the war from his mind?

Inner circle question:
When Ishmael was in the army with the commander, the “city sissies” picked people to go to rehab. Why do you think the commander let the “city sissies” take the children?
How does the dream Beah had about his family symbolize?
Is it better to kill or be killed?

At the end of our class we reset the desks, packed up, and left after the bell rang.

- John Griffin (Official Scribe of 10-24-13)

LWG 12-17 Fishbowl Period 5


LWG 12-17 Fishbowl Period 3


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Period 5 Scribe 10/23/23

Homework: Read and annotate Long Way Gone 15-17, 5 Questions over 12-17, SAT Work, Fishbowl Tomorrow

First we went over SAT questions:
Exercise 3
1. D. transitive- to carry across
    F. massive- tending to the mass
2. A green light signals you to proceed through an intersection.
    Fighting must stop if warring parties agree on a cessation of combat.
3. To communicate with someone who speaks a foreign language, you will need to send your message through a [n] translator.
    The transcontinental railroad ran across the width of the United States.

Ms.Smith also said she made an outline copy and if you would like to, you can start an outline for your essay.

The rest of the period we had time to read A Long Way gone in class

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

English 9 Honors - 10/22/13 Scribe Period 3

Today in English we had our fishbowl for chapters 6-11 of A Long Way Gone. The outer circle live blog can be seen down below. In the inner circle the presenters and discussers talked about many interesting concepts and brought up some good questions .

Some of the main points of the discussion included:

  • How did Ishmael's experiences change his emotions or his personality? 
  • At what point do the soldiers start committing as bad of atrocities as the rebels? 
  • How is Ishmael's group similar to the group of boys in Lord of the Flies? 
  • When at the river, Ishmael sees another man with his family, the man does not like Ishmael and does not trust him, why? 
  • Did Ishmael's pain and/or sadness lessen as time went on because he got used to all the bad things that were happen, or was the pain just as bad each time?
These were some of the concepts discussed in the inner circle. The questions were also posted on the live blog in the outer circle.

Our Homework was to read and annotate chapters 15-17, while making connections to Othello. Also we have SAT 8 to complete. The further agenda can be found here:

Grace Carlson 10/22/13 hour 5 Scribe

Today's agenda: check questions
Fish bowl for chapters 6-11
We will read some of 12-17 in class tomorrow so bring headphones, otherwise try to be quiet
Homework: SAT 8- Friday read and annotate chapters 12-17, write 5 questions for the chapters- Friday

Fish bowl starts:
(The outer circle's conversation is on a different blog on blogger.)
How does Beah's writing make an impression on the reader?
Most people agreed the style in the book help to immerse the reader and set the mood for the next scene in the book.
The bird could symbolize sacrifice, a broken heart, or foreshadowing of future gruesome events.
Through out the book we observe many traditions and rituals that would seem strange in our culture. The culture in Sierra Leone is very mixed and holds a lot of beliefs from different religions.
Is it better to be recruited by the rebels or to be afraid of being killed by other civilians in villages you've never been to before? Wow no agreement.
Does religion factor into if you fight or run from the rebels? The flight or fight reflex is a big factor here, although people can be very passionate about their religion, if someone is shooting at you religious beliefs won't be the first things you think of. But it truly comes down to the person in the situation.
The rebels are not only using the boys as soldiers, but also as shields to hide behind when soldiers, and not just villagers, stand up to them.(Connects to Lord of the Flies)
The older people in this book seemed more willing to sacrifice themselves to save the younger generation, whether this is because they think they'll die or they won't survive the escape, or if they're selfless and have hope.
The moon is a large theme in this book, it symbolizes an innocent past and what Beah thinks is pure and good, even though he's changing into someone too numb and sad to truly feel regret, guilt, or pain for the other people.
Beah's environment has changed killing from a horrible action to something that happens everyday, and is normal or natural. He also seems to become distant and unemotional after all that's happened to him.
Anger (Connection to our main question) is a huge part of this story, it causes Beah to blame people for his situation, and lash out at others when he suffers a loss. The anger Beah has may later be used to aid him in becoming a soldier.
If Beah could forget everything that's happened would it make it better or worse? Forgetting would help him sleep and maybe lead a happier life, but remembering would continue to make Beah a better person and enable him to share his story with the rest of the world.
When the rebels attacked and began killing people, they completely changed Sierra Leones culture, and in some ways, the culture and treatment of people would never be the same.
Did the burning of the cassettes symbolize the destruction of Beah's innocence and the end of his childhood.
Class ends
Mrs. Smith says: have a great day!

LWG 6-11 Fishbowl Period 5


LWG 6-11 Fishbowl 6-11 Period 3


Monday, October 21, 2013

Smith, period 5, 10/21/13, Scribe- Sophie Kramer

Mrs. Smith first greeted us all with her warm and cheerful greeting and then got straight to business. She informed us that there would be another fishbowl tomorrow and warned the discussers and the onlookers about talking too much. Blake was asked to stand up in front of the class and give some tips on how to present. He advised us that we might want to share a Google doc with the other presenters that has a list of questions that everyone who is presenting wants to talk about. Mrs.Smith also said that we need to read chapters 12-17 in A Long Way Gone by Thursday. Additionally, she told us that we also need to remember to do our new SAT and informed us that one THE BEST words was on our new list. The word that was highly praised by Mrs. Smith was “quagmire”. One of the students was obviously very excited and familiar with the word and showed the class so as she stood up and shouted a excited “YES!” at the mention of the word.
We then went around the room to introduce SAT 8 while Mrs. Smith handed back our Othello essays. Even though we were supposed to be focusing on the new SAT words, many of us took a quick peek at our essays. To our disappointment, many of us didn't do as well as we had hoped even though there were a few exceptions. Knowing this, Mrs.Smith assured the class that just because we get bad grades does not mean that we are bad students. She emphasized that we should learn from our mistakes and only worry and throw a 3-year-old tantrum if it’s second semester and we haven’t improved at all.  Mrs.Smith advised us to look at this as place where we have room to grow, whether we did very well or very poorly on the essay. She warned the overachievers against letting the good grade go to their heads because she will be grading the next essay a lot harder. To drive home her point about learning from our mistakes, our teacher told us about different mistakes that she made and how she learned from them. “One of my mistakes,” she’d said “ was getting a divorce. Was it a big mistake? Yes. But....” Mrs. Smith went on “but, I learned from it. I learned how I wanted and did not want to be treated. I also learned what environment that I did and did not want my daughter to grow up in. Out of my mistake, I learned a lot of good lessons. Look at this as a place to learn a lot of good lessons out of your mistakes.” After Mrs. Smith finished her encouraging talk, she reminded us that this was our starting point and that we should only grow from this.Then, she directed us to make a list on the back of our essay paper of all of the things that we know we did well and all of the things that we need to improve on. On the whiteboard, Mrs. Smith drew a larger scale list of general things that she saw in our papers. The list is below.
Things Done Well
  • Format
  • Intro: organization
  • thesis
  • background
  • Body Paragraph: quoted corporation
  • citations
  • concluding paragraph
  • work cited
  • word choice
  • good attention getter
  • correct quote citations
  • tying ideas together at the end
Things to Improve On
  • verb choice ,word choice
  • using “this shows.....” to summarize what point we are trying to make
  • keeping paragraphs in chronological order of events
  • set-up before the quote: give a previous understanding; provide context; DO NOT explain the whole plot
  • background information....not whole plot
  • characterization
  • underline title
  • don’t use contractions
  • format work cited
  • comma usage
  • Explain points made
  • not using personal pronouns
  • no run-on sentences

Mrs. Smith also said that she wants us to start thinking about how to connect A Long Way Gone and Othello to the essential question. While our teacher was going through the list, one student questioned why the rebels and killers were so happy when they brutally murdered another person. Mrs.Smith explained that she would address that question on Wednesday when she shows us some clips from Blood Diamonds.
Mrs. Smith decided that she wanted to give us an example of how to connect both A Long Way Gone and Othello to the essential question. She used the topic of anger in place of jealousy and informed us that in the next essay, going past the originally listed subjects in place jealousy in the essential question was acceptable. For instance, a student in Mrs. Moritz’s class wanted to use innocence in place of jealousy even though it wasn't one of the options. Mrs. Smith assured us that this was okay by her and then she turned her attention back to the whiteboard to continue with her example. The example is below.
Othello: strangling Desdemona
LWG: Ishmael killing everyone
Othello: Desdemona cheating; handkerchief
LWG: boy hiding in attic while sisters raped
What are Shakespeare and Beah saying about anger? Anger overall
  • begins to destroy relationships
  • affects reputations
  • affects actions/state of mind
  • destroys a person physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Mrs. Smith advised us again to start thinking about these connections for our next essay that we will start in a week. Again, Mrs.Smith told the class that using unlisted topics was acceptable but she also warned us that if we do that, we might want to check in with her first.

On that final note, Mrs.Smith’s lesson for the day ended and the class was left with 8 extra minutes of class time that most people used to read. Some of the presenters and discussers,however, gathered in the corner of the room to plan for the fishbowl tomorrow. The rest of the students who couldn't focus on their reading, worked on homework or talked to friends.