Thursday, January 21, 2010

Midterm: Junior English

For your midterm, you're going to write a series of blog posts. For each post, I will be looking for the following criteria:

Evidence of Critical Thinking: Thoughtful observations, connections between readings and the larger world and/or your life, and growth in your thoughts/ observations from the beginning of the year.

Evidence of Critical Reading: Evidence of thorough readings, comprehension of reading materials, insightful reflections, and connections between readings materials.

Evidence of Creative Thinking: Inclusion of photographs, music, videos, or other media that enhances the presentation of the post; original ideas presented in readings are extended in a creative manner.

Evidence of the Ability to Write Clearly and Effectively: Grammar, spelling, capitalization errors do not interfere with audience understanding. The structure of your blog posts allows for understanding and is easy to follow.

Evidence of Awareness of Diverse Audience: Opinions, justifications, rationalizations, and summaries are written in a way that allows a diverse audience to understand your intent. Writings are not offensive, but engage audience members in your ideas and opinions in a creative manner.

Here are your topics. Some are required posts, but others offer some choices. Make sure that each entry meets the criteria listed above.

Required Posts
1. Write an update about Ishmael Beah. Where is he now? What happened to him after A Long Way Gone was published? (Make sure to include links to informational sites.)
(LABEL=A Long Way Gone)

2. Write a post that includes information about the current situation in Haiti. Include facts about the earthquake, survivors, and what's being done to help victims. (Make sure to include links to informational sites.) (LABEL=World News)

3. Write a reflective post about your blog. It's only a baby blog at this point, but I want to know what you're learning about writing from this process. Think about: improvements in the quality of your writing, your awareness of audience, your writing/ blogging goals for the rest of the year. (LABEL=Reflection)

Optional Posts (Choose Two)
1. Choose one of your Newsday Tuesday worksheets. Look up more information about the topic online. Write a short post explaining what's happening with the issue and why you were interested in it. (LABEL=Newsday Tuesday)

2. Write a post explaining some facts about Haiti before the earthquake. Include important facts about Haitian history, including what it was like to live in Haiti for the average person before the earthquake. (LABEL=World News)

3. Type one of the Poetry Friday selections not already posted in your blog. Make sure to include the author! Explain how the poem relates to the book it with which it was paired. (LABEL= Poetry Friday)

4. Write a post about a topic or interest that you have that you'd like us to discuss/ explore sometime this year. Your post could be a specific issue that you've heard about in the news, or one that is more local and relevant to our school. (LABEL=Opinion Piece)

Please take your time with these posts. Make sure to check over each entry for those little errors that can mess up an otherwise perfectly good post! Let me know if you need help; otherwise, blog away!

Once you're done with your midterm, please complete this survey.

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