Final day of To Kill a Mockingbird.

Today marked the final day of To Kill a Mockingbird for our class. Students took an in class essay as their final task for the unit. The prompts for the final essay can be found below:

TKAM Final Essay

Students: please return your copy of the novel, to the media center, as soon as possible!

We will spend the remainder of the school year reading, analyzing, and discussing William Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew. 

For now,

William Milburn

05.20 Update

Book Trailer Projects: 

Our class had time reserved in the computer lab to continue working on the book trailer project. Unfortunately, we had an unforeseen issue as the internet went down through out the district for parts of the school day.

Since we were unable to work on the projects and I have extended the due date as a result. Projects need to be submitted by May 26th.

In Class Essay: 

Students will be taking an in class essay on Tuesday, May 26th. Students were given some areas to focus and consider to help prepare them. This essay will look at their growth from the start of the school year until now. This essay will be started and completed in class on Monday and will not be homework.

Students (PLEASE READ) – At the end of class Tuesday, you need to turn in your copy of To Kill a Mockingbird. You will not be able to pick up your yearbook until all books and textbooks are turned in.

After Monday our English class will move into our last, albeit brief, final unit – Taming of the Shrew. 

Please email me with any questions or concerns.

-William Milburn

Wrapping up TKAM.

Our English class has moved on to making trailers for the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird.  Guidelines and rubrics can be found below:

TKAM Book Trailer GuidelinesBook Trailer Rubric

Students are able to work in small groups of three. Students have access to Animoto, a free movie production website, or the ability to use iMovie on the Apple computers in the labs.

For Animoto:  the login is, tkamisb+#@gmail.com, and the password is, tkamisb.

The assignment is tentatively scheduled to be submitted by the end of the day tomorrow (May 20). This may adjust if I feel students have diligently been working in the labs and truly need some extended time on the project.

As always, feel free to email me with any questions or concerns.

William Milburn

05.12 Update

 

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Students worked in their book groups to create a summary for the chapters they were assigned. I felt that all of our groups did well on this and created concise but informative summaries, highlighting important events from the remaining chapters of the novel.

Then, as a class, we reviewed themes from the novel. This information can be found in the link below:

Themes in TKAM

Homework:

Teacher for the Day:  Students who have yet to complete this assignment, need to do so independently and submit it to my email by May 18th.

Monologues:  Monologues needs to be either handed in, or emailed to me by this Thursday @4:00PM. Students are given the option to perform their monologue in class, or video record themselves and submit via email. More information can be found in the handout in the previous update (scroll down).

For now,

Mr. Milburn.

 

“People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.”

Update – 05.11.2015

Film: On Friday, our English class finished the film version of To Kill a Mockingbird. Students: remember to answer the following prompt in your journal.

Required prompt response: In the famous movie version of the novel, several key events (Miss Maudie’s house fire, visiting Cal’s church, Miss Dubose’s struggle with morphine, Dill’s running away, Christmas with Francis and Aunt Alexandra, the tea party) and characters (Mr. Dolphus Raymond, Aunt Alexandra) are excluded. Choose ONE thing missing from the movie, and explain to the movie’s director why that scene or person MUST be included by describing its importance to the novel’s themes or characters’ development.

Monologues: 

Students were also given the guidelines for their character monologues. The link below provides the assignment expectations, as well as, a guided brainstorm to allow students to start collecting their ideas and plan for the monologue.

TKAM Monologue

Monologues need to be a minimum of one page long, and must accurately represent the thoughts and feelings of the character they chose. Monologues are meant to convey important information to the audience.

Students have two options for this assignment:

1. Film the monologue and submit the video, with the typed script, via email by the morning of May 14.

2. Perform the monologue in class on May 14, and submit the script after the performance.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

-Mr. Milburn

 

Movie and Response.

Students will be comparing the film version of To Kill a Mockingbird, to the novelover the next few class periods. The class was given the following two questions:

1. In the famous movie version of the novel, several key events (Miss Maudie’s house fire, visiting Cal’s church, Miss Dubose’s struggle with morphine, Dill’s running away, Christmas with Francis and Aunt Alexandra, the tea party) and characters (Mr. Dolphus Raymond, Aunt Alexandra) are excluded. Choose ONE thing missing from the movie, and explain to the movie’s director why that scene or person MUST be included by describing its importance to the novel’s themes or characters’ development.

2. A dynamic character is a character that changes in an important way through the course of the novel. Besides Scout, describe a character that changes in a significant way through the course of the novel. What specifically changes in that person? Describe the character initially, what causes him/her to change, and how the change is evident at the end of the novel.

NOTE: Question one was assigned and is a required response that will go in their journals. Question two is extra credit, and can help improve their journal grade.

On Friday we will return to class without anymore disruptions from Smarter Balance. We will spend the upcoming weeks reviewing the end of To Kill a Mockingbird, the themes of the novel, and completing two more summative assessment tasks. Still have plenty to do for this novel!

Until next time,

-William Milburn

And we’re back on pause…

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Yesterday our English class reviewed To Kill a Mockingbird chapters 19 -23. We played a Jeopardy -like game which turned out be very competitive. An overview of the questions and answers can be found here:

TKAM: Quiz Review Game 19-23

Again, we will be putting class on pause as we will be completing our Smarter Balance testing next week. Further information on next week’s schedule will be coming home via email from our school’s administration.

– William Milburn

The return of TKAM

After a couple weeks of Smarter Balance testing, it’s been nice returning to discussion and analyzing Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird.  Students were back in groups answering prompts and then contributing to a whole group share out. Below are links to the questions from today, and a (brief) answer key.

TKAM: Chapter12-18 Questions

TKAM:12-18 Answer Key

Homework:

  • Read Chapters 23, 24, 25.
  • Day 7 Guided Reading Question
  • Journal Response Question – Chapter 12-15.

Let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

-William Milburn

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Smarter Balance Updates.

Our class has completed two of the three days scheduled for the Performance Task of the Smarter Balance. Thursday will be our final day scheduled for this portion of the assessment.

Some notes for next class session:

  • Report to B112, not Portable One
  • Come with nothing to class, other than a pencil and a book to read if you finish the test early. Please leave backpacks, phones, etc. in your locker.

Journal Collection:

To clarify, the journals for To Kill a Mockingbird, were due today. The journals needed to include: Days 1-6 of the Guided Reading Questions, All of the Journal Questions up to Chapter 12 (with the exceptions of chapters 2-3, and 9-11), as well as any other pertinent notes/activities from class.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

-William Milburn

 

Updates and a change of course (for now)…

Day Six:

Today our Mapping Maycomb assignment was due. Then, we transitioned into our Teacher for the Day discussions. We are putting this assignment on pause for the time being as we need to change our schedule for Smarter Balance Testing.

Our next assessment will be for students to create a Character Sketch (Profile) of a character of their choice from the novel. The guidelines, rubric, and an example can be found in the links below:

Character Sketch GuidelinesCharacter Sketch RubricCharacter Sketch Example

The next task was a group activity to practice analyzing characters. Each group was randomly assigned a character from the novel. Groups were asked to create a profile for their character, on a poster. Information needed to  include: picture, quotes, personality traits, and potential hobbies and interests (kind of like a “Facebook” page).

Each group will share their poster on Wednesday.

Homework: 

  • Read Chapters 16, 17,18
  • Day Six Guided Reading Question
  • Chapter 12-15 Journal Question
  • Character Sketch Due April 21

Smarter Balance: 

On Wednesday, I will be teaching a lesson that is a precursor to the Performance Task (Grade 08 Writing). Our class will begin the Performance Task starting Friday (04.17) and will take the next two class period after that (04. 21, 04.23). 

Then, on the week of May 4-7, we will take the second English portion (Literacy Assessment).

Obviously this disrupts our schedule for the novel. I will update the site frequently and remind students in class to take note of the adjustments.

NOTE: I encourage students and families to go onto the OAKS portal, and take the practice tests and check out the additional resources. Eighth grade students will get a “nuts and bolts” tutorial in their Technology or Math class. This is just additional exposure as we head into teasing.

The site: http://oaksportal.org/students/

Please let me know if you have any questions.

– William Milburn