Archive | January, 2015

Social Commentary Ideas; S.M.A.R.T. Goals

9 Jan

Non Fiction Friday

In the new year many people make resolutions, but often those fail within a couple of weeks. Read this article on S.M.A.R.T. Goals and create one for yourself in your notebook.

Share and Discuss Your Ideas for Your Social Commentary Piece

Today you will be sitting in small groups to discuss your ideas for your social commentary piece, and to listen to the ideas of your classmates.

Finish The Books and Answer the Questions by Monday

Don’t forget to finish 1984 or To Kill a Mockingbird!!! Here are the questions I will be checking.  1984 Section Three  or  To Kill A Mockingbird 20-31

Social Commentary: Research and Planning

8 Jan


The Social Commentary will not be due until Tuesday 1/13.  I think a little more time to research and explore the genre and potential topics would be helpful to everyone.  Also, as we finish our class reading (which is due Monday), I want you to think about how the events in the story add to the author’s message and create social commentary.  All of this will help you develop your own social commentary piece.

Today we are in the computer lab A206.  Here is your assignment:

1. Find 3 examples of social commentary on the internet.  This can be pictures, movies, music, articles, etc…. articles about pictures, movies, music etc. Pretty much anything goes.  Look for 3 things that make some sort of statement about society, people, politics, relationships, technology, lifestyle, etc.  (Remember: it is ok if that statement exists primarily in your own mind).

For each example, explain the message and how it is delivered.  Also, discuss whether and why you think the statement is true or false.

2.  In 50 words, explain what you are going to write your social commentary piece about.

3.  Name 3 skills you will use to write your piece (a complete list of skills is on the right hand side of this page).  For each skill, explain how you plan on using it and why it is an effective technique for writing this piece.

Make sure you have this assignment completed and with you in class on Friday!

Here’s an example of what I am looking for in question 1:

This Calvin and Hobbes comic strip is questioning some of the core aspects of education.  Rather than teaching deep understanding, higher level thinking, and application of knowledge, the educational system is placing a growing importance on testing.  Students simply need to memorize information, irrelevant to their lives, long enough to repeat it on a high-pressure examination.  Rather than develop critical thinking, students are learning to game the system. There’s a lot of truth to this statement.  Students are subjected to increasing numbers of high-stakes tests, instead of activities and projects that will have real-world applications.

Social Commentary: Banksy, Calvin and Hobbes

7 Jan

Today we will spend a lot of time discovering topic ideas for our social commentary piece.

Quick Writes: For each of the following images, what statements are being made about society and perhaps life in general?

Calvin and Hobbes


Vocabulary and Social Commentary

6 Jan

Two Word Tuesday!

All Classes:
Satire: (N) the use of humor, irony, exaggeration to criticize and make statements.

Corroborate: (V) – to verify a story


Vagrant: (N) – a person without a home that wanders from place to place


Deride: (V) – to insult, express hatred towards

Listen to and analyze Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind”



Happy New Year, Welcome Back!

5 Jan

I hope you all had a great vacation, and that 2015 is your best year yet.


10th and 12th Grades:

All Classes:

  • Reading Reaction #2 will be on our class book (1984, To Kill a Mockingbird, or Of Mice and Men). So no need to do any outside reading.
  • Our next writing piece is a Social Commentary and it is due on Friday.
  • Thursday we will be in the computer lab a206 to type our pieces.

Quick Writes:

  1. How do you think 2015 will be? What do you look forward to?
  2. What are some things that annoy you?

Skill- Allusion: a reference to something that is commonly known (person, place, historical event, art, music, literature,etc) to convey larger meaning.


“Don’t act like a Romeo in front of her.”
– “Romeo” is a reference to Shakespeare’s Romeo, a passionate lover of Juliet, in “Romeo and Juliet”.
The rise in poverty will unlock the Pandora’s box of crimes.
– This is an allusion to one of Greek Mythology’s origin myth, “Pandora’s box”.
“This place is like a Garden of Eden.”
–This is a biblical allusion to the “garden of God” in the Book of Genesis.
“Hey! Guess who the new Newton of our school is?”
– “Newton”, means a genius student, alludes to a famous scientist Isaac Newton.  (from

We will listen to “My Generation” by The Who, and read a social commentary piece by a former student.