Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Class Minutes for Tuesday May 31st

1. Prayer

2. Ms. Meakes spoke about missing assignments: it is much better (and easier) to boost your mark by turning in your missing work, than by doing really well on the exam.

3. Literary Device Quiz 2
(both classes scored an average of 58%)

4. Poplar Trees/Butterfly

Discussion of the questions on the poplar trees excerpt, explanation of the juxtaposition of the butterfly and the human skull.  Remarque's use of nature is symbolic and used to reveal theme. Nature reminds the reader of  the beauty of the world (outside of the war). It also reminds Paul of how distant all good things are from him.

5. The Lost Generation

Filled out chart and discussed first four rows as a class. To be continued.

6. Exam Outline
Handed out.

No homework. Study for your lit device quiz next class.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

All Quiet Class Minutes: "Us/Them" and "The French Girls"

Us/Them  (Wednesday, May 25th)

1. Prayer
2. Listened to the introduction of "Them" (link on moodle).  Ms. Meakes shared some of the "them"s from her high school experience. We answered a question (who are the "them"s we know), and then shared with the class.  We talked about why we have "them". Some answers included because we want to belong, because it makes our world easier to understand, because we don't like things that are different. Ms. Meakes asked how "them" applies to a war situation.  Answers included: so that the soldiers don't have to encounter the enemy as human, because we can't easily kill people that we can identify with, and to protect them from the horrific act of destroying another human life.

3. Discussion Prep
4. Discussion

5. Listened to "Don't they Know it's Christmas After All?" from the "Them" broadcast.  We had to think about the differences mentioned, but also how they indicated a larger similarity.

6. Thomas Hardy's "The Man He Killed". We read the poem and wrote compare/contrast thesis statements.  (Block 1-3 did this in the start of the next class)

Homework: Read the "French Girls" excerpt. Pages listed on handout.

The French Girls (Friday May 27th)
1. Prayer
2. Study Time
3. Poetic Vocabulary Quiz out of 20.
Averages: 1-3: 57%,  1-5: 60%   (we will be writing again next class)

4. Discussion Prep
5. Discussion
6. Review answers

7. Read together: The Poplar Trees, and discussion of their symbolism and what they reveal about how war has changed Paul and his comrades (1-5 only)

Homework: Read "The Home Leave" excerpts. Page numbers found on handout.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

English 11 in May

Since the last posting, we have written our motif paragraphs, reviewed how to write a five paragraph essay, written our five paragraph Macbeth essays (on dramatic irony), and started All Quiet on the Western Front.

All Quiet Class 1

1. "Paper Cuts" by Eve Stevens
"Paper Cuts" emphasizes the inexpressibility of a soldier's wartime experience.  It is difficult, if not impossible to fully express the reality of war to another person. As each generation passes, the experience of war becomes more abstract and removed from understanding.  This removal is symbolized through the patient's twofold recollections (first of the tomato stains, then of her husband's blood) and the juxtaposition of the speaker's recollection of paper cuts.

Followed by a class discussion of the ability to express the experience of war and the value of sharing the experience of war.

2. Historical Background (WWI)
Please see the notes and powerpoint posted on moodle.
We also discussed the savagery, brutality, and practicality of war. In particular, we read two excerpts: one about "boots" starting on page 15, and one about using shovels instead of bayonets on page 104.

3. All Quiet on the Western Front - Perspective and Reception
The novel was written by a man who had experience on the German front line in WWI. His perspective is authentic, but it was eshewed by the ensuing generations of Germans as Nazism grew and the country prepared for WW II.  See article on moodle.

4. Character List
To help with keeping the characters straight as we read the excerpts. See moodle.

5. Sign out books

6. Opening scene from the film.

7. Reading Homework:  pages 65-74 and 99-101

All Quiet Class 2

1. Mr. Street's Artifacts
Mr. Street visited the classroom to show some of the artifacts that he has from WWI.  He showed us a gas mask, a rifle, a grenade, bullets, water canteens, and a helmet.  It was shocking how heavy everything was.  He spoke to us about some of the students he has taught who have since gone to war.  Mr. Street brought to mind the moral dilemma that occurs when a soldier participates in active duty.

2. "Existentialism" discussion prep
Students individually prepare their responses for discussion.

3. Discussion

4. Existentialism
See notes (on the back of the discussion sheet). We connected the "helpless" feeling of Paul and the element of chance during war to the ideas of existentialism.

5. Reading Homework
Excerpts on Kantorek, Himmlestoss, and the Kaiser's visit. See the back of the discussion questions.

All Quiet Class 3

1.  Character Sketch
In groups, using the text as a reference, we filled out a character organizer on Himmelstoss and Kantorek.

2. Discussion Question Prep
Students individually prepare their responses for discussion.  Half the class prepared question one, and the other half prepared question two.

3. Discussion
Students observing also took notes on the question being discussed (as they did not prepare to respond to that question).

4. Poetic Terms
Study list given. Quizzes (different every day until the average is 80%, your highest mark stands) will start on Friday of next week.

5. Reading Homework: Pages 216-229 and 189-196.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Class Minutes for Tues May 3rd and Thursday May 5th

Over the last two classes, we have

1. Prayed

2. Written an Act IV and V quiz

3. Worked on Compare and Contrast Thesis statements

-wrote two
-edited peer samples
-edited our examples
-handed them in with one starred to be marked

4. Started our review of essay structure (block 1-3 only)

Homework:  Fill out your motif paragraph prep (using the concordances link on moodle)