Week of October 7th Overview

AP Language and Composition:

Monday will be your final work day in groups to organize your argument and prepare it for presentation to the class. The presentation should take 7 minutes or less. We will dedicate both Tuesday and Wednesday to presentations. After each presentation is given, all group members will be asked to fill out a self-assessment sheet, which will include giving the group a grade for the presentation, and commenting on each group member’s contribution to the overall effort. 

Thursday is your last day of class for the week, and we will use it to complete a brief writing task and discussion, leaving your long weekend free to ponder your semester project.

If you didn’t see the earlier post on They Say, I Say, please take a moment to look at the post below this one or go to the class page to find the permanent link. The introduction to the book provides excellent advice on treating argument as a conversation, which is what you will want to do in your argumentative presentation. I posted a comment on that entry, which is a model introduction I wrote. I will repost it here for your perusal:


The simple question is: Do teachers need to have experience? What is implied by this question is yet another question: to what degree does experience contribute to the making of a great teacher?
The reason these questions are so frequently asked is the broad agreement that high achieving students are the product of great teachers backed by support from the surrounding community. Great teaching is often hard to define, but that has not stopped many public, private, and charter schools from attempting to figure out what makes a great teacher. While some believe there is no replacement for on the job experience, others assert that youthful enthusiasm with organized support is the best path to student achievement. Of course, still others remain somewhere in the middle of this continuum and claim that ultimately the goal should be to find the best person for the job regardless of age or experience. No matter where one stands on the issue, there is almost unanimous agreement that great teaching is the product of experience paired with professional and community support. Yet again, the questions arises; how much experience is enough to give a teacher the potential to be great and to positively affect student outcomes?

Statement of Fact:
While there may be numerous pathways to teaching greatness, there is no greater determiner of student success than an experienced teacher, dedicated to continued learning and improvement. While energy, enthusiasm and youthful willingness are all positive attributes, they simply cannot overcome the vital experience that a veteran teacher brings to the classroom.

English 9/11:

This week we will finish Gilgamesh and focus on writing the final essay over the entire poem. The essay will ask each student to write a literary analysis essay which explains how Gilgamesh learns a lesson from each of the major experiences he undergoes throughout his journey in search of eternal life.

As you are well aware, we have been continually discussing this issue; so, you should already have notes prepared when we begin to pre-write on Tuesday. Wednesday and Thursday in class will be guided composition days, on which I will direct students through the introduction and first body paragraphs of the essay. We will finish the writing process and complete peer editing when you all return from the long weekend. The first major grade of the second quarter will be based on the steps of the writing process and the final essay you will have written as the result of it.

The Language! lesson for this week is Unit 32, Lesson 6.

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