Posts Tagged ‘7th Grade’

15 minutes of thinking…

Posted: October 13, 2017 in Home

7th Grade–do not forget to spend at least 15 minutes per day thinking about your essay topic. Take the time to record your best thoughts.

The Two Minds

Posted: October 13, 2017 in Home

Today we worked a bit on the creative mind in 7th grade classes. Get in touch with the mad artist within you! Only that way can you free your mind from the cage and get it on the page!

Some Class Notes on Character

Posted: October 12, 2017 in Home
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This is from 5th period today, but every class can benefit from it:

Analyze: to examine critically, so as to bring out the essential elements or give the essence of; to examine carefully and in detail so as to identify causes, key factors, possible results, etc

Some things to pay attention to when Analyzing Character:

Motivation: What force drives a character to act; what MOTIVATES that character? What reasons do characters have to perform actions?

Psychology: How a character’s mind works. Decision making processes, thoughts, unconscious mind, past traumatic experiences, mental state

Relationships: the characters’ interactions with others. How they treat others; how others treat them. Love interests.

Description: author’s details about the character. What does the character look like? How does the character dress? Physical features.   

Behavior: How a character acts and why.

Dialogue/Language: Determine character according to what the character says, how (s)he speaks to others. Consider tone, diction, syntax, style of speaking. Is the language simple or complex?

Unreliable Narrators

  • Compromised credibility (not a credible witness)
  • Intentional or unintentional
  • Wide range of causes: innocence, immaturity; lack of information, insanity, bias or prejudice, or just flat out lying.

Authors often provide clues of a character’s unreliability, but not always


What to expect this week…

Posted: October 9, 2017 in Home
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Hey Everyone,
We have a busy, four-day week beginning tomorrow, so I thought it may help to give you some idea of what you should expect. First of all, each class will receive a new seating assignment.

                                                                         8th grade
Period 1:
I will be collecting the two paragraph response on Montresor from Poe’s, “The Cask of Amontillado,” and then we will begin working with “The Black Cat.” Our focus will be on comprehending this difficult text, identifying Gothic characteristics, and formulating themes.

Period 5: A comprehension quiz will be given on Poe’s “The Tell-Tale heart,” and we will examine passages that exhibit Gothic characteristics. After that, we will examine symbolism and the characters’ relationships, which will lead to a journal assignment. Be prepared to use vocabulary to start drafting your Gothic fiction stories.

                                                                          7th Grade
Periods 4, 6, and 7: We will examine passages from Chaim Potok’s “Zebra,” in order to identify themes. In addition, we will complete a topic/theme/thesis, and then will begin the groundwork for our first formal essay.  Sentence diagraming is on the horizon.

**All students who have either not taken or completed last week’s vocabulary test will have until next Monday before the opportunity is lost. The grades are up on the portal.

See you tomorrow!



What’s going on…

Posted: September 30, 2017 in Home
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Here is bit about what we covered last week in class:

Period 1: We have been examining the symbolism of the eye in Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart,” as well as the relationship between the narrator and the old man. students completed an “iceberg” character analysis on Friday because we feel we need to more about the narrator to better understand the eye.

7th grade: We read, studied, and analyzed Julia Alvarez’s personal essay, “Names/Nombres.” We have a vocabulary handout for the test that will be given next week, most likely on Wednesday.  We explored names conceptually, and attempted to determine how much they influence identity.  We also analyzed Juliet’s thoughts on names, expressed in Shakespeare’s balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet. Students are currently writing letters to Julia using Juliet’s ideas to offer advice on the author’s struggle with names.

Period 5: We read Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Minister’s Black Veil,” and began to analyze the metaphorical/symbolic significance of the veil, after ensuring comprehension, of course. Students have begun a close reading analysis of specific passages in groups–it will be finished on Monday.

7th Grade Thesis Statements

Posted: September 28, 2017 in Home

I have assessed the practice thesis statements you wrote in class. Below, although they still need some development, I have posted the best ones anonymously. You know who you are…

I have made some slight edits for clarity, and they are not in any particular order.

In “Seventh Grade,” by Gary Soto, Victor’s actions suggest that he would be better off being himself and that he should not lie about his limits.

The story, “Thank You, M’am,” by Langston Hughes, teaches people how to right their wrongs.

Victor’s story teaches us that love can be too big of a distraction and that he should focus on school more.

In “Thank You, M’am,” Roger ironically becomes a better person by attempting to steal.

In “Seventh Grade,” Victor teaches us that we should be honest with ourselves and others.

Langston Hughes’ story, “Thank You, M’am,” teaches readers to accept help in times of trouble because such offers are never permanent.


Analyzing Character

Posted: September 21, 2016 in Home

Here is a brief overview of our discussion with the 7th grade today.

When analyzing character in a work of literature we focus on:
1). Traits (physical, emotional, psychological, etc)
2). Motivation (What does the character want? What drives this character to behave in each situation or overall?)
3). Other characters’ reactions to and interaction with the examined character.

You must recognize that characters are models of people, and literature is created by people; it’s about people, and it is written for people. Yes…characters are people too! You should judge and assess them with the same skill set you use to understand real people.