Monday, December 14, 2009

Period 6: Agenda for weeks of 12.14.09 - 12.21.09

Don't forget Tuesdays from 2:15 - 3:30--writing workshop with Mr. Maney and myself. Use the time to rewrite essays, finish missing work, get help on upcoming assignments, make use of computers, etc...

Class Agenda: You are responsible for anything that you miss in class.

12.14.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scene 2.
12.15.09: no class due to rotation.
12.16.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scenes 3.
12.17.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scenes 4.

12.18.09: Poetry Out Loud, selection of poems and assignment description. Practice.


12.21.09: continued practice.

12.22.09: Poetry Out Loud performances due.
12.23.09: 2/3 of Independent reading book needs to be finished before break.

Independent Reading Books to be finished on the day you return from break.

Period 2: Agenda for weeks of 12.14.09 - 12.21.09

Don't forget Tuesdays from 2:15 - 3:30--writing workshop with Mr. Maney and myself. Use the time to rewrite essays, finish missing work, get help on upcoming assignments, make use of computers, etc...

Class Agenda: You are responsible for anything that you miss in class.

12.14.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scene 1.
12.15.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scene 2.
12.16.09: Hamlet Act 3, Scenes 3-4.
12.17.09: Poetry Out Loud, selection of poems and assignment description. Practice.
12.18.09: continued practice.

12.21.09: no class due to rotation.
12.22.09: Poetry Out Loud performances due.
12.23.09: 2/3 of Independent reading book needs to be finished before break.

Independent Reading Books to be finished on the day you return from break.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Reminder for December 11th, 2009

Avinash Veeraraghavan
Total Internal Recall
Print componentDigital print on Arches textured paper3.5' x 4.6'2008
Found at GALLERYSKE

1/3 of your Independent Reading book (1st person narrator) is to be read by classtime on December 11th, 2009.

In class, I will give you two notebook entry topics (that will require your knowledge of the book), which you will complete and turn in at the end of class for a grade.

While you are completing this assignment, I will be grading your Reader's Notebooks, which should include:

3 entries on your Independent Reading book:
  • How the book opens. (The choices the author made to begin the book and the effects these choices had.) Don't be afraid to come back to this moment after you have read 1/3 of your book and add to your initial impressions.
  • a passage (about a half a page) which you can use to explain your narrator in terms of characterization.
  • a passage that struck you becuase of either the tone or the style of writing.

Hamlet Act 2 notebook:

  • Class notes (Don't forget to go back and add summaries & impressions of class notes)
  • Act 2: 1: an entry on characterization for Plonius, Laertes, Hamlet, or Ophelia
  • Act 2: 2: Three D.J.s on significant moments from daily class notes.

Here's the link to Reader's Notebook ideas and Rubric.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Hamlet Act 1 Paper Assignment & Requirements

Your final draft of the following four paper options (see four posts below) will be due in class on December 1st. If you do not turn your paper in on time and complete, you will be forced to stay after school to finish until complete. Please plan accordingly--you have more than a week to complete this paper & it is a major grade for 2nd quarter.

In order to facilitate your ability to turn your paper in on time, I will have writing workshops scheduled for class time on Tuesday November 24th & Monday November 30th. It is your responsibility to make sure you can make use of this time.

Also, as you all know, I get to school early and leave late. You are also free to use the computers in my room any period except for period 3 (as long as you schedule with me ahead of time.)

Format Requirements:

Type the following in the upper left (not in the header) of the first page:
Your Name
My Name (Please spell it correctly.)
English 12 CP, Period _
Due Date

Page Setup:
  • 1 inch margins
  • Insert page numbers, top right. Click box to not show number on first page. Add your last name to header with page number and align right.
  • Center title on first page.
Format:
  • Times New Roman, 12 pt. font, align left, double-spaced.
  • Staple rough drafts to back.
  • Staple Scoring Guide to front. No scoring guide = no comments. Click here to find Scoring guide.
I will not accept papers until / unless all the above requirements are met.

Option 1: Hamlet's view of women

You have until Monday 12.2.09 to complete this assignment. It is to be typed in 12pt font, Times New Roman, and 2bl spaced.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Develop your own thesis based on the following prompt:

  • How would you characterize Hamlet's view of women in Act 1? Explain why. Then explain how this characterization illuminates theme.
Hint: In order to develop characterization thoroughly, make sure you include specific textual evidence and explain how this textual evidence influences your perception of his character. Then explain how this could relate to theme. If you do this well, every paragraph should address these concerns.

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgment in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Option 2: Ophelia's characterization

You have until Monday 12.2.09 to complete this assignment. It is to be typed in 12pt font, Times New Roman, and 2bl spaced.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Develop your own thesis based on the following prompt:

  • How would you characterize Ophelia in Act 1? Explain why. Then explain how this characterization illuminates theme.
Hint: In order to develop characterization thoroughly, make sure you include specific textual evidence and explain how this textual evidence influences your perception of her character. Then explain how this could relate to theme. If you do this well, every paragraph should address these concerns.

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgment in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Option 3: video critique of Act 1 Scene 3


Michael Almereyda's Hamlet (2000) with Julia Stiles, Liev Schreiber & Bill Murray.

You have until Monday 12.2.09 to complete this assignment. It is to be typed in 12pt font, Times New Roman, and 2bl spaced.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the performance above of a potion of Act 1 Scene 3 and critique the director's interpretation of the scene.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice! (Hint: Watch the video more than once.)

Pay attention to:

  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor (characterization)
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music
  • etc--the list could keep going
You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgment in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Option 4: Video critique of Hamlet's Act 1 Scene 2 soliloquy


Laurence Olivier as Hamlet


Kenneth Branagh as Hamlet

You have until Monday 12.2.09 to complete this assignment. It is to be typed in 12pt font, Times New Roman, and 2bl spaced.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the two performances above of Hamlet's first soliloquy from Act 1 Scene 2 and choose which version is the best interpretation of the lines.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice! (Hint: Watch the video more than once.)

Pay attention to:

  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor (characterization)
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music
  • etc--the list could keep going

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgment in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Independent Reading Project: 1st person narratives

My biggest goal this year (since it is your senior year) is to transition you to life beyond high school--in other words, to make myself unnecessary in your life (in less than ten months.) So, I must hand over much of the responsibility of the class to you. In addition to what we study as "whole class texts," you will also be reading books in literature circles as well as independently this year. Our first "unit" (obviously with the college essay in mind) will cover 1st person narratives (fiction or non-fiction). As you choose a book, you may also want to start to consider what "topic" you are interested in, because we will develop reading plans for ourselves after this first memoir.Here's a short list of suggestions, but it is up to you to do the research on the books and make sure they fit your criteria. My criteria is that they should be at least 150 pages long (we can fill in the gaps with supplements if need be.)

Memoirs:
Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
Chasing Ghosts by Paul Rieckhoff
Chronicles by Bob Dylan
Lipstick Jihad by Azadeh Moaveni
Kafir Boy by Mark Mathabane
Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson
Dead Man Walking by Sister Helen Prejean
Gray's Anatomy by Spalding Gray (or anything by Spalding Gray)
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris (or anything by David Sedaris)
When I Was Cool by Sam Kashner
The Autobiography of Malcolm X (as told to Alex Haley)

And some other first person narratives (fiction):
Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest Gaines
On the Road by Jack Kerouac (or any number of his novels)
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Nadja by Andre Breton
Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Native Son by Richard Wright
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

You will need a copy of the book you choose on Friday, November 20th in class. Please plan accordingly.


Passage Expolication assignment on Pico Iyer's "In Praise of the Humble Comma"

Here's the assignment.

Here's the Rubric.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Period 2: Life Advice That Works

Finish Strong.

First Quarter ends @ 2:15 on Friday afternoon. Please keep this in mind. As you know, vocabulary quizzes can be taken once a day until the end of the quarter and major assignments can be rewritten (if they were turned in on time) for the highest grade possible. Consult with snapgrades on how to best end the quarter (and make sure there are no mistakes in your gradebook--your grades are your responsibility too.)

10.26.09. 2nd draft of
College Essay due. Argumentative Essay due. In class, we will do our presentations on A Doll's House as test prep.

10.27.09. No class, due to rotation.

10.28.09. finish presentations.

10.29.09. In-class 'essay-test' on A Doll's House (
prompt is on page 4). This test is open book & open notebook. You will complete essay in my room over two class periods. If you need extra time, you must stay after school to complete. You may not take essay out of the room.

10.30.09. Finish Essay test. Will be graded on the following Rubric (
rubric is on page 4). Reader's Notebooks will be collected and scored for the quarter based on the following rubric.

Things to keep in mind:

  • I usually arrive an hour early to school. I am free periods 1, 4, & 5. I will be after school on Tuesday and Wednesday until 4:00ish.
  • I will not be here on Thursday and Friday (professional development.) This will not affect your classroom experience. You will still report to class and take essay test.
  • Highlighted phrases are links to assignments and rubrics. Please consult them!

Period 6: Life Advice That Works

Finish Strong.

First Quarter ends @ 2:15 on Friday afternoon. Please keep this in mind. As you know, vocabulary quizzes can be taken once a day until the end of the quarter and major assignments can be rewritten (if they were turned in on time) for the highest grade possible. Consult with snapgrades on how to best end the quarter (and make sure there are no mistakes in your gradebook--your grades are your responsibility too.)

10.26.09. 2nd draft of College Essay due. Argumentative Essay due. In class, we will do our presentations on A Doll's House as test prep.

10.27.09. finish presentations.

10.28.09. In-class 'essay-test' on A Doll's House (prompt is on page 4). This test is open book & open notebook. You will complete essay in my room over two class periods. If you need extra time, you must stay after school to complete. You may not take essay out of the room.

10.29.09. Finish Essay test. You will be graded on the following Rubric (rubric is on page 4). Reader's Notebooks will be collected and scored for the quarter based on the following rubric.

Things to keep in mind:
  • I usually arrive an hour early to school. I am free periods 1, 4, & 5. I will be after school on Tuesday and Wednesday until 4:00ish.
  • I will not be here on Thursday and Friday (professional development.) This will not affect your classroom experience. You will still report to class and take essay test.
  • Highlighted phrases are links to assignments and rubrics. Please consult them!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Argumentative Essay

Due: Monday 10.26.09 in class. If papers are not typed, Times New Roman, 12pt. font and double spaced when you walk into class, it will be considered late. Textual evidence must also be properly cited.

The 2nd draft of your college essay is also due.

Choose one of the following two prompts:
  • Who is the least sympathetic character is Ibsen's A Doll's House?
  • Who is the most sympathetic character is Ibsen's A Doll's House?

You will be graded on the MHS Open Response Rubric.

Monday, October 5, 2009

College Essay Scoring Guide


Francis Bacon’s “Three Studies for Self-Portrait” (1976) is expected to sell for between $25 million and $35 million at Christie’s New York.

50 points--Grammar, mechanics, typos, spelling, & usage. Remember, this is your only impression to show yourself through language. No matter the content of your essay, careless mistakes make you seem--well, careless. And you do not want the college admissions team to think you are apathetic. I expect you to make sure the essay is flawless. I would be happy to suggest how to phrase things grammatically better, but I should not be spending my time fixing your careless typos and spelling errors (and I won't).
  • 50 points--Writer demonstrates control of sentence structure, grammar and usage.
  • 40 points--Errors do not interfere with communication. There are few errors relative to length.
  • 30 points--Errors interfere with communication.

50 points--Insight and creativity, readability, and is your essay compelling? A note to remember your audience here and the purpose of your essay: All writers do this on some level--we consistently look at audience and purpose when we analyze writing. If you are using this to apply to college, keep in mind that the admissions officers are looking for intelligent and motivated students who will be successful at their school. Your essay should:

  • Be personal (instead of general)
  • Be concrete (instead of abstract--can you make your reader "see" your world?)
  • Include anecdote (instead of summary--this is not a resume)
  • Include a hook or lead
  • Have sophisticated and / or subtle organization
  • Show a sophisticated or subtle mastery of language
  • AND AVOID CLICHE!

PLEASE PRINT THIS PAGE OUT AND ATTACH TO THE BACK OF YOUR ESSAY SO I CAN WRITE COMMENTS. WHEN YOU PRINT, MAKE SURE YOU ONLY PRINT THIS PAGE.

College Essay Scoring Guidelines



The prompts provided are often a starting point—it’s not really about which prompt you choose to answer, but HOW you use the topic to write an essay.

Remember Borges, “people tend to prefer the personal to the general, the concrete to the abstract”. You will notice that the questions are vague, repetitive, and general. You could almost adapt any good essay to fit a prompt.

Anyway, here are the common application prompts:

Personal Essay Please write an essay (250 words minimum) on a topic of your choice or on one of the options listed below, and attach it to your application before submission. Please indicate your topic by checking the appropriate box. This personal essay helps us become acquainted with you as a person and student, apart from courses, grades, test scores, and other objective data. It will also demonstrate your ability to organize your thoughts and express yourself.
  • Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its impact on you.

  • Discuss some issue of personal, local, national, or international concern and its importance to you.

  • Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.
    Describe a character in fiction, a historical figure, or a creative work (as in art, music, science, etc.) that has had an influence on you, and explain that influence.

  • A range of academic interests, personal perspectives, and life experiences adds much to the educational mix. Given your personal background, describe an experience that illustrates what you would bring to the diversity in a college community, or an encounter that demonstrated the importance of diversity to you.

  • Topic of your choice.


Image of Jay Defeo working on an early draft of "The Rose."

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

This is too Munch!


Due to the problems posting 1,000 words in the comment streams--(it only seems to take about 500 words at a time and you have to break up your comments) & due to MHS' server / internet being down all day, please turn in a hard copy of your paper tomorrow (10.1.09) in class (as we discussed today.)

Hopefully the technology will work itself out and catch up to our needs.
If you posted successfully, you are fine, but you can still print out if you prefer hand-written comments.

Peace.
I hope you liked my pun.

Image & Wikipedia note: The Scream (Norwegian: Skrik; created 1893-1910[1]) is the title of expressionist paintings and prints in a series by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, depicting an agonized figure against a blood red sky. The landscape in the background is Oslofjord, viewed from the hill of Ekeberg, in Oslo (then Kristiania), Norway.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Since you all asked. . .

Here are the class notes we developed and you asked me to post:

Objective: Read and comprehend Ibsen's A Doll's House and use textual evidence to explain how characterization is created in literature and film through the techniques of authors, actors, and directors in a formal essay.

Thesis paragraph:

Should state which movie clip presents the best version of either Nora or Torvald and explain why.
· You may only focus on the movie which is best.
· A sophisticated thesis will explain how characterization is created through author, actor, and director’s techniques.

Body paragraphs:

Should each focus on a specific topic which helps prove your thesis.

· Topic
· Provide context and “integrate evidence from the play”(37).
· Explain how author creates characterization with evidence.
· Explain why the movie version you picked represents this well.
· Give specific evidence (description) from the movie.
· Explain effect(s) of what you see actor doing, or techniques of the director.

Remember your essay is due Wednesday.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Which portrayal of characterization is better?

Watch the following two interpretations of the opening of Ibsen's A Doll's House & respond to the prompt below:


Directed by George Schaefer; Julie Harris as Nora and Christopher Plummer as Torvald (1959)


Directed by Patrick Garland; Claire Bloom as Nora and Anthony Hopkins as Torvald (1973)


Objective: Watch the following two versions (posted above) from the opening of Ibsen's A Doll's House and argue which of the two videos is the best interpretation of either Nora or Torvald's character.
  • Offering your opinion on this subject with specific reasons on why will help you craft a sophisticated thesis.
  • The rest of your essay will go into detail explaining your thesis.
Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from A Doll's House as well as provide descriptions of the video. (I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice!)

Pay attention to:
  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music

You have the names of the actors and the directors. Make it clear whether you are commenting on Ibsen, the director, the characters, or the actors.

It should be about 1,000 words. Edit and put spaces between paragraphs before you post please!

These should take more than one sitting to complete and show some depth and organizational structure.




I am well aware that neither video follows that play exactly. Your objective is not to point out the differences from the text. Your objective is listed above.


You have until Wednesday 9.30.09 @ noon to complete this assignment.
It is worth 100 points and will be graded by the following rubric.



Post your comments here:

Important info regarding Full-scholarship opportunity:

The following is from Mrs. Lipinski:

Hi all,


I just to make you aware that I will be hosting a Colby Sawyer College Progressive Scholars Information meeting next Thursday, Sept. 24th at 2:30 in the library. This will be an informational, informal meeting. If you have specific people you envision as potential candidates (outgoing, wants to be involved in their college campus, and has at least a 3.0 (unless there is some reasonable explanation as to why they don't), please send me their names so that I can reach out to them personally, as well as through the informational meeting.


The scheduled dates with CSC are:


October 8th- CSC visit MHS for their own private information session with the more serious candidates.


October 27- CSC visit MHS for official interviews at 12:00. (I will need to give CSC team a list of students a week ahead of time).


November 5- MHS visits CSC campus, along with Cambridge students.


More dates to come for the New Year.


Thanks for your support.


Victoria Lipinski, Holland House Guidance Counselor

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Characterization of Nora or Torvald in Act 1 of A Doll's House

Clair Bloom as Nora in an English Production from 1973 (directed by Patrick Garland.)

Homework assignment: 20 points

1.  Write your impressions of either Nora or Torvald in the first Act of Ibsen's A Doll's House.  You must write a paragraph that:
  • makes a claim (thesis)
  • provides evidence (page number) that is introduced with context (at least one example)
  • & an explanation of how this evidence backs up your impressions of Nora or Torvald's character
Since this is a homework assignment, you will not be graded on whether you are "right or wrong" but whether you completed the assignment.  Your post must be 200 words long & say something different than everyone who has commented before you.

Due:  By class on Tuesday.  Come and see me before that if you are having trouble.  Late work will be given half credit for a 24 hour extension.  After this credit will not be given.

Begining your blogging experience. . .


Hello Bloggers.


We have limited time here in blogland today, people, so let's use the time effectively.

Today we will build our own blog.

It is essential that you follow directions and don't move ahead.  Help someone else who is having trouble if you finish steps early.

Remember your username and password! This will allow you to comment on my blog--and there will be assignments submitted that way. I will not accept "I forgot my password" as an excuse for not submitting work.

Two things to keep in mind:

1. Compose your comments in Word and paste in when you are complete. If the internet crashes while you are composing, you will lose all your work.


2. Sarcasm is basically impossible to pull off in this forum. Keep all dialogue professional, courteous, and appropriate. This is a virtual classroom and once you post your comments, there is a record of them. This is the reality of the world you live in and you may as well learn how to perform in it.  Intellectual dialogue is your goal.

You may spend class time "personalizing" your blog if you want. This will be an on/going portfolio of your work for the year and you should post any work you do for my class on this blog. (I also suggest you post work from other classes on this blog, but this is your choice--you can use the label bar at the bottom to separate your subjects.)

Post a comment below when you have finished to see how it works. ..!

Welcome to Senior Year...

Here is your syllabus:

MHS ELA Syllabus for 12 CP 2009-2010

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Friday, March 20, 2009

Research Paper Due....

Monday, March 23rd, 2009. This means printed out and organized as you walk into class. If you are late, the paper is late.

All MLA guidelines must be followed. Please take note of them. If they are not followed, I will not accept the paper and your paper will bve considered late. The only exceptions to the MLA format are that you can single space the Annotated Works Cited & Consulted to save some paper. Also, I do not want any images in the body of the paper--I want them before your first page.

The paper must be a minimum of 8 pages--this means the eighth page is filled, and no, the Works Cited and Consulted do not count.

Order of things to be held together by a paper clip:
  • Images
  • Your Paper
  • Works Cited
  • Works Consulted
  • Rubric (see previous post and print out--if you don't print out, you will not receive comments.)

Good luck, and work hard...

Peace

Monday, March 16, 2009

Research Paper Rubric

Malden High School Research Paper Rubric Malden High School Research Paper Rubric ryanseangallagher@gmail.com

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Assignment for Act 3: Scene 1 (The 'To be, or not to be' soliloquy)

You have until Monday 3.16.09 @ noon to complete this assignment.
It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the following three versions (posted below) from Hamlet's soliloquy from Act 3 Scene 1 and argue which of the three videos is the best video interpretation of Hamlet's state of mind.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. (I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice!)

Pay attention to:
  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music

You should use the same structure for explication to develop a thesis. It should be about 1,000 words. Edit and put spaces between paragraphs before you post please! The last essays were not nearly well-crafted enough or thought out. These should take more than one sitting to complete and show some depth and organizational structure.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Act 3: Scene 1 (Kenneth Branagh)

Post your essay here if you think this is the best version of this soliloquy.

Act 3: Scene 1 (Alexander Fodor)

Post your essay in this comment stream if you think this is the best version of the soliloquy.

Act 3: Scene 1 (Laurence Olivier)

Post your essay in this comment stream if you think this is the best version of the soliloquy.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Some pretty great readings coming up...











Tuesday, March 10, 7 pm
Los Wünder Twins del Rap (hip hop), Seamus Connolly (Irish fiddle), and Buck Downs (poetry)
URBAN VILLAGE ARTS SERIES
National Park Visitor Center
246 Market St.
Lowell, MA

Tuesday, March 17, 8 pm
Fanny Howe and Tom Raworth
Pierre Menard Gallery
2 Arrow Street
Harvard Square

Monday, March 23, 7:30 pm
Sonia Sanchez
9th Annual Robert Creeley Award
R. J. Grey Jr. High School Auditorium
16 Charter Rd
Acton, MA

Agenda for week of 3.2.09 (Adjusted)

3.2.09

  • No class. Snow Day. Schedule has been adjusted because of the loss of a class period.

3.3.09

  • In class: Laptops. You may continue to work on Annotated Bibliography (Due 3.4.09) and start Artist Biography & Thesis Paragraph (Due 3.6.09 for Period 6 and 3.9.09 for Period 7.)
  • In class: Hamlet, Act 2: Scene 2. Begin D.J. and finish at home.

3.4.09

  • Due: Annotated Bibliography. 12 cited sources minimum. Proper MLA formatting. Late Annotated Bibliographies lose a letter grade a day. Annotated Bibliographies which do not follow proper MLA guidelines will not be accepted, and will then be subject to late penalties.
  • In class: Hamlet, Act 2: Scene 2. Begin D.J. and finish at home.

3.5.09

  • No Class. (Field Trip for me.) My expectation, of course, is that you will use the time to work on your research paper.

3.6.09 for Period 6 & 3.9.09 for Period 7

  • Due: Artist Biography & Thesis paragraph. 1.5 - 2 pgs., proper MLA formatting. Late Artist Biography & Thesis paragraphs lose a letter grade a day. Artist Biography & Thesis paragraphs which do not follow proper MLA guidelines will not be accepted, and will then be subject to late penalties.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Agenda for week of 2.23.09

2.23.09
  • In class: Work on research cards and citation list.
2.24.09
  • Due: Hamlet notebooks. Act 1 complete with D.J.s for each scene and class notes.
  • In class: Work on research cards and citation list.
2.25.09 (Period 6 only)
  • In class: Hamlet, Act 2: Scene 1. Begin D.J. and finish at home.
2.26.09 (Period 7 only)
  • In class: Hamlet, Act 2: Scene 1. Begin D.J. and finish at home.
2.27.09 (Meet in the Computer Lab.)
  • Due: Hamlet video blog (1 of the 3 posted below) at noon.
  • Due: 1 thesis paragraph, 30 research cards, 12 cited sources. (see below for details)
  • In class: I will do a mini lesson on how to do an Annotated Bibliography. You will have the rest of the period to work on it.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Hamlet Act 1 Scene 4-5



Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (1996)

You have until Feb 27th @ noon to complete this assignment.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the performance above of a potion of Act 1 Scene 5 and crtique the director's interpretation of the scene.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice! (Hint: Watch the video more than once.)

Pay attention to:

  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor (characterization)
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music
  • etc--the list could keep going

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. Post in the comment stream of the video you choose below. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgement in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Edit and put spaces between paragraphs before you post please!

Hamlet Act 1 Scene 3



Michael Almereyda's Hamlet (2000) with Julia Stiles, Liev Schreiber & Bill Murray.

You have until Feb 27th @ noon to complete this assignment.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the performance above of a potion of Act 1 Scene 3 and crtique the director's interpretation of the scene.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice! (Hint: Watch the video more than once.)

Pay attention to:

  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor (characterization)
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music
  • etc--the list could keep going

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. Post in the comment stream of the video you choose below. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgement in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Edit and put spaces between paragraphs before you post please!

Hamlet Act 1 Scene 2



Kenneth Branagh as Hamlet



Laurence Olivier as Hamlet

You have until Feb 27th @ noon to complete this assignment.

It is worth 100 points and will be graded with the APE Rubric.

Objective: Watch the two performances above of Hamlet's first soliloquy from Act 1 Scene 2 and choose which version is the best interpretation of the lines.

Your critique of the video must be based on your knowledge and understanding of the passage, so you must provide textual evidence from Hamlet as well as provide descriptions of the video. I can't watch the video and read your post at the same time, so you need to make me see what you see with your words. It will also help you to take notes on the video while you watch it. Pay attention to what you captures your attention. Notice what you notice! (Hint: Watch the video more than once.)

Pay attention to:

  • delivery of the lines
  • imagery the setting / scenery
  • the portrayal of the actor (characterization)
  • lighting & camera effects
  • sound effects or music
  • etc--the list could keep going

You should make sure to develop a sophisticated thesis. Post in the comment stream of the video you choose below. It should be about 1,000 words (use your best judgement in either direction--this is a recommendation, not a requirement. It should be as long as it takes to develop your thesis.)

Edit and put spaces between paragraphs before you post please!

The Library & The Internet (life advice that works)

Library Websites:

Since a majority of your information must come from printed text, you are going to have to visit a library at least once. To save yourself time, search the catalogs to see what is available before you go. Write down the title and call #s. It will save hours if you do this before you go to the Library. Don’t be afraid to ask for help while there--it's an ulterior motive of mine to actually get you to a college library before you, um, go to college. In fact, if you go to MASS Art Library, they will be expecting you!

Your Best Bet for Art Research:

Mass College of Art (Green Line, E train near Northeastern & MFA)
Boston Public Library (Green Line, Copley Square)

I have also had students go to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and be let into the special archives room.
Boston College
Boston University
Or Google any other college library and browse its online catalog before making the trip. You can call them and see their policies. Most are open to the public (except Harvard) but you will probably not be able to check out books.

Some good Art Magazines with websites.

Libraries will often have these archived. But you can see which issues, if any, relate to your artist before you go searching:
Art Forum
Modern Painters
ARTnews
It is also a good idea to Googleyour artist and see what scholarly work and books you can find (there's a function that allows for this on google, just as there is a function that allows you to do image searches.) It is helpful to have a list of title from which to choose to look for before you go to the library. The more time you can save yourself, the more productive you will be.

Better than just "googling" blindly, you can go to newspaper and journal sites (besides the ones listed above.) You can be much more productive if you learn how to search the web. Here are some places you may want to look:

The New York Times
N.E. Journal of Aesthetic Research
NPR
L.A. Times
Washington Post

Obviously the list could go on, and I didn't include any international papers, but you get the idea...or, you can do the leg work yourself!

Or find out where your artist has had a show and search the paper from that city.

Peace. & Good Luck.

Step 6: Research Cards and Citation Cards

Researching:
  • More than half of your research should come from books, journals, or magazines--this can include things that were or are in print but are archived online.
  • The Internet can be helpful for general life and historical information, but make sure the site is reputable. DO NOT USE WIKIPEDIA as a source (for the same reason you would not use an encyclopedia for this paper--however, use it for your own general knowledge and follow the links at the bottom of the wiki page.) The web can also be a good place to find interviews with the artist. Read as many of these as you can. There is no better person to explain the purpose or goal of the artwork than the artist who painted it.

Assignment: Due Friday after break, February 27th, 2009:

1. a paragraph that explains your thesis--(this will probably be reworked.)

2. at least 30 Research Cards of information. You will need at least 15 primary source cards & 15 secondary source cards. (This is a minimum--you should have more!) Remember that more than half must come from print sources.

Here's what should be on the (Research Cards):

(Front)
  • Topic of information (painting referred to if appropriate)
  • “Passage quoted directly” or paraphrased in your own words.
  • Include page number.
  • A number which corresponds to your citation list (see below).

(Back)

  • Your notes on significance, thoughts, etc.

3. You will also need a list of at least 12 sources (make sure you cite correctly the first time):

Here's what should be on your Citation List): Do this every time you reference a book or website, copy down proper citation information. Even if it does not end up in Works Cited, you will put in Works Consulted.

  • Proper citation information (See MLA Citation Guide) with a number next to information. This way, you will not have to waste time citing information every time you make a note card. Just write down the number of the citation. Make sure you get info right!
  • A brief summary--3-7 sentences summarizing the content of the source.

Developing a Thesis

At some point during your research, preferably sooner than later (but after you feel comfortable with your subject), you want to develop a thesis so that you can focus your research. Otherwise, you are wasting valuable time.

It may help to start with a group of paintings that share a common thread—the dates they were crafted, titles, subject matter, they may be a part of a series, or you may find a interesting thread on your own.

Your thesis must tie the work together (what is in common) as well as argue a theory about the significance of the work. Your research should help prove your thesis.

When developing a thesis, think of big questions: How do these paintings explain a perception of the universe? How is the artist’s own life or philosophy portrayed in the paintings? How does the artist ask his or her audience to view the paintings (or the universe)?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Reminder of how to hyperlink in the comment stream:

Say you want to make a link like this.

1. All you have to do is type the following into the comment box:
<"a href=http://www.google.com">"this"<"/a">

2. Then replace the html with where the image is, then replace the "this" with the title of the piece of art:
<"a href=http://muze.sabanciuniv.edu/ssm/userfiles/Image/SSM/english/exhibitions/2008/salvador_dali/exhibition">"Surrealist composition with invisible figures"<"/a">

3. Then, get rid of the quotation marks.

When you publish it, it will look like:
Surrealist composition with invisible figures

Remember that the Preview button is your friend.

The Research Paper, Step 4


© Salvador Dali, Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí, Vegap, Figueres 2007

Step 4:

Choose 1 – 2 paintings and try to describe them to the best of your ability. Paint a replica of the image with your own words. Can you make your reader “see” what you are seeing.
Assignment:
  • Post your description of 1-2 pieces on the blog in this comment stream.
  • Make the title a hyperlink to the image on which you are writing.
  • You will be graded on your ability to hyperlink the image and your ability to write 1,000 words. Late posts will lose a letter grade a day.
  • Due 8:00 a.m. Tuesday Feb 10th.
This is an important step in the process of writing this research paper for a few reasons:
  • First, you will need this descriptive writing in your essay to aid your analysis.

  • Second, you will learn things about the piece of art by forcing yourself to stare at it with the attention needed to describe it.

  • Last, what you see may be different from what others do, not just the abstract work, but what are your eyes drawn to first? You will never be able to get this moment back--what your eyes noticed when you were first drawn to the painting / or piece of art.

You will need this writing when you start to compile your formal research paper.

“Helpful Hints” to enhance your descriptive powers:

  • Spend as much time as possible “free writing” about the image prior to doing any research. You can always edit this down if you feel that the writing is stale or redundant. Free writing is best done with fresh eyes as a first response, and can be edited after you know the image well. This can be tedious if you are in the middle of trying to arrange your argument and realize your paper is just not long enough.

  • When describing colors, expand your vocabulary. There is no such thing as pure yellow. Maybe you mean lemon yellow or canary yellow or cadmium yellow or saffron. Check out these colors for ideas, but stick to colors that your audience will be able to visualize. For example, I can’t picture alice blue, but I can picture aqua and royal blue.

  • If the image is particularly abstract, focus on the emotions that the artist is trying to express. Do the lines create a sense of movement? Does the painting seem to speed up time, or slow it down? Ask your self creative questions and answer them.

Research Paper, The Proposal Letter


"Apparation of the Aphrodite of Cnidus
© Salvador Dali, Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí, Vegap, Figueres 2007"


By now, you should have your artist picked and posted in the previous comment stream.

Step 3:


Spend the next ½ hour or so familiarizing your self with the artist you chose and his or her work. For now, choose 1-3 paintings on which to turn your focus. Then, start to gather a list of websites (which includes links to books and magazines, where a majority of your research must come.)



Due Thursday, Feb. 5th by class time, you are to submit a typed, 'formal' proposal letter. You will be scored on the Long Composition Rubric, which will subtract substantially from your score if you make careless errors.



Your proposal letter should follow the proper format of a formal letter: (You may need to do some research on the Internet to find this.)

Letters submitted without proper formatting will not be accepted.
Letters submitted late will lose a letter grade a day.



Fit the following information on one page of your typed letter; write a short paragraph about each topic:

  • Who is your artist and what pieces of his / her art interest you. (Briefly describe why.)

  • What have you found in your initial research that makes him / her an interesting artist to research.

  • List at least ten places where information can be found about your artist in a paragraph.

  • Conclude letter with some ideas for your thesis. (These will obviously evolve and change, but I want you to begin thinking about these things before you even begin serious research.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Senior Research Paper: Researching and Writing About Artists and Their Work

Overview: You will be choosing one artist, either from the following list or a contemporary artist (or 20th Century artist) of equal historic merit--(he or she must have adequate primary and secondary source material from which to research). The research you gather will help you prove your thesis about specific pieces of art (1-5). Choose an artist whose work you like, and even more importantly, who you think makes an interesting statement through his or her artwork that you think you can explain for about 15 pages.

Here are two model papers from last year:
You should read these papers to understand where this process is going.

Step 1:
I have set up hyperlinks for about 50 artists. Spend the next hour or so choosing an artist that you would like to focus for the next few weeks. (You will want to have a back-up choice or two for various reasons.) I know a bit about each of these artists and have an idea of what you will face if you choose to research any of them. I’ll be around to answer questions. Enjoy.

For some of these artists, it is just as easy to do an image search.

Painters and Artists:

White Cube also has a good list of contemporary artists.

So does this PBS site.

I chose these artists because they should be easy enough to find research on but have not been written on endlessly. If you have an artist in mind, I’d be happy to add it to the list.

Step 2: Post a Comment on which artist you want and why (brief). You can, of course, pick someone that is not on the list. I would also like you to hyperlink the title of an image that you like from the artist, so a quick mini-lesson:

This is due at 8:00 a.m. on Wed. Feb. 4th. Artists are given on a first-post basis. Only two people per artist.

Kevin Ta 5 said...Alright, here’s my quick mini lesson on how to hyperlink in comment boxes. Say you want to make a link like this. All you have to do is type the following into the comment box:
<"a href=http://www.google.com">"this"<"/a">
and get rid of the quotation marks. When you publish it, it will look like:
this
Replace the URL (making sure you have the http:// part) and the “this” and it’s as simple as that. Remember that the Preview button is your friend. Hope that helps.