9/30/15 – 10/1/15 Class Agenda

English 9

Bell Ringer: to be completed on a blank sheet of notebook paper. 

Yesterday you mapped out the journey of a modern hero. Write one well-developed paragraph with one or two main idea chunks explaining the importance of the first three steps of the hero’s journey.

The Iliad: Prequel to the Odyssey

Please watch the first three minutes and thirty-three second of the video below to become acquainted with Homer and The Iliad. As you watch, consider why it is important to understand the background of classic literature.

Time to Read! 

After watching the video, read pages 1045 – 1047 and analyze the text for the first three steps of the hero’s journey: Ordinary World, Call to Adventure, and Refusal of the Call. Fill it out on your chart.

Once you’ve finished filling out the first three steps of the chart, continue reading pages 1048-1049 as a class. Then, pick only ONE of the prompts below and respond using one to two main idea chunks. You MUST use textual evidence from today’s reading!

  1. In many cultures, epic myths like The Odyssey were used as educational tools to instruct young people in the ideals and values of a culture, thereby passing the ideals and values to a new generation. What values might the story of the Lotus Eaters represent? Are these values evident in our own, modern culture as well? How?
  2. Think about your own life. What might the lotus plant represent to you?
  3. A theme is a lesson to be learned from a piece of literature. Thematic statements are always written as a full sentence. What theme do you see developing in these early stories from The Odyssey?

Once you’ve finished your exit ticket, please read The Cyclops for the rest of the period. Turn in your exit ticket as you walk out the door. 

All Things Vocabulary 2.1

Happy Tuesday, Jags!

We’re starting our new vocabulary unit this week! If you have not done so already, please make your new root word foldable for this unit and add it to page 123 of your interactive notebook. Don’t forget to draw the pictures on the inside flaps! Check out the new roots below:

  1. Clud, Clus: Latin – shut, to close
  2. Cogn: Latin – know
  3. Cor: Latin – heart
  4. Cycl: Latin – circle
  5. Dem, Pop: Latin – people
  6. Dict: Latin – to say or speak
  7. Doc: Latin – to teach
  8. Dur: Latin – hard
  9. Struct: Latin – to build or make

I will check both the vocabulary foldable and the root word foldable in class on Friday. Enjoy your week! 😀

Priority List – Week of September 21, 2015

Hey, Jags! We are finalizing our Greek Mythology Research Papers this week, which means we have a lot of work to do before the final draft of your essay is due via GoogleDocs on Friday, September 25th. Below, you’ll find daily priority lists for the week, but feel free to move on to the next day’s priorities if you accomplish your tasks before the rest of the class.

Monday, 9/21/15

Today you are to focus on correctly using in-text citations for the textual evidence sentences within your outline, and on writing your thesis statements within your group.

First, watch and take Cornell notes on the video below. Your essential question for these notes is “how can I avoid plagiarism in my writing?”

Second, apply the necessary changes to your outline so you correctly cite your sources as in-text citations.

Third, check out this guide to writing a thesis statement, and collaboratively write a thesis statement as a group.

Tuesday, 9/22/15

Today you are going to divide and conquer! One member of your group will write your introduction, one group member will write your conclusion, and one group member will make the works cited page using a nifty auto-citation website called EasyBib.

If you have not already written your thesis statement, or if your thesis statement is not very strong, please revise it before working on your individual jobs.


In a five paragraph essay, the first sentence in the introduction is the hook sentence. The purpose of the hook sentence is to catch your reader’s attention by presenting an interesting statement that will encourage your audience to continue reading your paper. Hook sentence may start with a startling fact or statement, an inspirational quote, or, for your Greek research paper, a comparison between modern life and life in Ancient Greece. For a helpful review of hook sentences, check out How to Write Good Hook Sentences from Kibin Essay Writing.

The second sentence in your introduction should connect the hook to the thesis statement. You have a lot of independence when writing this sentence because it doesn’t have any specific purpose. In other words, it can serve whatever purpose YOU want it to serve. How can you best connect your hook sentence to your thesis statement? Even though this is the second sentence in your outline, you’ll want to write it last so that you can best figure out how to best connect the first and last sentences in your introduction: the hook and the thesis statement.


When writing the conclusion, you will first restate the thesis statement using different words as a way to remind your reader of your argument. Then, as the last sentence or two of your essay, you will refer back to the hook from earlier, also using different words. For this particular essay, you may decide to connect the ancient concepts discussed in your essay to modern life today, or you may decide to do something else. For more information, check out The Owl’s post on writing strong concluding paragraphs. 

Works Cited

We already know that it is important to cite our sources using in-text citations, but we must also include longer citations within a works cited page. A works cited page is similar to a bibliography, but where a bibliography simply provides sources of information from research, the works cited page lists sources that you specifically cited as textual evidence within your essay.

Before you watch the video below, you must first use EasyBib to quickly and easily create your citations.

To learn how to format your works cited page in GoogleDocs, watch the video below.

Wednesday and Thursday, 9/23-24/15

You’re editing today! We will spend the first 10 minutes of class transforming our outline into a rough draft and sharing it with your assigned group of editors.

  • The person who wrote the first body paragraph in the outline will make a copy of the outline and share it with the rest of the group and with Ms. Hayes with permission to edit.
  • The person who wrote the second body paragraph in the outline will change the name of copy of the outline to God’s Name Essay – Period Number. They will then find the group they’ve been partnered with and share the rough draft with all three members, only giving them permission to comment and not to edit.
  • The person who wrote the last body paragraph in the outline will remove the outline format and squish the sentences together into traditional essay format.

We will spend the next 20-30 minutes of class editing each other’s essays, and you will also divvy up your responsibilities within your group so each group member has one job:

  • The person who wrote the first body paragraph in the outline will edit for textual evidence, citations, and analysis.
  • The person who wrote the second body paragraph in the outline will edit for topic sentence, MI sentence, capitalization
  • The person who wrote the third body paragraph in the outline will edit for sentence purpose, spelling, and sentence structure.

The remainder of the period will be spent applying the suggested edits to your rough draft in order to make it a final draft, and reformatting the rough draft to meet MLA requirements:

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 11.42.24 AM
Formatting Rules Part 1
Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 11.42.49 AM
Formatting Rules Part 2: Please list your last names alphabetically in the header. For example, if Mr. Rasberry and I were to write a paper together, our headers in the top right would read “Hayes, Rasberry 1; Hayes, Rasberry 2; Hayes, Rasberry 3”
Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 11.43.13 AM
MLA formatting for essay example

Friday, 9/25/15

It’s vocabulary day! Please login to Schoology to take your Vocabulary 1.4 quiz. You will also need to bring your vocabulary 1.4 foldable to me for grading.

Once you finish your vocabulary quiz, you may either create your next Root Word Foldable for Vocabulary Unit 2, or you may finish the final draft of your essay if necessary.

If you don’t remember how to make the root word foldable, check out the video here. Don’t forget to draw the pictures on the inside flap!

Your new root words for this unit are below:

  1. Clud, Clus: Latin – shut, to close
  2. Cogn: Latin – know
  3. Cor: Latin – heart
  4. Cycl: Latin – circle
  5. Dem, Pop: Latin – people
  6. Dict: Latin – to say or speak
  7. Doc: Latin – to teach
  8. Dur: Latin – hard
  9. Struct: Latin – to build or make

All Things Vocabulary 1.3

Happy Tuesday, Jags!

Here’s your video for this week’s vocabulary. Make sure to watch the video, create your foldable, tape/glue it into your Interactive Student Notebook, and add the definitions to new roots, prefixes, and suffixes into the space above the foldable in order to get full credit on Friday.


If you need a refresher on how to make your foldable, check out the video below.

As always, you’re welcome to visit me during lunch to watch the video or ask any questions related to your weekly vocabulary!

Rockin’ Research Thesis Statements

Good morning, Jags!

As you already know, you have been writing a group research paper on an assigned Greek god or goddess. You’ve already written your eleven-sentence body paragraphs independently, and now it is time for you to collaboratively write your thesis statement, but first…

What is a thesis statement?

A thesis statement is a single sentence that clearly states your argument to the reader. When writing five paragraph essays, the thesis statement is always the last sentence in your introduction.

Thesis statements have three characteristics:

  1. They respond to the prompt – Your thesis statement needs to state your answer to a prompt, and the rest of your essay supports that answer.
  2. They state an argument – Your thesis statement needs to be argumentative, meaning that someone could disagree with your claim. Your body paragraphs provide evidence that supports your thesis statement in order to drive your point home to your reader.
  3. They are either open or closed – Read more about open and closed thesis statements below.

Open and Closed Thesis Statements

There are two types of thesis statements: open and closed.

  • Closed thesis statements list the topics in your body paragraphs. These topics must support the claim in your thesis statement. Students are usually expected to write closed thesis statements in the ninth and tenth grades.
    • Closed Thesis Example: Loki, the Norse god of mischief and mayhem, represents the complicated nature of Norse families, morals, and chaos. 
  • Open thesis statements do not list the three body paragraph topics. Instead, they use an umbrella term to address all of the topics in one short phrase. Students are usually expected to write open thesis statements in the eleventh and twelfth grades.
    • Open Thesis Example: Loki, the Norse god of mischief and mayhem, represents the complicated nature of moral development in Norse children. 

In the examples above, notice how the open thesis statement uses the umbrella term moral development to refer to the three supporting claims in one phrase: families, morals, and chaos. The closed thesis statement, however, simply lists the three ideas so the reader knows exactly how the author plans to support the claim, “Loki represents the complicated nature of morality in Norse society.”

For your group research essay, I expect you to write a closed thesis statement, not an open thesis statement. When you’re writing, make sure you refer to the three topic sentences you and your group members have already written.

Writing the Eleven Sentence Body Paragraph

Greetings, Jags!

For your Ancient Deity Research Paper, you are expected to collaboratively write a five-paragraph essay with elevenScreen Shot 2015-09-01 at 10.53.44 AM-sentence body paragraphs. To be successful, you need to make sure that every sentence serves the purpose it needs to serve. These purposes (specific to your Ancient Deity Research Paper prompt) are explained below.

One Topic Sentence

Your topic sentence is the sentence that tells your reader what the rest of paragraph will be about. This sentence must be specific enough to introduce the topic, but vague enough to lead into the more specific main idea chunks. The topic sentence should also refer back to the thesis, which also refers back to the prompt.

For this particular assignment, each topic sentence should be about a different characteristic that can be tied to Ancient Greek culture. If you are having trouble with your topic sentence, try using one of the formulas below:

  • God’s name, the god of ___, represents the importance of ____ to Ancient Greek culture.
  • God’s name is also the god of ___, meaning that ___ was important to Ancient Greek culture.
  • God’s name was personality trait, and the rewards or consequences of his/her trait indicate that the Ancient Greeks valued or did not value personality trait.

Of course, you are not limited to these topic sentence templates, but you may find them helpful when composing your own topic sentences.

Three Main Idea Chunks

One Main Idea Sentence per Chunk

The main idea sentence introduces a claim that supports your topic sentence.

For your essay on an Ancient Greek Deity, your three main ideas for each paragraph will be on the three things listed below:

  1. One specific characteristic of your god
  2. One specific myth exemplifying the characteristic from the first main idea
  3. An explanation of how the characteristic and the myth represent the values of Ancient Greek Culture

So, your main idea sentences may look something like the templates below:

  •  As the god of ___, god’s name was characteristic.
  • God’s name’s characteristic is evident/exemplified/shown/apparent in the myth about ___.
  • Since god’s name’s characteristic almost always led to rewards/consequences in Greek Mythology, the Ancient Greeks must have valued/frowned upon characteristic.

Remember, you are not limited to these main idea sentence templates, but you may find them helpful when composing your main idea sentences.

One Textual Evidence Sentence per Chunk

The textual evidence sentence provides a quote from a text, or paraphrased information from a text, that supports the main idea sentence.

The textual evidence sentences for each main idea chunk should have an embedded quote from research or myths. Remember to avoid “quote splat” by introducing and citing your quote using one of the three patterns on the Patterns for Embedding Quotes digital handout.

One Analysis Sentence per Chunk

The analysis sentence connects the textual evidence to the main idea and to the topic sentence. Basically, the analysis sentence is where you tell the reader what to think about the information you’ve presented in your chunk, and it usually connects the information back to the topic sentence and back to the prompt.

Analysis sentences vary greatly, so templates would not be helpful here. If you have questions or concerns about your analysis sentences, come see me during lunch or add your question to your GoogleDoc in the form of a comment on the sentence in question. I may answer your question, or your group members may also provide feedback on your analysis sentences.

One Clincher

The clincher is the last sentence of your paragraph. It restates the topic sentence (using different words) and it leaves the reader with a lasting impression. When your eleven sentence paragraph is a body paragraph in a five paragraph essay, the clincher may also transition to the next paragraph.

All Things Vocabulary 1.2

Happy Wednesday, Jags!

Here’s your video for Vocabulary 1.2. Please make sure you finish your foldable and study your vocabulary words before Friday, September 11th. If you have questions about the words or the definitions, please come see me during lunch so I can give you individual attention.

If you need a refresher on how to make your vocabulary foldable, check out the video below.


Ms. Hayes

Priority List: September 2nd – 3rd

Greetings, Jags!

Today you’re making a GoogleDocs and a Schoology account, and you’re also completing your research paper outline! Woot woot! Please use the priority list below to accomplish all of these tasks in the appropriate order.

First Priority: Make a Student Google Account

I understand that many of you already have an account through Google, but I expect you to make a new one today following these two requirements:

  • Username: first.last19
  • Password: Student ID Number

Once you’ve created your account, please add your information to the appropriate sheet on my student email spreadsheet. Simply select your class and add your information in the next available slot.


Once you’ve finished setting up your Google account, please send me an empty email with your first and last name as the subject line (my email address is kelly.hayes@aps.edu). This will be your professional email address to use for the rest of your high school career.

Second Priority: Make a Schoology Account

Every Friday, you will take your vocabulary quiz on Schoology. Sometimes, we will also use Schoology to have class discussions online.

When making your Schoology account, please use your Student Google account as your Schoology username and your student ID number as your password.

Once you make your account, you will need to join my class. To do this, you will click on courses at the top of the page, then click join at the bottom of the drop down menu. Copy and paste the appropriate access code below into the access code box that pops up.

1st period: CRXNB-WM6VS

2nd period: CZWRX-V4Z6S

3rd period: G9DVQ-R4Q67

4th period: 6JNKH-P729D

5th period: 84HN3-K2SNQ

6th period: MJHMJ-KKQP6

Third Priority: Research Group Discussion

Now that you’ve gotten the housekeeping stuff out-of-the-way, please visit the Greek Deity Outline Preparation: Questions for Discussion page. Copy and paste the questions into a new GoogleDoc, and take notes as you discuss each question.

Before moving on to the next step, share your discussion document with the rest of your group members and with me (kelly.hayes@aps.edu) so I can give you a group grade for the discussion. 


Fourth Priority: Outline Body Paragraphs Independently

Once you’ve agreed on the topic sentences and main idea sentences as a group, please save a copy of the outline to your GoogleDrive and finish your specific body paragraph independently. You may find it helpful to review your notes on the eleven sentence paragraph while working on your outline.

Before the end of the period, share your outline with me at kelly.hayes@aps.edu so I can give you a grade for your work.