Monday, October 20, 2014

Creating your characters

Today you will begin creating the main characters for your novel. You are going to fill out "character questionnaires" for your protagonist, antagonist, and at least one supporting character. These questionnaires need to be completed and shared with me in Google Docs by Wednesday. To accomplish this task, follow the instructions below:

1. Go to your Google Drive and open our view only shared folder called "English 14-15." If you cannot see this folder, let me know. Inside, there is a folder called NaNoWriMo, the Character Questionnaire is located in that folder.

2. Open the Character Questionnaire and make a copy. Name your copy "period# lastname firstname questionnaire" (for example: 1 Baker Laura questionnaire) and share it with me (

 3. Type your responses in bold or a different color to make them easier to read.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Selecting your NaNoWriMo word count goal (and a place to browse for ideas)

Choosing the right word count goal for YOU is an important part of NaNoWriMo. Don't worry about what your friends are a goal that is challenging, yet attainable for YOU!

Take a minute and ask yourself the following questions:
1)    Do you enjoy writing? Do you feel comfortable and confident in your writing ability?
2)    Do you feel like you need to be challenged more in English class or is English a difficult subject for you? (Consider your current grade.)

I do not feel comfortable writing and am feeling VERY nervous about this assignment.  English is pretty hard for me. I don't mind having a very small novel and potentially earning a lower grade.

I am an OK writer and I am doing decently in English class. I need a little bit of a challenge.
I love writing and have been really excited about the idea of writing my own novel. I am ready for a big challenge!




Now that you have selected and entered your word count goal into NaNoWriMo, you hopefully have a pretty good idea of what your novel is going to be about. We start prewriting on Monday, so you'll need to have some solid ideas by then. If you are still stumped, try browsing some of your classmates ideas to draw some inspiration.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Your Model Novel

Today you brought to class your "model novel" -- a novel that you've read, enjoyed, and know well. Today you are going to examine the parts of that novel to draw some inspiration for the novel that YOU will be writing during the month of November. Click here to tell me about your model novel.

After you submit the form, you are going to write a "Book Talk Teaser" about your model novel on the left side of page 11 in you interactive notebook (under your quick write). Don't worry, this isn't a whole book review, but more like a movie trailer for your model novel; it gives just enough information to leave the audience wanting more! Take a look at this example about the novel The Great Wide Open.

Kenny Kolodny, the main character of Kevin Canty’s novel Into the Great Wide Open, has some serious problems. His mom is in a mental hospital. His dad drinks too much and then has a stroke. Kenny doesn’t have much hope for the future, that is, until he meets Junie Williamson. Junie lives in a fancy house with her very successful parents, and her life seems perfect—but Kenny knows it isn’t, because Junie has a problem that even her parents can’t ignore. For a while Kenny and Junie’s adventures provide an escape they both need; sooner or later though, both of them have to face reality. Will they be able to do it together?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Your "perfect book" plan

As we prepare to write our own novels during NaNoWriMo in the month of November, we are going to start thinking about what makes a novel great. Today, you and your partner (who you chose yesterday) are going to be brainstorming what makes a "perfect" book. The book you brainstorm today DOES NOT have to be the same as the novel that you write for NaNoWriMo...but if you love it, you can certainly use it! You and your partner will share one computer and fill out one form together. When you are ready to begin, click here.

After you submit your form, you will have about 10 minutes to complete some other business in the library.
1) Check out a new independent reading book if you need one. Remember, you will be responsible for writing a book review about it later!
2) You need to bring a "model novel" (a novel that you have read, enjoyed, and know well) with you to class tomorrow. If you don't own your model novel, you can check it out while you are here.
3) Return your group novel (unless you are saving it to use as your model novel tomorrow).

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Open House 2014

Hello parents, guardians, students, and friends,

I'm sorry that I could not be at tonight's open house, but please view this video to learn all about what we will be doing this year in ninth grade English.

If your student is part of the yearbook staff, we've already hit the ground running! Ask your student which pages he or she has been assigned for our first deadline (November 3). Your student (along with his/her partner) is responsible for the photography, layout, and copy writing on that page. Being part of the yearbook staff is a fun privilege, but also a huge responsibility, since the whole school is counting on us for a great finished product in June! Click here for another look at the yearbook syllabus.

I'm looking forward to a great year together!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

"The Rights to the Streets of Memphis"

Today we read "The Rights to the Streets of Memphis" on page 37 of your orange paperback textbooks. As you read, you paused to interact with the text and answer the margin questions.

Your final task was to answer the short response question on page 43:

This period in Richard Wright’s life was full of conflict. Would you say his biggest challenge was overcoming an external conflict or an internal conflict? Write a paragraph response using examples from the text.

If you are completing the response paragraph for homework, you may use the frame below to assist you with your academic language.

Although Richard Wright faced many conflicts as a child, his biggest challenge was overcoming the _________ (internal or external) conflict he faced against _________________________. This conflict was the most significant because ____________________________________. For example, ____________________________________________. This example proves/shows/illustrates _________________________.