9 CPI: Of Mice & Men & Tolerance Project Proposals

Today was an early release day, which meant we didn’t have a lot of time to dig into that much content.  That’s okay because we still had plenty to do.

Period 1 we started with Of Mice & Men, finishing the first section. (Period 3 we skipped this step and will be catching up on Friday.) On Friday we will follow George & Lennie to the ranch for the first time and see the men with whom they will be working. (Look in your gmail for a document called Steinbeck if you want to catch up.)

From there folks had some time to catch up on blogging and making sure all of their online Roots & MUGS quizzes are in the books for 3rd quarter.  With grades finalizing on Thursday night, that’s kind of ridiculously important.

And then attention turned to the Tolerance Project Proposal forms.    I met with a number of folks about their proposals and will meet with the rest on Friday.

If you need help with the Bloom’s Taxonomy part, look at this Bloom’s Taxonomy model and click on the parts of the wheel that explain to you the sorts of thinking and task you need to do at each level.

Some great stuff that I heard today . . .

Essential Questions:  

  • How can we become more patient?
  • How can we make people more aware of their offensive language even when they don’t mean to be offensive?
  • How can teenagers better understand adults?
  • How can students better tolerate homework?

Product Ideas:

  • Video game
  • Informational Poster Campaigns
  • Amazing Keynote
  • Video
  • Short story
  • Website


Roots 11 Word Castles/Roots Product & Quiz on Tuesday, April 9

Tolerance Project Due Friday After April Vacation

Blogging – Text-to-Text, Text-to-Self, Text-to-World over the first reading of Of Mice & Men expected to be one of your three blog entries this week. This was assigned on Monday (Quarter 4 Week 1)

9 CPI: Tolerance Projects, Of Mice & Men & End of the 3rd Quarter

The 3rd Quarter ends for us at midnight, Monday.  (This is the extension I offered the class last Thursday because of my absences last week.)

In class today we started reading John Steinbeck’s Of Mice & Men.  (There’s a chunk in your e-mail so you can follow along if you don’t have your book.)  I’ll be reading most of the book out loud to you folks during our normal PrimeTime sessions.  (This is the closest thing we’ve got to a tradition in my classes and I figured this would be as good a year as any to keep that going.)

A few things you need to remember about this book —

It was written in the 1930s and takes place in the 1930s.  Steinbeck wrote it as a way to capture what was happening in the country at the time.  It takes place in southern California, one of the few places where people could find farm work during the Dust Bowl era.  And it features two migrant workers trying to make a living the best they can manage.

After I read up to the moment where Lennie complains about the rubber mouse, I asked folks to blog, making text to text, text to self and text to world connections.  If you need a refresher on these connections, check here.

We took a few minutes to look at Roots 11 on Quizlet.  There will be a quiz next TUESDAY and word castles/roots products are due that day.

From there we looked at the rubric for the Tolerance Project. Originally the due date was to be next Friday, the day before vacation.  But I think extended the deadline to the end of the week after vacation will help you all to create better products.  That said, you still have to get started right away.

For Wednesday, complete the project proposal form. It is available in your Google Drive. We will read a little Of Mice & Men on Wednesday and spend some time looking at Bloom’s Taxonomy to make sure your projects are pushing the envelope.  On Friday we will look at characterization and how to work that into your projects.


Complete Project Proposal Form for Tolerance Project – Due Wednesday 4/3

Study Roots 11 and Complete Word Castles/Roots Product 11 – Due Tuesday 4/9



9 CPI: Early Release, To Kill a Mockingbird & Make Up Work

Today’s class was focused almost exclusively on To Kill a Mockingbird, the film.  The clip we watched is available on your school Google Drive.

Screen shot 2013-03-14 at 12.02.08 AMAfter watching, folks were expected to make three text connections to the film excerpt.  (Text to self, text to text and text to world, naturally.)

Remember to blog at least three times this week as well as complete the creative challenge for the week revolving around pre-thinking for the tolerance project.  It is described in the post from Monday.

On Friday we will be watching more of the film and talking about the project on tap.

On another note . .

I love it when my students are passing the class.  It isn’t an easy feat to accomplish.  I assign a rigorous work load, there are usually many things happening at once, and the thinking tends to be different from what students are most familiar.  Looking at passing grades, especially those that meet and those that exceed the standards?  Seriously, it feels fantastic.

There is quite a bit of make up work that could be completed and better ensure that I get all those super warm fuzzies at the end of the quarter. Remember that you no longer have to complete Word Castles unless you prefer them to inventing your own Roots Word Product.  That product could be anything from a poem to a short story to a slideshow to a podcast to a song to a model to . . . really . . anything that demonstrates an understanding of the roots and their meanings that goes beyond just copying it down.

A number of folks did not complete the Three 4 Thinking form after looking at the pre-writing slideshow or the hook introduction video.  These are both reading assessments and should be completed ASAP.

Remember also that you can retake any Roots or MUGS quiz.  All you need to do is demonstrate practice and studying.

Humanities: Roots Quiz & Tolerance Work

We will take a Roots #13 quiz, review the project rubric, and then it is off to the food court to work.

Mr. Ryder had to leave early today to take care of a sick kid, but since the kid is napping his face off, folks should feel free to ask him questions via Gmail chat/email.

Projects.  Tomorrow.  Due.  Blogs.  Tomorrow.  Due.


9 CPI: Digging Up Roots 5 & Rocking the Blogger for the 1st Time

Tuesday, November 13, we started the day with a scary quiet PrimeTime in the library. (At least during Period 1 it was quiet.  Eerie quiet.  I’m obsessing and shall move on . . . )

Then we went on a Roots 5 photo hunt — moving about the campus taking pictures of items that remind us of the Roots 5 terms.  There’s a huge Roots 1 through 5 quiz next Monday.  It’s epic and will frighten small children.  Be not afraid ye who study.

After that we set up Blogger — our blogs will soon be listed on the 9 CPI page — and conferenced about PBL projects.

The weather was disgusting outside, but good things were a happening on the inside.

9 CPI: Project Based Learning — It Begins . . .

Tuesday, October 23rd we started to change things up from the norm.

Everything started as it normally does: attendance, PrimeTime, some work on Quizlet.  Wait . . . what was that?  Yes.  Roots work on Quizlet, an online flash card site where students can take quizzes and play games custom-designed to help you learn the roots.

After that we went outside and took a look at some junk beside the recycling shed.  We thought of projects we could do with the junk: broken desks, chairs, old mops, a wooden palate, some busted concrete.  (The best idea of the two classes might have been “redneck Transformer.”)

Then we went inside and watch some video about Project-Based Learning (PBL)


And this lead to a discussion of what school has been like and what it could be.

Finally, we took a look at West Virginia’s PBL site and the projects students are doing in schools there.

Already folks are thinking about building cars, computers, creating audio tributes, doing something with food, something with music, and something with art.

Next class, we formulate ideas and take a serious look at the process necessary to get this underway.