This Week: February 4-8, 2013

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? You know you’re not as young and cool as you thought you once were when the band that you’ve idolized since you were sixteen writes a song that makes think immediately of Mrs. Dalloway. Either there’s something frumpy about you or them, but either way, well, let’s just say you don’t go running around trying to tell your friends about what you’ve discovered.

In concert, though, you get to do a lot of primal wo-ohs, so enjoy the video.

So here’s how the week is shaking out; sorry for the lack of concrete detail, LLC, but we’re sort of making it up as we go along. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.

AP English
This week involves two whole group sessions, and two breakdown group sessions, and each of you drops once. In the large group classes on Monday and Tuesday, we’ll have our last discussion about the narrative style, and try to slice our way through the different characters’ internal and external conflict.

On Monday, assuming that televised photos of a light snowfall in Manitoba don’t cause a school cancellation in New Canaan, we will share our Friday observations about epic similes (except for that one), and we’ll use that opportunity to clarify the way the main characters have been introduced to us. Monday’s homework will be to complete the Day 3 reading assignment, at which point we will have an even clearer picture of the conflicted characters’ conflicts.

When you leave class on Tuesday, you should have a narrower, more personal purpose for your reading, as you will by then have enough background and understanding of the story to begin choosing your own line of inquiry into the novel. This is when you will begin applying the principle of simultaneity to your reading: while you are reading to discover what will happen next in the novel in general, you will also be focusing your attention more precisely on the character or idea you will most likely address in the essay you’re going to give to me as a Valentine’s Day gift.

I know it will seem awkward to give me a Valentine’s Day gift, but it’s a lot less creepy than you getting one from me.

On Wednesday, as well as the last class meeting of the week, you will group yourselves with like-minded folk and discuss those moments in the text that reveal subtleties about the movement of characters’ conflicts, and start connecting the dots of the story to see important moments in context.

I will also be seeking volunteers to help me shoot some instructional videos. As I try to implement the suggestions you’ve made about my role in your goal strategies, I want to reteach certain lessons on introduction development, topic sentences and quotes in the analytical essay. The iMovie app on the iPad makes iProduction pretty iEasy, but I can’t really shoot myself, can I? (I know what some of you just thought, and it hurts my feelings.)

LLC
I’ve asked you to read “The Lottery” for Monday, and we’ll discuss it in context with “The Red Bow” to see if we can learn a little something about big ideas and the ways different authors address them at different times. But this doesn’t mean I’ve figured out what we’re reading for the rest of the week. I only know that at some point, by midweek, I want you to start picking out your own stories. Be warned: I do have “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” on the brain, but you’d have to prove that you can accept the cartoon world’s existence in English class stories as a condition of being able to read anything by Marquez.

 

 

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