Wednesday, May 23, 2012


SE Cyber-Assignment Reflection and Comments

We had fun making books last week, our final class meeting. Today those who made it were also in for a treat as students presented their SE essays and some book reports.

Keno's SE, the founder of EBay who now owns Pay pal was great, especially the short video he shared which talked about the entrepreneur's personal journey and his philosophy one which I am certain many entrepreneurs profiled also share, like Rohan's John Wood, whose Room to Read sounds like a fantastic effort.

I also like Keno's great storytelling skills presented not just in his SE presentation but also in the gripping tale of Buck in Call of the Wild, another book on my summer reading list.

Rohan was similarly bitten by inspiration when he met his entrepreneur in the Frontline World Video and then went on to read his memoir. That Wood is improving the lives of people in his home country, people who are not related to him, makes Rohan even more enthusiastic.

Similarly Luis Rodriguez has lit many fires and inspired many students like the trio: Kong, Sam, and Myung who did a wonderful presentation. They even had a bit of Mexican folkloric music --a nice touch. I loved the way, Tesfaye told the same story with flare. Pen in hand, he illustrated Rodriguez's desire to fill an niche in his community by opening the book store community center in East LA. Likewise, Stephanie told yet another story about Rodriquez entertainingly. He is a man none of us tires of.

Patrice's personal involvement in the organization she told us about Youth Learning Culture Institute was great, especially when I looked at the two women, and realized I had met them before. It was great seeing her three children in the newpaper article too.

Hong or Lynda is great with the powerpoint presentation. We reviewed her research last week and the presentation reflected a deeper look at Ralf Hotchkiss. Kong's presentation on a book by Bruce Lee was also inspiring. The book is a great one to carry in one's car or back pocket for those moments when one needs a bit of sunshine.

Stephanie's choice of The Handmaiden's Tale was also fun. I love Margaret Atwood and a new film is out based on a lecture, now book looking at what we owe. Check it out. It opened a few weeks ago. I had the director, Jennifer Baichwal, also Canadian on my radio show last month talking about Payback.

My interview with LR is at:

Write a self-reflection on your presentation. What improved between the book report essay and this one?

Secondly, write a brief reponse for your peers. Talk about their strengths. What worked well? Include both in your porfolio in the SE section. There is a line for each comment.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Yesterday I gave students a copy of the posted documents below. They are the same documents; one is more detailed than the other. What I want you to pay attention to is the portfolio narrative information.

Yesterday I gave students a copy of the posted documents below. They are the same documents; one is more detailed than the other. What I want you to pay attention to is the portfolio narrative information.


Portfolio Checklist English 201 Spring 2012

On the cover page identify yourself by responding to the following:

Mailing Address
Phone Number
E-mail address
Course number and code

This page is followed by the narratives.

The only paper copies are the freewrites, perhaps reading logs, and this checklist completed. Do not give me your originals. Turn this checklist into me filled out to the best of your ability the day of final.

The portfolio narratives (These are essays. Each essay is minimally 250 words in length. Where necessary, essay 2, there should be a works cited page.)

1. The first narrative essay will look at the past 18 weeks of study, and the themes we looked at this semester such as gangs and violence via books and films: Yummy, Luis Rodriguez’s Always Running, Juvies, The Interrupters, and Sandra Cisneros’s House on Mango Street.

In your research papers you chose a person to highlight who has made it their life’s work to use their skills to better the lives of others in society. Talk about what you've learned and discovered this semester about writing and yourself, college and life, which have transformed or changed you.

What have you learned about the discipline you are studying here: reading and writing that you plan to carry forth into your lifelong pursuit of learning.

Please also comment on the texts and whether or not they were helpful in this process. You can also talk about the instruction, culture of the class and the teacher. You can also offer suggestions for future students, instruction and on the instruction.

2. The second part of the narrative looks at the writing process and what you have been learning about yourself as a writer. Take two essays and talk about the planning, research and revision strategies you used. It helps to choose an early paper and compare to a later paper. Often you can more easily see the differences in your writing and a better example of mastery of certain concepts. Also discuss skills you need to improve and how you plan to address that.

Besides the two reflection essays, I also want you to include the Hootenanny essay, the letter to the Governor and any response from his office, a reflection on The Interrrupters and Juvies from the blog, the research essay and cyber-assignments.

Additional narrative considerations for the portfolio essay:

The second essay has students look at the writing process and discuss their own writing process: the topics chosen, the information used, revision strategies, writing as a process. This should include a definition of the difference between editing and revising and a value statement on the place for both in composition.

I am really interested in discourse about audience and how that shapes or determines how the writer approaches her topic.

I am also interested in discussion of the revision process, and whether or not seeing writing as a work in progress or a draft, liberates or stagnates the creative process. (Students are to use examples from their writing to illustrate these points.)

I'd also like students to think about and give at three specific ways how they have grown as writers and thinkers this semester. Each essay should be minimally 1-2 pages (250-500 words).

I have given you two essays that look at the revision process. Please include this in the reflection directly or as a part of the bibliography.


Portfolio Checklist Draft 2012

This checklist can serve as the table of contents. Put a check next to the items to show inclusion in the portfolio. Use as the second page to the portfolio, after the cover sheet. Where there are questions for the section, students can post the answers to the narrative there.

Number the pages with a header.

Name ______________________________
Date ______________________________
Class including class code and semester ____________________
Address _______________________________________
Phone number __________________________________
Email address__________________________________

ENG 201 A
21768 Lec 01:00-02:50 PM MW Sabir A-202

ENG 201 B
21774 Lec 01:00-02:50 PM MW Sabir A-202

Class Meetings: Jan. 23—May 17, 1-2:50

May 21 9 AM to 12 PM A-205/maybe 1-3 as well (check with me first)
Portfolio assembly workshop _______________

Portfolio Due Date
Portfolios due by Friday, May 25, 12 Noon electronically. Make sure you receive a receipt for your submission. No paper copies, no exceptions.

Grade Justification
What grade do you think you've earned this semester? What evidence supports this conclusion?

1. Portfolio Essay 1 Don't forget to talk about SPHE _______

2. Portfolio Essay 2 __________________

3. Stewart Pidd Hates English _______________

Quizzes: List scores for all:
Punctuating Sentences Quiz A______ Quiz B______; MLA Style Title Quiz ________; MLA Style Format _________; Pronoun AGR ________; Pronoun Case _______; Quotations and Ellipsis Marks Quiz _______; Possessive Nouns and Pronouns ________; Parallel Structure ________; Subject-Verb AGR_______

Essay Exams
Essay Exam 1: Pronoun Case______; Essay Exam 2: Possessives; Essay Exam 3: Parallel Structure __________

For each essay exam, note which errors were chosen and whether or not you had to revise the essay. If you did, what corrections did you make, and why?

Grammar Exams
Grammar Exam 1: Score: ________. Analyze your score. What type of errors did you make?

Grammar Exam 2: Score: ________. Analyze your score. What type of errors did you make?

Other Pidd Essays: Sentence Punctuation ________; Pronoun AGR _________; POV _____; Be-Verb ________; Subject-Verb AGR________.

List scores for all.

Hootenanny Essay (post with grade) ____________

Always Running Essay Portfolio _________
Include: planning sheet_______
Peer Review________
Graded Drafts_______ (how many?) Do not forget the narratives for revisions which speak to what changed between drafts)

Book Report
Planning Sheet, Outline, Thesis___________
Final draft grade__________
Pidd-type essay grade ____________or Narrative________________

Book Report presentation___________
Peer comments (how many?)_________________
Include in your portfolio for the essay__________

Book Report Presentations:
Grade is an “A”for all presentations or “-0-“ for opting out. The presentation is a quarter of the grade for this assignment


Social Entrepreneur

Planning _____________
On-line Frontline World (on-line responses 3) Post them here

List of sources (5) minimum in MLA format (post here) _____________

Essay: Planning Sheet, Outline, Thesis__________
First Draft (peer review via email)__________
Final Draft Grade due into me by Monday, May 21, 12 noon______________
Revisions _____________
Pidd type essay ________________ or narrative ____________

SE Presentation May 12-2 p.m. Wed., May 23, 2012 ___________
Abstract for classmates _____________ (Bring to class.) If you give to me in advance, I will make copies for students. You can email me. If you need technology, let me know as well.

The presentation is a quarter of the grade.

House on Mango Street
Post text from freewrites here. How many chapters_______
Did you make a book: yes_______ no_________
Bring your book to the final exam. Grade________

Yummy Assignments
Freewrite _______
Letter to Governor Brown________
Anything else__________

New Heroes essay responses (Inderjit Khurana, Mimi Silbert . . .), include with SE portfolio.

Other cyber-assignments (how many?) ________________

Extra Credit: Students can turn in a graded essay from another course if the other teacher doesn’t mind. It has to use research and MLA style documentation, so certain courses are not applicable.

Anything else? ____________________________________________________________________

Teacher research

Can I use your work in presentations and publications? Would you like to be anonymous? If I plan on using your essays or work in a book, I will let you know and share any proceeds.

Yes, I agree.
No, do not use my work.

Final Grade

Portfolio checklist _____________
Portfolio Essay 1_______________
Portfolio Essay 2_______________
Portfolio Grade_________

Course Grade_________

Wednesday, May 09, 2012



1. Freewrite: House on Mango Street--today this was to be the freewrite, but no one brought his or her books, so for homework choose between 2-3 chapters to read and respond to.

Bring all the Mango freewrites to class Monday in one document. We will print the pages and make our books.

Each student should have minimally 10 chapters or 10 freewrites. You can have more.

2. Book Report Essay presentations. Five students presented today. The students who did not present, can present the day of the final.

The presentations were great, some better than others. Visuals help one's audience stay engaged. A story board helps. If your book has been made into film, show us a clip (smile). You do not have to tell us the entire story, just prove your thesis.

Next week is the last week of classes. I will host a Portfolio workshop the week of finals. I hope students will be able to make it.

3. Revisions of returned essays--workshop. Next week, students who have revisions due, make sure you understand my comments.

4. Other homework: Bring in all graded assignments Monday. SE essay: keep becoming an expert. Write a fast draft for Wednesday to share. We will have an informal peer/teacher review. Everyone should bring in an outline.

Students are still having trouble developing thesis sentences. A thesis sentence is a declarative sentence, a statement of fact. It is not an absolute fact or a question. It is an assertion one has to prove with evidence. It is an assertion that is debatable, which means your audience does not have to agree with you.

Respond to classmate's presentations. If you presented, write a self-reflection. Note your strengths and area for improvement.

Monday, May 07, 2012



Post your abstract for the Book Report Essay here.

Take notes on the presentation and write comments here. How well does the presenter make his or her point?

Self-reflection: Reflect on the presentation. What do you do well? Where do you need to improve? Use examples.

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