From Mr. Parsons:

  • Review Chapter 8
  • Take Chapters 7 & 8 Quiz
  • Mood, Diction, and Connotation activity
  • Activity: Staging the scene. Students will reenact Chapter 9, Section I. Students will take the role of the characters and act out the situation as the chapter progresses, and see how they build on the suspense of the scene by acting it out.
  • Read & annotate Chapter 9- Skim pages 150-164 (go over with class) and mark p. 165.

Annotate: Armstrong as suspect (140-141), Change in weather (146) MacArthur’s death (147), Cause of death (148), Wargrave’s speech (165).

Homework: Finish Chapter 9


From Mr. Parsons:

  • Review Chapter 9
  • Activity: The Cabinet of Dr. Cagliari: Students will watch a scene from the silent film. Students will write in their Writer’s Notebooks about how a silent film conveys a sense of suspense and the power of inference in a silent film. Students will be asked to find where the novel uses these same skills to build suspense.
  • Read & annotate Chapter 10
  • Preview finding/using mood, diction and connotation. A frame sentence will be modeled to show how mood/diction/connotation work in conjunction with the novel.

Annotate: Armstrong as suspect (170-171), Wargrave & Armstrong (174), Brent’s mental state (175), Missing items (176-177).

Homework: Finish Chapter 10


From Mr. Parsons:

  • Review Chapter 10
  • Group mood activity (see Mr. Parsons for worksheet). Turn in when finished.
  • When finished, begin reading Chapter 11.

Annotate: Sleeping in (182). Heavy hitting event (185), Vera loses it (186).

Homework: Finish reading & annotating Chapter 11. Quiz 9-11 on Thursday


From Mr. Parsons:

Links to today’s activities and notes:

Mood notes: moodnotes

Mood Assignment: moodassignementindividual

  • Quiz 9-11 taken today
  • Read Chapter 12 for homework

Annotate: Brent’s condition (199), Bee aware of this big event! (202-203), More missing items (204,210), Searching the guests (207).


From Mr. Parsons:

  • We took the English interim assessment. Make sure you find a time to make it up if you missed it!
  • We read and annotated Chapter 13

Annotate: The weather (212), Lights out! (215-216), Vera’s scream (218), Judge for yourself if this is a major event! (223), Remember those itmes that went missing earlier?

Homework: Finish reading Chapter 13. Quiz Monday: Chapters 12 & 13


October 24-28th

Monday, October 24th

From Mr. Parsons:

  1. Review chapter 2 and annotations.
  2. Take Chapters 1 & 2 quiz.
  3. Begin reading Chapter 3 in class.

Annotate: China soldiers & poem in every room p. 40, The voice accusing all of murder p. 42-43, Discovering they’ve been invited by vague acquaintances p. 51-54, Blore is detective & suspect p. 55, Host= U.N. Owen/Unknown p. 56

Homework = Finish reading & annotating Chapter 3.

Tuesday, October 25th

From Mr. Parsons:

  1. Writer’s Notebook entry: What do you think about the characters all being accused of murder? Which one do you think the most surprising? The least?
  2. Activity: Believability. With your group, look at each of the crimes that the characters are accused of. With your group, number the characters from most likely to least likely to have committed a crime such as this. Then, by yourself, write 3-5 sentences explaining how your group came up with this list.
  3. Review chapter 3 & annotations.
  4. Read chapter 4 & annotate

Annotate: Wargrave taking charge (63-64), Wargrave & MacArthur’s stories (64-65), Vera’s story (66), Lombard’s reaction (67), Blore’s story 70, Armstrong’s thoughts (71), Brent’s reaction (72), BIG event (75)

Homework: Finish reading & annotating chapter 4

If absent, complete “Believability” activity on your own to turn in.

Quiz on chapters 3 & 4

Wednesday, October 26th

From Mr. Parsons:

  1. Writer’s notebook: What was your reaction to Anthony’s death? Did you think he’d be the first to die?
  2. Review chapter 4
  3. Take chapter 3 & 4 quiz
  4. Begin reading chapter 5 & annotate
  5. Activity: Look on the page where Wargrave discusses Seton and his physical appearance after he takes his teeth out to sleep. In your group, draw a double faced picture of Wargrave. On one side of the face, draw his outward, normal appearance. On the other side, draw his inner, toothless, cruel side. Be prepared to describe what this says about Wargrave as a character.

Annotate: Group’s reaction to Anthony’s death (76-77), Wargrave on Seton (81), The Soldiers (81), MacArthur’s guilt (82-83), Vera’s flashback (87)

Homework: Finish reading & annotating chapter 5. Complete Wargrave activity at home, dividing the paper into two sections. On one side, describe Wargrave’s outward appearance, and on the other side describe is inner personality.

Character Quiz tomorrow

Thursday, October 27th

From Mr. Parsons:

  1. Review chapter 5
  2. Character quiz
  3. Begin reading chapter 6 & annotate
  4. Writer’s Notebook: Two characters have died already according to the poem. What do you think will happen to the next victim based on it (Eight traveling to Devon, one said he’d stay there)?

Annotate: Armstrong’s flashback (91-92), Mrs. Roger’s death (93), Reactions to the death (98-99), MacArthur’s revelation (103), Soldier figures (105-106).

Homework: Finish reading & annotating chapter 6

Friday, October 28th

From Mr. Parsons:

  1. Writer’s Notebook: Everyone is starting to react to the deaths on the island. Which character seems suspicious so far based on their reaction?
  2. Review chapter 6
  3. Activity: Use a blank sheet of paper, and write down each character’s name that is still alive, skipping lines to allow for space to write.  find at least 2-3 for each character along with page numbers that might cast each character in a suspicious light. Students may consult their groups for help.
  4. Begin reading chapter 7 & annotate.

Annotate: The women’s conversation (108-109), Brent’s reaction to “our black brothers” (110), Brent’s story (110-111), Suicide theory (115), Armstrong’s conscious (115), Owen as a suspect (118)

Homework: Finish reading & annotating chapter 7, read & annotate chapter 8 over the weekend.

October 17-21st

Monday, October 17th

From Mr. Parsons:

  • Read Agatha Christie’s biography on Mystery Net (link below).
  • On a blank sheet of paper, write down 5 interesting facts about Christie’s life.
  • Below this, pick out 3 of the most interesting facts and write 3-5 sentences on how these 3 facts you picked out influenced Christie’s mystery novels and her writing.
  • Christie bio link: http://www.mysterynet.com/agatha-christie/

Tuesday, October 18th

  • Go to the library to check out/check in books.
  • Clean out and organize binders for the new nine weeks. *If you were absent, come by room one morning to get help with organization.
  • Discuss protocol for reading And Then There Were None: the blabber box, the consent form, book checks, and Roman Numerals.
  • Go over the 10 Commandments of Detective Fiction.
  • Complete Google form as a skills preview: Skills Preview Google Form
  • Homework: Your copy of ATTWN is due Thursday! We start reading on Thursday!

Wednesday, October 19th

From Mr. Parsons:

  • In your writer’s notebook, answer, What do you look at when you are trying to determine what someone is like using their outward appearance? What is an inner truth that people wouldn’t know about someone right away?
  • Complete the ATTWN character appearance activity using projected images of each character and Chromebooks  to access Google Forms. Google Form link: ATTWN Character Google Form
  • Results and discussion will be had after the Google Form is filled out.

Thursday, October 20th

From Mr. Parsons:

  • Hand out character chart to have side by side during reading
  • Introduce “Big Question” poster (How does Christie create suspense? How does she use extreme characters to show the best and worst sides of people?). This will be referenced daily.
  • Read chapter 1 of ATTWN and annotate together as a class. Point out how it fits the mystery plot circle.
  • Annotate: Description of Wargrave (1), Vera and her letter (3-4), Coroner’s Inquest (4), Drowning and Hugo (5), Lombard and his reason for going to the island (5), Lombard’s situation (6), Emily Brent (7), Brent’s letter (8-9).

Homework: Be prepared to read a chapter a day

Friday, October 21st

From Mr. Parsons:

  • Review yesterday’s reading (re-read Writer’s Notebook entry).
  • Read and annotate the rest of chapter 1.
  • Annotate: MacArthur’s reason going to the island (10), MacArthur’s rumor (10), Armstrong on his success (11), Armstrong’s reason going to the island (12), Armstrong’s problem (13), Marston’s personality (14), Blore’s notebook (15), Blore’s reason going to the island (15), Blore’s disguise (15), Foreshadowing (16-17). Third person omniscient POV.
  • Answer this question in your Writer’s Notebook: Christie creates suspense by making suspicious characters. Explain which character is the most suspicious to you so far.
  • Set up reading for the weekend:
  1. Pass out and tape in annotate guide for chapter 2.

Homework: Read and annotate chapter 2: 1st view of the island (24), Anthony=God (26-27), Fred the Boatman (27), the house (29), Mrs. Rogers (31), Dr. A on Wargrave (36), Brent’s Bible passage (41).

  • Quiz Monday! Chapters 1 & 2

October 10th-14th

Monday, October 10th

  • No school/Teacher Work Day

Tuesday, October 11th

Wednesday, October 12th

Thursday, October 13th

  • Discuss “The Landlady” by participating in a Nearpod session. If you were absent, make sure your investigative report is filled out completely.
  • Homework: Finish your investigative report if needed. And Then There Were None is due October 20th!

Friday, October 14th

  • Writer’s Notebook Journal Entry: (After watching the video clip) Why does Dahl make Billy dumber than the average reader?
  • Take notes on detective stories:
  • Apply this pattern to a quick episode of Scooby Doo.
  • Homework: Finish today’s plot circle if needed. I am grading it! And Then There Were None is due October 20th!

October 3-7th

Monday, October 3rd

  • Go over the answers to Friday’s review sheet.
  • Play Kahoot! review game.
  • Use quizlet for independent review. Please refer to the quizlet post if you wish to review at home.
  • Homework: Study for tomorrow’s test on SVA. Your benchmark is Wednesday–see the Benchmark post for more information. ATTWN is due 10/20.

Tuesday, October 4th

  • Take SVA test.
  • Discuss the benchmark.
  • Homework: Prepare for tomorrow’s benchmark by studying the blog post and study guide. ATTWN is due 10/20.

Wednesday, October 5th

  • Take the benchmark.
  • Go over yesterday’s test.
  • Begin detective genre notes with Mr. Parsons: detective-fiction-powerpoint
  • Homework: ATTWN is due 10/20.

Thursday, October 6th

From Mr. Parsons:

  • Finish notes on Detective Fiction.
  • Start “Detective’s Notebook” activity.
  • Read “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” Parts 3 & 4
  • Turn in exit slip on parts 3 & 4- Who do you think the killer is?
  • Text link: “The Murders in the Rue Morgue.”

Friday, October 7th

From Mr. Parsons:

  • Review your notes in your “Detective’s Notebook” with your group.
  • Review “Rue Morgue” Parts 3 & 4.
  • Read “Rue Morgue” Parts 5 & 6 in class.
  • Discuss the reveal of the story as a class.
  • Finish “Detective’s Notebook ” (your thoughts on the killer’s identity).
  • Turn in “Detective’s Notebook.”


And Then There Were None–due Oct. 20th

For Acton and Hutchings’ students, Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None is due in class on Thursday, October 20. If you already ordered from us/library back in September, we teachers will already have the books. No need to do more.
If you did not order, please get a personal copy for him/her before the due date of 10/20.  We request that students not use an e-book; physical books are best in these situations. Please do use the same edition that we’re using, so we can all literally be on the same page. 
ISBN 9780062073488 for $6.50
Inline image 1
If you need a free copy, ask ASAP since don’t have many for these books.

1st 9 Weeks Study Guide Information

STUDY GUIDE for the 1st 9 Weeks’ Benchmark

Your benchmark is Wednesday, October 5th. We are using Google forms in class to take this test.

First, here’s your copy: STUDY GUIDE for the 1st 9 Weeks’ ELA Benchmark. Second, here are the general categories and notes that we’ve used this 9 weeks, from August to October. Note: Subject Verb Agreement will not be on this benchmark because we have the SVA test itself the day before (Tues the 4th). In addition to these questions, you’ll be given a passage to read and analyze for thematic idea, supporting evidence, and the human condition.

Here is a KEY: http://podcasts.shelbyed.k12.al.us/shutchings/files/2016/09/KEYBenchmark1st9WeeksStudyGuide.pdf

What are the basic differences between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset? Look at what we did: filling out the Learning Mindset Survey,  exploring theMindset Infographics, listening to James Dyson, inventor and 7th richest man in the UK, explain his views on failures and schools (listen to 17:04-12:10) and watching Austin’s Butterfly video about a 1st grader (note both of them using growth mindset to make failure a pushing off point rather than an end point)

What is a thematic idea? What are some examples of thematic ideas? (Think about your red sheet.) Look at what we did:  Thematic Ideas and Abstract Nouns (the red sheet), Writing about Thematic Ideas in the Outsiders, and 2016 Thematic Ideas TO Ch 6-7

Describe in general what “one story” means. Look at what we did:

(To be posted soon)

What is the human condition? Look at what we did: The Human Condition sheet (front of red sheet) and ACE Chart for The Outsiders (last row)

How do you cite a direct quote correctly? (In other words, what are all of the parts?) Use the questions below.What is context? What punctuation marksgoes around a direct quote? What goes inside parentheses at the end ( )?Where does the period go? Look at what we did: ACE Chart for The Outsiders (last column). Below, in blue, is another example of what a direct quote looks like: When they hear about Johnny’s death and Dally’s emotional reaction to it, Two-Bit says, “So even Dally has a breaking point” (155). 

What does ACE stand for? Look at what we did: ACE Chart for The Outsiders (first 2 rows, first column).

September 26-30th

Monday, September 26th

  • Discuss results of papers, projects, and pretests.
  • Introduce SVA: Today, we discuss the difference between the words singular and plural, what makes a verb singular/plural, and the basics of how to make subjects and verbs agree in number.
  • Notes: subject-verb-agreement_2016 *Look at slides 1-8 for today’s notes.
  • Homework: Complete the following worksheet fully: practice-for-sva-intro-2016
  • Upcoming Dates: Your SVA test will be NEXT Tuesday. There will be a quiz on the indefinite pronouns THIS Friday.

Tuesday, September 27th

  • Grade last night’s homework (20 point silver).
  • Continue SVA: Today, we discussed indefinite pronouns.
  • Notes: subject-verb-agreement_2016 *Look at slides 9-12 for today’s notes.
  • Homework: Complete the following worksheet fully: 2016-indef-and-compound-practice * Just do the first sheet on indefinite pronouns.
  • Upcoming Dates: Your SVA test will be NEXT Tuesday. There will be a quiz on the indefinite pronouns THIS Friday.

Wednesday, September 28th

  • Grade last night’s homework (28 point silver)
  • Review indefinite pronouns by playing Kahoot! and going through the memory tricks.
  • Continue SVA: Today, we discussed compound subjects and how to make them agree with verbs.
  • Notes: subject-verb-agreement_2016 *Look at slides 13-16 for today’s notes.
  • Homework: Complete the following worksheet fully: 2016-indef-and-compound-practice *Just do the side on compound subjects.
  • Upcoming Dates: Your SVA test will be NEXT Tuesday. There will be a quiz on the indefinite pronouns THIS Friday.

Thursday, September 29th

  • Grade last night’s homework
  • Finish up SVA: Today, we discussed collective nouns and other problems in agreement.
  • Notes: subject-verb-agreement_2016 *Look at slides 17-end for today’s notes.
  • Homework: Complete the worksheet fully: 2016-sva-other-problems-practice
  • Upcoming Dates: Your SVA test will be NEXT Tuesday. There will be a quiz on the indefinite pronouns THIS Friday.

Friday, September 30th