Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Grade 9: "Ghostbusters": You be the Judge

"Ghostbusters": You Be the Judge

Image result for Ghostbusters
  • I identify features that define a comedy. (2.2.14)
  • I evaluate the effectiveness of the film by considering the believability of plot and setting, the credibility of characters, and the development and resolution of conflict. (2.3.4)
  • I use effective speaking skills. (4.3.3)
  • I use effective visuals and display techniques to engage my audience, improve accuracy of content and persuade my audience of my judgement of the film’s effectiveness.  (4.3.3)

Students watched "Ghostbusters" and are now evaluating the effectivness of the film with a partner. They are building a presentation to share with the class. See the criteria below:

Criteria for Evaluating Effectiveness of Film:

  • Scene Analysis of own funny film
  • Explain exaggeration in a clip with specific explanations from the text.
  • Explain the serious observation from the same film (second clip)
  • Clips are appropriate for school

  • Believability of setting and plot
    • Explain events that add to the believability of plot
    • Explain events that make the plot less believable
    • Describe the most believable setting and least believable setting
    • Include overall judgement on believability of plot and setting (considering it’s a comedy)
    • Use specific examples from the film

  • Credibility of Characters
    • Explain which character is most credible (credentials, actions)
    • Explain which character is least credible
    • Include overall judgement on credibility of characters (considering it’s a comedy)
    • Use specific examples from the film

  • Development and resolution of conflict
    • State main problem
    • State 2 or 3 complications (events that make it difficult for protagonist to reach goal)
    • Explain how problem is solved
    • Include overall judgement on the effectiveness of solution. (what worked or what to change)
    • Use specific examples from the film

Criteria for Display Techniques:

  • Slides
    • Put explanations (specific examples from the film) in the speaker notes and only main points on slides
    • Use a minimum of 13 slides (orange, purple and red)
    • Slides may be added to accommodate more images
    • Minimum font size 18.

  • Engagement
    • The placement of images creates balance
    • Images are clear and match specific information on the slide to improve accuracy of explanations
    • Images used are interesting and persuasive; not just the first one found.

Students will rehearse their presentations next week before presenting them to the class.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Grade 8: Halloween Film Comparison

Halloween Film Comparison

We discussed similarities today in pairs to help us build our presentations.  See our Criteria below:

Halloween Film Comparison Criteria      
I compare two similar short films by considering the characters, plot, conflicts and main ideas 2.2.9
  • I organize my ideas and information creatively, as well as logically, to develop a comparison between two films 3.3.1
  • I integrate appropriate visuals and text to inform and engage the audience 3.4.2
Items to include:
Please notice this in my work…
Criteria for Comparing Films:
  • Content
    • Include similarities and differences for 4 characters (traits, roles, motivations)
    • Include 2 or 3 main similarities and differences in plot (setting, atmosphere, events)
    • Include 2 or 3 main similarities and differences in conflict (problems)
    • Include 2 main similarities and differences in main ideas (subjects)
    • Use specific examples from the film to explain similarities and differences
  • Slides
    • Put explanations in the speaker notes and only main points on slides
    • Use a minimum of 9 slides (orange and green)
    • Minimum font size 18.

Criteria for Organization:
  • Creative
    • The placement of images creates balance
    • Slides may be added to accommodate more images
    • Title Slides (purple) may be decorated to grab attention and improve understanding of title.

  • Logical:
    • Plot comparisons are put in a relatively close time order they occurred in the film (beginning, middle, end)
    • Place images to help viewer understand information (Ex.  similarities: images on the outside, differences: images in the middle)

Criteria for Images:
    • Images are clear and match specific information on the slide
    • Images used are interesting; not just the first one found.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Grade 8: Digging into Deeper Meaning

Digging into Deeper Meaning

  • What does literal and figurative mean?
  • How can I use context clues to interpret possible meanings of figurative language?
  • What meaning or feeling do music, colour and symbolism add to film?

  • What is the difference between theme and topic, or main idea, in a narrative?

Students explore a variety of texts to identify and interpret phrases that have a deeper meaning. Once we understand the main idea of text we will explore how to develop theme statements using a cooperative snowball activity. Students will work together to generate support for their themes and write a well developed paragraph. We will also explore a variety of poems and write many different types of poems in stations. We'll select our best piece, polish it and integrate images in the finished product.

Students are reading and viewing "The Fantastic Flying Books of Morris Lessmore".

See the handout below:

Students worked individually and in pairs to discuss the deeper meaning behind figurative language.

Today we watch the video and recorded ideas for the following questions:

  1. What effect does the music have on the mood or meaning in the film?
  2. What are some symbols in the film and their meaning?
  3. What meaning is given to the film when colour changes from black and white to colour?
Students discussed their findings and created 2 news paper headlines to represent the main idea of the story and the effectiveness of techniques.

We self-assessed the insightfulness of our ideas and the effectiveness of our support written on the back of our headlines.

Students are analyzing character traits and motivations.  We brainstormed a list of personality traits then examined how we might prove a character has this trait.  

We know to use a character's:

as proof.  We realized we may have to make inferences to determine a personality trait.

Students examined Morris's Life logo and explained what the colours and objects might represent about Morris's personality.

We will design our own life logos to describe our traits and motivations.  

Students use Google Draw to create their own life logo.  See Mrs. Anderson's example below:

Next, students write to explain their traits and motivations using life experiences.  

Finally, students choose a presentation format to share their ideas:

Thursday, 29 September 2016

9D Lost and Found Song Analysis Project

9D - Lost and Found: Song Analysis Project
  • Students comleted a brainstorming exercise to explore the theme lost and found.  Students could write and create a list.

See Mrs. Anderson's Example Below:

Then we found songs we felt fit into the theme.  We completed a close reading activity.  Students read their songs and made interpretations to specific lines with deeper meaning.  Then they recorded their connections to these interpretations.

Our Goals:  I identify ideas that have a deeper meaning in texts and interpret them.
I compare and contrast my own life situation with themes found in a text.

See example below:

Now that we understand our songs we write a paragraph to explain the theme and our connections.  See Mrs. Anderson's example below:

Students interacted with this paragraph highlighting the 3 main criteria in their own paragraphs to make sure they are effectively explaining the theme of their songs:
  • use evidence from the song - GREEN
  • make interpretations of these lyrics - PURPLE
  • use evidence from our own lives to explain theme - PINK
Once this highlighting is done we can see what's missing and what to ADD to our writing.

After improvements, we self assessed our work with the rubric below:

Representing Theme Bumper Sticker


  • I represent the theme of my song using a different form: bumper sticker
  • I use symbolic font (size, shape, and colour) images and colour to improve the meaning and feeling of my message.
  • I use words with correct feeling to improve the tone of my bumper sticker and demand the audience's attention.
Students completed a mini lesson on symbolism.

Can you find:
  • symbolism defined
  • thoughts about font size, colour, and shape
  • thoughts about images 
  • individual interpretations of meaning
  • thoughts about how the choices in the quote improve the meaning and feeling of the quote

Then we practiced word choice
I use words with an appropriate connotation (feeling behind them)  to improve the tone of a bumper sticker and engage the audience.
This means my words should:
  • Be appropriate
  • Have a strong feeling
  • Be interesting
  • Create imagery

We attempted to transform this info into a bumper sticker slogan. See some of our thinking below:



Steps to help us through this process:
  1. Read the description then add to it.  What does it mean to you?
  2. Underline words that are appealing and have a strong feeling.
  3. Create a list of things we can compare our topic to.  
    • Love compared to…   superhero, policeman
    • Love helps us survive… compare random harsh world to a storm or an angry ocean or a complicated maze
    • Fly with love’s guidance… Love from others transforms us allowing us to soaring free through the sky
  4. Write the message as a figurative sentence.  
  5. Change words. (synonyms with a more accurate feeling)  Rearrange words.  Add punctuation.
  6. Create several versions of the same message.
  1. Some things to use:
    • Rhyme
    • Parallel structure
    • Figurative language - Simile, Metaphor, Alliteration, Onomatopoeia, Personification, Oxymoron
    • Slang?
See our class ideas below:

Students experimented with Google Drawing today:

We used the search tool in images to find:

  • transparent images of houses, family, wheat, waves, roads, and hearts to add meaning and feeling to our message.

We used a text box and changed font styles, colour and size to improve meaning and feeling.
We tapped the touch pad to select background colour - pink

Students participated in musical feedback today.  We examined criteria when giving feedback:

  • Round 1: Word choice

Criteria for word choice:  
    • Words grab attention
    • Message has clear meaning
    • Message has a strong overall feeling

  • Round 2: Symbolic Font, Colour and Image
Fonts: Add meaning and feeling by changing:
    • Large = important dominance strength...
    • Small = less important weakness, loneliness...

    • Rounded = friendly + feelings
    • Angular = hostile - feelings
    • Red - Love / Anger / Danger
    • Orange - happiness / sunny
    • Yellow - friendship / cowardice / polluted
    • Green - nature / money / inexperience
    • Blue - calmness / sadness
    • Purple - royalty / night / fear
    • Black - evil / fear
    • White - purity / peace

Images: Add meaning and feeling:
    • to individual words  
    • to the statement as a whole.

  • Round 3: Overall Effect

    • Symbolic items work together to reinforce an impression
    • Layout seems balanced - nothing seems out of place or crowded

Students used this specific meaningful feedback to make improvements to their first draft of their theme bumper stickers.

We self-assessed our stickers using the rubric below:

LA 7 Fantastic Fiction: Flashback and "Knife"

Fantastic Fiction What are the elements of fiction? How do I identify conflict and explain how it is developed and resolved? ...