Tag Archives: CTS 10

Student blog will win $10,000 Scholarship

One blogger chosen by “the internet” will win $10,000 US scholarship … for keeping a blog.

As the ratio of high school student blogs I read to the number of college student blogs I read approaches infinity, I think it a good time we troll a few of the best college bloggers in the US.

All STJ student bloggers have been involved in assessment of one another’s blogs since the beginning of STJ iblogs in 2006. I’m certain we’d pick a deserving “Final Four” from the list of 20 finalists.

I’m curious to know for what blogs STJ bloggers vote.

Submit your comment (or trackback) here with a brief reason/detail/example justifying your vote for the $10,000 US scholarship.

Consider our recent emphasis on structure and voice: How are these college bloggers defining themselves through voice? What structures/patterns do successful bloggers adopt? What role do comments play in the development of the blog?

Yaaar, there be pirates in one of the blogs . . . but don’t let that influence your vote.

New features Gallery2 and Subscribe2

Gallery2 integration works, mostly. Well the sidebar and full page embedding works, more to come. Activate WPG2 by pointing it to http://stjschool.org/gallery2/ and it should autodetect the rest. Then place the STJ Galley widget in your sidebar.

Subscribe2 allows you to email, automagically, site updates(a new post for example) to your subscribers. A new Subscribe link appears in your footer.

Here’s an idea that could snowball!

Find a “copyright-free” etext online at, say, Project Gutenberg or here or here

Start a new blog.

Parse your etext into manageable chunks and insert into your blog.

Add graphics and organizers. Edit theme. Voila.

Look at Castle of Otranto and The Jesuit Relations and the History of New France as examples.

Search for works by the following at Gutenberg:
Austen, Jane
Barrie, J.M.
Brontà«, Charlotte
Brontà«, Emily
Dickens, Charles
Burroughs, Edgar Rice
Carroll, Lewis
Chesterton, G. K
Christie, Agatha
Twain, Mark
Collins, Wilkie
Connor, Ralph
Conrad, Joseph
Corelli, Marie
Defoe, Daniel
De la Mare, Walter
Doyle, Arthur Conan, Sir
Eliot, George
Galsworthy, John
Haggard, H. Rider
Hardy, Thomas
Henty, G. A.
James, Henry
Jerome, Jerome K.
Joyce, James
Kingsley, Charles
Kipling, Rudyard
Leacock, Stephen
Mansfield, Katherine
Maugham, W. Somerset
Maupassant, Guy de
McClung, Nellie L.
Melville, Herman
Montgomery, L. M.
Moodie, Susanna
Moore, Clement Clarke
Nesbit, E.
Oppenheim, E. Phillips
Potter, Beatrix
Sabatini, Rafael
Scott, Walter, Sir
Shaw, George Bernard
Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft
Sinclair, Upton
Stevenson, Robert Louis
Stoker, Bram
Swift, Jonathan
Thackeray, William Makepeace
Trollope, Anthony
Wallace, Edgar
Walpole, Horace
Wells, H. G.
Wilde, Oscar
Wodehouse, P. G.
Woolf, Virginia
Yonge, Charlotte Mary

Bloggiest start to the bloggiest year ever.

What a funny word, “bloggiest”. Should I say it is a “most bloggy” start to the year? Does correct English matter in a blog?

All students I teach have begun a blog, of sorts. For the most part, I’ve insisted the content of the blog must be school or course related, the myriad responses to Macbeth fit this category. Other responses are more like “snowflakes”, snowflakes is my term to describe the phenomena of no two responses to the same prompt being identical.

I aggregate(not related to the term aggravate) RSS feeds from each class to aid in tracking down assigned work. Each student has a spreadsheet I term the Data Collector that averages rubric scores and totals moderated comment feeds, too. I then collect the Data Collectors periodically to determine scores to enter into GradeLogic. The data collectors serve a dual purpose, a foundation to build a grade obviously, but a powerful device to bring a landslide of peer pressure and collaborative assistance on the lazy, slower, or reluctant bloggers. Those that finish first have always shown a willingness to “share their secrets” with others.

Students are also instructed to collect and deposit appropriate comments on each other’s blogs, too. It is proving to be a fine art to learn to comment. Last year I found the aspect of commenting to be more valuable than the creation of the posts. Comments must contain evidence of critical thinking, I said, not simply “gladhanding”. If you troll the blogs you’ll notice the biggest difference right now between a veteran blogger and a newbie is the quality/quantity of appropriate comments. Students complete work earlier to benefit from positive/any attention from peer “commentors”. Any student who doesn’t get their blog post done on time, gets punished by receiving low or no rubric scores from their peers. However, unlike class discussions, the very nature of blogging allows anyone to catch up at any time. The students themselves seem to have an unofficial pecking order for who writes the best comments. They have internalized their own standards for what they will accept as a comment on their blog and are very persuasive at convincing each other to measure up. A few students are positively verbose and comment on all they can. Others choose fewer responses yet measure their words very carefully. Those that finish writing a post early, are left to hustle remaining students.

The grade 10s are shifting their attention to Keyboarding modules for a while, although I keep prodding them about “Turing Tests”. iGod is our most recent fascination.

The grade 9s get their prompts from Mrs. Fraser’s class then I help them become a bit more tech savvy.

The Grade 11s are in the midst of Macbeth and may see no reprieve for at least 2 more weeks, I figure. The more traditional assignments I’ve used for the last 14 years are as appropriate in a blog as they have ever been in my class. Doing it with blogs is just so cool!

Do you want to send free text messages to a cell phone?

Look for the Quick SMS widget on any theme that has sidebar widgets. Mine works(vmobile.ca). I need someone to verify that the Telus Mobility widget works, too. If your provider is not listed, and you want it, let me know. Receiving texts messages on my cell phone, for me, is free. It’s sending them that costs me a dime. How much is Telus to send/receive? The Quick SMS widget lets me send at no cost. You can put any number(10 digits), so behave. Enjoy, report abuses to me.

D. Sader

English 10 Mages

Get a magic wand, silk hankie, a coin, pin, string/thread, rubberbands, and a deck of cards. You’ll want to wear a sport coat/blazer (to help hide hands/stuff in big pockets).

NO FIRE. NO SWORDS. NO DECAPITATING the teacher tricks. You may not saw a kid in half.

I’ve got a dvd that is just awesome. Co-op has a few tricks in their birthday party stuff.

Find a “magician’s oath” from google/wikipedia. Take it seriously.

We need a table and a fancy-shmancy cloth.

Someone find a trick were you have a hand puppet as your assistant.

Let’s put on a good show. Rehearsal Thursday AM, PM, too if needed.

Expect to stay out of the Lab and in my room until your trick is mastered. Grrr.

Performance and public presentation is very much a Language Art, everyone will step up and deliver.

Out.

Anti-Bullying Song Research Assignment

Blog an online research about a song that relates to Heather’s workshop(s) about:

  • Bullying
  • Domestic Violence
  • Peace
  • Getting Along

Requirements:

  1. Lyrics, portions cut’pasted with hyperlink to source.
  2. 250-words:
  • What is going on in the song?
  • What is the message the artist is trying to send?
  • How do you feel about this message?
  • How does it focus on the workshop topics?

3. Composer, performer, dates, album art, awards.

4. History, background, items/ideas of interest

5. Hyperlink all sources.

6. Add to Assessment Data Spreadsheet and apply Critical Thinking rubric (1-4)

7. Moderate three comments on your own. Leave plenty of comments, at least three, on other iblog.stjschool.org blogs.