H is for Head, Heart and Hand

head heart hand

Dear 8B,

The head, heart and hand are the source of numerous expressions and metaphors in our language. For example:

  • She wears her heart on her sleeve.
  • He can’t get his head around this idea.
  • I have my hands full at the moment.

Can you explain each of these and think of others?

These three domains of human thought, emotion and action are also central to the ideas of a Swiss educational reformer, Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi.

In the task detailed below I would like you to reflect on the symbolic meanings of these three words and on the varying roles each domain plays in your personal and educational life.

In the table below, there are some words and phrases that you will be discussing and classifying in class. Many of the words in the lists will be familiar, while others will be new to you.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

PS Don’t forget to continue creating your “i-Want” with its satisfying mix of death-defying and frustration-defeating new-tech tools for a more manageable existence. You might have a/n —— -overrider (Nathan’s contribution), generator, organiser, activator (Ryan’s suggestion), delayer, muter, rewinder, dispenser, teleporter, remote, changer, interpreter, vaporiser (Emma’s contribution) or robot. 

heart28, clipartlord, pd hand5, clipartlord, pd
head heart  hand

 

Vocabulary

Nouns

emotion, feeling, thought, action, creativity, belief, morality, inventiveness, 

common sense, memory, dexterity, compassion, responsibility, dignity, 

coordination, imagination, knowledge, physical strength, empathy, experience, practice

Adjectives

cognitive, active, reasonable, manual, rational, psychological, physical, 

practical, logical, technical, intellectual, analytical

Verbs

do, love, think, feel, remember, evaluate, understand, touch, consider, learn, design, 

interpret, perform, analyse, operate, build, contemplate, reason, think through

Phrases

learn through experience, develop motor skills, consider theoretical perspectives, judge the validity

of a theory, carry out an experiment, formulate a hypothesis, weigh up the benefits and disadvantages, 

develop self-awareness, become more mature, maintain friendships, deal with complex situations, 

resolve a disagreement, put a theory into practice, reflect upon one’s actions, plan a series of actions, 

use effective tools, inspire others, develop a philosophy of life, respond to a friend’s anxieties, 

solve a problem


Activities (link to handout) 

“You seem to have the weight of the world upon your shoulders.” | “I’ve got your back.” | “That man is really two-faced.”

Our list of idioms from our first class – click to see in full size

1 Draw a simple picture of the human body (just in silhouette, no need for detail!) and write some more examples of expressions to do with parts of the body around your drawing; for instance: sticking your nose into someone else’s business, giving someone a hand, having one foot in the grave, etc.

2 Classify the words in the table by drawing little icons next to them. Use the handout (downloadable below) to do this.

3 Rank the three icons (head, heart, hand) from your strongest to weakest. Write two to three sentences to justify your choice.

4 Choose at least five words and phrases that describe you well in your strongest area. 

5 Choose at least three words or phrases that describe you well in the other two areas.

6 Write them on a small concept map.

7 Develop a little self-description, with reference to your character, talents, interests and achievements. 

  • Use as many of the words you have chosen as possible.
  • Utilise some words and constructions that trigger subordinate clauses in your paragraph: for instance: although, when I…, whereas I…, while I…, etc.
  • Employ as many words from the table as you can. Focus on describing your strengths and be honest, thoughtful and incisive!

7 Once you have completed your paragraph, show it to me. When I am content with your style and expression, you can then add it as a comment to this blog, so that your classmates can read it and respond to your ideas.

Phrases to help you get started – or feel free to think up some of your own:

  • I would describe myself as…
  • I find it difficult to categorise myself, but…
  • I believe that I am ruled by…
  • My greatest talent is…
  • One of my best qualities is…
  • My friends tell me that I am good at…
  • I believe that I have a gift for…
  • The driving force in my life is…
  • What matters most of all to me is…
  • At school I may appear to be ruled by rational ideas, but on the football field I…
  • Sadly I am not particularly…
  • Despite being…, I am often…
  • Although I am sometimes…, I am also…

Links and Downloads

♥ Downloadable handout for this topic 

Body Language – An Alphabet of Idioms 

 Kahoot: Body Idioms: Class | Preview

Online Quiz: Body Idioms

i-Want handout

A Kahoot based on the vocabulary in this post

Class Mode | Preview Mode

 

S is also for Status Swap

Dear 8B,

Status swaps are the bread and butter of fiction writers. A change of status is the standard situation from which an author or film-maker can weave a story that fills the reader or viewer with empathy, dread, hope and ultimately a sense of relief or triumph.

Consider these examples:

  • Poor, deserving, beautiful girl escapes from a miserable fate, dons sparkling (if impractical) shoes and marries a prince.
  • Skinny boy with horrid family discovers he is actually a famous wizard.
  • Hungry, poverty-stricken boy inherits a chocolate factory.
  • The supposed fool of his family rises to the position of Roman emperor, despite his tendency to stutter and drool.
  • Young girl who loves reading saves her family from a vicious psychopath by conjuring a character out of a book to defeat him.
  • Homeless boy with athletic talent is adopted by a kind family and drafted by a top football team.
  • Brilliant young girl with neglectful family and criminal father manages to get rid of the school bully (who also happens to be the headmistress)
  • Prim and proper hobbit goes on a long journey and in the process becomes an adventurer who rubs shoulders with wizards and elves and comes home with a fortune.
  • Four working-class boys in Liverpool start a band and become musical superstars.
  • Child in Serbia survives a dangerous childhood in a war-torn land and becomes the number 1 tennis player in the world.
  • Horrible teacher gets her comeuppance when one of her students denounces her cruelty at a dazzling ball.

Not all of these are fiction, but all of them sound like fiction. Can you identify each story?

As Oscar Wilde once memorably said: “The good ended happily and the bad unhappily. That is what fiction means.”

Sad to say, real life doesn’t work like that. The poor grow poorer, tyrants seize power, and leaders often treat their people with callous disdain: life is anything but fair. Perhaps that is one reason why, through fiction, we revel in a fantasy world where the people with merit, courage and resolution win the day. They turn the tables on the bad guys. In these other worlds created from ink, paper and celluloid, there is some hope of justice, at least after the heroes or heroines have proven their steel and their resource and have prevailed.

Can you think of other instances of status changes in fiction? Add your own example from a film or a book in a comment below.

Then continue to contemplate how you can turn that human fascination with such turnarounds into a simple story encompassing just one such status change. Add photos to emphasise how the significance of your principal character changes throughout. Vary your angles, lighting and types of shot. You will be following the great traditions of the human story.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

 

Examples of Status Swap Situations for this Creative Task:

Your teacher makes mincemeat out of you at Parent-Teacher Night. While he shreds your character, scorns your work ethic and describes your tendency to fall asleep on Friday afternoons, you sit there sweating and wishing that you could slide under the table. All the other parents and students who are waiting for their next interview listen with a certain malicious pleasure to your teacher’s strictures. Just at the moment when you are contemplating flight through this throng of curious onlookers, your teacher’s computer is attacked by a virus. With a few nonchalant movements of your fingers, you effortlessly save all his files. He thanks you and promises you anything that your heart desires on your next report…You reply that reports don’t matter to you; you have already been offered positions by Apple and IBM and can’t decide which one to choose.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

The school bully steals other students’ lunch money each morning as everyone arrives at school. Only one student, Raymond, seems impervious to the bully’s actions. Raymond is startlingly strong, despite his diminutive size. One day you see him carrying a bookcase. Then he saves everyone from the bully simply by… 

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Bess is fed up with Emily for boasting about her boyfriend Harvey. “He’s tall, handsome and masculine,” says Emily. “I simply cannot stop stroking him. You wouldn’t believe how fine his hair is.”

One day Emily invites Bess over to meet the love of her life.

Harvey turns out to be…

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Blake is the kind of sensitive, caring boy whom other students sometimes tease. Then, unexpectedly, the most beautiful and talented girl in the school asks him to take her to the formal. Suddenly, all the boys who used to tease him want to know his secret.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

A modest and self-effacing boy, Joseph never admits to anyone that he is a mathematical genius who can do equations 5 times faster than Mr Fitzgerald and 10 times faster than everyone else in 8B. But one day, he has no choice but to reveal his brilliance…Scientific American asks to interview him. The Mathematical Journal for Distinguished Nerds asks him to submit a paper…

S is for Story

Part 1: Will 8B get revenge on the wicked Mrs Grun?

Once upon a time there was a cruel and heartless teacher called Mrs Grun. She taught in a pleasant school in the eastern suburbs and her students, a quiet, obedient class known as 8B, were modest, hard-working and well-mannered. Despite this, she was intent on making their lives a misery. They never had any fun in class, never went on any excursions and only rarely were allowed to visit the library. All this they could have borne without a murmur of complaint, but when Mrs Grun refused to let them go to the Year 8 Formal, the social event of the year, they were especially downcast.

Their predicament was made even more painful by the fact that Mrs Grun’s other class, 8U, a bunch of cashed-up bogans and rednecks who were coarse, vulgar and thoroughly unpleasant, had been told at once that they would be able to go to the ball. “Of course, my darlings,” Mrs Grun had said to them, cooing and smiling in her peculiarly repellent way, “no ball would be the same without you. I’ll be there in my turquoise and orange evening dress with shoulder pads and a bustle. I wear it every year. Perhaps we can have a photo together.”

When the students of 8B, however, begged to be allowed to go, Mrs Grun laughed unpleasantly. “You can’t go,” she said, and they could tell she was enjoying their distress and chagrin. “You have to stay at school and clean the quadrangle with old toothbrushes.”

“What?” they cried. “Why?”

“Because you are low, unworthy and undeserving,” Mrs Grun cried. “Because even if I were to let you go to the ball, you would have nothing to wear. You are all too poor, too ragged and too pitiful for words. Why, even your uniforms are threadbare. I daresay none of you have anything you could wear to such a special occasion, in any case.”

It was true. The students of 8B were all dreadfully poor. The allocations to classes always worked that way. The richest students were in 8U and the poorest in 8B. Most teachers were too kind to draw attention to this fact, but Mrs Grun was too nasty to overlook it. She mentioned the impoverished state of the 8B students at least five times every lesson.  Continue reading

Q is for Questions

On the way to school a few weeks ago, my sixteen-year-old daughter gave me a new insight into the life of students that, despite about 25 years in the classroom, had passed me by.

My daughter Sophie helps me to understand how teenagers feel, yet even with her aid, I sometimes fail dismally. That’s one of the hazards of growing old.

During the drive to school, she mentioned to me that she doesn’t always understand what her teachers have just explained. I asked her, perhaps a little impatiently: “Why on earth don’t you just ask the teacher to explain it again?”

My daughter replied: “I can’t do at. I don’t want everyone to think that I’m stupid.”

And there was the answer to the question that I’d always asked myself: why is it that the students who could really use advice shy away from asking for it? Conversely, why do the students who hardly require any help at all nevertheless request it?

My daughter is my advisor on all matters relating to the teenage sphere. Yet even with her input, at my advanced age I can be rather slow on the uptake.

Sophie had made the reasons clear with that simple statement. If a student already understands, there’s no shame involved in asking for clarification; those who are all at sea, however, would rather preserve the appearance of being on top of the subject.

I suggested that she couch her request in such a careful, precise way that everyone in the class, including the teacher, would be impressed by her probing questioning technique. There would then be no danger than anyone might find her foolish.

Here are a few ways of asking for help – or at least showing that you might need it. Can you classify them according to the options provided?

 

 

AFTER THE QUIZ

Rose’s solution to the question-asking, help-requesting conundrum… I have featured her question in my quiz above, because her idea has many merits: a precise, directed request; limited use of teacher time (so that other students can also gain help); and evidence that she had thought through her work and picked out the parts that she felt required development.

 No teacher, on hearing the most precise and probing questions presented in the quiz above, could doubt the power of your intellect or indeed your eagerness to learn, develop and improve.

Of course, some teachers are neither particularly patient nor sympathetic. They may even assume that if you question what they’ve said, you simply haven’t been listening. A precise question permits you to demonstrate that you have indeed been paying attention; the onus is then on the teacher to explain the topic more thoroughly.

Teachers are not mind-readers. With the years, we gain some insight into what students find difficult and we gradually learn to address some difficulties even before they become evident. All the same, we sometimes assume that students understand better than they do in reality.

That’s why you should try to ask precise and probing questions, even if this seems awkward and embarrassing at first.

Profit from your teachers’ expertise. Let us know when we need to explain something better. Put us to work for you.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

 

Comment:

(a) Can you suggest another effective way of asking for help that might lead to precise and useful feedback? You need not only refer to the subject of English. How could you ask for help in your other subjects?

(b) How would you describe yourself in this regard? Do you ask for help easily or do you tend to go it alone? Do you think you are sometimes wary of asking for help or feedback? 

(c) Other students are often the best helpers, because they have already dealt with the same difficulties as you have and managed to work out solutions of their own. Can you recall a time when you have helped someone else or another student has helped you? Describe this experience.

G is for Gratitude


Dear Year 8,

I first met Kate Mitchell in the 1990s, when our school was shrinking and the government in power wanted to force its closure. The principal at that time, Robert Jenkin, refused to cave in to the demands of that government. Mr Jenkin was not an easy man to intimidate. He had worked as the president of the teachers’ union and he was used to resisting the pressure of politicians.

Mrs Mitchell took over from Mr Jenkin and she has worked with the utmost dedication and resolution, ultimately making the role of principal her very own and putting her stamp on our school. In the process, she has had to withstand considerable pressure herself, just as her predecessor did. Two decades later, our school has 1300 students and is highly regarded in the community.

Although she began here as a regular teacher, Mrs Mitchell rose rapidly through the hierarchy, becoming the year twelve coordinator, then the deputy principal and finally the principal. In this position, she has worked tirelessly to improve the school environment, to appoint committed and highly competent teachers, and to ensure that the school retains its friendly and welcoming nature. This is a school where teachers and students can simply be who they are: those who love reading can sit in the quadrangle and read; those who are gamers can go on a camp together; those who love the arts can display their talents; those teachers who have a special dream or a wild idea can follow it and realise it.  

We tend to take these daily wonders for granted until the people who make them possible leave us. This week we say farewell to Mrs Mitchell. How can we express our gratitude to her?

Please write a comment in which you describe what you most appreciate about Mrs Mitchell or about the school where we work, learn, make lifelong friends and pursue our varied endeavours.

For instance, I am deeply grateful to have worked for two principals whose kindness, integrity and decency are beyond question. I am particularly thankful that  Mrs Mitchell allowed me to travel to Germany on two occasions to complete courses with the Goethe Institute in Frankfurt and Munich. Most of all, I appreciate having the opportunity to teach in this school. Your class, like many others that I have encountered, fills me with pride and delight — and gratitude.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

S is for Spelling Nightmares

Actually, I have no idea how many exceptions there are to the rules of English spelling. That number is just a wild surmise. 1

Dear 8B,

As you all know, English spelling makes Melbourne weather seem predictable. There may be rules, but they are diabolical 2 rules that are bent and broken at every turn. Sometimes I think that, for every English word that is governed by a clear spelling rule, there is another word that refuses to be subdued 3, like a peasant who is rebelling bravely against oppression 4. English words are defiant, headstrong and perverse 5.  

Melting pot: A melting pot allows one to melt and mix many metals. This phrase is also employed to referred to a process of development with many elements being blended together.

In fact, English spelling sometimes seems as unruly and tumultuous 6 as a peasants’ revolt. One reason is that our language was forged in a melting pot 7 of many languages.

You may find the task of spelling difficult, but don’t let a fear of making spelling mistakes put you off writing. Just keep scribbling. Your spelling will improve with practice – and so will your writing.

I honestly believe that some English writers are simply good spellers, while for others, spelling is an ongoing torment. If you are a good speller, your life is much easier. If you struggle with spelling, however, don’t let this put you off writing. The act of writing is much more important than perfect spelling.

During my years of English teaching, many of the best writers in my classes have not been naturally good spellers. Console yourself, if you find spelling difficult, with this thought: you can get a machine to spell for you. No machine, however, can write prose with the intuition, the wit and the discernment 8 of a human being.

If you have that kind of writing ability or potential, don’t let a few misspellings hold you back.

Despite these words of support and reassurance 9, the Kahoots provided below are aimed at helping you to improve your spelling of the trickiest and most troublesome words in the English language.

Forgive me, I’m an English teacher. It’s my job to be a pedant 10.

Kind regards from Ms Green

Downloads

Essential Links

Write a Comment:

List your worst three “danger words” in English spelling. Do you have a method for remembering how to spell them? Here are two of mine: perseverance and diarrhoea.

I try to cultivate the first and avoid the second! 

  1. surmise: a guess or supposition that is not based on evidence
  2. diabolical: horribly unpleasant, devilishly tricky
  3. subdued: brought under control, restrained
  4. oppression: prolonged cruel or unjust treatment by an abusive authority figure
  5. perverse: deliberately and obstinately unreasonable and uncooperative
  6. tumultuous: here: disorderly, confused
  7. melting pot: A melting pot allows one to melt and mix many metals. This phrase is also employed to referred to a process of development in which many elements are blended together.
  8. discernment: high-quality judgement
  9. reassurance: the action of removing or reducing someone’s doubts or fears
  10. pedant: a person who is excessively concerned with minor details and rules

E is for Empathy – and for Escape

Retreating into a book is one of my favourite pastimes.

Dear 8B,

Reading has always been my refuge from the real world. Books whisk me away from the present into a distant past, a mysterious future or an author’s imaginary universe.  Oddly enough, although novels provide a mode of escape from reality, they also force me to experience the pain and suffering of others. The greatest writers are utterly convincing: the worlds and the people within their books are just as intense and believable as the world I actually inhabit.

In fact, sometimes I indulge in little “if only” plays in my head. If only I were as clever as Hermione… If only Dumbledore hadn’t died… If only our school had a “Room of Requirement”…

Even Shakespeare has this effect on me. When Macbeth walks towards the sleeping Duncan, dagger in hand, I cry out inwardly: “Don’t do it! You can still stop! Let him live!” You know that a character has become important to you when you plead with another to spare him or her and in the process save his own soul.

Books can carry you away to another place or time, like a teleporter that actually works.

Have you ever had experiences like that, moments in which a book takes over your consciousness and becomes almost more real than your own existence? If so, write a comment in which you describe the novel and your reaction to it or simply recommend the author and book to your classmates.

Mrs McQueen is an everyday angel and a book fiend.

Mrs McQueen loves books, which is just as well, because as our librarian, she is their custodian, their advertising agent and our ongoing reading consultant. Here are some of her recommendations for wide reading, as well as some of the books chosen by the class.

Kind regards,

Ms Green


This short list is from the display in the library titled “Walk a mile in my shoes” – books chosen to promote reader empathy:

  • Does my head look big in this? by Randa Abdel-Fattah | Book details
  • When Michael met Mina by Randa Abdel-Fattah | Book details
  • f2m: The Boy Within by Hazel Edwards – A young person transitioning from female to male is the focus of this story. | More information – or read the first 12 pages here
  • Nona & Me by Clare Atkins This is a story about an Aboriginal girl and her closest friend. | Book details
  • Kokoda Track: 101 Days – Peter Macinnis This story is about bravery in Australia’s history. | Book details provided by the State Library “Inside a Dog” site
  • Ana’s Story: A Journey of Hope by Jenna Bush A young girl grows up with HIV and all the prejudice and suffering that brings. | Book details from UNICEF
  • Veiled Courage: Inside the Afghan Women’s Resistance by Cheryl Benard In this story, women defy the Taliban. | Review at GoodReads
  • Ethel and Ernest: A True Story by Raymond Briggs This is a beautifully illustrated graphic novel about an “ordinary couple” who live through World War 2 and the period of the Cold War. They have an extraordinarily talented son and it is he who decides to tell and illustrate his parents’ life story. This novel has also been adapted as a short film. You can see the trailer below: 


Other Recommendations from Mrs McQueen


Classy Choices by Class Members

  • Hunger by Michael Grant – Anre
  • The Siren by Kiera Cass – Rose
  • Revolting Rhymes by Roald Dahl – Pia
  • Assassin’s Creed by Christie Golden – Eden
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K.Rowling – Claire
  • The Flywheel by Erin Gough – Kim
  • Doctor Who: Death Riders (Justin Richards) and Heart of Stone (Trevor Baxendale) – Barrie

Essential Links

P is for Precision

Dear 8B,

Some words are vague, broad and general. We use them when we speak, because they are easy to pluck from our memories and cast out into everyday conversation. After all, when you are speaking, speed is essential. Your listeners would prefer not to wait while you consult your inner thesaurus.

Here are some words that fit into this category: awesome, wonderful, amazing, terrific, fantastic, great. All of these words are useful fillers during brief interactions with acquaintances or hasty conversations about the weekend.

When you are writing, however, you should aim to choose your wording more carefully. This doesn’t mean that everything you write must be poetic, flowery or elaborate. Nevertheless, at least some of your sentences should captivate your readers, penetrate their consciousness, pierce their indifference or touch their souls.

My friend, Mrs McQueen, once told me that every quilt she makes must have a colour that “pops” – a colour that is eye-catching, distinctive or especially vivid. Any piece of writing should likewise include some precise, original and striking words. Some of your words should also “pop”!

When you are writing your “J is for Journey” piece, therefore, try to include some words that you have agonised over, not just settled on at the last minute for want of something better. For instance, if you are describing a person who has influenced you or to whom you are deeply grateful, such as your mother or your father, avoid vague statements like this:

My mother is a great person. I like her a lot.

Write something instead that brings the individual qualities of your mother to life. Refer, for instance, to her actions, to her warmth, humour, kindness and unending toil on your behalf. Write something more like this:

My mother has always taught me the love of living things. Whenever she encounters a lonely child, a sick animal or even a wilting plant, she does her utmost to care for each one. While she is kind-hearted and gentle, she is also spirited and fiercely protective. As the central figure in my life story, she seems to know intuitively how to help me when I’m low, how to guide me when I’m lost and how to counsel me when I confide in her.

That was my mother.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

Essential Task

Choose your most memorable slide or page so far, the one with the most powerful, effective or moving words, and show it to me. Then add it as a comment to this post.

Essential Links

F is for Figurative

Dear 8B,

Words have multiple meanings. Sometimes a word that has a concrete meaning can  be employed in certain contexts in a symbolic or figurative way.

A black night – A black mood – A black heart

For instance, if you write the sentence, “It was a black night”, the word “black” is fairly concrete and limited, assuming that you are describing a dark night with not much moonlight. In the sentence, “She was in a black mood”, however, the word “black” suggests “low” or “pessimistic“. When you place this seemingly simple adjective into the phrase, “He has a black heart”, its meaning mutates once more; in this context it signifies “wicked” or “callous“.

By describing Carl as “a bloated pincushion on sturdy legs”, Moloney emphasises the boy’s vulnerability and sensitivity to the hurtful remarks of others.

In the novel that we are reading, A Bridge to Wiseman’s Cove, James Moloney often employs words in a figurative way in order to convey the intense emotions and experiences of his characters. Appreciating his use of imagery will help you to identify and explore the themes and to understand the characters in his novel.

The pictures below show symbols that are frequently used in figurative ways. For instance, we might say that we are offering “the hand of friendship”, that our motives were as “pure as the driven snow” or that a friend has a “fiery temper”. Can you think of a figurative usage for one of these objects or symbols? 

A sword, an island, a chess set, a candle, a pen, a suitcase, an anchor, a lightbulb, a book, snow, a hand, barbed wire – all physical objects with a potentially figurative meaning…

Write a comment in which you explain a possible symbolic meaning for one of these objects OR describe yourself by using a metaphor. James Moloney’s writing includes many moving and sometimes amusing examples that will aid you in employing figurative language yourselves.

Kind regards,

Ms Green

Essential Links

R is for Resolution

My name is Ms Green.

Dear 8B,

If you are anything like me at the start of a new school year, you resolve to be a better person (or in my case, a better teacher). For instance, I tend to make myself all kinds of unrealistic promises, like these:

I shall be kind, patient and considerate to all my students, even on Friday in Period 6 when the weekend is beckoning…

2 If students make questionable excuses, I shall not roll my eyes or respond with an acerbic comment. Instead, I shall listen quietly and sympathetically.

3 When students beg me to make them a Kahoot, I shall exert myself to fulfil their wishes.

Sometimes I manage to live up to these high hopes, but quite often I fail dismally. Once winter sets in, I find that my temperament, like the weather, becomes less sunny. You may remind me of the resolutions above any time you like.

Kind regards from Ms Green

Your first comment: What are your resolutions, hopes and dreams for this year? Write at least one in a comment at the bottom of this post. Use formal, correct English and ONLY YOUR FIRST NAME.

Sentence starters:

  • This year I hope to…
  • I would like to show that…
  • During this year I promise to…
  • In the next twelve months, I shall try to overcome my tendency to… 
  • One of my plans for this year is to…

The sun goes down on the summer holidays.

J is for Journey

The first English task for this year is titled “J is for Journey”. The idea comes from a novel by Barry Jonsberg titled My Life as an Alphabet, which I highly recommend. It is an amusing and touching story. 

Two sample slides from my own presentation:

Each slide or page of your presentation should include a picture, a letter, a corresponding key word and an explanation.

Try to use pictures that you have taken yourself. I snapped the photo above in a gourmet supermarket: power through Vitamin C – and word play!

Essential Tasks

  • Write a comment in which you describe one resolution for this year. This need not have anything to do with English or school. It may refer to sport, friendships, music or hobbies, for instance.
  • Set yourself the task of completing one alphabet letter for “J is for Journey” each day or two. Time will also be provided in class. Each page or slide should include a letter, a corresponding word, an image and 2-4 sentences explaining your point clearly.

Essential Links