Friday, December 19, 2008

Just a little something to tide you over...

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all!  It was a nice surprise to get 3 extra days of vacation.  We'll be grumpy in June, but it sure feels good now!

All right, let's get to business.  We're going to write a short paper toward the very end of class and this assignment is going to help you start thinking about it while practicing some analysis at the same time (we were going to do something from the book, but I thought there would be at least half of you that didn't have your book at home).  

Go to Read the 2 paragraphs "What is This I Believe" and "The History of This I Believe" on the first page.  Then browse through the many essays on the site picking one from the 1950's and one from more recently that you like.  Do the AP squared  process to them.  (Remember that? If you recall, the sides of the square are labeled purpose, persona, audience, and argument.)

To blog your responses without going through the time-consuming aggravation of making a quadrisected square, do something like this:


Outside: Sharing is the quintessential trait that makes us truly human.

Inside:  Details from the text that led you to say what you said on the outside of the box

Audience (I think you get the idea)

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a Happy New Year!

So, who is most likely to watch all 34 bowl games: Richards, Rosas, Keeney, Howell, Moore, or Bunker?   My money's on Moore...or maybe Gendron.  ;)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Will we ever have school again?

If we have class tomorrow (we'll have to see how much time we have), hopefully it will just be about passing back papers (at least of 3rd period as I'm not sure I'll be done with 2nd) and maybe getting the vocab test out of the way.  Ironically, I have more time to grade when I'm at school -- no little Charlie to play with.

I JUST got a call from FSD saying there is no school tomorrow!  I'll give your papers back when we have school again. Watch this blog tomorrow (Friday).  I'll have your small, just-something-to-keep-your-brains-from-atrophying assignment up by then.  Until then, have fun in the snow!

Megan,  Charlie is having a great time in the snow and I'm trying to grade essays while he's asleep.  Charlie and I finished playing in the snow a little bit ago and are baking chocolate chip cookies at the moment (he's very excited).

Mr. G

Monday, December 15, 2008

Dashing through the snow

All right.  The weather outside may indeed be frightful, but school must go on, albeit not without some changes.  So this week is going to look like this:

Monday: Timed Write!

Tuesday: Vocabulary 6 Quiz, guided timed write activity (using Hazlitt)

Wednesday: It's supposed to snow, but if we're here, we're having another timed write and play with fallacies.  :)

Thursday: Movie

Friday: Finish movie, eat party-type food if people would like to bring it.

All plans listed or alluded to above are subject to change.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Winter Solstice, Happy New Year, and Happy whatever else you may have going on.  ;)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Fallacious D

Hasty conclusion like toy balloon: easy blow up, easy pop.
–Charlie Chan at the Race Track  

Your homework is to make sure you have the 3 scenarios on your blog.  

Here are 10 logical fallacies. Research them here or/and here and then create for your blog three short scenarios: two of which are examples that you make up of the fallacies below and one that is meant to be logically consistent. In class, we’ll examine these paragraphs and see if the class can guess which is which. Make sure that it’s not obvious that you’re using a fallacy. Make us work; make us better.

  • Begging the Question

  • Slippery Slope

  • False Dilemma

  • Post Hoc

  • Biased Sample

  • Gambler’s Fallacy

  • Hasty Generalization

  • Ad Hominem

  • Straw Man

  • Tu Quoque

Remember: DON'T label your scenarios as it will take the fun out of guessing what's what.

Also remember that the vocab test and the timed write have been moved to Monday!

Borrowed (stolen) from the wise and illustrious nstearns.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Researched Argument Synthesis Essay

Don't forget to bring whatever you need to work on your synthesis essay tomorrow, including your paper!  Also, the vocabulary test is moving from Friday to Monday this week.

Monday, December 8, 2008

MLA Format

Here is the Research Paper Format Example we talked about in class today.  Please address any questions not answered in that document, on, or in the Word 2007 citation tool to the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers sixth edition found on the bookshelf in my room.

Remember we'll be in the computer lab tomorrow (12/9) so bring what you need to work on your paper!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Mexico and California

Hey guys, sorry this is going up a bit late.  We had a staff meeting. 

Anyway, take the introduction from Days of Obligation that we were working on in class and define what is being said in each paragraph.  Then I'd like you to examine how each paragraph/section builds on the one previous and leads into the one following.  How does he transition from idea to idea?  What are his techniques?

Bring it in tomorrow on paper. 


Plagiarism bad; original thought good

Synthesizing others' work with you original thought while giving credit where credit is due -- better!

Today we're going to educate ourselves on plagiarism.  This is something we need to pay attention to as we branch out from our book and use outside sources in this next essay.  To that end, everyone needs to complete the quiz under option number 1and the test under option number 2 (print your certificate) found at

Additional resources: