The sonnet for high school: (part 2)

Use these student-written mentor texts inspired by Terrance Hayes Two weeks ago, I posted about a unique sonnet writing exercise inspired by poet Terrance Hayes that I tried with my junior-senior poetry class. Click here to read that post. This new exercise took repetition to an extreme degree, and in so doing, demonstrated the literaryContinue reading “The sonnet for high school: (part 2)”

Hexagonal Thinking and The Great Gatsby

My first attempt with hexagonal thinking Dear Teacher-Friends: If you’re here for Part 2 of my “Teaching the Sonnet” post, please bear with me. I am still in the process of obtaining permission from a few students to post their wonderful sonnets. As soon as I have those permissions rounded up, I will publish thatContinue reading “Hexagonal Thinking and The Great Gatsby”

A New Poem Activity for The Wanderer

While our study of The Wanderer included some note-taking, reading the poem aloud, and completing a close-reading activity, I wanted us to go one step further to get more out of this beautiful verse. So when I read about something called the “Ubi sunt” motif present in The Wanderer, I took notice… especially when I considered how it might be a way for students to better connect personally to this poem.

Race, Class, and Music in The Great Gatsby

Originally posted on The Avid Listener:
Carrie Allen Tipton (Houston, TX) https://www.youtube.com/embed/ozkOhXmijtk Warner Brothers film trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby (2013), featuring multiple musical excerpts (starting off with André 3000 and Beyoncé performing “Back in Black”). The Great Gatsby turned ninety last year. What does its antihero—floating dead on a bloody mattress in…

Switch up sketchnotes to engage distracted students

I love sketchnotes. They’re engaging, colorful, and creative, and allow me to make illustrative connections while I listen to a book. But here’s the thing: I’m not a very good listener. I need to carefully concentrate on the words I’m hearing or my mind wanders to whatever’s going on in the hall, outside the window, or just inside my head. So even though I’m a huge fan of sketchnotes, sometimes I need a more passive kind of sketchnotes… sketchnotes that keep me engaged, but still able to focus on the text so I can create meaningful notes and doodles that will ultimately aid understanding and retention of the content.

The Great Gatsby 2013 Film Chapter Breakdown (updated 1/31/22)

While planning lessons a few days ago, I wanted to know exactly how Baz Luhrman’s Gatsby aligns with the novel. To find out, I watched the movie with novel in hand. Here’s the chapter breakdown.