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2011 Engl9 Unit1

Page history last edited by Russell 8 years, 6 months ago


Fall 2011

Unit 1 - Elements of Fiction

English 9


Fri, Oct 7


DUE: Irony essay

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Unit exam


Irony essay turned in


Unit exam


Thu, Oct 6


DUE: One paragraph you worked on at home


  • Study for the unit exam TOMORROW
  • Finish and print a copy of your irony essay 

TODAY: Modeling Step-Up to Writing


Students provide input toward a sample paragraph that would be acceptable for the irony essay and that follows appropriate step-up-to-writing protocols.


Sample from period 4:

Situational irony is incorporated in the story “The Censors” by Luisa Valenzuela to create surprise in the reader.  Situational is irony occurs when a reader’s/audience’s expectations are met with something different (under reasonable circumstances).  The effect of situational irony involves surprise, as a reader’s reasonable expectations are not fulfilled. In the story, Juan joins the censorship office in order to intercept his own letter in the hopes that he and his lover will escape arrest and harm. He becomes so skilled a censor that he rejects and censors his own letter, sealing his fateful doooooom.  In this section/scene/part/segment there is situational irony that surprises the reader, who would expect Juan to remember his letter, intercept it, and keep it from the censors. Instead, we are surprised by his reflex to censor even his own letter. Luisa Valenzuela uses situational irony to surprise the reader in her story “The Censors.”



Wed, Oct 5


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Work on your DRAMATIC IRONY paragraph (part of the irony essay)

TODAY: Body paragraphs (step-up to writing)


The class moves through the requirements of the paragraphs in the irony essay (outline and requirements in the link)


Two sample paragraphs:


     In Richard Connell’s “The Most Dangerous Game”, the author uses dramatic irony to build tension in the reader. Dramatic irony happens when the reader/audience knows something a character does not. Dramatic irony has to do with building tension, because the audience or reader must always wait for an outcome, and that waiting causes suspense. In Connell’s short story, the hunter Rainsford must fight for survival as General Zaroff hunts him. He builds traps, hoping to kill or stop Zaroff. The reader knows that Rainsford builds the traps, yet Zaroff is unaware of them. The reader wonders if the traps will work to stop Zaroff and if Rainsford will survive. The fact that the reader knows and waits for the outcome is dramatic irony. Because the reader is made to wait for the outcome, tension is built. The reader eagerly waits to see if Zaroff wins or Rainsford saves himself.Dramatic irony is employed by O’Connell to cause the reader to experience tension and suspense.


Example 2:

            T.S. >> In Liam O’Flaherty’s “The Sniper” the author creates suspense in the reader through dramatic irony. DEFINITION >> Dramatic irony occurs when the reader/author knows something that a character does not. EFFECT >> This knowledge the reader has creates tension as the reader waits for an outcome. SUMMARY >> When the protagonist tries to trick the opposing sniper, he dangles a hat as bait, hoping the other man will shoot it and give him a chance for a shot with his pistol. TYPE OF IRONY >> In this scene there is dramatic irony as we wait to see if his trick will succeed. The reader is aware that the protagonist sniper has developed a trick with the hat; however, the antagonist sniper is unaware of the trick – he thinks the hat is the sniper’s head. READER’S EXPERIENCE >> The reader waits to see if the opponent falls for the trick; we wonder: If the trick works, will the protagonist succeed at killing him? If it doesn’t, will the protagonist die? Because the reader is made to wait for the outcome of the protagonist’s trick, suspense is built. CLOSING >> O’Flaherty succeeds in building suspense through dramatic irony by making the reader wait for the outcome of the sniper’s trick.


Tue, Oct 4


DUE: n/a

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Library services


In the library to hear about the services Pierce County Library System offers to students = FREE!


Mon, Oct 3


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Make an outline for at least one paragraph of your irony essay

TODAY: Review of irony; irony in our stories


The essay this week asks: “How do authors use irony to create surprise and suspense?

Surprise = Situational

Suspense = Dramatic




  • ·         Z thinks he’s the best hunter yet dies at the hands of R; in fact we think he’s skilled as well
  • ·         R at first believes animals have no emotions when hunted; finds this is NOT true when he is hunted
  • ·         Z and the reader believe R has died, yet R appears and ultimately defeats Z


  • ·         We believe all L’s work has been to repay a valuable debt, but in fact the work is all in vain b/c the necklace was “paste”
  • ·         We would expect L to be happy w/ the invite, but instead she complains and rejects it


  • ·         We expect J to pass on his letter, but he censures it
  • ·         J hates/fears censorship office yet joins it and becomes a star employee
  • ·         His focus WAS only for his letter, but he starts to lose that focus (reports the strike organizer)


  • ·         Protag believes he may know the other man; turns out to be closest relative


  • ·         We would not expect J to part with his most valuable possession


  • ·         Miss S expects the town to be kind and respectful to her b/c of her family heritage; she is shocked when no respect is shown for what she values most


  • ·         We know R sets traps, yet Z and I do not; we wait to see what happens
  • ·         We know R is hiding, and we wait to see what Z will do: Will he find him? Kill him?


  • ·         We know L loses the necklace and we wait to see M F’s reaction


  • ·         Censors don’t know why J joined the office AND don’t know J’s letter is out there; we wait for both to be resolved


  • ·         Sniper tricked the other man; we know protag is still alive, but other man thinks he’s dead


  • ·         We know D cuts her hair and wait anxiously for J’s reaction (will he still love her?)


  • ·         We know Miss S drops the letter, yet she does not
  • ·         We know Miss S sends the letters; others do not



Fri, Sept 30


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Create a 2-column table titled "Situational" on one side and "Dramatic" on the other; fill in all the examples of irony you can recall from any and all of the stories we have read so far.

TODAY: Vocab review; notebook check


Students receive their "Personal Conflict" essay and file it in "Returned Work" in the binder



  1. Class Notes
  2. Vocab
  3. Current Work
  4. Returned Work
  5. Handouts


Students create a checklist of in-class work to be found in the binder "Class Notes" section and grade each item according to the descriptions given below:

  1. 9/9 Dangerous Game Notes
  2. 9/16 The Necklace Notes
  3. 9/20 10-minute "Don't Stop" writing
  4. 9/20 Steps and requirements for the "Personal Conflict Essay"
  5. 9/23 Notes on irony, and a table w/ irony from D.G. and Neckl. 
  6. 9/28 Notes from The Possibility of Evil


All assignments are out of FIVE total possible points. The breakdown for points is as follows: 


  • 5 (100%) A score of five means that upon visual inspection and review the student obviously fully understood and applied the necessary skill and knowledge. Tbe student's work is extensive, including all necessary details plus more. An "outstanding" piece of work.
  • 4 (80%) A score of four means that upon visual inspection and review the student mostly understood and applied the necessary skill and knowledge. All of the main, important items are included, with detail present on some areas while not in others. A "good, solid" piece of work. 
  • 3 (60%) A score of three means that upon visual inspection and review the student somewhat understood and applied the skill and knowledge. The assignment may include the "bare essentials" but lacks key, relevant detail. Assignments scored a three almost always are of low quality, often "thrown together" just before class.
  • 0 (not prepared) A score of zero is assigned when the student is not prepared to show his or her "quick check" assignment. There is not enough evidence of knowledge or skill to assign a score.


Thu, Sept 29


DUE: Personal conflict paper, revised

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Review of unit 1 vocab


Collection and small peer review of personal conflict paper


Review of unit 1 vocab and creation of vocab segment in notebook:

  • protagonist, antagonist, main character, secondary/minor character, round/dynamic character, flat/static character, setting, time, place, internal conflict, external conflict, man vs man, man vs nature, man vs society, man vs self, exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution/denouement, theme, allusion, Biblical allusion, mythological allusion, historical allusion, cultural allusion, situational irony, dramatic irony, verbal irony, understatement, overstatement


Wed, Sept 28


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Finish revisions on personal conflict paper - bring tomorrow

TODAY: Irony quiz corrections/review; new story


Review of irony quiz, with questions and answers investigated


Notebook check


Reading of "The Possibility of Evil"


Tue, Sept 27


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Edits and revisions to Personal COnflict, due THURS

TODAY: Reading an assignment checklist


Review of yesterday's quiz w/ answers explained


Notebook check!


Review of the Personal Conflict assignments, with tips and tricks. The original assignment checklist follows w/ comments after each item that gave you trouble on the drafts:


GRADING: Grading will be by checklist

  • Student includes a topic sentence at the beginning that states what he/she learned from the experience

In the first four sentences OR in the first paragraph, I need a sentence that clearly states what your overall learning was – EVEN IF you mention it at the end. WHY? B/c a topic sentence is a road map that appears at the beginning. “…I learned …” OR “I took away …” OR “I established …” OR “I came to understand …” OR “I realized …”

  • Student "tells the story" of the conflict/challenge - from its start to its finish

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENT: Add at least one (more) simile to help add descriptive detail. SIMILE: comparison using like, as, or than.

  • Student's telling of the story includes a setting that gives the time and place
  • Student presents himself/herself as the protagonist or main character using first person "I"
  • Student identifies the type of conflict accurately

Explicitly state: Person vs. nature; man vs. self; PROVE you know the category of conflict

  • Student explains how and what he/she learned from the experience
  • Student concludes by stating how he/she will react when faced with a similar conflict in the future (or how he/she will avoid similar conflicts in the future) 




Mon, Sept 26


DUE: Irony in The Gift of the Magi

HMWK: Begin editing "Personal Conflict" DUE THURS

TODAY: Reading for irony - situational and dramatic


Review of irony – you should have notes on it!


New story: The Censors

Recording of situational and dramatic irony


Irony quiz


Your “Personal Conflict” essays

Final draft due Thursday

Double-check your checklist to ensure all items are included in your paper. Many people failed to include:

The type of conflict described (man vs. self, m vs nature, etc.)

What you will do in the future when faced w/ a similar conflict


NOTES from The Censors:


  • Juan joins the office he fears
  • Juan reports a man, when he himself is there to avoid being reported
  • He finds himself working in an office that performs the reviews he wants to avoid
  • His mission becomes "noble" and he is shocked at the secretive messages; he becomes what he hates/fears
  • He censors his own letter 


Take out a blank piece of notebook paper you can re-insert into your 3-ring binder later – don’t tear it out, but unclip and remove

Make a heading w/ just your name and class title

Put today’s date in the left margin, and in the text area write “Irony Quiz”

Answer the following questions on your quiz sheet. Do not write the questions, but answer them in full sentences:

  1. In your own words, describe situational irony
  2. Explain one case of situational irony from The Gift of the Magi
  3. When the protagonist of The Sniper finds that the man he shot is his own brother, what type of irony is it?
  4. In your own words, describe dramatic irony
  5. Explain ONE case of dramatic irony from any of the stories we have read 



Fri, Sept 23


DUE: "Personal Conflict" assignment

HMWK: What is the irony in "The Gift of the Magi"

TODAY: Irony - situational and dramatic


Situational Irony – When the reader/audience’s expectations are not met – they instead receive a surprise, like the opposite happens

  • Dangerous Game: Z thinks he’s the best hunter, yet he dies at the hands of R in the end (that’s ironic for Z); reader thinks R is dead (as does Z) but R surprises everyone when he appears in Z’s room; at the start, R believes animals can’t feel emotion, but he himself feels emotion when he’s hunted (ironic for R)
  • The Necklace: We, like Loisel, believe the necklace is real – she works hard to pay off the debts of a real diamond necklace; however, Forestier reveals the original was fake = sit. Irony
  • The Sniper: Prot. wants to see who it is – maybe someone I know. Feels it just may be an acquaintance. Not only someone he knew better, but the closest person: a brother – family! Expectation was distant, but the reality was near.
  • The Gift of the Magi: ????


Dramatic Irony - When the audience/reader knows something a character does not - creates tension for the reader as we await the character's reaction to events

  • The Gift of the Magi: ???? 


Thu, Sept 22


DUE: evidence of starting "Personal Conflict" assignment

HMWK: Finish "Personal Conflict" assignment

TODAY: Topic sentence, establishing setting


In-class work with topic sentences and establishing setting. We will work from examples Mr. Rice provides, reviewing that ...

  • topic sentence = a succinct statement that provides the main point and focus of a paragraph
  • thesis statement = a succinct statement that provides the main point and focus for an essay
  • setting = any details that provide the reader with clues to time and place 


Wed, Sept 21


DUE: Your decision for the conflict on the "Personal Conflict" assignment

HMWK: Develop the conflict assignment - begin to write out the story

TODAY: Don't Stop writing; review of writing assignment checklist


15-minute "Don't Stop" writing about the conflict selected for the writing assignment


Shaping of the "Don't Stop" so it is useful for the writing assignment


Tue, Sept 20


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Work on "Personal Conflict" assignment

TODAY: Conflicts; writing


Free-write "Non-Stop" 10 min


Brainstormed personal conflicts of various types - try to pick one that has a story behind it


New "Personal Conflict" assignment - work time in class


Mon, Sept 19


DUE: Plot chart for "The Necklace"

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Plot review; theme


Review of plot in "The Necklace" based on student input - notes on the board

Review of plot in "The Most Dangerous Game" based on student input - notes on the board


New vocabulary: THEME

Theme is seen by many to be the subject of topic of a piece of literature. That is one dimension of theme. The second level is the author's message, or aim, with regard to his/her subject and topic. A good way to get at a deeper theme is to ask: "What is the author trying to say through the events in this story?"


Consider "The Most Dangerous Game" - At the start, Rainsford denies that animals feel anything - even fear - when they are hunted. However, he finds himself in a situation where he feels keenly the terror and fear of an animal that knows it may die. Because he is the protagonist, we must focus on HIS experience. What does he learn? Well, some might say he learns that you don't truly know how something feels until you experience what they experience. Others recall the saying, "You don't really know a man until you walk a mile in his shoes." THOSE are true themes.


Consider "The Necklace," which many say has a few possible themes. One theme has to do with the fact that Mme Loisel cannot shake the feeling that she is not "made" to be poor. She wants to look - and thereby feel - richer. She is dissatisfied with her position in life, and that desire to appear and feel wealthy is what causes her downfall. Some say there is a message here that you need to be true to yourself. Don't try to be what you're not. Others see that Loisel lies to Mme Forestier by secretly replacing the original necklace. Many readers point out that if Loisel had only told the truth at the outset, her downfall would not have happened. These people argue that the theme of the book has to do with truth, and that you should always turn to it.


Fri, Sept 16


DUE: n/a

HMWK:Complete the plot chart on "The Necklace"

TODAY: More on plot; new story "The Necklace"


A new plot chart in class notes and reading of "The Necklace" by Guy deMaupassant


QUESTION: What is the climax of the story? If the climax is the point of highest tension, then what is the point of highest tension? Options may be:

  • Mme Loisel cannot satisfy her desire to rise above her class
  • Mme Loisel loses the necklace
  • The Loisels borrow and borrow to replace the lost necklace
  • The Loisels work and work to repay the loans


Thu, Sept 15


DUE: Completed reading of "The Most Dangerous Game"

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Quiz on plot elements; learning to use the Senteo "clickers"


Quiz using the Senteo "clickers"

Topic: Everything about plot, including

  • exposition
  • rising action
  • climax
  • falling action
  • resolution
  • setting
  • protagonist
  • antagonist
  • external conflict
  • internal conflict
  • man v self
  • man v man
  • man v nature
  • man v society


Wed, Sept 14


DUE: n/a

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: Rising action, climax, falling action, resolution


Completion of "The Most Dangerous Game" and the accompanying plot chart


Review of plot terms, with today's new vocabulary:

  • climax - the point of highest tension in a story (where the main conflict is usually "broken") 
  • falling action - the immediate events resulting from the story's climax, or the end of the main conflict
  • resolution - the concluding events in a story; where everything stands at the end 


Tue, Sept 13


DUE: n/a

HMWK: n/a

TODAY: setting, plot, exposition, rising action


Reading of "The Most Dangerous Game" and an introduction to the basics of a plot chart

Key terms:

  • setting - anything that relates to time or place in a text
  • protagonist - the central figure(s) in a text
  • antagonist - the person or force acting against the protagonist
  • plot - the chronological sequence of events in a text
  • exposition - introduction of a story; setting and characters are established
  • rising action - conflicts are introduced to the protagonist(s) to raise tension and interest


Students copy a plot chart into their notebooks, recording key terms, examples, and notes from "The Most Dangerous Game"


Mon, Sept 12


DUE: "I Am" poetry assignment


TODAY: "I Am" sharing; learning how to read a scoring guide and rubric


Sharing and discussion of "I Am" poetry assignments, focusing on the nouns and complete sentences


Fri, Sept 9


DUE: n/a


Finish the "I AM" poetry assignment - DUE MONDAY

Complete the 5 class notes questions from class:

    1. What is the setting? Time? Place?
    2. Who are the main characters so far? 
    3. Are any conflicts introduced?
    4. Who is the protagonist?
    5. Does an antagonist appear?

TODAY: Vocab and our first story


Introduction of first vocabulary terms with a helpful chart (PDF):

  • plot - the order of events in a story
  • exposition
  • setting
  • conflict - man vs man, man vs nature, man vs self 


Task: Identifying the elements of literature in a short story

  • Read Connell's story "The Most Dangerous Game" from pgs 39-middle of 51
  • CLASS NOTES: As you  read, use the plot chart with your literary vocabulary to record information:
    1. What is the setting? Time? Place?
    2. Who are the main characters so far? 
    3. Are any conflicts introduced?
    4. Who is the protagonist?
    5. Does an antagonist appear?


Thu, Sept 8


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Work on the "I Am" poetry assignment - DUE MONDAY

TODAY: Work on "I Am" poetry assignment


All period: Work on "I Am" poetry assignment - DUE MONDAY


Mr. Rice will read everyone's poem - the goal is to have a completed poem by the end of class



  • Assemble and place the images (not less than 3)
  • Write the explanations of 2-4 images on the back of the sheet 


Wed, Sept 7


DUE: n/a

HMWK: Work on the "I Am" poetry assignment

TODAY: Picture day, so only work on "I Am"


Due to schedule interruption/picture day, we will only work a bit on the "I Am" assignment


Tue, Sept 6


DUE TODAY: Nothing


  • Work on your "I Am" poetry assignment
  • Answer the class notes questions from today's lesson

TODAY'S FOCUS: pre-assessment; elements of literature: plot, setting, exposition, conflict


A small test - a pre-assessment - on literary terms to see "where we are"



Fri, Sept 2


DUE TODAY: Nothing


  • Work on "I Am" poetry assignment


  • Overview of the year
  • Personal introductions 
  • "I Am" poetry assignment


Course overview, grading, units, etc.


More personal introductions: In groups of three, students interview one another on key items:

  • Month of your birth
  • If you could interview anyone - any real person, alive or dead - who would it be and why?
  • If you were stranded on a desert island, what music would you want with you on your MP3?


Introduction of the "I Am" poetry assignment DUE WEDNESDAY

Work time on "I Am"


Thu, Sept 1


DUE TODAY: Nothing


  • Browse around the web site to become familiar with it 

TODAY'S FOCUS: Introduction to the class, including content, rules and regs 


P2 = textbook checkout @

P4 = textbook checkout @

P5 = textbook checkout @


How to enter class

Your questions about the schedule, lunches, or classroom locations

Class rules and procedures

Includes restroom/"I forgot!" pass sheet

Mr. Rice introduction

Name games to learn names and something about others in the classroom

  • Action Syllables - With the group standing in a circle, have the participants each choose an action for every syllable of their name. Example: Elvis has 2 syllables, so he does a hip shake with “El” and snaps his fingers for “vis”. Once Elvis has done his action while saying his name, the whole group repeats. After the 2nd person does his/her name, the whole group repeats, then does Elvis’s again. And so on ‘til everyone’s done it.
  • Alliteration - "My name is Russell, and I like RADISHES." Everyone in turn gives a name and alliterative food or food type ("I'm Tina and I like THAI.") Then the circle tries to repeat as many as possible.
  • 3 Things In Common - Using a three-way Venn diagram, students will explore what traits and experiences they have in common, and what traits and experiences are unique to each person. Findings are recorded by students on a Venn diagram handout and reported to the class.


Exit: Write the name of as many people as possible



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