New Year, New Blogs

Posted August 5, 2009 by MsStewart
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Cary Academy has decided to host our blogs in-house using WordPress MU. I’m excited because this gives us lots of opportunities for cutomization. Each student will have his or her own blog, and I’ll keep a class blog.

WE (Writing Enthusiasts) Magazine

Posted May 28, 2009 by MsStewart
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Lots of hours of student and teacher work went into the middle school (6th-8th grade) literary magazine. The results are fantastic! Congratulations to all the authors, artists, and designers. Hope you enjoy browsing the magazine.

We used Microsoft Publisher to create the magazine and Adobe Acrobat Pro to publish it as a pdf. Section covers were created using Adobe Photoshop. We uploaded the final product to Scribd in order to embed it in the blog. We ordered print copies from MagCloud. The results were fantastic! I’d highly recommend them.

Some of the formatting may look slightly off because we needed to leave trim area for the publisher and last names were deleted for the online version. The magazine is best viewed in full-screen mode. To access this, click on the button in the top right-hand corner.

View this document on Scribd

Red Scarf Girl Characters

Posted May 6, 2009 by MsStewart
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This week students created ways to present their knowledge about the characters we have encountered so far in Red Scarf Girl. Here are some great examples of student work.

This group of students recorded quotes for each character using Audacity and embedded them in the PowerPoint. Unfortunately, you will not be able to hear them while vieing the SlideShare show. There is a way to record audio with SlideShare; we just didn’t do it for this project.

This group of students used Glogster for their presentation. If  you click on the picture, you will be able to interact with the glog. Students knew that origami is traditionally Japanese, not Chinese, but it “looked cool.” :)

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Here’s another glog. This group chose to give more detailed information about fewer characters.

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Students planned this poster on their tablets and then created it on poster board.

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Red Scarf Girl

Posted April 26, 2009 by MsStewart
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Image from Ji-li Jiang's website

Red Scarf Girl

We have begun reading Red Scarf Girl by Ji-li Jiang in conjunction with the World Cultures unit on China. You can find out more information about the book by visiting Ji-li Jiang’s website.

We Are Poets!

Posted April 20, 2009 by MsStewart
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On Friday night, students, parents, and friends gathered at Barnes and Noble in Cary to share poems written during the course of poet Phillip Shabazz’s residency. I am in the process of creating a “book” from poems students wrote during the week. For now, I’ll share an album of photos of students reading their poems and a clip of Mr. Shabazz reading one of his poems.

Art and Poetry in the Garden

Posted April 13, 2009 by MsStewart
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floweringcherryStudents completed their haiku and Japanese line drawing projects today. The project was inspired by Tosa Mitsuoki’s paintings, Autumn Maple and Flowering Cherry with Poem Slips. Mitsuoki’s paintings feature trees bedecked with traditional Japanese poetry. An excellent resource for teachers about the Flowering Cherry painting is available from The Art Institute of Chicago, where both paintings are housed.

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The project was a collaboration of World Cultures, Language Arts, and Visual Arts classes. Students completed line drawings of an object in the Japanese dry garden and then wrote a haiku based upon their drawing.

Here’s a Power Point I used in Language Arts class for an introductory lesson on haiku. Here are some haiku students wrote as part of that lesson.

Below are pictures of the Japanese garden and one of the completed scrolls.

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Not Just 575: Traditional Japanese Haiku

Posted April 8, 2009 by MsStewart
Categories: poetry

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Haikuis one of the most popular poetic forms. While most people know that haiku are composed of three lines with a 5-7-5 syllable pattern, there are several other characteristics of traditional Japanese haiku. We discussed traditional Japanese haiku in class today. The Powerpoint I created to guide our discussion is posted below. After the discussion, students rotated through stations around the room where pictures were posted. These pictures of natural life guided students’ composition of haiku. I asked students to focus on writing poems which evoked seasonal images rather than focus on strict adherence to the 5-7-5 pattern. Some of their compositions are posted here.


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