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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Tell Tale Heart - A Crowd Pleaser!!

Yowza! I said I would blog more and well... that just hasn't happened.  I am making it my new years resolution to blog more.  Here is the first of I hope many more posts to come!
In October we read the Tell-Tale Heart.  This story itself is a total crowd pleaser, but I think the activities we did with it made it even more enjoyable to my students. Luckily it is found in our literature book, which saved me a ton of copies, but I could also have to students listen to it as we read.  (I LOVE the voices and pacing in the audio included with the book.)  As the students were following along an listening to the audio, I randomly would stop and discuss parts with them.  Some of them would look up at me in shock, like-I can't believe we can read about someone chopping up another person, which made it even more enjoyable to me. 
 
(If you click on the picture, you will be able to enlarge and see it better.)
When finished reading, the students made a characterization foldable over the "insane" man/killer.  The outside was an illustration of the "insane" man/killer and the title of the story.  The picture is what I had on the board for them to do on the inside.  The students did a complete indirect characterization of the character.  I got the acronym STEAL from Darlene Anne's characterization packet (here).  It has done amazing things for my 8th graders and really made them dig deeper to evaluate a character.  They referenced their notes on types of characters that I got from Lovin' Lit's (Erin Cobb) reading notebook (here).  I had some amazing final products, but forgot to take pictures.
 
 
We also watched this cartoon version of The Tell Tale Heart on YouTube.
 **I will say that you might want to preview it.  As the police are walking down the hallway, in the background is a picture of the with pubic hairs covering the nether regions the man.**
 My students LOVED this video!

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/The-Tell-Tale-Heart-Pre-and-Post-Reading-Task-Cards-1075628
These task cards are amazing!! I highly recommend heading over to Tori's story to check out everything she has.
(Click picture to be taken to her store)  

To culminate our study, I split my students into pairs to complete task cards over the short story. (These were hands down the best resource I found for this short story) Not even going to lie, but since it was so close to Halloween & the other ELA teacher would be putting hers out in the hall, I told each class that the top 2 from each period would get a full size candy bar of their choice.  It's amazing what an 8th grader will do for candy. 

Here are some of my favorites:
(Click the picture to see a bigger version.)










Let me know if you have any amazing activities you have your students complete when you read The Tell Tale Heart.... I am always looking for more to add!



Monday, November 24, 2014

T is for... {A week of Thanks!}


I am excited to link up this week with the girls over at Blog Hoppin' in a week of thanks.  I really needed this linky this week... it is making stop, slow down, and be thankful for things in my life.  With as crazy as life is everyday, this is a blessing in disguise.
 
 
  I moved to 8th grade this year and was completely overwhelmed.  I am lucky to have an amazing teammate that has helped me feel more comfortable as the year has gone on.  We have opposite personalities, but we are a perfect fit.  She is the calm to my crazy, which if you know me there is a lot of! 
 
The last couple of years in 5th grade I felt like I was on an island and just doing my own thing.  I would bounce ideas off the other ELA teachers, but they weren't very receptive to my ideas.  That was a hard thing.  If you have been through that, you know.  This year is the complete opposite because of my teammate. 
 
I am thankful for this lady right here..
 
 
 Head on over to Blog Hoppin' and link up!