Below are some of the assignments that will be formally evaluated. Please note that they do not include regular writing tasks designed to help you communicate more effectively.
- Becoming a better writer tutorial
- articles for the Centurion (our online newspaper)
- Short Story
- Macbeth test
- Someone Else’s Shoes Rant (writing)
- Someone Else’s Shoes delivery
- in-class essay
- The Mockingbird Project
This semester, you will also write the OSSLT, or Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test. We want this process to painless yet purposeful: it should be painless in the sense that it shouldn’t cause you undue stress, and purposeful because the activities we will complete in preparation for the test should make you better communicators. Hopefully, our online newspaper will help you prepare; in fact, it might be best to think of all of the tasks you complete this Semester as content worth publishing.
Today, you will look at a few Grade 9 exemplars. I’d like you to work in your groups to evaluate the work. Here is some useful terminology that might help you with this task:
thesis: this is the main argument in an essay. Traditionally, it is the last sentence of the introduction.
topic sentence: this is the first or second sentence of a paragraph. It should prepare the reader for the rest of the paragraph, and it should connect directly to the thesis. In essays, topic sentences often state part of the argument, and thus resemble thesis statements.
evidence: this is the support that the writer provides for their claims. The evidence should be clear, accurate, and relevant.
Spelling errors: Bad spelling herts my eyez. Actually, a recent study suggests that, in total, English websites lose millions of dollars every year because of spelling errors; potential customers find other business online because they believe poor spelling indicates unprofessionalism. See? Bad spelling is costly.
Fragments: Incomplete ideas. Which have no subjects. Sometimes no verbs, either.
Irrelevant Information: Providing irrelevant information reminds me of something I did on the weekend. I nearly finished Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for the first time in about 10 years. Good times.