Compare/Contrast Essays

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Since September 28(A)/October 1(A) we have been working on Compare/Contrast Essays.

In class on Sept 28 and 10/1 we took Cornell notes (to be placed in the writing section of our binders) on Compare and Contrast Essays. We were able to record the process for writing a thesis statement and used American Idol vs. X Factor as a practice example thesis.

The next class, everyone was assigned one of these three prompts:

•Prompt #1: Compare/contrast how allusions and the inclusion of personal background information helped each author reveal their perspective on the topic of each story
•Prompt #2: Compare/contrast the family influences and cultural/literary influences on the perspective of each author
•Prompt #3: Compare/contrast the main ideas/essential messages of each story and the methods the authors use to get  these ideas/messages across to the reader

We moved on to working on comparing and contrasting items based on the prompt assigned from the two stories we read “Straw Into Gold” and “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” in a Venn Diagram Worksheet.

We took notes on outlining and began to outline our essays on the given worksheet.

If you need an example on how to fill out your outline OR you need a new worksheet click this:


Rough Drafts of essays are due by October 12, 1:45pm (end of school day)

On October 15(B) 16(A) we are peer reviewing.

Final drafts are due October 17(B) 18(A and 7thPeriod)

Compare/Contrast Essay Notes:


Compare/Contrast Essay Rubric:


For further help:

Thesis Statement:

Holt Online Textbook

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To access our textbook for English III, go to this website:

Login: tparker806

Password: braves

You need to type it in perfectly in lowercase letters, do not copy/paste!

It is correct, I checked several times. Use Firefox or Google Chrome rather than Internet Explorer, possibly.

Use the textbook to make up assignments you missed and study!

September 4 and 5: Allusions Notes

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Here are the powerpoints used during these days class period.


AllusionsPPTPDF This is where the Cornell Notes came from*****

Here are the videos watched during the class period:

Alice Walker reading “Ain’t I A Woman” to go with the Allusion Worksheet done as classwork/homework:

Short video on Alice Walker’s life to base your QuickWrite answer:

Homework: Allusion Worksheet (See me for a copy); Fill in Cornell Notes Left Column and Summary

About Cornell Notes and Questioning

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Cornell Note Form

We take Cornell Notes often, therefore it is very necessary that you become comfortable with them. I gave a handout about Cornell Notes, if you need another copy, see me. It is SIMILAR to this one:

Be a STAR note-taker, check out this helpful handout: Star_Note_Taking_Handout

Set up paper, Take notes, After class, Review notes

Here are some helpful links for Cornell Note Taking:

Questioning Techniques for the Left Column of Notes

We will be writing in different “levels” of questions into the left column of our Cornell Notes. This will help us use the notes as a study guides for tests and in-the-moment processing of the information.

In this class and many other classes at our school the question levels come from the “Depth of Knowledge” system. I gave a handout to the class to help with this that is supposed to be kept in the front of the binder. You may have heard of other question level systems, such as Bloom’s Taxononmy. Take a look at how they compare:

In your notes you must have at least: 1 Level One Question, 2 Level Two Questions, and 2 Level Three/Four Questions


Recall and Reproduction DOK Level 1

List animals that survive by eating
other animals
Locate or recall facts found in text
Describe physical features of
Determine the perimeter or area of
rectangles given a drawing or labels
Identify elements of music using
music terminology

Skills/Concepts: DOK 2 Examples

Compare desert and tropical environments

Identify and summarize the major events,
problems, solutions, conflicts in literary text
Explain the cause-effect of historical events
Predict a logical outcome based on
information in a reading selection
Explain how good work habits are
important at home, school, and on the job

Classify plane and three dimensional

DOK Level 3: Strategic Thinking

Compare consumer actions and analyze how
these actions impact the environment

Analyze or evaluate the effectiveness of
literary elements (e.g., characterization, setting,
point of view, conflict and resolution, plot

Solve a multiple-step problem and provide
support with a mathematical explanation that
justifies the answer

Extended Thinking: DOK 4 Examples

Gather, analyze, organize, and interpret

information from multiple (print and non
print) sources to draft a reasoned report

Analyzing authorᾼs craft (e.g., style, bias,

literary techniques, point of view)

Create an exercise plan applying the ᾿FITT

(Frequency, Intensity, Time, Type) Principle῀

Here of some question starters for you to use: DOK Question Stems


Setting Up Your English Notebook

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How to Set Up Your English Notebook

1.Make the cover represent you with pictures, drawings, and art. Make sure it is appropriate for school.

2. Write your name on the inside front and back cover.

3. The first page is a Title Page. It should include: Name, “English Notebook Semester 1”, “Ms. Arnholt”, Block #

4. The next two pages (backside of title page and the next) are your Table Of Contents. Title it.

5. Every page after that, the left side is to have the Brain Warmer, an activity/homework, the reflection/exit slip. The right side contains your Cornell Notes of the day.


****If you are having trouble with your notebook, see me in tutoring after school Tuesdays and Thursday and we will fix it together!