June 8

ELA B10 Starting Macbeth – the Scottish play!

To begin our look at Macbeth, we considered the possible influences for our choices:

  1. Fault: we make our own decisions, exert free will, so we alone are responsible for successes or failures
  2. Fate: timing of events/sequencing can be all it takes to set up a circumstance that leads to our downfall – could it be just coincidence or destiny that leads us to success or failure?
  3. Influence: people that surround us has differing levels of influence on us. Those who are more persuasive can be quite impacting, so could it be less our success/failure and more someone else’s at times?

To start the play, it’s helpful to have a basic overview of what the play is about and who the players are. This summary cartoon does a great job of that. Watch up to about six minutes in. That leaves the ending/tragedies that unfold still to be discovered as we read/perform the play.



There’s also the continued conspiracy theory that Shakespeare isn’t the sole author of all he’s credited for writing. An interesting film/documentary was made looking into that possibility.


April 6

ELAB10 Pre-Reading Inquiry – The Dirty 30s

You’re about to read a novella (short novel) set in the Dirty 30s of America. To understand the relationships and context of the story’s plot, you’ll need to learn a bit about that era of history.

Do some online digging and find out a few things about each of the following:

  1. America in the Dirty 30s – The Great Depression
  2. The Dustbowl
  3. Migrant Workers
  4. Unemployment Rates
  5. Why Men Left their Families
  6. Riding the Rails (traveling by train)
  7. Role differences of men and women
  8. What happened to children during the Depression
  9. Look up Photography of The Dirty Thirties and skim through them

Once you’ve learned about these things, you’re ready to read the novel.

You can also read the summary of or watch at home the film Cinderella Man. It’s set in a similar time and includes many of these characteristics of the time.


March 31

ELAB10 Equality – Responsibility to Others in the World

We’ve recently finished studying events in history where culture groups were in need of protection from persecution. It’s a pretty heavy, but important, topic!

In our discussions yesterday we made comparisons of more recent world events, after the Travel Ban (#1) was enacted in America. The reactions from people across the USA were amazing to see; the positive reactions were amazing. The negative ones, discouraging.

I said I’d collect some of the examples so you can see what happened.


March 22

2017: Grade 10 Introductions to German Penpals

Hi there from far away! Below are the Introductions the Canadian students have made to share with our new German friends. We’re really looking forward to whatever we each gain from this exchange of cultures and ideas!


Exciting times for #ELAB10 students!! We’ve got new #penpals and are just starting our first writing post directed to them. Our pals are from #Germany and are in gr9, which we think is actually equal to our gr10. We’ve created introductions to send to them and their teacher said they’re going to look through them and “call dibs” to pick who they’ll pair up with. The German students will be writing in English, but it’s not their first language, so each #Canadian student will have 2 partners (and one with 3). Now… what to write them!? They’ll each initiate a conversation topic every two weeks – one started by a Canadian student about one of our recent #ELA topics they want to share/hear feedback on and one topic initiated by a #Germanstudent for the same exchange of ideas. We’re excited to try this out! We’ll be using our #elablogs and the key thing that was brought up today was they’ll have a real audience! #realworldlearning #culturalexchange #realtopics #openminded #Saskteacher

A post shared by Marcy Waldner (@marcywaldner) on


Beside each name if their Introduction PDF.
Below each name is their first Post/Letter written to you! Good luck getting started!

Bella (Isabella) Bella – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://bellat2015.edublogs.org/2017/03/21/letters-to-a-pal-week-1/


Brooke Brooke – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://villib2015.edublogs.org/2017/03/22/dear-pen-pal/


Carson Carson – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://carsong2015.edublogs.org/2017/03/21/first-wright-to-my-pen-pal/


Jenna Jenna – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://jenna2015r.edublogs.org/2017/03/22/letter-to-a-pal-week-one/


Leah Leah – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://leahl2015.edublogs.org/2017/03/21/letter-to-a-pal-week-1/


Mackenzie Mackenzie – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://becky2015b.edublogs.org/2017/03/21/letter-to-a-pal-week-1/


Nate Nate – About Me

First Blog Post to You: http://nate2015p.edublogs.org/2017/03/21/127/


Trystan Trystan – About Me

First Blog Post to You: (Written by a guest since Trystan is going to be away for a week)

We’re excited to hear from you!!
Image result for excited gif




February 7

ELA B10: Feb 7/17 Exposure to Sketchnoting

You’re soon going to listen to an interesting podcast that looks at the scientific background of “Race”; it explores the question of whether race actually exists, beyond the Human Race.

Your task, while listening to that podcast, will be to follow along and sketchnote your understanding of the audio. You likely haven’t tried creating a sketchnote visual before, though, so you’ll need to understand what it’s about and how to use the symbols best to your advantage.

The number one thing to understand, though, is that this is low risk – there’s no “right” or “wrong” in trying this. You’re going to give something new a try and see how it suits you and your style of learning.

For some exposure to sketchnoting, then, there are a few YouTube tutorials you can use to learn a bit about it and the technique.



January 31

ELA B10 Jan 31/17 Equality – Do we have a fair and equal society?

Your B10 course will be much like your ELA A10 course, but the two halves will focus on different themes. They’ll study literature exploring:

  1. Equality

  2. Decisions

To start your Equality unit, you’ll watch a movie about a young boy who earns a football scholarship to a private, ivy league school. (Ivy league would mean it’s a school rich and prominent people send their kids to so they can be prepared to go on to ivy league universities, like Stanford, Princeton, and Harvard. These are some of the most prestigious colleges in America and many years ago, they were mostly for White students only.)

While you’re watching the film, track some of your ideas, personal responses, and predictions in the linked Google Doc. We’ll review the comments you’ve left after watching and use them to start our discussions.

Google Doc Active Viewing Document Link 




Scan the QR Code to access the open Google Doc for During Viewing Comments.



June 20

ELA B10 June 20/16 Sample Obituaries for your Obit Writing

You know you’re tasked with writing an Obituary celebrating a character’s life from the play Macbeth. To get an idea of what this type/form of writing is like, here is a website with a collection of unique Obituaries. Read them to get a sense of:

  • tone
  • how each celebrates the deceased in some way
  • quirky elements – the uniqueness of each is mentioned
  • loss
  • one sample tries to find meaning in a tragic loss of a son to suicide – it’s worth skimming for ideas (tragic loss of many in Macbeth)

Here’s the link to the web page. 


Sample Obituary Writeups - website

June 9

June 9/16 ELA B10 Fault or Fate – Introduction Discussion

We’re about to start studying a famous Shakespeare play called Macbeth. It’s known for being one of the bloodiest of his tragedy plays. But this isn’t a 400 year old story with no relevance to today – it has every relevance. Many of the popular shows in media in the last handful of years follow a type of formula for anti-hero protagonists in tragic circumstances.

The video examples below are evidence of the ultimate question that surrounds these types of plot lines: is it the character’s fault or fate?

Breaking Bad – Walter arrives to rescue Jesse from relapsing in his drug addiction and, while there, an event happens. Is Walter guilty of the results of the scene or was he a victim of cruel fate and poor timing?


The Path – A story of a cult-like community whose leader is away receiving the rest of the messages from God that will direct their future path. Another young leader, Cal,  knows the truth, though, that the leader is in a South American hospital dying, and Cal, believing himself to be the next chosen leader, is trying to direct fate so that he’ll lead on. Confronted by someone else who knows the truth of the dying leader, and recent circumstances having literally put a broken vase in Cal’s hand, he reacts in a moment and kills another.

Without fate setting up the circumstances and timing of this event, there would have been no murder. Again, is it fault or fate?



May 31

May 31/16 Sample Letter of Concern – My Letter to Saskatchewan Roughriders Organization

Your next assignment coming up is to write a Letter of Concern or Complaint. This will include formatting your message, tone, and purpose more carefully in order to get the type of response you’re hoping for.

As an example of this type of writing, I’m sharing with you the Letter of Concern I wrote earlier this year to the Saskatchewan Roughriders Organization. It was in response to bullying behaviour my family and I were subjected to by a number of people in a group of seasons ticket holders. I spent quite a bit of time drafting and revising this Letter of Concern, specifically because I wanted it to be well-received and result in action on the Roughrider Organization’s part, which it certainly did.

I was very pleased that, after reading this letter, the following happened:

  • the Security Manager called my brother personally to offer an apology for how we were treated and got more information from him of the day’s events
  • the Security Manager was able to finally get a meeting, specifically as a result of this letter, with the Rider Organization Managers to address security issues that were ongoing and not yet addressed
  • it resulted in some formal changes being approved after that meeting and more specific security features enacted, such as:
    • more security personnel in specific parts of the stadium
    • cards being handed out pre-game with text info to request security’s assistance during the game
  • for my brother, 10 already-purchased seats for an upcoming game were upgraded to be positioned directly behind the Roughrider bench
  • He was also given pre-game field passes for h to observe the warm up and interact with the Rider players.

We were very happy with the actions taken by the organization as a result of the concerns relayed through this letter. A carefully articulated message can definitely draw results, which is what you are to consider as you will play a role in future issues being addressed in Canada.

Sample Letter of Concern: My letter sent to the Roughrider Organization