December 19

ELA 7-8 Finishing up Projects Before the Break

We’ve only got 2 classes left for 2022! We won’t begin anything new, but you’ll use these classes to confirm you’ve finished recent activities/projects we’ve done. You can use this as an opportunity to see if you can properly track your own completions through our Teams Assignment Tab.

Here is the list of recent-to-older activities to complete:

  1. Beginnings 9 (assigned to you today) See below for video.
  2. Five Frame Stories: Instructions at this blog link.
    1. Five images added into Google Slides – shared.
    2. Storyline developed to make a reasonable plot based on images selected. (Around 5 sentences each image.)
    3. Using Screenrecording tool WITH MICROPHONE to record a VIDEO of your Five Frame Story. Video uploaded to your Google Drive and then Shared with me to the gmail account. (The video is the final project.)
  3. 55 Word Stories: Instructions at this blog link. You should have a minimum of 4 completed. (1 from the 1st day trying & 3 from day 2)
  4. Beginnings 8 Free Write activity. (We did this Dec 6 – many people were missing that day.)
  5. Quill Sentence Combining Activities: Assigned/done also Dec 6th.
  6. “Thank You Ma’am” Flipgrid response to short story questions. We read this story together using Active Reading Cues (predictions, motivation of characters, summarize) and then you answered/discussed the questions attached in your handout. Most used Flipgrid to record responses and some submitted written responses in Google docs.

Are you keeping up with our work in ELA 7-8? You’ve had many months now to get used to the format for class and kinds of assignments we do.
If you’re not finding a way to be more aware of what’s unfinished, we should talk about strategies for that.

December 15

ELA 20: Instructional Essay Overview

Well, now I’d guess ELA has gotten a little interesting for you, right? Suppose you’re at this step in the course. In that case, that means you’ve been reading about romantic relationships and might have even had a blunt conversation within your group to ask people who represent others you’re attracted to the questions you really wanted to be answered. It usually gets interesting when we get to this part of the Adolescence half of the course!

And now you get to write an Instructional Essay –

  • It is Informal, so there’s no hard-fast rule on the format or outline for it.
  • It must be Instructional, which means it has to offer steps to the reader in order to follow through with something (How to be a third wheel, How to date your parents, etc)
  • With the step-by-step instruction, you’ll also have to have strong use and control of Transition phrases of sequence. 
  • The Tone must be sarcastic and witty; this is meant to be playful and comical
  • It must also have a Persuasive tone. This means you have to include language that is commanding, demanding, and like you fully expect readers to follow your instructions fully. Instead of saying “You should…” or “You could…” persuasive language choices include “You must…”, “You have to…”
  • And the Jargon language requirement will take some consideration. Jargon is language that’s really only used related to one topic. The words flambé, sauté, and infuse don’t work outside of cooking. Words/phrases like lay-up, dunk, and three-pointer are fairly obviously related to basketball. So you’re looking to pick a topic (cooking, hunting, basketball, hockey, cinema, etc) and compile a list of the phrases and words that are only related to those topics. Then you’ll carefully integrate them into your writing, like you’ll see in sample paragraphs.


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December 14

ELA 7-8 Five Frame Stories – creative writing/using technology

Stories include a Beginning, Middle, and End.

How interesting/challenging would it be if you were given Random Images and had to create a reasonable storyline that could tie all those images together as a story? We’ll try it and see!

Two Options: Create a Plausible Storyline (slightly serious) or make a Goofy/Comical Storyline

Supports for both options:

  1. Plausible, serious-ish storyline: you can use the websites linked below to find a series of photos that include the same setting, actors/models, so the storyline seems as if it all fits together smoothly, through the images you choose.
    1. Websites you can use to get 5 images in a series include:
      1. pixabay
      4. burst
  2. Goofy/comical-ish storyline: you can instead really test yourself by using a Random Image Generator to select 5 images for you that you have to then try developing a storyline to suit those images and tie a reasonable storyline altogether.
    1. lets you set how many images you want (5) and you can let it pick randomly or you can select a category (ex: animals). Then those are the 5 you go with for your story.
  3. You want to select 5 images for the Beginning-Middle-End parts of a story.
  4. You’ll add each image as a Slide in Google Slides.
  5. Then you’ll develop the Story details for the images to tie them together in a story.
  6. In the final step, you’ll audio record yourself Telling your story along with your images.

Image Examples: Series Serious (horizontal) and Random Goofy (vertical) 






Adrenalin (above) Red (below)

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December 8

ELA 7 – 8 Writing Development: 55 word stories

Some writing practice for you today: Another Beginnings Writing Prompt and then a “55 word story” Challenge!

  1. Beginnings #8 Label it properly in your Google Doc and share to me.
  2. AND Written in the same Google Doc, try developing some Fifty-five Word Story Writing:
    It is a type of story writing that involves writing descriptively (activating the 5 senses) and including dialogue (speech exchanged between characters or internal dialogue). But there is a restricted pattern for sentence lengths you have to follow; the instructions are below.

    1. You can try using a Story Generator if you want.
    2. Write one story after another. See how it goes!

Instructions: from Write Moves text pgs 169-170Write Moves: A Creative Writing Guide and Anthology - Broadview Press

Dip your toe into story structure by writing a “55-word story”, a fiction narrative exactly ten sentences long.

  • The first sentence must have precisely 10 words, the second sentence nine words, the third sentence eight words, and so on until the final sentence is composed of a single word.
  • All acronyms and digits must be spelled out (“28” is “twenty-eight”, which
    counts as two words).
  • The 55-word story must include a setting, a character in conflict, and a resolution (or sense of “ending”).
  • To compose, write the numbers 10 through 1 (the number of words allowed in each sentence) down the left side of your page.
  • Draft the story first as a list of sentences then transcribe your draft into prose format (see the example below).
  • Notice that each time a new character speaks, there is a new line.

Here is a 55-word story called “Wax and Wane” written as an example:


“Say that again,” she whispered, tickling fingers through its hair. (10)
It’s not yours,” he whispered, knealing in the barn. (9)
“Tell me again, Duane,” she sobbed, eyes excited. (8)
“It’s not yours, not yours, Diane – Not! (7) The animal purred between them both. (6)
“Say it again,” she whispered. (5) Duane shifted his body. (4) The kitten slept. (3)
“It’s beautiful.” (2)
Mine!” (1)

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