March 12

ELA 20 Script Writing – Interview with fairy tale character

You’ve recently studied and analyzed an old-time, original fairy tale, one that was likely quite a stark contrast to the type of enjoyable and reassuring fairy tales you’re used to in more modern times.

Examples of the extremes of older, original fairy tales includes:Casey Affleck — Armchair Expert


  • Fairy tales where a woman hated/wanted revenge on a young, beautiful woman so they arranged for her to be killed and her heart cut out and brought to them
  • a fairy tale where a young potential bride was lured into a house where killers and rapists cut up a woman while she hid

Newer fairy tales, the ones we read to kids today, don’t include such gruesome and horrible storylines. And for good reason!

Your task in this assignment is to write the dialogue exchange between an interviewer and the main character of the original fairy tale you read. In that conversation, the interviewer wants to challenge the character on the messages and potentially dangerous influence their “story” would be to today’s kids. 

  • The Interviewer could be:
    • You, yourself
    • Ellen Degeneres
    • Oprah
    • Joe Rogan etc
    • Dax Shepard (Armchair Expert)
  • The Interviewed Person is the main character of your original version of the fairy tale you choose
    • you’ll have to draw parts of that character’s back story (where they live, who they’re related to, what they feared, their goals or hopes, what dangers were there against them, enemies and influences, etc)
    • Elements from this character’s story that you may challenge them on or question them about may include:
      • the message their story would leave with young boys about the roles males play in society
      • the message their story in particular would leave with young girls, about how girls should interact in their society (wait for a rescuer, be valued for beauty and virtue, etc)
      • the potential message shared about what is good in the world – beauty over being a good person, bravery over relying on others for help, maintaining power and riches, etc
      • what possible ideas could the original story leave with today’s kids about their relationship with their parents – that they could be left somewhere if their parents cannot afford to care for them anymore, that they could be targets of violence, that old people will want to hurt young people, etc
      • what types of individuals can be seen as heroes, only men? only young people? only the ones who use force and violence?

Resources for Planning: 

Script Writing Resources:

The interview conversation will be written out in Script Form with the goal it is performed as a Stage Play.

Image result for stage directions diagram



To see samples of short stage scripts, try these:

Image result for script writing stage play examples

Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT
March 3

ELA 20 The Original Fairytales – Not What You’re Expecting

While you likely grew up thinking of fairytales as stories with a happy ending after heros and heroinnes manage through a complicated problem, the original fairytales were stories intended to scare children into submission and doing what they were told. They were dark, included elements really not appropriate for children, by today’s standards, and are suprisingly different in their messages.

One of your tasks in this section is to select one of the original fairytales. You’ll read it to understand what they used to be like and analyze them for patterns or common messages. Then you’ll consider the comparison – how are they a different type of story than fairytales of the present?

Don’t believe me? Check out the Dark Side of the Grimms Fairytales (article)

Sites to find your original fairytale from are provided below.
Note: Make sure you select on that’s long enough that you’ll be able to analyze it for meaning and content. Some of the shorter ones won’t include enough to really consider. Check with me on your story choice if you’re uncertain.

You are also asked to develop some thoughtful questions for discussion, after studying your original fairy tale text. You are well-practiced at answering questions posed to you, but not as practiced at developing thoughtful, higher-level thinking questions yourself. Here, you have an opportunity to practice that.

You want to try developing more-advanced types of questions that would require someone to understand the text and apply it to their experiences and knowledge, rather than asking them questions for answers that can be found directly in the text.

The ultimate guide to teaching higher-order thinking. | Teach Starter

Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT
February 14

ELA 20 Reflective Essay Writing – Resources

You’ve done a number of formal literary written assignments in recent semesters of ELA. This next essay will have a more-relaxed format and be less formal because it will rely on the reflection of personal, childhood memories.

Through this writing assignment, in particular, it will really test your use of transitions to smoothly guide your reader back and forth from past to present observations.

Some parts of this writing will require special attention including:
Handout with Advice to Consider

  • Transitions to consider for Past vs Present writing
  • Understanding to keep similar topics together in your paragraph – avoid jumping back and forth and back and forth between past/present within one body paragraph. Clump similar focuses together in the paragraph to keep the organization of ideas smooth/easy to follow for your reader
  • establish a pattern of steps in your body paragraph writing – adapt the pattern you typically use for body paragraphs to suit the requirements of this assignment in particular
  • There are also sample student paragraphs included ranging from less developed to more with feedback included for what is strong and weak in each. It may help you set goals for what to develop in your own writing.

Sample Student Paragraph – strong development

Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT
December 14

B6 ELA 20 “Initial Ask” Questions

Here are some written out questions to consider when reflecting on this text.
Note: If you have a copy of the text without page numbers, the first page is pg 40. 

  1. Pg 56-57 The Two Selves: The author mentions research giving evidence of people developing “two selves” – an online self and an in-person self. Why are there these two personas of people and what danger is there in it? Can you identify with this, having two selves yourself, or not? Explain.
  2. Pg 62 Spelling: The book talks about how spelling errors in early texts between potential romantic partners can be a turn off. Why do researchers think it matters so much in this digital world related to dating?
  3. Pg 63 Three Traits for a Successful Text: From the feedback they’ve gotten from people’s personal experiences, the author breaks down the three things required for a successful text message. What are they and why do these seem most important for giving the right impression?
  4. Pg 67 It’s written in the text that “the person who receives the last message in a conversation wins”. George Hormans established the classic sociological “Principle of Least Interested”, which implies that the person who is least interested in the relationship has the most power. Explain your understanding of this concept. Can you relate to this theory from your experiences? If not, explain why you think this happens.
  5. Pg 67 Wait Time: What observations does the author share about how people use “wait time” with potential romantic partners? What are some of the approaches/personal rules to implementing wait time? (wait two times as long or 1.25 times as long etc) Share whether you have your own type of rule or habit.
  6. Pg 68 Explain the advice Socrates gives to the young woman so she can better attract more of a man’s attention. From your perspective and experience, is there truth to this concept? Could it work as well if a man employed this technique as for a woman using it? Explain.
  7. Pg 69 “reward uncertainty”: Summarize the psychological concept explained of “reward uncertainty” and share how people can use it in their potential romantic relationships. Knowing this pattern of human behaviour, how can people use it to benefit themselves?
  8. Pg 76-77 When not interested – there is an ironic difference between the way people want to be treated when they are crushing on someone who isn’t interested back versus the way they typically respond to someone who is crushing on them but they don’t return the feelings.
    1. How do people typically say they would want a crush to let them know the crush isn’t interested?
    2. How do people end up typically letting others who are crushing on them know that they aren’t interested in return?
    3. What is ironic between these two approaches, based on the book’s explanation? Why do you think there is this difference? Have you seen this type of difference in your expectations of how you are treated versus how you treat others?

Extra Q: In general, what is your review of this book/chapter – how would you describe it to next year’s ELA 20 students and would you suggest they read it?

Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT
October 30

ELA 20 Section A4 Documentary Choices (2018)

In this section, you’ll be considering how experiences are different for children and youth today compared to the experiences from decades ago. The impact and integration of technology used daily by children, for example, is a clear example of how times have changed.

Personal Judgement: Understanding the conflict with the cover of Girls’ Life magazine. Is the actual magazine cover on the left dangerous to girls and gender norms?

Facebook Comment Discussion on this Cover: If you’re not able to participate in a group discussion on the cover and whether it’s dangerous, you could skim the comments and see what the public thinks.














MagellanTV is offering $1,000 to watch 24-hours worth of true crime

Before Watching Your Documentary: you should approach a documentary differently than you approach watching a movie. If you’re not experienced with that difference, the following articles will help you understand the difference.

Several documentary choices are assembled for you to pick from. There are considerations to follow through with Before Viewing, During Viewing, and After Viewing.

  • Childhood 2.0: For the first time in history, mental illness and suicide have become one of the greatest threats to school-aged children.
  • Angry Kids and Stressed Out Parents: for the first time in history, mental health issues have surpassed physical health issues in youth
  • The Nurture Room: Documentary following the experience of young children with high needs as they are integrated back into schools. Not all child experiences in schools are typical.
  • You are not Alone: Documentary following young kids dealing with mental wellness and suicide issues.
  • A Dark Room: Canadian documentary looking at hockey culture, the stigmas developed, and the rise in concussions and mental health epidemic.
  • Beyond the Blues: Child and Youth Depression: Depression in children and youth is on the rise in Canada
  • Struggling for Control: Child and Youth Behaviour Disorders: A look at the causes, symptoms, and treatments of the most commonly diagnosed child behavioural disorders – ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, etc.
  • Kids in Crisis: A look at Britain’s child mental health crisis, where half a million kids are awaiting treatment, sometimes for 2 years, for mental health issues.



Article Links from Section Handout: 



The Alarming Rise in Teen Mental Illness

With Teen Mental Health Deteriorating Over Five Years, There’s a Likely Culprit




Teach your kids to question what they read and watch. Teach them to question everything. - 3 Documentaries That Will Change The Way Your Kids See The World (That Are Available on Netflix & Amazon Prime) *This is a must-read for parents. Be sure to look at the additional community suggestions at the end of the post. Love this quote!


Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT
October 30

ELA MLA Citation Guide & Links

If you pursue post-secondary education, the odds are you’ll have to develop a piece of writing that requires in-text citations and a Works Cited page. Here are some resources to use as a guide for that:

In-text citation guide:

  • author and page #
  • anonymous authors
  • text from an anthology or collection
  • multiple authors
  • internet sources

Citing non-print or sources from the Internet

With more and more scholarly work being posted on the Internet, you may have to cite research you have completed in virtual environments. While many sources on the Internet should not be used for scholarly work (reference the OWL’s Evaluating Sources of Information resource), some Web sources are perfectly acceptable for research. When creating in-text citations for electronic, film, or Internet sources, remember that your citation must reference the source in your Works Cited.

Sometimes writers are confused with how to craft parenthetical citations for electronic sources because of the absence of page numbers, but often, these sorts of entries do not require a page number in the parenthetical citation. For electronic and Internet sources, follow the following guidelines:

  • Include in the text the first item that appears in the Work Cited entry that corresponds to the citation (e.g. author name, article name, website name, film name).
  • You do not need to give paragraph numbers or page numbers based on your Web browser’s print preview function.
  • Unless you must list the Web site name in the signal phrase in order to get the reader to the appropriate entry, do not include URLs in-text. Only provide partial URLs such as when the name of the site includes, for example, a domain name, like or as opposed to writing out or

Works Cited page – basic guidelines

Basic rules

  • Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your research paper. It should have the same one-inch margins and last name, page number header as the rest of your paper.
  • Label the page Works Cited (do not italicize the words Works Cited or put them in quotation marks) and center the words Works Cited at the top of the page.
  • Double space all citations, but do not skip spaces between entries.
  • Indent the second and subsequent lines of citations by 0.5 inches to create a hanging indent.
  • List page numbers of sources efficiently, when needed. If you refer to a journal article that appeared on pages 225 through 250, list the page numbers on your Works Cited page as 225-250. Note that MLA style uses a hyphen in a span of pages.
  • If you’re citing an article or a publication that was originally issued in print form but that you retrieved from an online database, you should type the online database name in italics. You do not need to provide subscription information in addition to the database name.

Easybib Citation Maker: this website can be helpful for easily making your Works Cited page.


June 25

What’s on my bookshelf? Check online to see!

There are a lot of cool books on the shelves of the bookcase at the back of the room. Most are separated to fit their best course or genre that they relate to, but it can be deceiving, since many overlap and fit a number of high school ELA courses.

To help you see what your options are and decide,  I’ve created online shelves in GoodReads. At the link below, you can skim through and read summaries to every book on my shelf and get a sense of its topic, rather than judging by colour.

Curious about a book? Ask me about it!

GoodReads Shelves Ms Waldner

You’ll see on the left of the page a number of Shelves – click through them to skim books that apply and are potential choices within your class.


January 16

ELA A10 B7 Roles of Gender in Society – Topics to Consider

You’ll be doing some research on a topic that relates to the current roles our genders hold in society. The purpose of this is to pick something of interest to your personality and that may have an impact on your own future.

These topics range from older, ongoing topics to more recent issues that have come up through mass media and other influences. The topics themselves are categorized to be more related to Female, Male or Both genders.

If you have an idea for another topic to use for your project, let me know and I’ll confirm it is an appropriate topic to move forward with.

The topic ideas are categorized in the following groups: 

  1. topics relating to both genders
  2. topics relating to female gender issues
  3. topics relating to male gender issues


Both Genders – Issues of Conflict:

  1. 2017 New: The #metoo movement on social media – people are coming forward sharing their experiences being the victim of sexual harassment or assault. It is mostly females protesting how males have the power or are able to be protected despite this behaviour for years. Ayslee dibs 2021
  2. 2017 New: Also the #metoo movement focuses mostly on the female perspective, though several males have also recently come forward to disclose experiences of sexual harassment. This voice in the #metoo movement is not as loud, though. Is it not happening as often or not as much of a concern?
    #metoo is also being used by males sharing they have also been the victim of sexual harassment, including actor Terry Crew of the Old Spice Commercials.
  3. analysis of movies to look at how genders are commonly represented. Ex: Lethal Weapon tv show has mostly male cast – only 3 female characters, all secondary characters including the one detective’s wife who is a Lawyer, but mostly only represented inside her home, answering the door or in her kitchen. Macey dibs 2021
  4. Snapchat – look into the controversy of its use for Sexting among teens.
  5. Analyze advertisements for similar products that are gender-specific. Ex: Men’s body wash ads versus female body wash ads.
  6. Teens are now being charged with creating and distributing child pornography for sending and sharing sexting images. Consider why these new applications of the law are necessary.
  7. Female same-sex relationships in media seem more accepted than male same-sex relationships. Why? Jess dibs 2021
  8. Compare clothing sold for kids and the disparity between the gendered items. Ex: Boys shorts go down to almost the knee most often, while young girl’s shorts end mid-thigh. Is there a sexualization of children’s clothing that mostly targets young girls? Cameron dibs 2021
  9. Compare treatment and media representations of male and female pro athletes. Ex: Bouchard pro women’s athlete asked to “spin around” after winning a major title game.
  10. Compare dress uniform expectations for male vs female workers in restaurants. Ex: Males are often fully dressed in flat-heeled shoes, while women are often asked to wear tight, low-cut, short skirt/dress outfits with high heels. Boston Pizza and Original Joes are examples of this. Complaints have been made by waitresses to Canada’s Human Rights Commission.
  11. Analyze the difference between gendered play and toys. Example: boys should play with action figures and girls should play with dolls.

Female Gender Issues of Conflict:

  1. Women’s magazines target the age group younger than their own. Ex: Women’s Mags target teens, Teen Mags target Tweens, etc.
  2. In some countries, it is now required to include Warning Labels so consumers know the images have been edited or photoshopped.
  3. Look into what “violence against Women” is; it’s not just physical, but includes many other elements. Lexi dibs 2021
  4. Look into the difference in typical women’s clothing sizes from the past to now. Ex: The norm used to be size 14, now it’s size 10. There didn’t use to be such a thing as a size 0.
  5. Some stores have had PR issues after there was negative feedback about the types of items targeted to very young boys and girls. Ex: Little bralettes with sexualized phrases on them, or boy’s shirts that say “Pimp” on them.
  6. The topic of Vocal Fry, the really low, gravely voice some women use in media. It possibly is considered a negative quality by future employers.
  7. Look up the contrast of female to male CEOs of Canadian or North American Companies. The representation may be as low as 4% – 4 out of 100 CEOs might be women. Why the vast disparity?
  8. Pressure on new moms to “bounce back” after a pregnancy. Consider samples of celebrity mom bloggers who look very similar to their pre-pregnancy bodies and what pressure that puts on every day new moms. Consider what is realistic vs represented as the expectation.
  9. Trends in high schools across Canada/the US of young girls protesting school dress codes, such as a “go braless” movement.
  10. Analyze the treatment of women compared to men in a global sense – in other countries, how are women treated compared to their male counterparts. Ex: In some countries, women aren’t allowed to drive, have to be completely covered when in public, cannot be in the company of any male who is not their father or husband, can be stoned to death by a husband under suspicion of adultery, etc.
  11. Female Genital Mutilation (or Female Circumcision). Why is this done, what does it involve, and what countries/cultures participate in it. What is the expectation related to this potential practice being done in Canada – is it allowed? What’s the reaction if caught?
  12. 2018 India – response to 8 month old raped by 28 yr old cousin. Calls for changes in women’s protections.
  13. 2018 SAG Awards – Nicole Kidman won Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Mini-Series and, in her acceptance speech, championed those in the film industry who recognize women past 40 “are viable” still. Compare that to the attempts to maintain a youthful appearance by many, including Kidman, whose upper lip seemed to some frozen and unmoving during the SAG Awards evening.
    2018 Golden Globe Ambassador, Simone Garcia Johnson, daughter of “The Rock” Johnson, a 16-year-old presenter at the awards show had a noticeably frozen upper lip as well. Is botox only for the older crowd?

    Half of the searches that show up on YouTube for her relate to her mouth.










Male Gender Issues of Conflict:

  1. Comparison of the misogyny of the past to present. Example: Compare the treatment of women from entertainers like Andrew Dice Clay and Howard Stern compared to recent comments of Donald Trump regarding women.
  2. Do an analysis of the Stanford Rape Case, the young Olympic swimming hopeful who raped a girl and got a very light sentence. His father famously commented to the press that his son’s future was ruined over “20 minutes of action”.
  3. Analyze the issue of Rape Culture and represent some findings. Ex: Some Canadian University sports teams (hockey/football) have had instances of rape by team members and coaches/schools looked the other way for fear of losing funding and reputation loss.
  4. Canadian military – there is much reported recently about the high incidents of sexual assault and harassment against women in the military. Compare the rates to rates of the general public. Could compare it as well rates of reported/alleged assaults against female RCMP members.
  5. Rates of murder-suicide among men. Many incidents of this in recent years in Canada – men kill their kids, wives, and possibly others before killing themselves. What are the warning signs or what is contributing to this? Why is it predominantly men committing this?
  6. Roid Rage in young men. Many examples of pro athletes committing brutal assaults on female partners (ex: player beat up his girlfriend in an elevator & dragged her somewhere). Look into the effects of steroid use that may increase violent tendencies/inability to control emotions.
  7. Look into how some of the different cultures represented in Canada historically/culturally treat women. Ex Some cultures still believe in Honour Killings. (Jaxon dibs 2021)
  8. Compare the acceptance of female to male mental health issues. Does it seem more acceptable for women to admit mental health issues compared to young men? Is there a greater stigma attached for males? Are the rates higher or lower in comparison by gender? Connor dibs 2021
  9. The “Boys Will be Boys” Excuse. There is the belief this phrase is outdated and only plays up and reinforces some of the negatives of the boy/male stereotype – like boys have to be tough, boys can’t show emotion, boys are reckless and that’s okay/to be expected. Brodie dibs 2021
Category: ELA 20 | LEAVE A COMMENT