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.


November 30

ELA A10: Quest and Journey Stories

Your next section focuses on the theme of Challenges and what greater challenge story exists other than Quest stories? You probably have read stories or novels that include a quest story and it may

Image result for how to read literature like a professor for kids

be the elements of it that draws you to these story types.

The following short text will give you an explanation of what a Quest Story must include to be a true quest. Take notes on your handout so that you may assess the short story you eventually pick to guage whether it is really a quest story or not.



In your Quests and Adventures section, you’re asked to consider what qualities, in your experience, make someone a hero. Having made that list and considered your own opinion on the subject, pick one of the following articles to read and develop a response to. Instructions are included in your handout for after reading. 

  1. Choose which of the two above articles you want to read and make a list of the points made within the article.

What Makes a Hero (article) if the criteria for what makes a hero were changed, would there be more or less labelled heroes in the world?

Why we Need Saviours (article) the benefits and reason for heroism stories popularity in media

2. Following your reading, you’ll engage in a discussion with others who selected the same text. 


Link to selection of Quest Stories to choose from: click here

There are 25 short stories of Quests on this page. Skim through them to pick the best choice for yourself and your interests.

November 2

ELA A10 Essay Prompts for Individual Novel Reading 2017

Almost all of you have selected a novel to read that interests you personally. Some of your choices are more related to the Mystery theme of the first half of ELA A10 and other c

Image result for young adult novel reading

hoices are novels related to the Challenges theme for the second half of our course. Either way, there are a number of essay prompts for you to select from so that you may consider them and watch to collect evidence to support the essay prompt while you’re reading your novel.

You’ll want to look for examples in the book that support the topic of your essay and collect those examples by page number and possibly even which phrases specifically on that page you’ll use in your supporting paragraph.

There are a number of prompts; you can pick the same one that a friend has selected, because no two people (so far) are reading the same novels.


Mystery Essay Prompts to pick from:

  1. Science fiction books often warn society of the potential dangers or misuses of science and/or technology development in the future. Analyze three ways your selected novel accomplishes this.
  2. Identify and analyze three significant themes of the novel you read.
  3. Analyze three characteristics of your novel choice that make it fit the science fiction (sci-fi) genre.
  4. Dystopian societies are futuristic, potential societies that exist with different government, power, and value systems. Example: The society of Panem from The Hunger Games. Analyze how your novel choice also develops this type of alternative society.
  5. The development of conflict and dramatic rise to a climax is an important part of good mystery novels. Analyze the three main events that promote or establish the drama of the plot.
  6. Authors often develop characters with a bias, ensuring readers will either like or not like the character as intended. Analyze how the author of your novel uses this writing technique with three significant characters.
  7. Antagonists stand in the way of the protagonist achieving their goal. Analyze three ways your book’s antagonist accomplishes this.

Challenges Essay Prompts to pick from:

  1. Analyze three ways characters face the obstacles they are struggling with.
  2. Analyze three types of conflict that exists/is represented in the novel.
  3. Identify and analyze the role of secondary characters and how they impact the plot/outcome of the story.
  4. Dynamic characters develop internally/mentally/emotionally. Identify/analyze three characters that grow because of certain experiences they have in the book.
  5. Some relationships are positive influences, while others are negative and destructive. Analyze three relationships in the book for whether they are positive or negative ones.
January 13

ELA A10 Jan 13/17 Watching Your Selected Documentary

You should naturally have a habit now of thinking of a text in stages of Before, During, and After. You’ll have to submit evidence that you used strategies for each step to help you make meaning and connections to the text you chose to study.

Some options of what you can review/analyse/write out to prepare yourself for viewing include:

Before Studying/Viewing the Documentary:

  • setting a purpose for why you’re going to view the film
  • reminding yourself of what the characteristics of a documentary are
  • consider the style you observed in watching The Cove and how they constructed their argument and their methods to persuade the viewers
  • Set certain questions for yourself that you hope are answered by the text
  • Look up some background information about the documentary you’ve chosen

During Studying/Viewing the Documentary: 

  • make jot notes of things that stand out to you as you watch the film
  • record the questions you find yourself asking as you’re watching that you may later look up the answers to
  • keep a list of elements of the film you’re critical of or find suspicious
  • monitor your own reactions, mentally and emotionally, to the storyline and images you view

After Studying/Viewing the Documentary:

  • write a personal reflection of how you feel/your thoughts immediately after viewing the film
  • write out questions you have, now that you’ve completed watching it
  • read reviews of the film to check if your reaction is similar to how others received it
  • Tweet comments/reflections out about the documentary
  • make a T-chart and list some of the things you wrote down During Viewing on the left and on the right side expand on why they stood out to you

To prepare for your final assignment, a presentation and informal talk, you’ll need to review and possible rewatch parts of the film for the following:


January 9

ELA A10 B8 Challenges Society Has Faced – Documentary Sites

You’ll soon begin a project-based inquiry, focusing on developing your skills of questioning, critical thinking, and problem solving. For this activity, you will select a Documentary and study it for its codes and conventions, including such things as the source, any agenda the makers might have had, relevance or truthfulness of the information relayed, as well as any techniques employed to manipular the viewer.

Before watching, you’ll want to understand some of the techniques and characteristics specific to documentaries. The following YouTube video includes an overview of them:

Documentaries may be a genre of video text that you have less experience with,Image result for documentaries so you’ll first need to develop a fair understanding of what sets this type of film apart from other video texts, like movies. While a movie has the purpose of entertaining, documentaries have the purpose of convincing audiences of something. For that reason, a viewer needs to be aware of that agenda and monitor what they view with a critical eye.


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.

Website Sources of Documentaries you could choose from:

Spreadsheet: There are tons of documentaries you can pick from and that are accessible online to you from this Spreadsheet. If you know of others you think should be added to the list, let me know! View only link here.


Sample Documentary Titles you might be interested in:

  • The Cove – dolphin killing in Japan
  • Blackfish – on Netflix or I have a copy
  • White Like Me – racism and white privilege
  • Myths for Profit – exploiting notion of Canada as peacekeeper vs involved in arms trade
  • Supersize Me – man eats nothing but McDonalds food to see how it affects the body
  • My Life as a Gamer – gamers play/develop and donate their proceeds to Save the Children funds
  • Audrie and Daisy – two young hs girls both sexually assaulted by boys at their school / after math (Netflix)
  • Miss Representation – documentary explores the codes of female gender repeated through media
December 6

ELA A10 Challenges Text – The Sniper short story pdf

You’ll be reading the story called “The Sniper”, by Liam O’Flaherty. As you read, you should use Active Reading and watch for and be able to answer the following:


  • Make a prediction
  • Ask a question of the text
  • Clarify something you don’t exactly understand
  • Make a comment
  • Make a connection to yourself
  • Share what puzzles you of the text
  • Identify something unique about the writing
  • Identify an example of inference
  • Summarize what’s happening
  • Make a connection to another text
  • Share what you visualize
  • Identify what is motivating characters right now
  • Make a connection to the world / society
  • Identify something relevant or irrelevant
  • Identify a single phrase or sentence that is significant
November 3

Nov 3 Planning for Gr 9/10 Showcases

We’ll soon have Showcase evenings where your parents and you will join us one of two evenings at the school to share and celebrate some of the learning yoImage result for kenaston school logo transparentu’ve done so far this school year.

To plan for this, you have a few tasks to complete: one mandatory and three optional choices.

  1. Mandatory: Reflection Sheet reviewing progress/accomplishments in classes. Open Handout Here: Gr 9&10 November Course Reflection Sheet

    Options 2, 3, 4 (Choose One)

  2. Learning about course selections and DLC options.
    In handout, choose A B or C. Open Handout Here: course-and-dlc-exploration

    1. Math Pathways Parent Brochure
    2. Saskatchewan Math Pathways
    3. Science Pathways
    4. Sun West Distance Learning Center – Course Descriptions and Requirements 
  3. Exploring a future post-secondary option.
    Identify a possible area of study you’re considering for Post-Secondary Schooling and look up what pre-requisites are needed for you to enter that program.

    1. University of Saskatchewan – pre-requisites for the different colleges
    2. SIAST – requirements list
    3. Other?
  4. Tech Five (app, program, blog) – Show and tell.
    You have learned to use several new apps and created two different websites in your classes. Pick your Top Five of these features that you want to share with your parents to show how they work and what you can use them for.

    1. You could create a blog post and link or embed different projects you’ve created using the different apps.
September 12

ELA A10 Sept 12/16 Poetry Activity C – “Six Blind Men of Hindostan” visuals

Poetry is intended to elicit many ideas and senses in the reader/listener, but some are constructed to activate one sense over another. The following poem easily does this with visualizing. This poem also is narrative, meaning it tells a story that progresses.

  1. Read the poem and discuss each stanza to ensure you understand the poem’s larger meaning.
  2. For this task, you will read the poem and decide with your partner on an image that would suit each stanza’s message.
  3. You can choose what program/app to use to put these images into order, like Google Slides.
  4. Include a type of transition between slides, but be mindful of your use of class time.
  5. Publish/share your Visual Slideshow as a comment below. You can add it to your own individual blogs as well.


The Six Blind Men of Hindostan

It was six men of Hindostan,
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the elephant
(Though all of them were blind)
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.


The first approached the elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl,
“Bless me, it seems the elephant
Is very like a wall.”

The second, feeling his tusk
Cried, “Ho! What have we here
So very round and smooth and sharp
To me ‘tis mighty clear
This wonder of an elephant
Is very like a spear.”

The third approached the animal
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Then boldly up and spake;
“I see”, quoth he, “The elephant
Is very like an snake.”


The fourth stretched out his eager hand
And felt about the knee;
“What most this might beast is like
Is mighty plain,” quoth he;
“Tis clear enough the elephant
Is very like a tree.”


The fifth who chanced to touch the ear
Said, “Even the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an elephant
Is very like a fan.”


The six no sooner had begun
About the beast to gropeTha
n, seizing on the swinging tail,
That fell within his scope,
“I see,” cried he, “the elephant
Is very like a rope.”


And so these men of Hindostan,
Disputed loud and long,
Each with his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And each was partly wrong.