Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Week of March 29, Sharing our Stories

Hi everyone,

Today and tomorrow we will be working on our stories. First check your email to read the feed back from your partners at the Eagle Tech Academy in Columbia City, IN.

I asked their teacher, Mr. Urschel, to share the link to the story on CNN where he learned about our school, and here it is.

Here is information about the school:
Eagle Tech Academy is a small, stand-alone public high school. Any type of student can choose to come here; there are no grade requirements. Our students stay here for the first three blocks of the day, then they go to the main campus of the high school (Columbia City High School) for their electives. This is the first year we've been open. We're a STEM school (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).

Here is a note Mr. Urschel posted to our blog:

Newcomers Students,
Thanks so much for your responses. Our students in third block just finished looking at your school through Google Earth. They're impressed that your school is so large. It's a beautiful building. If you would like to look us up on Google Earth, we’re at 107 N. Walnut Street, Columbia City, IN 46725. We're located inside the Marshall Building. One of our students, Angel Sanders, wanted to know if there was a way for some of our students to become "pen pals" with you all at Newcomers. We are looking forward to reading your stories. Thanks so much for your willingness to share! We have a great deal to learn from you.
- Mr. Urschel, Teacher at Eagle Tech Academy

Today, we will use our computer time to really finish our stories for First Person American, and then email these final drafts, with answers to their questions/comments to our Eagle Tech partners.

Open your draft in Google Docs and revise it based on Irina's instructions:

  • Remember, you're telling your story about your experience of coming to America, and within your story, you are transitioning to a sub-story about someone that welcomed you. You're leading with your main story (coming to America), and then telling a sub-story (story of someone that welcomed you and helped change your life).
  • Make sure your main story and sub-story meets all of the checklist criteria:
1. Do you have a strong hook for introducing your main story?
2. Does your main story of coming to America follow a strong story arc?
3. Does your main story of coming to America address the WWWWWH?
4. Do you use rich details and help the reader visualize your background, how you came to America, the circumstances about your last day in your country/first day in America, what you were feeling?
5. When you transition into your sub-story about the welcoming person, do you have a strong hook?
6. Does your sub-story about your welcoming person have a strong story arc?
7. Does your sub-story about your welcoming person address the WWWWWH?
8. Do you use rich details and help the reader visualize your welcoming person--their physical traits, their personality, etc? You may want to describe their voice, their personality, recall something specific they said to you. Talk about your feelings and how their actions made you feel.
  • Make sure your entire story addresses all of the above criteria!
At the end of class, email your story to your Eagle Tech partner, and print your story. We will help each other revise our stories tomorrow in class!

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