Wednesday, August 20, 2014

In the Classroom: The Set-Up

Sorry I haven't posted much in the past two weeks. Between professional development, in-service, and trying to get my room ready, I haven't really had time to write anything for myself.

BUT even though I was super busy, my room got finished! All thanks to the help of my best friend, Kody :) Seriously . . . all. She decorated over 90% of my room. 

Below are some pictures of my completed room:

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

In the Classroom: The Point Games

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one." - George R.R. Martin 

Most students think "I can learn all I need to know by living." While it IS true that we as humans learn much from our life experiences, I would argue that we learn even more when we experience life both in the flesh and on the page. In short: we grow from exposure to life experiences, whether first-hand or second-hand.

My goal as a teacher is to help students experience life through a variety of lenses, to figure out who and what they are, to help them grow. But the sad truth is: sometimes, students don't read. At all. Well, at least not for pleasure.  This year, I tried to think up of fun and creative ways to get my students reading. And so, I give you:

The Point Games

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


George R. R. Martin himself came out and hinted that R+L=J, arguably one of the largest fan theories out there about the ASOIAF series, may be true.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles

I don't know about you all, but I am VERY excited to see that Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles is going to be made into films! Universal Pictures just acquired movie rights to the series:

Friday, August 8, 2014

A Guide to Scifi: Subgenres

Science Fiction is a complex, multifaceted genre that can be broken into numerous subgenres, each complete with its own specific rules and themes. Most Science Fiction stories span across multiple subgenres. A few authors, like Jules Vernes, can even write works that define an entirely new subgenre. While it would be convenient to have a "subgenre map" similar to Music-Map that broke down all of the Scifi subgenres and showed you how each related to the others, such a tool does not yet exist. In lieu of a Subgenre Map, here is a list of Scifi subgenres adapted from this Scifi Ideas article.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Flannery O'Connor

Even fifty years after her death from lupus, Southern Gothic author Flannery O'Connor is still regarded as one of the South's greatest writers. Her short fiction is well known for its authentic characters, sharp satire, and powerful moral messages.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Writing Wednesdays: Ekphrasis

Perhaps you have heard of or have even read an ekphrastic poem, or a poem that describes a work of art. "Ekphrastic" is the adjectival form of the Greek work "ekphrasis," which means simply "a vivid description of a thing" (

One of the earliest examples of ekphrasis can be found in the 18th book of The Iliad when Homer describes the creation of Achilles' shield by the blacksmith god Hephaestus:

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Technology in the Classroom: Using Twitter in the Literature Classroom, Part 2

Last week, I discussed five ways to integrate Twitter into the literature classroom. Below are five additional ways to enhance your literature/writing class with Twitter:

Monday, August 4, 2014

5 Informal Formative Assessment Strategies

Informal formative assessments are great ways for teachers to gauge student understanding at any stage of the lesson. Click here to find out why formative assessments matter. Below are some informal assessment strategies that can be employed in most classroom environments.