Head Outta the Book

Where reading a book is just the beginning…

Head Outta the Book

Tuesday, October 21

English H2 and 12 did the same thing today: you set up your blogs following the directions on my blog.

At home, you should upload a picture of you as your blog avatar, change the title to something that reflects who you are, and customize any headers/images/background with your own pictures.

Eng H2: For Wednesday, you are completing the first SLOB reading with preparation for your Literature Circles.

All classes meet back in 195 tomorrow.

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Blog set up

Follow the directions in this post to set up your blog. Keep this page open on one tab and open your blog on another tab, toggling between the two pages to complete all the steps at your own pace over the next two days.

Log in to blog and go to Site Admin (Dashboard):

Users: Your Profile–new password, update profile


General: Do the following:

  1. site title–change. Give your blog a title as unique as you, a title that reflects you as an English student, as a thinker and explorer of the world. Perhaps you use an analogy related to an area of interest for you, ie. music, sports, cars, etc.
  2. tag line–delete and feel free to add something that reflects who you are
  3. time zone–Choose New York (obvious, but important when you want to prove you had a post done on time)
  4. date and time–format as desired
  5. Save changes

Blog Avatar: Within the next two days, upload a picture of you or create an avatar and upload it


Themes– Find one that you like, preview, then activate

  1. Ones with images (pictures) at the top are often customizable, so you can upload your own picture.
  2. Theme options, header, background

Widgets: Drag the following to the side bar:

  1. blog avatar–drag to very top
  2. categories
  3. links
  4. text

Links--add new

  1. Name: Head Outta the Book (or Miss Harris)
  2. Web address: open new tab with my home page, copy and paste
  3. Categories–Add new– Blogs I follow (check)
  4. Add link (upper right corner)
  5. Do this for other students as you’d like

Goodreads widget:

  1. Open a new tab and go to Goodreads and sign in
  2. My books, widget (left side bar), make adjustments as desired
  3. Save changes
  4. Copy and paste HTML code into empty text widget box on your blog

Users: Your Avatar-This will show when you leave comments and may or may not be the same as your blog avatar.


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Blog email update

It would appear that the correct blog email is not getting through to many of you. I suspect it is a filtering issue on the school emails since I believe all the people who contacted me had Vestal emails.

You could see if there is a spam folder into which it has fallen. If not, have no fear. I can give you logon info tomorrow.

Thanks for letting me know.

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Monday, October 20

So nice to see you all today! You all have the homework task tonight of checking your email for your blog invite. I used the email you use for turnitin.com. You should find a user name and password; bring them to class tomorrow.
If you do not receive the blog email with the user name and password, don’t worry. I will help you out in class tomorrow. Technology is great when it works, but when it doesn’t…

Eng H2: You received your next text, reading schedule and literature circle assignments. The first reading is due Wednesday. Some of you still need to get your paper in to Miss Vymislicky on turnitin.com tonight. Don’t miss that deadline.

Eng 12: We talked about risk taking and options after high school to get us thinking about the content of our next book.

One pager deadline for all: Monday, November, 3.
Finish up those SSR books!

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October 17, 2014

Hey students…today is a sad day!! This is the last blog post I am going to write :(

H2: Today was your last day in the lab.  Your essay is due by 11:59 pm on Monday.  Don’t forget to browse through your materials that you have at your disposal (rubric on Turnitin, “Tips/tricks for reader responses,” “Writer’s Self-Checklist,” and the tips at the bottom of your essay assignment sheet).  By making sure to hit all of the components necessary on these will ensure that you will receive the grade you want.  I have a feeling that I will be reading some really awesome papers soon enough!!

12: Today you took your test.  I will be grading these over the weekend, but since I have a couple of students who have not taken the test yet, I will not be able to get them back to you on Monday.  Hopefully by Tuesday you will receive them.  I’m confident I will be please with your work while I grade this weekend.

THANK YOU SO MUCH for such an awesome student teaching experience.  You are all so special to me because you are the first students I have ever taught!  I wish you all the best of luck in your lives, and I hope that you receive all the desires of your hearts.  AGAIN my email is [email protected].  I’d love to hear from you!!! :)

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October 16th, 2014

Hey students…

H2: Today we had a brief lesson on commas, and then you continued work on your essay.  I got to meet with a few of you and discuss your essays.  I am mostly pleased with what I’ve seen.  Continue the good work!  Tomorrow will be the last day in the computer lab, and the essay is due on Turnitin by 11:59pm on Monday, 10/20.

12: Today we discussed the ending of the book, using passages from this reading portion as a springboard to do so.  I gave you two more passages to practice with in class, and told you if you didn’t finish it, it would be a good idea to do so tonight to get the practice and analyze for more meaning from the text.  Also, if you have not read the book/taken any notes, devote any time you have tonight to get as much done as you can in preparation for the test.

My time is dwindling with you, I’m sad :((((

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October 15th, 2014

Hey students….

H2:  Today we continued work on our essays in the english resource room.  I gave a short mini lesson on prepositions and how to avoid ending sentences with prepositions in formal writing.  I got to speak with a few of you on your essays today, and I will try to speak to those tomorrow that I didn’t get a chance to today.

12: Today I briefly went over my model passage analysis with you, and then you broke into groups to do one together.  I came around and helped you, and asked you questions that deepened your analysis.  Thank you to period 7 for being so great and going along with the filming.  I know it was awkward for you, trust me it was way more awkward for me!  Thank you for helping me with this I appreciate it.  Analyze the passage on the back of the sheet I gave you tonight for homework if you did not already do it, also, try to come with your favorite quote or passage from the last 20-30 pages of the novel for us to analyze and discuss.

Thanks and have a good one!

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October 14th, 2014

Hello, students!

H2: Today was your first day in the resource room (computer lab) and you began typing out your essays.  Everyone got set up with turnitin today as well.  Please keep your email you used and your password some place safe since I will not be able to access your turnitin account if you misplace/forget these.  We will continue working in the resource room until Friday.  Your essay is absolutely due by Monday, 10/20, so use this time wisely.

12: Today we worked on the theme of “oppressive societal control” from the text, and we worked together to come up with ideas and thematic sentences for this phrase.  I also gave you a model of a passage analysis that I wrote, so something similar to this is what is expected of you on the test.  Lucky for you, you get to use that along with all of your notes to refer to while taking the test.  Yay!

Have a great night :)))

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October 9th, 2014

Hey Students…

H2: Today you worked all period on drafting your essay.  I came around and talked to a lot of you and for the most part, I was satisfied with the direction in which you were going.  I only received a few drafts/outlines/ideas for me to take home with this weekend for comments, so if I didn’t get one I’m going to assume that you are going to do some more work on it over the long weekend so you can come  to the computer lab next week ready to write.  We will be in English Resource Room 275 on Tuesday and we will be there until Friday.

12: Today we spent some time discussing the last bit of reading that you had to do for homework last night.  I asked you two questions that required you to go back in the text and find quotes to help you explain exactly what went on in these scenes in order to answer the questions.  We then read for the rest of the period.  I didn’t want to do it, but for time’s sake I assigned the rest of the book for you to read (whereever you left off in class to page 165) over the long weekend.  This should not take more than an 45 minutes to an hour to read 20-30 pages and take notes on what you read.

ENJOY the long weekend!  Do something fun! :)

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October 8th, 2014

Hey there…

H2: Today you got your essay assignment, which will be due by 11:59 pm on Monday, October 20th to turnitin.com.   We will be taking tomorrow in class to draft, and we will be in the computer lab all of next week.  Any progress you make on a draft (does not even need to be in formal essay format–it can be an outline, or a paragraph detailing what you will mainly be talking about, or even a list of ideas) I will be able to look at over the weekend and give you feedback.  No homework tonight or for the rest of my time with you, but remember that any extra work you do at home will inevitably result in a satisfactory grade.  The more you rewrite and revise, and revise and rewrite, the better off you will be.

12: I decided yesterday that we needed to forge on with our reading so that I will be able to properly prep you for the test, since my time here is rapidly running out!!!  So, today I did a read-aloud think-aloud for you as I did on our first day with the novel.  Whereever I left off reading in class, you are to pick up from there and read to break on page 136.

Have a great night!!

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