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Beyond Book Reports:


Beyond Book Reports: Using technology and Drama to Share and Celebrate Literature in the Classroom Freyja Bergthorson Loudoun County Public Schools – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Beyond Book Reports:

  • Beyond Book Reports
  • Using technology and Drama to Share and Celebrate
    Literature in the Classroom
  • Freyja Bergthorson
  • Loudoun County Public Schools
  • English SALT, Farmwell Station Middle

Nature of the Beast (middle / HS students)
  • Highly social
  • Need movement
  • Easily bored
  • Must be monitored
  • Pacing
  • Desire for fun and recognition from peers
  • May not value English as area of study
  • Desires options / choice
  • Naturally curios / inquisitive (at school?)

Nature of the Beast (middle / HS students)
Nature of the Beast and English Instruction
  • May not value English
  • Satisfied with literal (reads good enough)
  • Needs a reason to care about English
  • Reading and writing are silent, sedentary, and
    individual activities (aka boring)

  • Poetry Performance Project
  • Audacity The Bells
  • Lyric Project
  • Trailers / choices
  • Movies
  • Theater Games
  • Literature Circle Groups
  • Shakespeare Out Loud
  • Illuminated Poetry

Formative Assessment and Project Work
  • Teacher monitors corrects misconceptions
  • Peer discussion of content
  • Product develops communication skills (21 Century
  • Active engagement of students with content

Poetry Performance Project
  • Guided practice
  • Group
  • Teacher
  • Engagement
  • Formative Assessment
  • Emphasis on academic skills
  • Memorization (a first)

Poetry Performance Project Process
  • Students
  • Select poems
  • Analyze apply literary terms (SOL)
  • Create academic and creative presentation
  • Teacher -
  • Teach skills for group (explicitly)
  • Formative assessment walk the room

Student Examples
  • Oranges
  • Sonnet
  • Eldorado

Playing with Sound
  • Poes The Bells mood, sound devices, voice
  • Support SOL objectives
  • Sound devices / figurative language / voice
  • Focus on authors craft and purpose
  • Student engagement

  • Whole Class / complete table
  • Listen to reading identify type of bell sound
    / stanza
  • Identify mood supporting word choices / stanza
  • Deeper meaning / theme
  • Group work 20 minutes

Student Samples
  • 2010 6B online
  • O Captain, My Captain

  • IV Hear the tolling of the bells- Iron
    Bells! What a world of solemn thought their
    monody compels! In the silence of the night, How
    we shiver with affright At the melancholy meaning
    of their tone! For every sound that floats From
    the rust within their throats Is a groan. And the
    people- ah, the people- They that dwell up in the
    steeple, All Alone And who, tolling, tolling,
    tolling, In that muffled monotone, Feel a glory
    in so rolling On the human heart a stone- They
    are neither man nor woman- They are neither brute
    nor human- They are Ghouls And their king it is
    who tolls And he rolls, rolls, rolls, Rolls

  • IV A paean from the bells! And his merry bosom
    swells With the paean of the bells! And he
    dances, and he yells Keeping time, time,
    time, In a sort of Runic rhyme, To the paean of
    the bells- Of the bells Keeping time, time,
    time, In a sort of Runic rhyme, To the throbbing
    of the bells- Of the bells, bells, bells- To the
    sobbing of the bells Keeping time, time,
    time, As he knells, knells, knells, In a happy
    Runic rhyme, To the rolling of the bells- Of the
    bells, bells, bells To the tolling of the
    bells, Of the bells, bells, bells, bells- Bells,
    bells, bells- To the moaning and the groaning of
    the bells.

  • O Captain! My Captain! O CAPTAIN! my Captain!
    our fearful trip is done The ship has weather'd
    every rack, the prize we sought is won The port
    is near, the bells I hear, the people all
    exulting, While follow eyes the steady keel, the
    vessel grim and daring But O heart! heart!
    heart! O the bleeding drops of red, Where on the
    deck my Captain lies, Fallen cold and dead. O
    Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the
    bells Rise up--for you the flag is flung--for
    you the bugle trills For you bouquets and
    ribbon'd wreaths--for you the shores
    a-crowding For you they call, the swaying mass,
    their eager faces turning Here Captain! dear
    father! This arm beneath your head It is some
    dream that on the deck, You've fallen cold and
    dead. My Captain does not answer, his lips are
    pale and still My father does not feel my arm,
    he has no pulse nor will The ship is anchor'd
    safe and sound, its voyage closed and done From
    fearful trip, the victor ship, comes in with
    object won Exult, O shores, and ring, O
    bells! But I, with mournful tread, Walk the deck
    my Captain lies, Fallen cold and dead.

Introduction to Poetry I ask them to take a
poem and hold it up to the light like a color
slide or press an ear against its hive. I say
drop a mouse into a poem and watch him probe his
way out, or walk inside the poem's room and feel
the walls for a light switch. I want them to
water-ski across the surface of a poem waving at
the author's name on the shore. But all they want
to do is tie the poem to a chair with rope and
torture a confession out of it. They begin
beating it with a hose to find out what it really
Billy Collins
Lyric Project
  • Music is poetry
  • Apply poetic terms analysis to song lyrics
  • Connects school learning to real world
  • Student beg to do this project
  • Value of sharing projects (how to do this

Student Samples
  • Fireflies
  • Hungry Like the Wolf

Book Reports / Trailers
  • Importance of choices
  • No summaries
  • Critical thinking
  • Writing skills reinforced
  • Group options
  • Grading
  • Homework they WANT to do!

Student Examples
  • The Hand
  • Drew, Nick, Thomas song
  • Emily Luis 451
  • Nathaniel 451
  • Giver trailer Phil James
  • Giver Soundtrack Arens
  • Giver trailer Alison Taylor
  • Body Biography

Literature Circles
  • Student choice for books
  • Grouping
  • Reluctant readers and
  • Clear objectives monitoring
  • Allow for differences / choices
  • Self peer evaluation of progress
  • Daily MVP

Student Projects
  • Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie

Value of Video Analysis
  • Students record presentations analyze their
  • Reflective process to improve performance
  • Video group analysis
  • Select focus (general area for improvement)
  • Identify strengths

Theater Games
  • The Doctor is in
  • Tableau
  • Dumb Show (Shakespeare)
  • Reduced performances
  • See additional resources

Importance of Peer Feedback
  • Immediate, valued, treasured, raises the bar,
    improves climate
  • Quick Easy Ways to give feedback
  • MVP
  • Post-it
  • Project guest sheet
  • 2 stars and a wish
  • Discussion

Illuminated Text
New idea power point manipulation of text to
imaginative new form of communication
  • Web site - http//
  • E-mail
  • Group Support Materials
  • Poetry Performance
  • Instructions
  • Rubrics
  • The Bells
  • Table web link
  • Lyric Project
  • Lit Circles Project
  • 451 Project choices
  • Body Biography

Its all about
Student Engagement!
  • Fun Extras!
  • Kiplings If
  • Lost Generation