In Context

Sunday, November 30, 2008

2008 NCTE Annual Convention Awards

Best Books and Journal Articles
Celebrate the many teachers, authors, and researchers who received awards this November during the 2008 NCTE Annual Convention in San Antonio, Texas. On November 25, 2008, the online issue of NCTE INBOX featured some of the award winners.
  • Orbis Pictus Award--Look to the Orbis Pictus Award to find the best nonfiction titles for students. See "The 2008 Orbis Pictus Award Collection of Nonfiction Literature for Children" from Language Arts for details on this year's winning books.
  • Edwin M. Hopkins Award for articles in English Journal written by non-classroom teachers--"Writing Like a Good Girl," from the January 2008 issue, illuminates the subtle yet powerful and often detrimental messages to girls that silence their public and private voices and diminish their opportunities to question and learn.
  • Paul and Kate Farmer Writing Awards for articles in English Journal written by classroom teachers--In "The List," from the November 2007 issue, the author shares his list of fifteen reasons to keep teaching. In "Literature into Film (and Back Again): Another Look at an Old Dog," from the September 2007 issue, the author provides a variety of literature, film scenes, and classroom activities to introduce literary, cinematic, and theatrical elements.
  • Richard Ohmann Award for an article in College English--In "Transnational Feminist Rhetorics in a Digital World," from the May 2008 issue, the author proposes a new methodology for analyzing the processes through which the modes of global circulation of digital representations become rhetorical and, ultimately, political actions.
  • English Leadership Quarterly Best Article Award--In "The Way We Teach Now: Teachers of English in the New World of High-Stakes Assessment," from the October 2007 issue, the authors share some findings from a study of how English teachers are responding to state-mandated standards and their accompanying high-stakes assessments.

Copyright 2008 National Council of Teachers of English NCTE, 1111 W. Kenyon Rd., Urbana, IL 61801-1096; Phone: 800-369-6283; Email:

Monday, November 3, 2008

English Technology Inservice 11.03.08

  • 6+1 Writing Traits--Continue emphasizing these traits as a followup to middle school emphasis. Use in rubrics as well as during instruction and editing.
  • High School Writing and Style Guide--Please distribute and regularly incorporate into writing instruction. Students should write their names on copies and keep in looseleaf binders for use in all content areas. Students are expected to keep these booklets from year to year. They may print replacements from the following link:
  • INTRANET Access (CLC name and password) and Content
    E-Guides--Curriculum lessons for grades 9 and 10.
    DR Access
    Process to unblock sites--Call number on blocked page.
    Air Card from Verizon--Offers internet access anywhere.
    Kindles ( electronic devices for downloading etexts; may benefit nontraditional readers.
  • Grades are due to ITLs by 10:00 AM Thursday morning, November 6 this week.
  • NO Department Meeting on November 11 by consensus of the group in attendance.
  • Instead, ETS Training for Criterion Online Writing Evaluation Program will be held November 17 for all English teachers of Grades 9 and 10; Regular and Review Classes.
  • Instead also, CPR Rhetoric Group will also meet sometime this month.

~English HSA Online Resources~

~English HSA Online Resources~

  • Maryland HSA Overview & History
  • Class of 2009--First Class Required to Pass Tests for Graduation
  • High School Testing Content & Data
  • High School Assessment Testing Calendar
  • Publicly Released Test Forms--2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005
  • Answer Keys & Scoring Rubrics
  • Online HSA Courses
  • Testing Options/Accommodations
  • Contact Information
~from The Tragedy of King Richard II (Act 3, Scene 3) (1623) by William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

Yet looks he like a king: behold, his eye,
As bright as is the eagle's, lightens forth
Controlling majesty: alack, alack, for woe,
That any harm should stain so fair a show!

~from Moby-Dick (Chapter 96: The Try-Works) (1851) by Herman Melville (1819-1891)

There is a wisdom that is woe; but there is a woe that is madness. And there is a Catskill eagle in some souls that can alike dive down into the blackest gorges, and soar out of them again and become invisible in the sunny spaces. And even if he forever flies within the gorge, that gorge is in the mountains; so that even in his lowest swoop the mountain eagle is still higher than other birds upon the plain, even though they soar.

~from Love's Phases (1899) by Paul Laurence Dunbar

Love hath the wings of the eagle bold,

Cling to him strongly
What if the look of the world be cold,
And life go wrongly?
Rest on his pinions, for broad is their fold;
Love hath the wings of the eagle bold.

~from What the Eagle Says (1999) by Xi Chuan (born Liu Jun, 1963)

Among men there are men who are not men, just like among eagles there are eagles that are not eagles: there are eagles that are forced to pace up and down the alleyways, and there are men who are forced to fly through the air.