Sunday, August 18, 2013

Say What? Context Clues

I wrote about my first day of school recently and told you how awful it was!

This could be for a few of reasons:

1. Maybe everyone was tired and not used to waking up that early.

2. Students are not used to really having rules and regulations after being in 7th grade for a year. 

3. Not only do hormones kick in in 7th grade but quite a few of our 7th grade teachers really don't have, how should I put this, finely tuned classroom management techniques. 

4. They were testing my boundaries day one rather than observing me first...so that just tells me they are hands on learners and go getters! (better than lazy right?)

Things have not been as bas since that first day.

In fact, yesterday we had a pretty good day. 

I decided to switch up what I was doing and use a prezi to grab their attention. 

So I chose to do my context clues prezi/lesson.

At the end of this lesson I introduce students to the poem "Jabberwocky" and walk them through translating the poem into modern/standard English. 

First, the poem is read to them in the prezi. I then have them go through the poem and underline all the words they don't recognize. I like to stress that it is OKAY that they won't know most of the words because they start to freak out easily about all the gibberish. 

Then the fun begins as we begin to translate. I allow my kids to have a little fun with the translation as long as the gist and meaning of the poem stays in tact. 

I tell them that a Jabberwocky is a beast and that I wanted them to think of the most terrible and ferocious beast they could and that would be the jabberwocky. When I asked for their beasts I got a lot of dragons, bears, and werewolves, but one student proudly offered up, "A female!"

I started laughing at this and really couldn't stop, and told him that was fine, but when it came time to volunteer translations I was going to make him read his whole translation....he agreed. 

My favorite stanza from his translation was this:


  The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
  And burbled as it came!


  The female, with eyes of flame,
Came sauntering through the tangled wood,
  And complained as it came!

I think I'm going to like this kid and his sense of humor!

If you are interested in my context clues prezi here is the link:


1 comment:

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