Category Archives: Writing

Newspaper Article Rubric



Editor’s checklist:

  • Is the information grouped into logical paragraphs?
  • Are the paragraphs in a logical order?
  • Is there any unnecessary information?
  • Is any necessary information missing?
  • Are there any parts that you can’t understand?
  • Are a lot of the same words repeated?
  • Can more precise words be used?
  • Is there too much repetition of linkers like and, but, then etc?
  • Do all the verbs agree with their subjects? (e.g. she are is …)
  • Have articles (the, a, an) been used correctly?
  • Have the correct verb forms been used?
  • Is the punctuation correct?
  • Have all the words been spelt correctly?

Posted in General, Grade 7, Language, Media, Non-fiction Text, Writing | Leave a comment

Journalism & Quotations

We are conducting interviews and practicing writing quotes!

In every interview:

  1. Listen more than you speak. Control the interview gently, but don’t interrupt.
  2. Be polite but persistent.
  3. Ask open-ended questions; especially avoid questions with “yes/no” answers.
  4. Visualise the story as it is revealed to you.
  5. Evaluate the news story as it is revealed to you.
  6. At the end of the interview, recap what you understand the story to be.



Posted in Grade 7, Language, Writing | Leave a comment

7 1/2 – Main Character

Your homework for tonight it to find an image of what you picture your main character to look like. As a comment below, post their name and a link to the image (right click, “copy image url“.   This will help you describe your character more descriptively in your writing.

Remember, your final fairy tale will need to include a metaphor, simile and personification. Perhaps you can compare your main character, or one of their features, to something.

E.g., his hair was like a lions mane.  His chest was like a giant wine barrel. Her hands were scaly like snake skin from all her cleaning. Her voice was melodic like a piccolo.

Name: Zinia:

Posted in Fairy Tales, Language, Writing | 29 Comments

7 1/2 – The moral of the story is… Homework!

This weekend, I would like you to post your fairy tale moral to this blog (the one you worked on in class).

There are two options:

a) if you character has a a flaw and needs to make amends, or
b) if you character is good, and gets rewarded in the end.

See below for examples.

E.g., 1 Character Flaw

  • Character Flaw: plays too many video games
  • Moral: If you spend too much time playing video games, your work will suffer.
  • Consequence: Don’t get work done (e.g., farming), family goes hungry
  • Amends: works really hard farming so family doesn’t starve over the winter

E.g., 2 Good Character Trait

  • Good Character Trait: Kind and helps others
  • Moral: If you help others out, they will help you out. What goes around, comes around.
  • Action/Consequence: Helps others out so much, she doesn’t get her own work done.
  • Reward: The people she helped come to her rescue in her time of need.

Posted in Writing | 19 Comments

8-7 – Flipped Chapter 3 – Buddy, Beware!

“Buddy, Beware!”

Type up your answers in Google Drive in the English folder.

  • Be sure to have a proper topic sentence, supporting evidence, and concluding thought.
  • Check for capitals (names, places, etc.), punctuation, and run on sentences.
  • Have a friend read it out loud to you. Make any necessary changes.
  1. What is the biggest change that happened in Bryce’s life during seventh grade?  What was so strange about it?  (analyze)
  2. Why did Juli make the front page of the local paper?
  3. Write the simile that Bryce used to describe his attempt at climbing the tree.
  4. DESCRIBE the change that took place in Bryce’s mind about Juli and EXPLAIN when and why it occurred. (analyze, inference).
  5. Describe the first conversation that Bryce has with his grandfather.  What is it about?  Why does it upset Bryce so much? (analyze, inference)
  6. DESCRIBE Bryce’s grandfather’s overall impression of Juli. Where did he get that impression of her from? (analyze, inference)

Posted in Flipped Novel Study, Grade 8, Language, Reading, Writing | Leave a comment

7 1/2 – Descriptive Writing

We are learning to write descriptively, so that our words paint a vivid picture in our readers’ minds.  Using the five senses helps to achieve this. We can describe what something:

  • looks like
  • moves like
  • smells like
  • sounds like
  • feels like (emotionally and physically)
  • tastes like

We can use metaphors and similes to help describe unfamiliar things to our audience, or to describe everyday things with a fresh look. (E.g., the lazy orange slept in fruit basket – creates a mood)

A simile is a figure of speech in which two things that are not obviously like each other are compared to make a description more vivid. A simile will often use “like” or “as”.

  1. The piston of the steam-engine worked monotonously up and down, like the head of an elephant in a state of melancholy madness
  2. a small strawberry-pink villa, like some exotic fruit lying in the greenery
  3. the cypress-trees undulated gently in the breeze, as if they were busily painting the sky
  4. roses dropped petals that seemed as big and smooth as saucers
  5. marigolds like broods of shaggy suns
  6. a thousand ballerina-like blooms quivered expectantly.

Metaphors are like concentrated similes. In a metaphor two dissimilar things are compared but rather than saying one is like the other, a metaphor goes a stage further and makes one thing become another.

  • Her smile was my sun
  • The detective listened to her tales with a wooden face.
  • She was fairly certain that life was a fashion show.
  • The typical teenage boy’s room is a disaster area.
  • What storms then shook the ocean of my sleep.
  • The children were roses grown in concrete gardens, beautiful and forlorn.
  • Kisses are the flowers of love in bloom.

Classroom similes:

  •  as thin as a strawberry wafer
  • as bald as a senior citizen as a a hair cut
  • as smart as a textbook
  • as bald as Caillou after a haircut
  • as poor as a homeless man’s piggy bank
  • as a strong as an Olympian weightlifter
  • as poor as a farmer after a drought
  • as strong as a bull on steriods
  • as white a fresh snow
  • as smart as a rock that never went to school
  • as neat as your house before guests arrive
  • as dumb as a cliche that everyone uses
  • as smart as a salesman on a quota
  • as dumb as the Cleveland Browns staff on draft day
  • as bald as Madison’s dad
  • as poor as the dead after a grave robbery
  • as smart as a man in a tux /  woman in a suit
  • as bald as a peeled potato


Write one really creative, unexpected simile tonight to share with the class tomorrow. Be observant at home. What can you compare your little sister to? Describe how your dad eats dinner. etc…

Posted in General, Language, Writing | 3 Comments

8-7 CASI – Sept., 9

Today, students completed CASI (Comprehension Attitude Strategies Interests) – the Ontario reading comprehension program.

For more information on CASI, please visit:


Posted in Assessment, Language, Reading, Writing | Leave a comment

Persuasive Essay – Music Grant

I am learning to create a persuasive essay

  1. My writing appeals to my target audience (CARAS)
  2. My introductions “hook” my audience, using an analogy they can relate to
    • E.g., first time opening your music case and seeing your instrument
  3. I clearly state my thesis in my introduction
    • Laurentian derserves this grant because…
  4. I provide three reasons to support my thesis
  5. I provide proof using facts to support each reason
    • use facts supported by personal experiences, whenever possible)
  6. I use “high impact” images that reinforce my reasons
  7. Describe and then refute the key points of the opposing view
    • Can you think of any reason why CARAS might not award the grant to Laurentian?
  8. I use persuasive words to emphasize my points
    • E.g., must, love, always, absolutely, never, etc…
  9. My summary restates and reinforces my thesis and supporting evidence.

Posted in Language, Writing | Leave a comment

What are you a “Fan Boy” of?

  1. Write down a list of three of your favourite “things”: clothing, gadgets, video game systems, etc…
  2. Read the article.
  3. How do you think each of your “things” affects your image of who you are? What characteristics does it add to your image?
  4. What characteristics do you value in other people?  Are those characteristics that can be gained by owning things?
  5. What image would you like to project and how can you cultivate that image?

Psychology of a fanboy: Why you keep buying the same stuff

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