2013 guidelines and overview


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on February 4, 2013

Grade 9 English in 2013 is using the new ACARA English curriculum for Grade 9 students in Australia.

Requirements for Grade 9 English – for every lesson

1. Laptop with dictionary/thesaurus bookmarked – charged and ready for every lesson
2. Laptop with www.vocabulary.com www.betterspellers.blogspot.com.au and http://pbakesenglish.edublogs.org bookmarked
3. 1 current reading book/magazine
4. 1 exercise book covered and named
5. 1 document wallet to store printed handouts and assignments
6. 1 Google document called “Spelling and Vocabulary” shared with me
7. 1 Google document called “reading journal” shared with me

Note there are three strands to our English course based on the Australian curriculum

1. Language
2. Literature
3. Literacy

Year overview

Term 1:
Our changing language, persuasive writing, feature articles, spelling and vocabulary, private reading

Term 2:
NAPLAN, Power and Conflict (The Wave), spelling and vocabulary

Term 3:
Indigenous poetry with a focus on Kath Walker, spelling and vocabulary, private reading

Term 4:
Exam, Indigenous and Asian short stories and extracts, spelling and vocabulary

1. Homework is an essential thing to talk about – sometimes it will be preparation for class, some of it will be ongoing expected work and some of it will be after class work.
Whichever it is, there is no excuse for not doing homework.
2. Effort and application in class and allowing other people to work
3. Completing and handing in assignments on time – occasionally house points will be allocated for those who get work in on time – you won’t know when.
4. We will have a spelling and vocabulary focus and will test words each week. They will be related to the ideas we are examining

Words are powerful part 2


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on November 1, 2012

Here is a devotional thought from The Word for Today that is highly applicable to our understanding that the words we speak can bring life or death for people

The Right Word at the Right Time
‘What you say can mean life or death’ Proverbs 18:21 NCV
There’s a story about a teacher who, to honour her students, gave each a ribbon that stated, ‘Who I am makes a difference,’ and asked them to pass it along to someone who’d made a difference in their lives. One kid gave his to a young executive who helped him plan his career. He in turn gave it to his boss, who was hard to get along with. He told him how much he’d been influenced by his creativity, and asked him to give the ribbon to somebody he admired. That night the boss told his fourteen-year-old son, ‘I’ve thought about who I want to honour-and it’s you. My days are hectic, and I’m always complaining about your grades and your messy bedroom. Tonight I want to let you know the difference you’ve made in my life. Besides your mother, you’re the most important person I know, and I love you.’ Fighting back tears, the boy replied, ‘Earlier today I wrote a letter explaining why I’d taken my life, and asking you to forgive me. I was going to do it when everybody was asleep. I didn’t think you’d care. I guess I won’t need the letter now.’ Upstairs in his son’s room the father found the anguish-filled note beside a loaded gun. God can help you to ‘…speak a word in season to him who is weary…’ (Isaiah 50:4 NKJV) Words change lives: ‘What you say can mean life or death.’ So go out of your way today to speak words of encouragement to somebody you don’t normally think about. ‘…a word spoken at the right moment-how good it is!’ (Proverbs 15:23 AMP)

SoulFood: Deut 18:9-18, Dan 2, Isa 47:5-15, Acts 16:16-34

Words have power


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on October 28, 2012

The world is a dangerous place,
not because of those who do evil,
but because of those who look on and do nothing.

Albert Einstein

Ephesians 4: 29. The Bible says:
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up, according to their needs, so that it may benefit those who listen.”

In another version it says this: “Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift”

A third version says this: “Do not use harmful words, but only helpful words, the kind that build up and provide what is needed, so that what you say will do good to those who hear you.


We are viewing the film Bully as part of this unit

Bully (originally titled The Bully Project) is a 2011 documentary film about bullying in U.S. schools. Directed by Lee Hirsch, the film follows the lives of five students who face bullying on a daily basis. Bully premiered at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. It was also screened at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and the LA Film Festival.
Bully had its global premiere at Italy’s Ischia Film Festival on July 17, 2011. The film was released in United States theaters on March 30, 2012. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bully_(2011_film)

Here is a link to the documentary movie we will be viewing this week – please view it before we watch the film


Please read this information on documentaries from Curriculum Organiser

Documentaries are similar to feature articles. A documentary’s purpose is to inform and entertain. It explores facts by presenting information to the viewer, and/or commenting on its significance.

Documentaries are perceived to be more ‘real’ than other TV programs. They are perceived as powerful tools in political circles. Generally, non-commercial documentaries have more credibility than those on commercial stations.

Nature, travel and current events documentaries occupy a lot of screen time. They use the same codes as other entertainment but vary in the way they are constructed. Some collect evidence in the field, which makes nature documentaries so appealing. They take the viewer to places that are generally out of reach, creating interesting scenes that require patience and time.

Some compile old footage. This gives the impression of history, a context, a time and place. Recreating the past in a documentary provides a context for the present.

Other documentaries have a lot of narration. This adds a voice of authority to the content. If the narrator is well known to the viewer, it adds greater credibility, regardless of the narrator’s authority on the subject matter.

Dramatic recreation is another style of documentary. It employs the techniques of drama, which adds the emotive dimension. Recreating scenes, for example courtroom scenes, allows filmmakers to create sensational views of the idea being presented.

Cinema-verite is a style of documentary that keeps the camera running irrespective of the action. Its purpose is to capture a sense of real life, not a construction of it. Reality TV had its beginnings as cinema-verite. It is a very old style of film. During World War Two, the camera would be left to film certain action. This style of documentary is still a construction. The people of the film are influenced by the presence of the camera. Producer’s work on the construction and angles as soon as they start filming.

Television news and current affairs programs are a selective, constructive commodity. They are sold to viewers as information, but commonly operate as entertainment.

Dialogue – conversations that take place between subjects in a film (or subjects and the filmmaker)
Factual –attempting to relay information that is accurate about something real or actual; based on facts
Fictional – something invented or imagined; a made-up story
Footage – refers to all material used in a film, including edited and unedited sequences
Opinion – an evidence-based personal belief or judgment that, unlike a fact, can be disputed by another person without either of you being wrong (e.g., Vanilla is the best flavor for ice cream)
Persuade – to cause to believe; convince
Point of View – sometimes abbreviated as POV, the perspective from which a story is told; in film, also refers to a shot that depicts a character’s outlook or position
Re-enactment – a depiction created at a later time than the actual event
Represent – to re-tell; all media is a representation of something (e.g., a photograph of a horse is not the actual horse; it represents the horse)
Stock footage (archival footage) – footage that is included in a film that is often shot by another filmmaker or for another project and not specifically for the film
Subjects – the topics of the film or the people the film features
Voice-over – a production technique or creative device in which an off-screen voice is used for narration. This voice often establishes context and was recorded at another point in time.

sourced from: http://www.pbs.org/pov/docs/Vocabulary%20Handout.pdf

4. An anti-bullying video made by an elementary school in America. http://english12applied.wordpress.com/bullying-links/

Robert Frost


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on October 9, 2012

The poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” was written by Robert Frost, an American poet in 1922. The poem tells the story of a man riding his horse through a forest alone on the darkest night of the year. Ironically he wrote the poem on a summers evening and was published in a book of poetry that earned Frost a Pulitzer prize for literature.

The following web address takes you to a clip of Robert Frost reciting this poem frost.html

As you listen to him read the poem what do you notice about his tone and speed and how does this add to your understanding of the poem.

Jealousy by Carissa Marley


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on September 30, 2012

Jealously by Carissa Marley

Jealousy is a monster
Creeping up from behind.
It slides its way into us
And tries to make us blind.

A writhing, wriggling snake,
It wraps around our heart.
We want to try and stop it,
But don’t know where to start.

Jealousy is a feeling
We all get deep inside
When someone else achieves that dream
We wanted all the time.

It drowns out all the good things –
Our life crashes to the floor.
We start to do and say things
We never would before.

But slowly we defeat it,
Despite the lengthy haul.
Although it’s slow and painful,
We finally let it fall.

Jealousy is a monster,
But when finally put to rest
It teaches us the truth that
We won’t always be the best.

1. In this poem the poet has used the concept of jealousy as the ‘green eyed monster’ and extends it in a series of metaphors. Identify the metaphor in stanza one of the poem.
Show how the poet develops the metaphor in the stanza. Does the word “blind” indicate (a) a physical state (b) a mental state?

2. What is the metaphor in stanza two of the poem? What does jealousy do to the human heart?

3. Why do we envy other people?

4. What effect does jealousy have on our thoughts and actions?

5. Identify the lines which reveal that man can overcome jealousy.

6. Why, do you think, the poet uses the pronouns ‘we’, ‘us’ and ‘our’ instead of ‘he’ or ‘she’?

7. What is the mood of the poem? How does the rhythm of the poem help to lift the mood?

8. What is the message the poet wishes to convey?

9. Identify all the examples of alliteration in the poem.

10. Underline every line that expresses something that couldn’t literally be true.


Poetry is repetition – scanning poetry


Posted by pbakes | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on September 17, 2012

When a poet writes a structured piece of poetry – sonnet, ballad, quatrain etc – they are seeking to achieve a specific rhyme and/or rhythm pattern. This is done by paying special attention to the metre which is the basic rhythmic (beat) structure of a line or lines of verse. The regularity is achieved by combining weak (unstressed) and strong (stressed) syllables into a repetitive pattern.

Rhythm comes from the Greek (rheo) meaning to flow
Metre comes from the Greek (metron) meaning to measure

Each line of poetry consists of a series of words which can be broken into syllables. A syllable can have a stressed or an unstressed emphasis. A syllable is each part of a word that has one single vowel sound

Try this source: how to scan poetry

When poetry is scanned each stressed syllable is shown with a ‘/’ while an unstressed syllable is shown with an ‘x’. In the examples below stressed syllables are shown in bold

recognized metres are

iamb (weak/strong) – a double rising rhythm

So long / as men / can breathe, / or eyes / can see,
So long / lives this, / and this / gives life / to thee.

Shakespeare – Sonnet 18

trochee (strong/weak) a double falling rhythm

Double, / double, / toil and / trouble;
Fire / burn and / cauldron / bubble.

Witches in Macbeth by Shakespeare

anapest (weak/weak/strong) a triple rising rhythm

The Assyr / ian came down / like a wolf / on the fold
And his co / horts were gleam/ ing in pur / ple and gold
And the sheen / of their spears / was like stars / on the sea
When the blue/ wave rolls night / ly on deep/ Galilee.

Byron’s The Destruction of Sennacherib:

dactyl (strong/weak/weak) a triple falling rhythm

Just for a / handful of / silver he / left us
Just for a/ riband to / stick in his / coat

Robert Browning The Lost Leader

amphibrach (weak strong weak) a rocking rhythm

All ready / to put up / the tents for / my circus.
I think I / will call it / the Circus / McGurkus.
And NOW comes / an act of / Enormous / Enormance!
No former / performer’s / performed this / performance!

Dr Seuss: If I ran the circus

spondee (strong/strong) – often only seen as part of a line

Be near / me when/ my light / is low,
When the blood creeps / and the nerves prick (note the two spondees in this line)
And tingle; / and the heart / is sick,

In Memorium by Alfred Tennyson

When you repeat these patterns in a line you set up a particular rhythm.

Lines of poetry are named according to how many of these patterns (called feet) are in a line

Iambic pentameter, for example, has 5 iambs in the one line making a total of 10 syllables.

monometer is 1 foot
dimeter is 2 feet
trimeter is 3 feet
tetrameter is 4 feet
pentameter is 5 feet
hexameter is 6 feet
heptameter is 7 feet
octameter is 8 feet

Now complete the poetry worksheet handed out in class.

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