Do you think the Vote with your Feet session we had was fun and productive? How did it help us meet the standards?

Also, did the topics add anything to the reading of "The Filipino and The Drunkard?"

Explain what you liked or didn't like about the voting and the writing between the parts of the story. 

Everyone in A Raisin in the Sun has a dream for the insurance money. Which dream do you think is most deserving of the money? Who is entitled to the money? If your family suddenly had extra money, what would you do with it?
How important is the environment a person grows up in to their development? Does Mango Street actually change Esperanza? Is the apartment in A Raisin in the Sun affecting Travis? Will the move to a white neighborhood hurt the family? How about your environment...does it impact who you are? What do you think about the environment in general...does noise, air or water pollution worry or affect you?

You've probably heard the expression that "blood is thicker than water." Obviously, it is not meant to be taken literally. What do you think? Is family more important than any other type of relationship? We saw Rachel turn against her father in Inherit the Wind, but not necessarily because of love. Esperanza is telling us many details about her family. What is a healthy balance of loving self, family, friends, etc.?



Are  you artistic? Can you draw, write a personal essay or create a poem? Mrs. Unzueta is looking for five talented Humanitas students to create a drawing, poem, or writing that depicts Womens' History Month. The lucky five will be honored in a ceremony at El Camino College.

The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination.Don Williams, Jr.

We talked about journeys in class; we discussed moving from place to place over time as well as change or progress. We saw the journey Odysseus took against his will, Equality 7-2521 embarked on a journey of his own design and we followed the  journey of Cates, Brady, Rachel and Drummon.

What journeys has life given you so far? What journeys are you hopeful for in the future?


Inherit the Wind is set in a very small town where people have similar beliefs and everyone knows everyone else. Rachel tells Bert in Act 1 that he should care about what people in the town think. Would you like to live in a small town like the one in the story? Why or why not? Be specific.[8-)]

I don't know, but I believe that each classroom blog should have a place for our collective random thoughts, a space to share our ideas. One thing random but disturbing for me is every year I seem to go through a block of time where I witness--up close and personal--three accidents in the space of a week or so. My emotions run the gamut from shocked at witnessing the events, to worried about the people, to anxious about how I keep ending up right in front of an accident, to angry the accident has caused disruption in my day! Random, huh?

 Many of these accidents, I think, could be avoided if people would HANG UP THE PHONE AND DRIVE! That's what I believe.

Well, random thoughts for the week...Pisces birthdays are almost students performed As You Like IT and made me proud...Ian won outstanding male monologue for his portrayal of Measure for Measure's Angelo and Jessica rocked as Helena...Little Shop of Horrors is a fun musical.

Well, tag, you're it! 


I couldn't attend the 10th grade Salon II on Friday, 2/16 because some of my advanced drama students were preparing for Shakespeare competition.[Y]

Did you enjoy the show? What did you like and dislike about it? Did you prefer Salon 1 or Salon 2? [H]

Based on viewing the salon(s), what do you think the 10th grade is learning/studying?  Explain. What kind of intelligences do they show as a group?

 What is your opinion of salons in general?[I]


What kinds of adaptations have you had to make in your life? Was it hard to adapt to the high school environment during the fall semester? Are you making any special adaptations for the spring? Describe your overall attitude towards change...
What did you find interesting about Skin & Bones, the show examining the parallels between fashion and architecture?  Can you comment about the drastic difference between the "shelters" made from cardboard tubes, connectors, and UN blankets and the homes and opulent buildings others live or work in? Apparently humans want more than shelter, but why? Sometimes we are desperate for shelter...and then a simple tent offers relief and safety, does it not?


When creating awards in class this week, many students awarded Liberty 5-300, The Golden One, the award for "Most Beautiful." Maybe Liberty is beautiful, but the text tells us other things about her such as "tall and thin as a blade of iron." We also read that her eyes were dark and hard and in them there was no kindness and no guilt. We read that her hair flew wild and that she flung the seeds with scorn.

It is unclear whether or not she was beautiful, but clearly something about her is attractive to the reader and to Equality. What is it? 

What is beauty? What does our society value in a person? What images are put forward in our society as beautiful? Why do you think this is the way it is?


Equality 7-2521 lives in a society that is quite different from ours. The setting is referred to as anti-utopian, or portraying a community in a fashion that is opposite to what people might want or that the author believes is just.

What specifically don't you like about the setting of Anthem?

What is a utopia?

Can a utopia exist? 

What would a just and fair society look like to you? 

MLK Jr.  

What do you already know about Martin Luther King, Jr.? What were his positions, accomplishments, and strengths as a person? What kind of leader was he? Why was he an effective leader?

In the "I Have a Dream" speech, what does MLK, Jr. do that shows effective persuasion?

How does he compare/contrast with Odysseus?

Wow. The semester has really been moving along at a rapid pace and it is time for the Thanksgiving holiday.

  • What are you  MOST thankful for today?
  • What will you do for the holiday?
  • Are you into the family, the food or the GIVING at this time?
  • What would make you MORE thankful than you already are? 


OK. I wasn't going to pursue this conversation further, but I received so many emails about the topic, I am throwing it out there for comment.

If Odysseus was trapped with Calypso, and he really wanted to be home, and he really misses his wife and he cheating when he is with Calypso or is it beyond his control?

When would you consider it cheating if his relationship with Calypso isn't cheating?

Many teenagers tend to speak about being "in love."  Sometimes they talk of loving someone they haven't known for very long or only see at school. While finding a young romance seems like a terrific thing, what are the down sides of "love" or forming relationships or crushes?  Can love be a "trap"? What are the problems you see associated with teens and "love" (for example, parent objections, ignoring friends, dropping grade point averages, etc.)?

 Can you think of any parallels with Odysseus? Would he think love can be a trap?

The stories we are reading are from ancient civilizations thriving thousands of years ago; however, some of the events that take place or the relationships people have could be clipped from the paper today.

 What connections can you make between items in the news in our world and the myths from ancient Greek? Are there THEMES that come out of the stories that still ring true?

If you can link to a specific article, include it.

There are many issues that we feel strongly about...

school hours, dress codes, cell phones, piercings, curfews, intolerance, food, movies, language, sports, and so forth.

 Talk about something you feel strongly about and try to persuade/convince/sway us to your side or opinion.

Use strong, specific words...appeal to our emotions and logic...have some well thought out reasons.


We read about how important "the old ones" and culture are in Rudolpho Anaya's stories. In the next excerpt, he writes about how respect was a key component of his culture. Once respect started to break down in the culture, it wasn't the same and many felt the impact of that loss.

We identified things that are important to our culture. Once important components erode, the culture can lose its identity, its power, even its government.

Based on what you read, what was important to the culture of Thailand? What is important to the "old ones?" What symbols and customs are being threatened in the country? What are the recent events in Thailand telling us about the culture?

We were a fairly small but wonderful group in Little Tokyo! It was such an amazing evening...stimulating company, delicious food, thought-provoking theater, warm and satisfying Starbucks!  I sincerely had a terrific time and thank all the students who attended. Too bad we had the competition from the football game...these things happen.

Thank  you to everyone who went on the first optional field trip of the year to the Skirball Center, Hammer Museum and City Walk.

I heard only wonderful things about the trip, from student behavior to opportunity to view art and photographs, to the singing, picture taking, and eating!

I am TRULY sorry that I missed the trip, especially because I worked hard to organize it and had been looking forward to it.  You may have heard that my parents were involved in an incident that day and were both in the hospital. So, I do apologize! 

 I am glad you had fun. If you have any feedback, besides what was posted, or have ideas for the next outing, let me know.

[:O]Ms. S

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Our theme this semester is "Origins" and we have all survived a new beginning...the school year. How has the beginning of high school been for you so far? Do you have any strong opinions about the school or your classes to date?
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How was your break? Did you enjoy reading Anthem? Why or why not?
Have something to say? Want to make an observation, pose a question, or discuss something related to school, what we are reading or something that has happened? SAY IT HERE. Tags: ,
We haven't had a chance to read much about Penelope in the excerpts of the Odyssey we've read, but we have heard Odysseus speak about her often. What do you think of Penelope and her situation in Ithaca all the years Odysseus was away. Do you admire her loyalty? Do you think she is crazy to wait and put up with the aggressive and destructive group of suitors in the palace? Is she heroic?
Talk about Odysseus. What do you think of him as a human being with a desire to reach home and many obstacles and imprisonments along the way? What about the idea of him being a hero? Is he someone you can admire?
What do you think of the "love stories" we read in class?  As the women in the stories make choices that change their lives forever, what do you think the message is to the reader? Does the myth Daphne have any relevance in our world? Explain.
What have you learned in Biology about cells and the origins of life that is similar to or different from the myths we read? What types of connections can you make? Can you connect the stories to the development of populations around the world (geography) or the poetic ideas about culture or life (Poetry) or your personal life (Life Skills)?


Do you think it is part of being a human to wonder who we are, where we came from, what our purpose is? Do you ever wonder if life exists elsewhere in the universe? What do you think about scientist finding new planets and demoting others? Tags: ,
In the beginning of The Pearl by John Steinbeck, the pearl seems to represent hope, a better life and goodness, but at the end the the book everything has changed. Do you agree or disagree? Is the pearl evil? What has changed? Technorati Tags: , ,