Our homework for the following three weeks is a little bit different to normal, as the students have come up with the suggestion and developed their own project that they would like the complete. For this task, each student is going to develop a book review.
As a part of the book review, students will need to select a book and then complete a wide range of activities exploring the book in more detail. It is important to remember to select a book that you think is appropriate for you – no point picking something too easy.
When the reviews are returned, we will mark them using the rubric below. What do you need to do to get the best mark?
In class we have begun to look at the ‘7 Steps to Amazing Writing’. As a launching pad to the steps, we began by spending the first fortnight focusing on ‘Sizzling Starts’.
A Sizzling Start is a start to a piece of writing or story that really engages the reader and makes them want to read more in the story. It could be an action scene or something funny – anything that makes the reader want to keep reading more.
We have had a look at writing which does not sizzle (it fizzles!) and how it causes us to become disinterested in the writing. Some examples of this include writing that starts with ‘On the weekend…’ or ‘When I woke up…’.
Students have been fantastic at identifying sizzling starts! Some of the sizzling starts that we have identified in books, movies or television programs include:
The beginning of Stormbreaker, with Ian Rider being chased from Port Tallon. (thanks Tai)
The introduction to Men in Black, as the agents zap the alien in the desert. (Thanks Zak)
The movie Wall*E with its engaging and wonderful first scene.
The film Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, which starts with the boulder chase scene.
The Simpsons Movie, when Homer poisons the town’s water supply (thanks Jarryd)
Pirates of the Caribbean has a suspense filled start with many people dying
The television show Modern Family often starts with a comic scene that makes you laugh and want to keep watching.
The books Beware contain lots of short stories but they are all set in Halloween and full of suspense. (Zak)
The books in the Deltora Quest series contain twists at the start to make you want to find out what happens, such as when the main characters die out right at the start (thanks Zenia!)
Tomorrow When the War Began starts with a bombing and fighting scene
In the novel Breaking Dawn the character begins to talk about her life experiences and what has happened to her (thanks Kelly)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets captures you in by jumping off where the last story ends and Harry doing something he shouldn’t be doing.
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanya starts with a newspaper headline and the main character talking about how it will affect others
This is only a short list of some of the ideas that we discussed in class over the past fortnights. We have also completed a range of activities to get us good at thinking about quick starts to stories. These have including writing ‘five fast starts’ where we have to write the start to five stories in just ten minutes- yes it can be done! Ideas we were given for stories included “All of the kids are at school but there’s no teacher’s in sight”, “A ghost story about a dog with three legs” and “There’s a tree in the wetlands that eats kids”. It’s amazing what you can write in two minutes when you put your mind to it!
Today, we moved on to another of the steps and starting looking at Planning for Success.
We spent some time this morning discussing the importance of having a wide range of ideas to be able to build a story from, and not necessarily using the first thing that pops in to your head. As a grade we brainstormed some large lists of different characters (heroes and villains), sidekicks, problems, settings and animals we might include in a story. From these lists, we had to use something from each list to write the start to a silly story. Here are some of the ideas we came up with.
A walking saucepan has to flee from the FBI who know his mysterious secret. It’s the year 2012 with Mayans freaking everywhere and with the help of a monkey his only transport is a non-stop kicking horse. -Malinthi
A class full of heroes in the year 2500 has to stop a million dollar author and her evil cat from making every pencil in the world grow huge with only the help of Kevin Rudd. – Kelly
A fat cow and its sidekick the talking wheelchair have to fight the psycho killer for killing the Prime Minister, helped by a tiger with fangs. – Jesse
The evil cat is owned by a mad scientist in the year 3000 with the help of a supersized pig. But he was stopped by the talking tree. – Sarah
In the first year ever a lady had a super big pig and her sidekick bumble bee brother looked after it. They also had an old lady, sick hobo and giant bee. – Olivia
A vampire, who has lived from 1899 to 2240 trying to find a way to become human again, has found her match, a demon and with only her mind and her python she has to kill him or he will control the world and herself forever. -Amber
A farting monkey and sidekick, a non-stop kicking horse, would face and fight evil dog. They would fight in the year 2240. Evil dog will die and the world will end. -Ryan
There once was a zombie with his sidekick alien mouse named freckles. They tried to stop the evil flesh eating dog from trying to kill the guy with an evil haircut. – Jarryd
In the year 1204BC, one ex villan has to prove his hero worthiness by defeating an old Egyptian guy who wants to be the God of everyone, with the help of only his miniature talking dinosaur and his smart flying hippo. – Zenia
We are now at that hectic time of the year with writing reports and completing assessments and because of that, it has been more than a week since we updated our blog. This doesn’t mean we haven’t been hard at work though!
During the week Luke and Kelly have been busy investigating and preparing the first episode of our new weekly vodcast, temporarily titled ‘News from 56C’. Together they brainstormed a large list of ideas for the episode, wrote up a script and filmed it themselves. What a fantastic effort for our first ever attempt! In this week’s episode, you can find out about:
On Friday we played our first round of Interschool Sports against Berwick Grammar School. Lucky the weather held off all morning and we got to play in relatively dry conditions!
Our footy and netball teams had some success, winning their games. Soccer and T-Ball weren’t so lucky this time around, but have certainly taken back some lessons to practise. Kickball didn’t get a run against Berwick Grammar, but are looking forward to playing their first game against Brentwood Park next week.
Our 5/6C kitchen day started as usual. Everyone piled through the door to be the first one to get an apron and stand around the bench. Today’s menu started off great. The desert of the day was going to be a yummy apple pie with ice cream! Pasta, also something on the menu, was something I was definitely looking forward to. The Cos Cos salads main ingredients were the chick peas and tomato. The bread hopefully would turn out great. The menu was off to a great start. It sounded yummy and we were all dying to start cooking.
In the amazing group I was in there were, Zak, Jessica, Jesse, Malinthi and I. Our helper of the day was the lovely Malinthi’s mum. The group started well with Zak and Jesse arguing as usual. All of us started off by chopping some pumpkin. The pumpkin that was going to be the main ingredient in the sauce and pasta. After the pumpkin was out of the way came the dreaded onion. It had most of us close to tears. The pumpkin and onion was the biggest part of the sauce. Next came the green leaves, paisley, chives and the unforgettable leak. The leak had us all laughing at Zak’s incredible humour. Zak had given us a dumb-struck look when we told him that leaks come from spring onions!
After all our chopping came the wet and slippery washing up. I had been put as the washer with Zak and Jesse the dryers. we started slow but then we got our grove and finished the job. For the worst part of kitchen it could be quiet fun. But then we had to clean up all the mess the water made.
After all the hard work was done we had a chance to sit down relax and eat! the Cos Cos was really nice. The chicken peas made the whole thing better. The bread was cooked perfectly. the pasta was my favourite I had 2 serves of that! The desert was really yummy! I loved how it had the ice cream on top.
My group was awesome. I really enjoy my kitchen classes. Being in the same group as Malinthi is great because I have one of my friends with me. I Really enjoy kitchen on a weekly bases. Today’s kitchen was great!
Wow what an amazing day in Kitchen today. Our grade 56C day a Kitchen today this week was a menu week so we made lots of different foods. We made the Cos Cos salad, Pumpkin Pasta and we also made and a bread that was made fro a french roll. The Cos Cos Salads main ingredients were the Chip peas and the Tamarto and obviously the Cos Cos. The Pasta had lots of pumpkin. the Pasta was a dough and ’00’ flower. The Bread was very well cooked. it was pretty much just the French Bread but cooked. The Desert was an Amazing it was a wonderful Apple pie with ice-cream!!!
Our Great group helper was Ms Brown. My group was the fried Green Tomatoes. In my group was Amber, Ryan, Jessie and I. My group made the Cos Cos salad it was amazing. It was really hard because we had to make more Cos Cos at the end about 10 minutes before we we meat to go and sit down to have Snack. In the Cos Cos Slade it had Tomato, for 5 minutes at the end Amber and I needed to keep fluffing the coc cos until it all mixed in.