Monthly Archives: October 2009

Today’s Reading Blog Assignment

I want each person to respond to the following prompt on the group blogs:

Should the book you’re reading be available for more people to read in Perspectives? Consider the following in your response:

  • Who would the book appeal to?
  • What about it is appealing?
  • What obstacles should student readers of this book be ready for?
  • What would students need to know about in order to understand the book?
  • What issues does the book deal with that students might be interested in discussing?
  • Is there any “mature” content in the book? If so, what kind of content? How would you deal with such content in class?

Reading Group Blog

Today we’re making blogs for our reading groups. I’ll walk you through the process in class.

If you’re not in class today, check your e-mail (the one you use for Google Docs) for a post about joining a blog, and click on the first link.

When we get to the point where you can write your first “real” post, I’ll want you to write about your initial thoughts before we’ve started on the book. Here are a few things you might address in your first post:

  • What are your expectations from this book? What do you know about it so far?
  • Do you know anything about the author?
  • What kind of books do you usually like to read? What was the last good book you read?
  • Why did you choose this book over the other available options?

Where are your blogs?

Please copy and paste the addresses from your blogs in the comments below.

TBL Reviews (cont.)

Hey everyone.

We’re back in the lab today, revising on the reviews we drafted last week.

A couple of specifics for this draft:

  • You’re not writing a book report. Write as if there are real human beings on the other end of your review who want to know whether they should read it, and why. Interesting word choices help. Varying your sentence length helps. Not repeating the same beginnings of sentences all the time helps.
  • Suggest what you think early on. Reviewers don’t wait until the end to give you an impression of their evaluation. A reader should have a sense of what you think of the book by the language you use throughout your review.
  • Get the details right. Look back at that list of mistakes we said we’d always fix, and make sure you’ve fixed them.
  • Include a word count near your name at the top of the paper.
  • Give it a title other than “This Boy’s Life Review.” Write a title suggesting your evaluation, or something important about the book.



…if I don’t have your This Boy’s Life review yet, I needed it yesterday.

Book Reviews

In the lab today, we’re starting to draft our book reviews.

For those of you who have missed some of the past couple of days, on Tuesday we listened to several book reviews (linked below; please listen) and took notes on what the different reviewers were doing. Here’s a partial list of what we came up with:

  • author/title/genre
  • summary of setting/main characters/conflicts/action
  • tone of the book
  • author’s style
  • evaluation
  • personal connections

So now we’re going to write reviews ourselves.

Today and tomorrow we’re drafting these reviews. Remember a few things:

  • Your review will be pretty short: between 400 and 500 words.
  • You want to sound positive in your review, even if you’re also looking at flaws.

Here are the links:

Stephen King Tom Callahan Maureen Corrigan Cormac McCarthy … David Lipsky