Category Archives: Weekly Writing Assignments

WWA due Thursday, November 12

Next week we hope to receive some help from one of the Board’s computer teachers in order that we may set up our own blogs. This week’s WWA is to read and respond to a blog, and brainstorm ideas which students would like to include in their own blogs.

This past week we read an article in The Spectator about John Beeden, who is attempting to row across the Pacific. This article was sent home with students, and it would be good if they reread it. Here is the link in case you need it.

Students then need to check out John Beeden’s blog, and read some entries.

Here’s the writing assignment:

Write one paragraph addressed to John Beeden. Explain who you are, offer encouragement, and ask questions. I will collate these and send them on in a group message. (You don’t swamp solo rowers in the middle of the Pacific with tons of emails…) Perhaps he will respond to us–we’ll see!

Next, write a paragraph outlining some topics which you would like to explore on your own blog. Remember, though, that it will be a school account, and it will need to have an appropriate tone, ahem. Have fun, but not too much fun 🙂

Speaking of fun, here’s some movie trailers we watched about others’ journeys in the Pacific. Guess which one is fictional!

WWA, due Friday, September 25


We are learning about the upcoming federal election in class, and used an interview with Canadian satirist Rick Mercer to help us understand some issues. The WWA for this week is to reread the interview (students should have a copy in their agenda front pocket), and answer questions about it. Many of the questions ask you what YOU think. Ensure that your thoughts are clearly explained–support your answers.

Students may choose to write on a hard copy (provided to them in class), or online. The document has been shared to your HWDSB Google Drive account. Remember to copy it before beginning your work!

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WWA due Friday, Sept. 18 “Art and Kahoot”

We don’t have a new assignment this week, but will instead work on work started in the class. The priority is finishing the “hand art”. Some students have quite a lot to do, and have taken this home. (Others are finished… that’s how it goes 🙂

The other item students can work on is their “Kahoot”. This is an online quiz which we play from time to time. Each student was given a photocopied quiz with 15 general knowledge questions, from which they may choose 10. If they like, they may add 3 of their own questions at the end.

Students will get Tuesday’s computer period to work on this, and I am confident they can finish it within that period, as many were almost done during today’s period. However, many students were eager to keep working at home, which I would never discourage 🙂 Kahoots should also be finished on Friday, but we’ll start playing them when they’re ready.

Please note: The book from which I took the quizzes is British, and some of the questions are quite focused on Great Britain. Feel free to skip those (you need to do 10 out of 15, so 5 may be skipped), or change it to a comparable Canadian question! I had hoped to alter questions before distributing the pages, but ran out of time….

Weekly Writing Assignment #1 Due September 11, 2015

In order to develop the students’ writing skills, they will be required to complete a home writing assignment each week. The topic will be given on Friday and the finished piece will be due the following Thursday.

Writing can be difficult to edit and revise in the classroom. Even with our smaller number of students, the teacher student ratio is problematic, as editing and revising is time consuming. So, if you are able, and it works for you and your child, I would encourage you to help him or her through part of the writing process, as outlined below. Assignments should be at least two paragraphs in length. Students are welcome to write more, depending on their interest and ability level.

Suggested process for completing home writing assignment:

  1. Student works independently at first, reviewing assignment requirements and doing necessary research. Student then brainstorms ideas and has a loose working organizer of what he or she will write about. Students may organize their thoughts on lined paper, or may use a graphic organizer.

Note: How the organizing is done depends on the child. Many can organize their thoughts in their head and don’t need to plan on paper. However, if written thoughts are coming out in a heap of jumbled and disconnected phrases, students probably should take the time to make a written plan first.

2. Once preliminary thoughts are organized, the student then completes his or her first draft on lined paper or on the computer. When the student is finished his/her first draft it should be reread independently, allowing the student to catch their first mistakes. I find it helps students to reread their work aloud and correct it as they go.

3. At this point you may wish to help your child with the editing process. Please make revisions directly on the sheet, or by sitting together at the computer. Only the final, polished copy needs to be submitted.

I look forward to reading the students’ selections. I am sure that we will see strong growth in their writing as the year progresses.

Assignments may be emailed to Hard copies are fine too.

How I Spent My Summer Vacation…

  • Assignment #1 :  Summer Vacation Explanation of the Duration of the Sunny Elation; not looking for a Dissertation.
  •  Due Friday, September  11                                               how-i-spent-my-summer-vacation
  • It’s a time honoured tradition in schools around the globe—having students write about their summer vacations. You’ve had TWO MONTHS off (so have I, as many adults remind me throughout July and August….), so the least you could do is tell us about your adventures! How you do this is up to you. Perhaps you want to focus on one special trip and write a couple of paragraphs about it. Perhaps you are bursting with things to tell me and want to list them off. Please give brief descriptions, however. Adjectives are welcomed. Students will have the option to share their selection with the class on Friday.




Write a Theatre Review, due Friday, June 5

Write a theatre review of either Buchanan Park’s Opera performance of La Boheme (program was sent home with students today), or the performance of Oliver which we saw today.  The program was not available yet, but I’ll try to get one over the weekend and scan it in. In the meantime, here’s a link to a review found online: link

Here is a list of things that we brainstormed in class which would be helpful to include:

  1. Acting, singing and dancing
  2. Set design, lighting and audio
  3. Costumes and props
  4. Music–refer to the performance of the live band in the pit

Discuss the various elements, highlighting what was effective, or that which could have been improved upon.

Your “voice” can shine through on the review, by the way. We looked at this review in class, which shows the personality of Gary Smith, Spectator reviewer quite clearly. link You may, however, choose to take a more formal approach if you wish.

This WWA will be a bit longer, so I will give class time on Monday  as well.

WWA due Thursday, May 28

Note: Grade 7 had a lot of history to finish, and so (once again) this WWA is optional for them.

This week’s assignment: create a Rube Goldberg machine in the same style as the original cartoons. What is a Rube Goldberg machine? It’s a complex contraption created to do a simple task. Here are some samples:

Please follow the same format: a drawing with the steps labelled from “A” to whatever letter you finish on. Explain the steps on the left hand side.

You can see more examples in the gallery section of the Rube Goldberg video. Here’s the video we watched in class:


WWA due Friday, May 22

First off, Let’s Talk Science participants, this is optional for you! You should be studying the handbook and getting ready for the big day which is on May 21!

For the rest of you… yesterday I bought the little book which is pictured above. It is full of writing prompts which is encourage creative and divergent thinking. Your assignment is to answer the following questions in a clever way. By all means, talk to your parents for ideas if you need to.

#1:  List seven things you brought along on the camping trip that people doubted at first, but now they’re glad you brought.

#2: You are watching the water. The person next to you says the sound of a boat horn is the most evocative, comforting, and lonely sound in the world. Name five sounds that you find even more evocative, comforting and lonely.

(Remember, “evocative” is an adjective meaning “bringing strong memories, feelings or images to mind.”)