• Week of October 21

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 10/19/2019 3:10:00 AM

    This week in Pre AP we will finish our study of informational text about the State Fair of Texas.  We will continue looking at tone and the author's purpose by looking at a variety of written and multimodal texts.  We will also take the District Unit Assessment on Wednesday and Thursday of this week. Students are prepared for this, so outside studying is not necessary.  However, I do ask students to continue reading.  They should have read all of The Testing by the end of the week. 

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  • Week of October 14

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 10/16/2019

    In Pre AP English this week, we will focus on the analysis of informational text.  When we read text, we will learn to use the text features and organizational structures in order to be able to identify what the author wants us to know, think, feel, believe, do, or understand as a result of reading the text.  We have a few fun activities that we will do in connection with the mentor text about The State Fair of Texas.  

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  • Week of October 7

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 10/4/2019 10:25:00 PM

    This is the last week of the grading weeks.  Please check grades and make sure everything is taken care of. 

    This week we will be looking at the end of "The Hero's Journey" by studying an excerpt of A Wrinkle in Time in the form of a graphic novel.  I love how graphic novels can engage students who struggle with all the text on the page. There is no shame in that game...Sheldon Cooper reads comic books!  

    We will also continue the literary analysis of The Testing.  Students should be reading this novel independently so that we can do the activities in class.  One activity that the students will do with this is to select a theme song for the novel.  Music is a great way to make a connection to the text and understand the theme.  

    Don't forget that October 14 is a holiday! 


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  • Week of September 29

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 9/28/2019 4:40:00 AM
    Fall is here...or is it?
    I hope that all is well in life with everyone.  

    This week in Pre AP English, we will be continuing to look at the hero’s journey as we read The Testing, other short stories, novel excerpts, and write our own text.  The Hero’s Journey Short Story is due on Thursday, October 3.  
    I am excited to see the level that students continue to reach. I keep thinking that the things I give them are too challenging, but the students continue to rise to the challenge I present.  They are greatness.  
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  • Week of September 23

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 9/23/2019

    This week in Pre AP we will continue with writing the Hero's Journey Fiction Text, which is due on October 3.  We will also continue looking at a variety of text that will lead to the understanding of plot through the eyes of the hero archetype.  Students will take the Common Assessment #2 on Thursday of this week.  

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  • Week of September 16

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 9/17/2019

    This week we continue through the Hero's Journey.  We will be reading a short story by Ray Bradbury called "The Drummer of Shiloh" and analyzing the text.  

    We will also begin the literary analysis of The Testing.  Students should finish the first four chapters by Friday.  

    Finally, we will be writing our own Hero's Journey and begin the prewriting process for that.  

    The analysis from Big Hero 6 is due on Thursday of this week.

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  • Week of September 9

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 9/8/2019

    This Week in Pre AP, we will continue making inferences regarding text as we study the literary archetype of the Hero's Journey.   

    Wylie Way Day is Wednesday, and we encourage students to dress up in western:  boots, jeans, hats, etc...

    Thursday is the 8th grade Common Assessment over Making Inferences.  It is 10 questions, and students will be able to use the skills we have learned with Signposts to be able to be successful.  

    All assignments in my class will be due on Thursday, with an occasional exception.  It may mean that they have 2 things due on the same day, but it works out well for the most part because the assignments have been made on different days, and they have had class time to work on them. This week is no exception.  

    I hope you have enjoyed the last of the 100-degree weather and have a fabulous week!  

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  • Week of September 2

    Posted by Michael Brinkley on 9/2/2019

    This week have I have split the newsletters between GT and Pre AP since the curriculum will become more different as the year progresses.  

    Speaking of the differences, while the GT and the Pre AP students all learn the same Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills at very high levels, they learn very differently.  If you could be a fly on the wall in my classroom all day, the difference is amazingly apparent.  Please understand that one is not "higher level" than the other, but while both GT and Pre AP students are very bright, they just learn differently.  

    On Tuesday of this week, we will complete, in small groups, an analysis of a short story using the skills we learned last week as we analyzed literature.  

    We will then begin a thematic unit called "The Challenge of Heroism."  The foundation for my instruction will be the Springboard curriculum from College Board.  It is the adopted curriculum for the Pre AP English.  It is brand new, and College Board has, "hit it out of the park" on this one.  As with anything that I do, I will add spins and twists to meet the needs of individual learners in my classrooms. 

    Please don't expect much homework from me.  I try to manage my class time to the extent that students will be able to show mastery inside of class. While there will sometimes be homework, I encourage students to maximize their time in class to keep homework to a minimum.  

    By the way...I love your kids!!

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