Hamann Notes Contemporary Lit

Core Units

Journal Prompts

MDE 11-12 Benchmarks

September 14-18 contemp lit
September 21-25 contemp lit
September 28-October 2 contemp lit
October 5-9 contemp lit
October 12-16 contemp lit
October 19-23 contemp lit
October 26-30 contemp lit
November 2-6 contemp lit
November 9-13 contemp lit

September 7-11

Monday, September 7


Tuesday, September 8

  • Have students names taped to their assign seats
  • On the projector:
    • Find your name and take a seat.
    • Take out a notebook for this class, write today's date, and then respond to the following:
      • My career thus far as an English student has been …
      • I usually enjoy these parts of past English classes (and why):
      • I don't really care for these parts of past English classes (and why):
      • My favorite part of any English or Language Arts class ever (and why):
  • Take attendance
  • Introductions — write 2-3 questions for me on the colored index cards. I will answer a couple a day over the next few weeks.
  • Go over the Class Procedures and Expectations PowerPoint and the Contemporary Lit Syllabus
  • Stretch
  • Activity: Introduce 6 Word Memoirs — this whole idea is based off of the story that Ernest Hemingway once penned a 6 word novel: "For sale: Baby shoes, never worn." Can your life be summed up in 6 words? Is that possible?


  • Do you think writing this type of memoir is easier or tougher than writing a book-length memoir?
  • You are going to find out! The parameters of the assignment: students must write a personal memoir in only six words. Some tips:

  • As with all writing, there is no first draft, perfect draft. To accomplish this task:
    • Brainstorm: what defines you? You might start with just a list of words and events, or personality traits. Likes, dislikes, etc.
    • Start drafting, pulling words from your list. Write several different drafts of several different memoirs.
    • Choose your favorite and write it in ink or marker on the white index cards.
    • Bring these back to class tomorrow.
  • Materials Needed:

Wednesday, September 9

  • (10 min.) Warm-Up Free Write: What is your most indispensable possession and why? What is your history with this possession? Tell us a story…
  • (10 min.) housekeeping, announcements, answer a couple of questions from the colored cards.
  • (30 min.) Application Activity: Students present their 6-word memoirs from yesterday
  • (30 min.) Lit focus:Introduce Double Entry Journals
    • Assignment: read "The Things They Carried," by Tim O'Brien (pages 366-384 in the short stories anthology)
      • Be ready to discuss and write about this story tomorrow

Thursday, September 10

  • (10 min.) Warm-Up Free Write:# 1 from this list print this list
  • (10 min.) housekeeping, announcements, answer a couple of questions from the colored cards.
  • Grammar day: capital letters are very important things. In groups of 3-4, see if you can remember all 13 categories of capital letter use in English. Go through and express edit one of your free writes, looking for just capitalization issues. When you have read through and checked it three times, write that and sign it at the bottom.
  • (30 min.) Application: mind map the story — "The Things they Carried" in the middle, surrounded by the characters mentioned, what they carried, and what that reveals about their character. If you can't remember, go back through the story. (literary terms that appliy)
  • (30 min.) Lit focus: discussion of the story and mind maps.

Friday, September 11

  • (10 min.) Warm-Up Free Write: From "The Things they Carried": In what sense does Jimmy love Martha? Why does he construct this elaborate, mostly fictional, relationship with her? What does he get out of it? AND/OR: Why do you think the soldiers tell jokes about the war, about killing?
  • (10 min.) housekeeping, announcements — big senior picture is going to be taken Wednesday morning (Sept. 16) at 8:15, answer a couple of questions from the colored cards.
  • (30 min.) In groups of 3, compare your free write responses from today. Then we will share in the large group.
  • In your groups, can you locate 1-2 sentences in the text that you believe sum up the theme of this story?
  • Introduce Double Entry Journals — start "Rules of the Game" in class. As you read, engage with it through double entry journaling. There is a minimum of 8 entries due on Monday. If it helps, think about: What do the two main characters in this story value? Why do you think that is? What cultural or familial factors have influenced their values? What is the central struggle here?

September 14-18

Monday, September 14

  • (10 min.) Warm-Up Free Write:
  • (10 min.) housekeeping, announcements, answer a couple of questions from the colored cards.
  • (30 min.) Lit focus:
  • (30 min.) Application Activity:

Tuesday, September 15

Wednesday, September 16

Thursday, September 17

Friday, September 18

September 18-19 CTAM — Will need a sub

September 28 - October 2

Monday, September 28


Tuesday, September 29

Wednesday, September 30

Thursday, October 1

Friday, October 2

October 5-9

Monday, October 5

Tuesday, October 6

Wednesday, October 7

Thursday, October 8

Friday, October 9

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