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Journal #52

Describe one of your favorite childhood memories.

Your entry should include:
A 1st person, detailed description of a single event
A short explanation that describes why this moment is
significant to you

Exploring the Self through


What is a Memoir?
A memoir is a reflective account of
significant memories that took place in
the subject's life.

Memoir vs. Autobiography

While an autobiography details the
chronology of the authors life, a
memoir details a meaningful and
specific part of someones life.
A memoir may focus on a significant:

Historical event
Turning point
Period of time

5 Elements of a Memoir
1. Truth

All events are accurately depicted, not fictional.

2. Theme

Focuses on significant themes that have influenced

the persons life.

3. Voice
4. Point of View
5. M&Ms (Memory &

Must reflect the writers authentic style/personality.

Written in 1st person
The book should focus on specific, meaningful
memories that reveal what the writer learned from
their experiences.

Identity Map Sharing

Find 1 new friend in the room to share your identity map with!
After sharing, your partner should record 2 interesting
facts/ideas they learned on the back of your image.

Journal #53
Describe a time you were ashamed of being different.
How did you react?
Did you try to hide your difference in order to fit in, or
did you reveal or celebrate your uniqueness?
Please make sure your name is on the Identity Map instructions, which should be
stapled to your map and left in the center of your table :)

Fish Cheeks-Amy Tan

Memoir Book Club

When I Was Puerto Rican- Esmeralda Santiago
Its Kind of a Funny Story- Ned Vizzini
Monster- Walter Dean Myers
Funny in Farsi- Firoozeh DuMas
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian- Sherman Alexie
Looking for Alaska- John Green
The Perks of Being a Wallflower- Stephen Chbosky

When I Was Puerto Rican- Esmeralda Santiago

Coming of age tale of a young, Puerto Rican girl

who moves from rural PR to NYC, where her
life drastically changes.
Themes: assimilation, family, culture, and

Its Kind of a Funny Story- Ned Vizzini

NYC teen breaks under pressure, landing

himself in a mental hospital, where he
meets new friends and has new
experiences that shapes his identity.
Themes: Peer pressure, mental health,
finding yourself through adolescence

Monster- Walter Dean Myers

Story of black teenage boy on trial for murder

in NY. The tale is told from Steve Harmons
POV in a mixture of third person screenplay
and journal entries that depict his experiences
in prison and enduring the trial.
Themes: Identity, race, peer pressure, crime,
and the subjective nature of truth

Funny in Farsi- Firoozeh DuMas

Story told through the eyes of a little girl who

moves from Iran to California with her family.
The tale follows her adjustment to American
culture, which leads to many hilarious and
awkward experiences.
Themes: language barriers, identity, assimilation

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian- Sherman Alexie

Sherman Alexies first young adult fiction book

1st person narrative of Junior, a 14 year old
cartoonist from the Spokane Indian
Reservation, whos decided to attend an all
white public school off of the reservation.
Comical accounts of his school experiences,
while also addressing serious conflicts
involving his family- alcoholism, violence,
Themes: Bullying, race, violence, double

Looking for Alaska- John Green

Miles Halter (Pudge) leaves FL to attend a

preparatory boarding school in AL, where he
meets Chip Martin The Colonel, Takumi,
Lara, and Alaska.
Pranks, drinking, love interests, wreaking
havoc, and then a devastating event occurs.
Themes: love, alcoholism, tragedy, finding
ones identity

The Perks of Being a Wallflower- Stephen Chbosky

Narrated by Charlie, a shy, introverted,

unpopular teen, who describes his
experiences in a series of letters to an
anonymous person (the reader?)
Follows experiences freshman year in
Pittsburg high school.
Chbosky took 5 yrs. to write this- based on
his own memories.
Themes: Introversion, adolescence,

Journal #54

No one Man should have all that Power

List 5 interesting images you notice in the

opening scene.
With your table, share what images you
found significant. Whats the story behind
this scene? What messages can we derive
from it?

Be prepared to share :)

Sword of Damocles

Does not Dionysius seem to have made it sufficiently clear that there can be
nothing happy for the person over whom some fear always looms?

King Henry IV Part 2

Uneasy les the head that wears the crown.

A Picture Worth A Thousand Words

Consider the story behind your image. Using the graphic organizer, take about 10
minutes to outline the main literary elements you would use in crafting the story
behind your picture.

You do not need to write the full story!

You may use bullet points, single words, phrases, and/or short sentences to
simply outline the way you envision it.
Please do this independently :)

Writing the Story

Trade your picture with the person sitting diagonal from you. Without seeing their
outline, write the story that YOU see behind their image!
Your short story should include:

Plot events (a beginning, middle, and end)

A descriptive setting
Characters that speak (use some dialogue!)
A conflict thats resolved by the end

Once you finish, read your story back to the pictures owner! See what similarities
and/or differences there are between the way you both envisioned the story behind
the image.

Discussion Experience Survey

Please answer the 5 questions on your experiences with discussion as
honestly and thoughtfully as possible.
Feel free to be informal and concise in your writing, but please provide clear
and specific answers :)

Major Keys To Discussion Success

1. Listen Patiently
2. Listen Actively
3. Police Your Voice

Somewhere in America
What are some of the ideas that resonated with you most?
What important lessons or messages can a person learn about the
teenage experience after listening to this performance?

Book Club & Reading Groups!!!

Here is what you MUST accomplish before leaving class today

Read over the entire Book Club Project Sheet found on Canvas with your
reading group. Please ask any questions you may have!
Complete the reading timeline and determine jobs for next week as a
Set your ground rules as a group and make sure each member signs your
Make sure you grab your respective book, write your name on the inside
cover, AND record your book number on the class sign out sheet!

Journal # 55
If you were to write a memoir on a significant part of your life,
what would the title of it be? Explain why.

She Believed She Could So She Did

A Memoir

The Danger of the Single Story

Journal #56- Whats

the story behind your name?

Consider the meaning of your name and reflect on how it influences your

Create the story behind your name with an acrostic poem that
perfectly describes you!

Jonathan Rodriguez- Untitled

1. What does Rodrguez mean when he uses the phrase two names, two worlds?
What two worlds does his name represent?
2. What different factors make up Jonathans identity?
3. What does Rodrguez mean when he talks about the duality of his identity? In
what ways can our multiple identities conflict?

Journal #57

What is the meaning of

Hughes poem?
What are your dreams and
why are they important to

Jacqueline Woodson Brown Grl Dreamng

Discussion Questions
Read and ANNOTATE your poems as a group.
Discuss the meaning behind the stories Jacqueline Woodson shares
through her poetry.

What do we learn about her?

How does she perceive her own identity? How does society perceive her
How have Woodsons experiences shaped her?

Be prepared to summarize the section of your reading! Pick a quote that

best describes the message of your reading.

Journal #58-- Welcome Back :)

Somewhere in America Spoken Word Piece

After watching the video twice, record 3 different interesting

ideas and/or conflicts that resonated with you from the piece.

Develop a Discussion Question

Turn to a partner and share what ideas resonated with you most from
the video.
As a pair, develop a discussion question to pose to the class about issues
teens face in our schools and society? How might these issues affect
their sense of identity and belonging?
Send one person to the board to write your question up!!! :)

The Lunch Date Response

Consider a time you were misunderstood by someone else
What happened and how did you react?

Jigsaw Reading Activity

Find friends nearby and get into groups of THREE
Pick ONE short story to read and ANNOTATE independently
Summarize and share the main ideas from your short story
with your small group and answer your discussion questions

I Feel Most Colored When...

Journal #59
I Feel Most ___________ When
Write a response about how it feels to be labeled by your single story.
Relate some of your ideas to at least 1 of the experiences we read from
in class today.

Journal #60
How are book clubs going for you?
Whats worked well and whats been challenging?
Describe you favorite book club discussion in detail.

Be prepared to share :)

Child of the Americas

1. How does Aurora Levins Morales see herself?
What does her identity consist of?
2. Why does the author not identify as African,
Taino, or European? And what does she mean by
I am new. History made me?
3. How does Morales understand her American

Journal #61
Write a three stanza poem about an
early memory youve had.
1st stanza- introduce the conflict
2nd stanza- detail the event
3rd stanza should reveal the
lesson you learned

Journal #62
Pick one of the conflicts that a character from your
book has experienced.
What was the issue?
How did they respond?
And how would you handle the situation if you were in
their shoes?

Characterization Activity

Present Your Character Sketches!

Find 1 or 2 other reading groups to share your character sketches
Give some background to your novel
Present your characters and explain the choices you made in
depicting them
Discuss any similarities and differences between the characters
of your respective books

Sit with Your Reading Group!

Take a minute to gather your character sketches and
Each group will have no more than 2 minutes to share their sketches
with the class!

Journal #63
Describe a time someone wanted you to change.
What was the circumstance?
Why did they feel this way?
And how did you respond?

Journal #64
What ideas does your group have for the final project?
What are you excited about?
What questions do you have about the project?

Journal #64
What does Conley mean when he says that race and
class are nothing more than a set of stories we tell
ourselves to get through the world?
Do you agree? What is your definition of race?

Race as a Social Construct

Race is a modern idea

Race has no genetic basis
Slavery predates race
Race justified social inequalities as natural
Human subspecies do not exist
Skin color is only skin deep
Most variation is within not between races

Desirees Baby by Kate Chopin

What are your thoughts about this short story?

What are the big essential questions that come out
of it?

Desirees Baby Discussion

1. Describe Desiree and Armand's relationship throughout the story. How and
why does it change?
2. What do we find out about Armand by the end of the story? Why is this
3. In class, we discussed the idea of race as a concept that society has constructed
to classify and separate people. In what ways does the social construction of
race emerge in this short story?

Journal #66

Write your own six word memoir

Provide a brief response that explains how your 6 words best
represent YOU!

Indelible Moments
Take ~10 FULL Minutes...
Make a list of the unforgettable moments in your life.
They can be:
Tiny Moments
Significant Moments
Moments Only Remembered by You

Journal #67
As you prepare to write your own memoir, what things are
you excited about? What things are you nervous about?
Share at least one specific idea you may consider using for
your piece!

What is A Memoir Vignette?

French Meaning: Vine
Vignette is a word that
originally meant something that
may be written on a vine leaf.

A vignette is a brief but powerful

personal narrative inspired by a
significant experience. A good
vignette leaves you wanting more.

Characteristics of Memoir Vignette

5 Elements of Memoir
Brief (~2-3 pages)
Original Title
Detailed illustration of a single
experience, moment,
character, theme, setting, etc.
MUST present a meaningful
message and demonstrate a
change in the writer.

Plot Structure
Plot Techniques

Flash Forward

Show Dont Tell


Using Figurative Language to Create Imagery

Metaphor- makes comparison between two things that are unrelated but
share some common characteristics.
Simile- makes comparison using like or as

Personification- non-human objects are portrayed with human qualities.

Hyperbole- an exaggeration used to prove a point
Allusion- an expression designed to call something to mind without
mentioning it explicitly; an indirect or passing reference.

The House on Mango Street Vignette Checklist

READ your vignette, DISCUSS the meaning, & NOTE the following:
Describe the plot structure. What happens in the beginning
middle and end?
What plot techniques, if any, are used?
What examples of figurative language are used to illustrate the
What themes/significant messages emerge?

If you could create any product in the world, what

would it be? How would it work? Why is it useful?
Stuck? Think of something you do on a daily basis What would
help make that task easier? You can even create an updated
version of an existing product!

Pick a NEW indelible moment from your list and begin to write
the story behind it using:
An Action
A Thought/Feeling
You should end with a total of 3 short paragraphs!

This video is filled with interesting

Make a LIST of at least 5 striking
images that may contribute to the
overall message/meaning behind
the song.

Figurative Language Review


A comparison between two unrelated

things that share similar characteristics.

Laughter is the music of the



A direct comparison of two things using

like or as.

Im blind as a bat without

my contacts!


Inanimate objects are brought to life by

giving them human qualities.

The stars danced playfully

in the moonlit sky.

Exaggerated statements or claims used to

emphasize an idea.

Im starving.

An indirect reference to something.

He was a real Romeo with

the ladies.


Pick a new indelible moment from your list. Use at least one
example of metaphor, simile, allusion, personification, and
hyperbole to best illustrate the experience.

Take a mental screenshot of a recent text conversation that was super

shallow.... Bring it to life by re-writing the conversation, adding
interesting details in your dialogue to create a story!

Journal #71
Grab a seat with your Book Club group!
Be prepared to give a 2 minute introduction to your project
As you watch each video, record at least one thing you LOVE and
one QUESTION you have for the group! :)

Journal #72
Describe your experience with drafting your memoir vignette.
What parts of your memoir you are most excited about
sharing? What parts are you nervous about sharing? What
type of feedback are you looking forward to receiving?