Thursday, November 7, 2013

Journalism: The Evolving Lexicon

Each year, journalists publish and evaluate the new additions to major English dictionaries. These additions represent the pulse of our evolving tongue, for better or for worse. Read the articles below and assess the new waves of vocabulary. Then, develop your own journalistic proposal: suggest 5 words to be added next year, and invent 5 words (in the spirit of schadenfreude and culacino) that pinpoint meanings for which single terms do not exist.

Oxford's Additions

The Guardian

G Block Freshmen: Shakespeare and Predestination

As we study William Shakespeare and read Romeo and Juliet in class, consider the following prompt: The concept of predestination is reflected in the work of Shakespeare. The lives of men and women are "mapped out in the stars," and attempts to transcend or disrupt this order, or chain of being, only lead to tragedy. Does belief in predestination exist in some form today? Do we subscribe to a similar or different philosophy? How does predestination relate to, or conflict with, the "American Dream"? How might you categorize the belief systems of our world today? Do you believe that your destiny is mapped out for you, or do you think that you control your own fate? 

Monday, October 28, 2013

Journalism: Magazine Analysis

Complete the following tasks and include the following information in a post (to your blog) entitled "Magazine Analysis."

1. Select a 100 word passage and use the Fry's readability formula to evaluate the grade level of your magazine's language. Put the results in context.

2. Tabulate the ratio of content pages to advertising pages. What does this ratio say about your magazine?

3. Compare your results with those of other students at your table. What does this comparison say about your magazine? Put its level in context.

4. Create a profile of this magazine's prototypical target reader. Consider age, gender, reading level, interests, values, socioeconomic status, etc..

Monday, October 7, 2013

Journalism: 10-7 Class Work

1. Before you leave class today, Mr. Kefor needs to confirm that you have developed a data collection design (interview questions, survey forms, etc.) for your data-driven journalism piece.

2. As a comment here, describe your current understanding of the global achievement gap. Do you think that America is behind? Why/why not?

3. As a comment here, offer Ripley's thesis (after reading).

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Keenan's Article

Congratulations to Keenan Coffey for being published in The Sun Chronicle. Click here to visit.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Journalism: 10-1

Before you start: please be sure that you have an active, current email tied to your Edline account.


Copy and paste the following data collection methodologies into Word. Begin by constructing a research question for each of the following topics. Discuss, with specificity, how each research question might be framed and approached as a qualitative quantitative endeavor. Paste the results in your final comment posted here. Below is a sample answer in italics.


1.       Teachers’ correcting workloads

2.       Student attitudes concerning Edline

3.       Attitudes concerning the school renovations

4.       Students’ political affiliations

5.       How students choose electives

6.       How seating charts affect academic performance

7.     Try it for your topic!

Favorite NHS athletic team to root for: Research question: What autumn athletic team draws the most fan attendance? A qualitative approach may include interviews with students not currently involved in seasonal athletics (to avoid bias), and determine conclusions based upon the reasoning provided by the sample population; a quantitative approach may include the researcher’s effort to count the number of fans for a game of each sport for several weeks, ultimately examining the ratio between the number of athletic participants and the number of fans.


There were no complete responses to Friday’s class work. Revisit the directions and submit any components that you missed on Friday.
PART C: Develop your research question and find sources for Thursday's class work.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Journalism Class Work for 9-27

Please respond to the following directives with a comment posted here. It is wise to work on your responses in Word, to save them as a document, and then paste and post here.

1. View your Edline grade report. Be sure to take care of any missing work.

2. Please update your Edline email. This is how I will forward to you the emails from Ken Ross.

Question A: Was the research from the Atlantic article qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods? Explain your answer with evidence, integrating the 4 basic quote integration techniques (paragraph). Cite the article in MLA format (cite each quote; list the article as a Work cited). This will require you to use the MLA resources linked on the left side of Mr. Kefor's blog. Be sure to locate the MLA format for a magazine/periodical.

Question B: Offer a proposal for 3 distinct data-driven journalistic pieces- one qualitative, one quantitative, and one mixed methods.

5. As peers complete Question B, respond to each comment (direct response with peer's name) and rank the success of each concept from 1-3. Respond to all peers by the end of the block.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

B Block Honors Seniors: 1984 Supplement

Part A: To supplement our reading of 1984, I am asking you to consider the qualities of both utopian and dystopian societies. Visit the two links below (of course, these are not put forth as actual utopias, but undeniably represent facets of what some consider ideal societies). Offer a brief synopsis of each. Then, discuss the qualities that you identify as synonymous with utopias and dystopias.

The World: Dubai

Denmark: The Happiest Place on Earth

Part B: Click here. View the document. Construct a thesis statement connecting the content of this article to 1984.

Part C: Click the links below to explore the images of North Korea on "The Big Picture". Peruse the photographs and read all of the captions. After viewing a number of images from multiple links, choose 3 that you feel echo- or, perhaps, represent distinctions when compared with- 1984. Construct 3 separate statements that identify and articulate similarities and distinctions between image and text.

Recent Scenes from North Korea
Peering Into North Korea
A North Korean Anniversary and Debut
Tension in the Koreas

Sunday, September 15, 2013

AP English IV: Monday's Blog Work

1. Please be sure that you have an active Google account. If you don't have one, create one.
2. Click here to visit AP Central. Browse the available resources for supplemental study.
3. Please post a comment here indicating your college essay status/timeline.
4. Download the Literary and Poetic Terms List from Edline. For the remainder of class (and beyond), work to customize this list to suit your needs and tastes. Consider adding other resources and making the format user-friendly. Within the next week or so, be sure to print a copy of your customized list to include in your binder for easy daily access.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Juniors: 6-7

Please post your poem analyses here.

Friday, May 24, 2013

5-24 Interdisciplinary Arts Lab Work

Part 1: By the end of the lab session, produce a response (as a comment here) that includes a discussion of the various art and artists whose work you peruse today (the 3 linked below). 

Check out Julian Beever and Kurt Wenner, two artists whose choice of media includes sidewalk chalk.
It would be difficult to find a more impressive modern sculptor than Kris Kuksi. Click here.

Part 2: Virtual Scavenger Hunt: Find the answers to at least 5 of the following questions. Any additional responses will receive additional credit.

1. How many windows are in Andrew Wyeth's "Master Bedroom"? What medium does Wyeth use?
2. Identify the figure depicted in a boat in Michelangelo's "Last Judgement".
3. What pachyderm is distorted in the background of Salvador Dali's "One Second Before Awakening from a Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate"?
4. What time is it in Vincent van Gogh's "Night Cafe"?
5. Monet and Manet are both Impressionists and have similarities beyond their names. Compare and contrast these two artists.
6.. Who is Camille Claudel? Examine her "L'Age Mur" and identify the 3 figures depicted.
7. Identify the works stolen during the infamous Gardner Museum heist. Identify and describe your favorite piece.
8. Summarize the "legend" behind the man with the top hat in Eugene Delacroix's most famous painting.
9. What is David Mach's "Gorilla" made of?
10. Describe your favorite Ron Mueck sculpture.
11. Paul Rahilly is one of my former professors. a) What breed of dog is depicted in his "Girl in a Paper Dress"? b) In which of his paintings does one find a chili pepper? c) a brioche?

Thursday, May 9, 2013

AP Seniors: Friday's Class Work

What’s a dinner without dessert, right?

Please complete the following tasks before the end of the period via a post here.

1.View the Final Exam Project on Edline.

2. Please post an exam and course reflection here. Please take some time to think about this. This is not an opportunity to berate your teacher, nor is it an attempt on his part to fish for compliments. Please discuss course experiences that prepared you well and tasks that you felt/feel ill-equipped for. I will take a close look at this and use your feedback to strengthen my instruction.

3. In preparation for the third portion of your Final, select one of the studies posted to Edline (Howley, Hodson, Bellis, or Stephens). Read it and develop a review of: research questions/hypotheses; methodology and data; conclusions and findings; implications and suggestions for future research.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Interdisciplinary Arts: Friday

I have posted your still-life photographs to a temporary blog. Take a look. Browse through your options and consider which offers the best composition for your piece. You should save this image and prepare to transfer the basic block-in via projection either today or Tuesday. You are strongly encouraged to print an 8x10 photograph unless you have an iPad available for classroom use. If you took your own photos with a phone, great, but remember that the image I've saved for you is a 15 megapixel image (iPhone pictures are 5-8), which allows you far more zooming capacity for the detail expected in a photorealistic image. Once we make our selections, we will work in pairs to transfer the images with the projector. If you are not working on a transfer, you should be completing the blog work below.

1. Offer a reflection for the Chuck Close documentary. What scenes, techniques, or elements resonated with you? (one paragraph)

2. The article on edges (from Wednesday) was written by Anthony Waichulis. Visit his online gallery, browse his and his colleagues' work, and pinpoint your favorite still-life image. Identify it and describe the qualites that you find exemplary.

3. Use the links on Mr. Kefor's art blog or any other online resource to track down at least 5 still-lifes that demonstrate particular visual characteristics that you hope to display in your own photrealistic piece. Paste them into a Word document along with bullet notes for each. Narrow your margins (save paper) and print this resource to include in your sketchbook/study pages.

4. Complete a compositional thumbnail from your selected photo. Include a 5 value key and range. Keep this for reference and to include in your study pages.

5. In the interest of planning ahead, view last year's proposal brainstorming for the forthcoming independent study. Brainstorm possibilities for your own proposal (post here as a paragraph).

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Walden: Jigsaw Assignments

1. Economy (Anderson, Clark, Woodworth, DaSilva)
2. Where I Lived, & What I Lived for (Barrette, Wry)
3. Reading (Brown, Cardone)

4. Sounds (Fairbairn)
5. Solitude (Germano)
6. Visitors (Goldberg)
7. The Bean-Field (Hynes)
8. The Village (Kennedy)
9. The Ponds: Parts A - B (Keough)
10. Baker Farm (Kiley)
11. Higher Laws (Korona)
12. Brute Neighbors (Lynch)
13. House-Warming (MacGray)
14. Former Inhabitants; & Winter Visitors (Maia)
15. Winter Animals (Morse)
16. The Pond in Winter (Ready, Ready)
17. Spring (Silva, Silver)
18. Conclusion (Travers, Weaver)

Linked here.

Honors Juniors: Emerson's Self-Reliance

1. How is Emerson's idea of Self-Reliance different from and similar to the common use of the term (take care of your own needs and don't depend on others outside yourself)?

2. In what ways is Emerson speaking religiously -- that is, about our relationship to the divine?

3. Which of the core persuasive techniques- ethos, pathos, logos- does Emerson use most effectively? Defend your selection with at least 2 direct excerpts (avoid the quotes below).

4. Choose two of the following quotes to analyze in relation to two of our texts from this year (The Color Purple, Death of a Salesman, The Grapes of Wrath). Be specific.

Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.
Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of every one of its members.
Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist.
What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think.
It is easy to see that a greater self-reliance must work a revolution in all the offices and relations of men; in their religion; in their education; in their pursuits; their modes of living; their association; in their property; in their speculative views.
Insist on yourself; never imitate.
Society never advances. It recedes as fast on one side as it gains on the other.
Society is a wave. The wave moves onward, but the water of which it is composed does not.
And so the reliance on Property, including the reliance on governments which protect it, is the want of self-reliance.
Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Sunday, March 17, 2013

English E-H: Monday's Class Work

1. If you were present for the Kumashiro assessment, you may view your grades on Edline.

2. Click here to view a short interview with Alice Walker. Quote at least 3 salient points from her interview to verify your comprehension.

3. Visit and earn 1000 or more grains of rice via English vocabulary and/or grammar. Capture and print your page. Put your name on it and submit it to the substitute for collection.

English I: F Monday's RV

Assessing your customized note-forms is complicated; but, for today, I'd like you to post some essential content from your note form that verifies your reading. You may decide what, how much, etc., but be sure to make it count.

When you are finished, consider amending your note form if necessary.

You may use the remainder of time to work on the "To Kill a Mockingbird: Building Background" scavenger hunt.

To Kill a Mockingbird: Building Background

Complete the following tasks/answer the following questions. Use your critical thinking skills to determine the best routes and resources.The traditional forms of web perusal may not work here.

1. Truman Capote said "Everything she wrote about it is absolutely true". What is the "it"?

2. What does Lee think of the film adaptation of Mockingbird? Use a quote in your answer.

3. Finish Lee's statement: "Now, 75 years later in an abundant society where people have laptops, cell phones, iPods and minds like empty rooms, I still..."

4. Identify Lee's 3 favorite authors and name a title from each.

5. Lee is a recluse but for several years she has quietly attended the awards ceremony for a particular contest. Describe this contest.

6. How are the Scottsboro Trials relevant to the novel?

7. Though Lee always declines interviews, she does write each refusal individually. When asked why she did not simply send out a stock response to the media's pleas, she responded that such a letter would simply say...

8. Click here. Listen to the audio. Who was the statewide essay winner? Who potrayed Scout in a school play and developed a repoire with Lee?

9. List and quote 5 parallels between Harper Lee's real life and her novel.

10. Lee's character Dill is based upon Truman Capote. Capote returned the favor by basing what character (from what story) on Lee?

11. Click here and explore the page. a) What were the results of the "doll tests" and what do they tell us about race in the mid 20th century? b) Using your knowledge of history, discuss why Truman's Executive Order is egregiously late in the context of America's history.

12. Click here and enter the image gallery. Choose 2 images and discuss their subject matter and context. Do not copy and paste.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Interdisciplinary Arts

1. Compose a paragraph that encapsulates your immediate metacognitive thinking regarding the paper bag drawing. Save your writing for your second metacognitive reflection (due date upcoming).

2. Review the MLA handout attached to Edline.

3. Review your options for master copies. Complete at least 2 compositional sketches in your sketchbook before the end of the period (these should contribute to your third set of study pages). It is wise to create a folder that includes a collection of high-pixel images for easy retrieval.

AP Class-work 3-15

1. I want to be sure that you are aware of the online resources available to you from the College Board. If you should need or want supplemental resources, this is one of several sites to visit. Today, begin with the "Multiple Choice Section Scoring Guide"- be sure that you are familar with the formula for this section's scoring. Then, open the 1999 released exam and complete the first 2 sections of Multiple Choice (submit here as a comment to this post). If you should finish early, review the multiple choice breakdown tables and the Q3 materials.

2. Work on your Olde School Vocabulary homework.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

F Block: Thursday

Hi class. Please complete the following tasks by the end of today's lab session. I have left instructions for you to attend third lunch today to avoid the disruption of lab time.

1. Create a Voicethread account. Use a password you will remember.

2. If you don't have a Google account, create one. Use a password you will remember. Create a Google presentation and share it (allow editing in sharing menu) with your partner. Sometimes, this application requires Firefox for shared editing privileges.

3. Title and save your presentation. You may begin building slides an/or collecting images.

4. Earn 1000 grains of rice on Print a shot of your final screen as evidence. Give the printout to our substitute teacher.

E Block Juniors: Kumashiro's Lens

Respond to the prompt in a well-developed essay (27-point test). You may use your notes, annotations, and reading materials. You may not borrow anyone else’s work after beginning the essay. Post the essay as a comment to this post. It is wise to type and save in Word as a precautionary measure. I have posted a Kumashiro copy on Edline that you may use for extracting quotes (a time-saver).

Remember- this is a high-level reading and writing task. It will require some deep thinking and precise writing on your part, but you can do it. Be confident and draw connections and meaning from the works. Show me that you can synthesize sophisticated works under pressure.

Be sure to use MLA for citations, quotes, and works cited.

Apply the principles posited by Kumashiro to Alice Walker’s The Color Purple. How does his unique lens alter the effects of the novel and its place in the American literature canon?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Congratulations to Jack Ledbetter (G block English I) for his published article in the Sun Chronicle. Click here to check it out.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Interdisciplinary Arts: Friday 3-8

1. For review, view Anthony Ryder's block-in demonstration slides. 

2. Click here and view Scott Waddell's "the Conceptual Edge" video. Discuss what you find meaningful in the tutorial, and how the tutorial's content may apply to your paper bag drawing.

3. Identify the 2 master copies Mr. Kefor has completed. Find the original images on the web. As evidence, describe the similarities or distinctions in media and color. Take some time to peruse the web for potential master copy images. You may wish to create a folder in which to store them. Post a list of at least 5 potential candidates here (artist and title). Remember- the images should allow you to display a level of visual sophistication appropriate for this course. If you don't know where to start, consider the following artists: Carravagio, Michelangelo, Velasquez.

Friday, March 1, 2013

G Block: Class Work 3-1-13

Welcome to March. Please read the following directions carefully and complete the necessary work by the end of the block. It is always wise to save your work as a Word file prior to posting in case you encounter any technical glitches.

1. Revisit the tone lesson from earlier this week. Compose a comparative thesis statement that acknowledges the similarities and differences between "Rock & Roll Band" and "Have a Cigar." Use the following structure: Though both A and B "contain" __________________________________, A uses ___________ and ___________ to ______________________________ while B uses ___________ and ___________  to ______________________________.

2. Display your understanding of semicolons by composing a sentence for each semicolon type. Use a vocabulary word (from any lesson) in each sentence. (between independent clauses; before a conjunctive adverb; to separate a list).

3. Click here to visit Play. Help save hungry children.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Blog Work: Interdisciplinary Arts 2-28

Please complete the following tasks by the end of today’s lab session. Submit your responses as a comment here. It is wise to complete and save this work in Word in case you encounter technical glitches when posting your work.

1. In a short paragraph, reflect upon your paper bag block-in thus far. What do you need to do to perfect today’s block-in and move toward building value?

2. Visit Mr. Kefor’s art blog and view the “Edging” YouTube link (10 minutes). Comment on: a) instruction that echoes content from our course; b) new take-aways from the clip.

3. On Mr. Kefor’s art blog and view the “Richard Morris” link (5 minutes). Comment on: a) demonstration that echoes content from our course; b) new take-aways from the clip.

4. Use your favorite search engine to peruse the internet for images of paper bag drawings. Choose one that displays exemplary block-in technique, well-developed values, and proper edging. Copy and paste this image into Word and print a non-pixellated copy to tape to your drawing board as reference/inspiration. Paste the image’s url here as confirmation of your work.

If you have extra time, visit some of the other art links on Mr. Kefor’s blog.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

G Block: Scavenger Hunt

1. Visit Edline and sort your vocabulary list so that only list 10 is visible. Choose a word from words 5-7. Compose a sentence that conveys your understanding of the word.

2. On Edline, locate the list of poetic and literary devices for freshmen. Select a term that we have not covered yet this year. Make a connection (one sentence) between this term and a piece of literature we have read. Be speciifc.

Click here to view a quick interview with Jeanette Walls. Describe Rosemary's paintings to verify your viewing.

4. Visit Locate The Glass Castle. Read through the customer reviews and locate one highly favorable and 1 scathing review. Copy the reviews, correct them for grammar, spelling, and punctuation, and paste them as your fourth response.

5. Review the rubric attached to your Poetry Test. Find your average response score and read the language that corresponds with your score. Then, look at the language in the category directly above your average score. Compose a paragraph that addresses the criteria that you need to focus on in order to improve your writing on future assessments. Use direct quotations from the rubric.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

English 3-H: Young Goodman Brown

Allegories are stories in which all superficial representations are operating as symbols. Analyze Hawthorne's use of allegory, symbolism and motif(s) within the story. Be sure to identify all of the notable instances of symbolism and motif, exploring the relationships among them while critiquing their effectiveness.

Produce a sharp, point-dense paragraph.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Interdisciplinary Arts: Friday, 2-1

Please complete the following tasks before the end of the period. Submit your responses as a comment here.

1. If you have yet to do so, visit the course page on Edline. Make sure that you are comfortable accessing files and links. Remember that your first set of readings should be well-represented in your first study page(s), due Tuesday. Print one copy of "Rubric: Study Pages (Peer)" for today.

2. Peruse the GCA blog. Sift through a few months of posts and images, clicking on the pieces that you find interesting and/or impressive. Select 3 works of art that exemplify 3 micro-lessons from our sphere drawing lesson or course readings. Compose a brief statement for each, and include: the artist's name, a description of the piece, and specific parallels between our lesson and aspects of the drawing or painting. Use your statements to demonstrate your learning in a specific and clear manner. If you happen to finish early, please proofread and refine your work.

3. If time allows, view the sphere drawing demonstrations linked from Mr. Kefor's art blog. Otherwise, view them at home. Remember that your final sphere will be assessed next week.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

POS: SSRS Evaluations

Today, our SSRS Think Tank groups will present the overhauled drafts of the SSRS forms. Please keep in mind that the form that best fullfills the objectives will be used on the Midyear Exam, so be honest and particular.


1. Rank the forms (by file name) from strongest to weakest.

2. Compose a paragraph defending your selection for the top spot. Be specific. Make your case for its inclusion on the exam.

3. Be sure that your group has the lyrics and audio to an appropriate song linked up for Thursday. Score the song yourselves using the SSRS you have created. Post the average score here along with individual scores.


4. On Thursday, revisit this post and discuss how the trial runs either confirm or contest your original rankings and feedback.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Top Song Defenses: POS

Please post the final round of song defense feedback as a comment here (remember to include the speaker's use of ethos, pathos, and logos).

Orwellian Parallels: AP English Literature

Part A: To supplement our reading of 1984, I am asking you to consider the qualities of both utopian and dystopian societies. Visit the two links below (of course, these are not put forth as actual utopias, but undeniably represent facets of idealistic societies). Offer a brief synopsis of each. Then, discuss the qualities that you identify as synonymous with utopias and dystopias.

The World: Dubai

Denmark: The Happiest Place on Earth

Part B: Click here. View the document. Construct a thesis statement connecting the content of this article to 1984.

Part C: Click the links below to explore the images of North Korea on "The Big Picture". Peruse the photographs and read all of the captions. After viewing a number of images from multiple links, choose 3 that you feel echo- or, perhaps, represent distinctions when compared with- 1984. Construct 3 separate theses that identify and articulate between image and text.

Recent Scenes from North Korea
Peering Into North Korea
A North Korean Anniversary and Debut
Tension in the Koreas

Part D: Study the following songs. Analyze the lyrics, and compose a paragraph that pinpoints the relationship between the songs and the novel. Though all of the songs are allusive, their contextualization and universal ideas may differ from Orwell's. To enhance your understanding, you may wish to view the videos while reading/following the lyrics in a separate window.

"Testify" by Rage Against the Machine: audio/video
"Big Brother" by Stevie Wonder: audio/video
"2+2=5" by Radiohead: audio/video