Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Comparative Essay Help

Paragraph 1:
     A. Introduction:
         Introductory sentence, author and titles of both essays,  
          present the contrast in tones of each essay. 
       (see compare/contrast/transition words on pg. 170.)
Paragraph 2:
    A. Essay #1 - Give a brief synopsis of the essay. Explain 
       two types of tone used throughout the essay. Cite 
       evidence from the text with explanations as to why that 
       quote fits that specific tone word.  

Paragraph 3:
    A. Essay #2 - Give a brief synopsis of the essay. Explain 
       two types of tone used throughout the essay. Cite 
       evidence from the text with explanations as to why that 
       quote fits that specific tone word.  

Paragraph 4: 
     Conclusion Statement - 
A. How did the different tones of the essays affect your mood 
     as a reader, and your thoughts about the author?
B. Does Mora and Atwood's use of tone play a major part in 
    conveying their points? How? 
C. Would you have used the same tone if you were an author 
     writing about one country admiring another, or missing 
     being close to your family?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Paired Essay Analysis Outline: Margaret Atwood and Pat Mora

Paired Essay Analysis Outline 1

Monday, November 28, 2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Grammar Fun with VERBS!!!

*Remember! Leave a comment, get extra credit. Leave a comment AND a link to something that connects, get MORE extra credit!*

Action Verbs:

Linking Verbs:

Spice It Up!

Helping Verbs:

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

"The Pedestrian" Study Guide

The Pedestrian Study Guide

Imagery in the Pedestrian

Bradbury's "The Pedestrian" to Systems of a Down's "Lonely Day"

"The Pedestrian" Vocabulary Part 1

Monday, November 7, 2011

Bradbury's "The Pedestrian"

From Ms. Carmen Sanders' WONDERFUL blog :
Check out the essay and leave a comment - Up to 5 pts EXTRA CREDIT!

We have finished with "A Sound of Thunder" by Ray Bradbury and we are moving forward with another selection that he has written entitled, "The Pedestrian". Read Mr. Daniel Gilbert's view of "The Pedestrian".

An Essay on the Pedestrian by Ray Bradbury, an essay fiction -

I believe this essay is a great primer for the selection and highlights several themes and critiques of society presented by Bradbury. Leave a comment and let me know what you think of the essay and its contents after you read it. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

"A Sound of Thunder" Study Guide

You are responsible for turning this document in, completed, on the day your Selection Test is given (TBD). 
You MUST have this study guide with you as we're reading in class. 
You have three options:

1. Download and print this document on your own (at home or in the school library - on your own time).
2. Recreate this document by copying it by hand.
3. Download the document, bring your laptop or tablet to class, and type in the answers as we go over them.

Sound of Thunder Study Guide

Freytag's Pyramid: Plot Structure (Class Notes 10/26/11)

Plot Focus 1

10/26/11 Homework: 
Create a complete plot structure for a sitcom (situational comedy) or crime show.

Must include the title of the show on your plot structure. Be prepared to share.

Ex: Martin, House of Pain, Law & Order, etc.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Meet Ray Bradbury: "Love What You Do and Do What You Love."

A great interview with one of the most prolific science fiction writers of our time.

10/11/11 Classwork: 
Complete K-W-L Chart on Ray Bradbury:

Knowledge gained from reading the author study on pg. 67 of your Language of Literature textbook.

If Mr. Bradbury were sitting with you at a coffee shop, what questions would you ask him about his life, and what inspires him to read and write?

While watching the video above, write down the answers to your questions in the "W" column, along with any other key information about his life. 

After watching the video, post a comment (or tweet mentioning @TottenEnglish) about what you learned/quotes that stood out to you, and leave links to other sources that may teach us more about Ray Bradbury. 
*up to 5 points extra credit*

Friday, September 23, 2011

9/23/11 HOMEWORK: Revise Final Drafts with Peer Feedback

@TottenEnglish: Typed Final Draft of 5 Paragraph Essay from the Writing Prompt Above Due MONDAY!! No comp/printer? Follow the formal writing standards in the tab above.

Post comments below, text, or mention @eltotten on twitter if you have questions!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

What's an effective "meatball"?

*Took me almost 1 1/2hrs to finish. Post a comment or mention @eltotten on twitter with your questions.*


Effective Meatball Final Draft

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

9/19/2011: "There Will Be Soft Rains" - All assignments due 9/21/2011

Totten Sub Plan

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Theme Revisited: Pd. 1 & 3 Homework

Practice identifying theme using the higher level thinking and vocabulary I demonstrated in class. Be prepared to share your thoughts, triumphs, and difficulties. Call or Text me if you need to... GOOD LUCK! 

Leave a comment!

Theme Revisted

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Harrison Bergeron Post Test on Thursday!

Re-Read The Story!!

Here's what you need to study:

Character Traits 
Active Reading Strategies
5 Elements of Fiction : How to identify, evidence from the story
Making Inferences & Identifying Theme
Comprehension & Details from the Story

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011

How To Post A Great Comment!

Posting Comments



In order to preserve your personal privacy and safety it is important that the following procedures are followed when posting comments:
  • Only use your first name and last initial (joaquin a)
  • Never post any personal information
  • Use your Google account for the e-mail account
When posting comments observe the following protocol:
  • Use proper English
  • Refrain from using text language and shortcuts
  • Respect other opinions and use sentence starters such as, I respectfully disagree, you make a good point, I support…………

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Totten's Syllabus & Expectations

Please be sure to send me a confirmation email at and leave a comment!

English 10 Syllabus

Monday, August 22, 2011

Welcome to Room 103!

I've gotten a lot of great compliments, so I thought I'd post it for the world to see!

I never could have done this with out Eboni, Jason, Elona, and all my wonderful summer school students!

Feel free to leave comments and ask questions!
*I noticed that I didn't post a wide shot...please excuse my "teacher brain"...too many things going on at once. I'll be sure to add it tomorrow*

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Let's Do Something Like This!!

Alliteration Rap!

Leave a comment with your ideas! 
Oh...we're doing this WEDNESDAY (2/16/11)!! 

Bring your beautiful brains and your illustrious ideas 
because we're about to take to the tunnel to where your mind speaks. 
Sizzling with knowledge and new thoughts you didn't know you could think. 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

How does THIS puppy feel about YOU??

Hey! Your blogs are pretty good, but let's make them GREAT!

Here's your blog checklist. Make sure you've done all these things. If your blog already has all these elements - guess what? You're ADVANCED *yaaayyyyy!!* 
If you're advanced click "read more" to make your blogs even MORE FABULOUS!! 


  • Add an avatar to your blog
  • Make sure EVERY post has a picture/image related to your post
  • Look on the sidebar of the class blog page and see if your blog is listed. If it's not there you MUST send me a message on edmodo stating: "Please add my blog ____________ (post a link to it) to your sidebar."
  • Change your background so that it fits with your blog's theme/personality.
  • CREATE A POST!  - your "Road" poem w/ a pic
  • CREATE A POST! - insert the videos (not links!) of your favorite Def Poets in the same post. 
  • CREATE 2 POSTS!! - about something in your life, a thought, opinion, realization, etc.  For Ex: "_____ Is The Best Team In The League" , "_______Is The Best TV Show" , "A Funny Thing Happened To Me At School Today", "Parents Just Don't Understand" *great post Elona!*, "Teachers Just Don't Understand" - YOU GET IT NOW!
*once you've done all these items, please move on to "advanced"*

Can You Find The Man In The Coffee Beans?

*Thanks Mrs. Thompson!*
This is bizarre - after you find the guy - it's so obvious. Once you find him - it's embarrassing, and you think, "Why didn't I see him immediately?"
Doctors have concluded that if you find the man in the coffee beans in 3 seconds, the right half of your brain is better developed than most people.

- If you find the man between 3 seconds and 1 minute, the right half of the brain is developed normally.
- If you find the man between 1 minute and 3 minutes, then the right half of your brain is functioning slowly and you need to eat more protein. If you have not found the man after 3 minutes, the advice is to look for more of this type of exercise to make that part of the brain stronger! And yes, the man is really there...

It took me about 10 husband found it in 3 :/ *womp womp*

Friday, February 4, 2011

Re-blogged: "Mark Up My Heart With Red Ink"

mark up my heart with red ink..

*This was written by a Clark Atlanta University student. Check out her blog *
 the red pen. a tool used by teachers and professors all over the world, for many years. by now, in “the college years,” we have all become very familiar with the meaning of a red mark; corrections, scratch outs, errors, suggestions and ultimately, change. most of us have become a bit immune to the whole thing, realizing that a red pen mark is pretty inevitable in most classes. but to be quite honest with you, the older i get, the further i get along with my studies, and the deeper i get into my major, i’ve developed some pretty strong feelings towards it. 
my heart does NOT bleed red ink! ..but apparently, some of our professors thinks it should. imagine taking every thought, every feeling, every single emotion you have, and putting it down on paper, just to see it all striked out,  or flooded with question marks?, i can’t speak for everybody, [especially for those majors who have very strict guidelines.] ..but i am an artist. I am not an english major, nor do i have any english based classes. in every single one of my classes, we are encouraged to be ourselves, to speak “freely,” and to develop a sense of discernment. so of course, that has been the tone with every paper i have written. now, don’t get me wrong, i’m not against a few punctuation and grammar corrections, [even though I could go without.] but crossing out MY words, replacing them with new ones, and suggesting that some of my thoughts simply aren’t needed, offends me. i’m tired of being penalized because my “poetic way with words” aren’t clear to you. and although i am the student, and technically the professor should be my “audience,” my stubborn way of thinking inhibits me from changing my words, just to make it a little more clearer for the reader.
however, rules are rules [so they say.] so i will try my best not to take it personally. but, i will not change the way i write. i choose every word ..for me. i write with passion, with soul, with everything i have in me, and as long as my commas are placed correctly, i could care less about anybody who can or cannot get a clear understanding of my mental. i write for me. …no one else. 
and to all the professors, i appreciate the help, i truly do, but would it kill you to be a little bit more open minded? least for those select number of students who express themselves a little differently. I just ask that the next time you whip out your handy dandy red pen, “keep in mind that i’m an artist, and i’m sensitive about my shit….” [-e.badu]

Monday, January 31, 2011

Our First iMovie!! Video Adaptation of Dylan Thomas's "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"

The first poetry analysis I assigned was Dylan Thomas's Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night.

Student groups were asked to develop video adaptations of their assigned stanza. Through various class discussions they realized that "that good night" was a metaphor referring to death. They also identified that the speaker was talking to six men: old men, wise men, good men, wild men, grave mean, and finally his father. He gives each man a reason why he should "fight" death (i.e."don't go gentle...").


Please leave constructive comments, praise, etc.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year! New Year's Resolution #2: Step Your Game Up!!

It's good to be back!! This quarter is going to be FULL of surprises.
All I can say is...step your "technology game" up!!

Integrating New Technology

This year we'll be creating new ideas, foundations, and practices using the following:

Blogger (Start thinking of a cool name for your blog...yes! Your OWN blog!)
Google Docs (trying to go paperless *hugs a tree*)
Cell Phones
EPals (hint: learn a few friendly phrases in French)
Voki (look up Avatars...not the movie...)
Ipods/mp3 players
Digital Camera's (any budding photographers/ videographers out there?)

We'll be using each and every tool above INSIDE and OUTSIDE the classroom!

My SMART goal for 2011 is to introduce and use one piece of new technology in the classroom per week. What's your SMART Goal?


We'll be wrapping up Quarter 2 and beginning Quarter 3 with my most popular and requested unit *drumroll* 

The HIP-HOP Poetry vs. The Classics Unit!

One of the many texts we'll be using is:
Hip-Hop Poetry vs The Classics 

                                                               See what's inside here!

Make sure you bring your favorite music with you to class everyday for some extra inspiration.

You may be a POET and not even KNOW IT! (get it?...get it?) *smile*


Baby Girl :)
Marley Hendrix Totten