Monthly Archives: December 2018

Independent Practice: The Battle of Tours-Poitiers

You know, despite the fact that it is a turning point in global history, I can’t even remember why I wrote this independent practice worksheet on the Battle of Tours-Poitiers. In the freshman global studies classes I co-taught in New York, I don’t recall ever–aside from a cursory mention of Charles Martel somewhere in the mix–covering this explicitly.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Term of Art: Learning

“Process of acquiring modifications in existing knowledge, habits, or tendencies through experience, practice, or exercise. Learning includes associative processes, discrimination of sense-data, psychomotor and perceptual learning, imitation, concept formation, problem solving, and insight learning. Animal learning has been studied by ethologists and comparative psychologists, the latter often drawing explicit parallels to human learning. The first experiments concerning associative learning were conducted by Ivan Pavlov in Russia and Edward Thorndike in the U.S. Critics of the early stimulus-response (S-R) theories, such as Edward C. Tolman claimed they were overly reductive and ignored a subject’s inner activities. Gestalt-psychology researchers drew attention to the importance of pattern and form in perception and learning, while structural linguists argued that language learning was grounded in genetically inherited ‘grammar.’ Developmental psychologists, such as Jean Piaget, highlighted stages of growth in learning. More recently, cognitive psychologists have explored learning as a form of information processing, while some brain researchers, such as Gerald Edelman, have proposed that thinking and learning involve an ongoing process of cerebral pathway building. Related topics of research include attention, comprehension, motivation, and transfer of training.”

 Excerpted from: Stevens, Mark A., Ed. Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Encyclopedia. Springfield, Massachusetts: Merriam-Webster, 2000.

Prohibition

Lately, I’ve worked to create a broad spectrum literacy course that will appeal to or reach as many students as possible. This reading on Prohibition and the comprehension worksheet are part of this endeavor.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Ax-grinder (n)

A carefully worded editorial that is seemingly objective but in fact is purposive and slanted; publicist or flack; one deemed too preoccupied with a given issue.”

Excerpted from: Grambs, David. The Random House Dictionary for Writers and Readers. New York: Random House, 1990.

Word Root Exercise: Hydro-

You might find that this worksheet on the Greek word root hydr/o–it means, unsurprisingly, water, but also hydrogen and liquid–helps students quickly build a lexicon of key vocabulary words.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Book of Answers: Cento

“What is a ‘cento?’ From the Latin for ‘patchwork,’ a cento is a poem or other literary work composed of lines or passages from other, more famous works, with the meaning altered. Centos were a favorite form in late antiquity. An example is the Cento Vergilianus by Proba Falconia (fourth century), which used bits of Vergil to recount sacred history.”

Excerpted from: Corey, Melinda, and George Ochoa. Literature: The New York Public Library Book of Answers. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1993.

Crime and Puzzlement: Fragment

Out of fear of copyright infringement–for even though they are mostly out of print, I am confident the Crime and Puzzlement books (that link will take you to a Google Books page where some of them appear to be available for free, which suggests that perhaps they are in the public domain) are probably still under the author’s copyright–I am reluctant to post this lesson plan on the Crime and Puzzlement case “Fragment.”

I’ve put up a couple of these before, and traffic to them is consistent. For this one, here is the Cultural Literacy do-now exercise on the idiom “An Ounce of Prevention Is Worth a Pound of Cure.” From the book itself, here is a PDF of the illustration of the evidence with the questions students will consider in analysis and contemplation as they resolve the crime. Finally, here is teacher’s answer key to this case.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.