Category Archives: English Language Arts

Worksheets, short exercises, learning supports, readings and other materials related to the English Language Arts curriculum.

Agitprop (n)

Political agitation and propaganda in literature, music, or art, especially pro-Communist doctrinairism.

‘I wonder if I should try to climb on the Women’s Lib bandwagon. First, I would have to change my name—Isabel Fairfax lacked the necessary agitprop crunch.’ Florence King, When Sisterhood Was in Flower.”

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

Isle (n) and Aisle (n)

Monday again, so I’ll begin another week with these five worksheets on the homophones isle and aisle.

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.

9 Muses

“Clio * Euterpe * Thalia * Melpomene * Terpsichore * Erato * Urania * Calliope * Polymnia

The nine muses, the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne (the goddess of memory), were a favourite subject for Roman artists and much depicted in mosaic and fresco, or carved in marble to grace the praesidium of a theater.

Clio, the muse of history, is represented with a stylus and a scroll, or after the Renaissance, with a book, a laurel crown, or a trumpet; she is easy to confuse with Calliope, who often has the same attributes. Euterpe, muse of lyrical poetry, bears a flute. Thalia, muse of pastoral poetry and comedy, carries a comic mask and sometimes a viol.

Melpomene, muse of tragedy, is associated with a mask, sometimes embellished with a fallen crown, and holds a dagger. Terpsichore, muse of joyful dance and song, often holds a lyre, as does Erato, muse of lyrical love poetry.

Urania, muse of astronomy, is normally shown consulting a globe of a compass. Polymnia, muse of heroic hymn and eloquence, possesses a lute and a solemn expression that outdoes even those of Clio and Calliope.

Excerpted from: Rogerson, Barnaby. Rogerson’s Book of Numbers: The Culture of Numbers–from 1,001 Nights to the Seven Wonders of the World. New York: Picador, 2013.

The Rosetta Stone

Wrapping up on a dark Saturday morning (is there anything better, incidentally, on a winter morning, than strong black coffee?), here is a reading on the Rosetta Stone and a comprehension worksheet that accompanies it.

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.

Word Root Exercise: Cent

This worksheet n the Latin word root cent will help students learn and apply some key words in English, I think. It means, your students will quickly infer (I hope) hundred.

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.

Plutocracy (n)

Now seems to be the perfect moment, or as perfect as moments get for such things, to post this context clues worksheet on the noun plutocracy. Don’t forget that it morphs to plutocrat and plutocratic, a couple of other good words that nicely represent our zeitgeist.

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.

Independent Practice: Albrecht Durer

If memory serves, I whipped up this independent practice worksheet on Albrecht Durer at a student’s request. I don’t think he ever turned up in the global studies courses I co-taught in New York, even as a representative figure of the Northern Renaissance–which of course he is.

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.