Thursday, 24 May 2012

Updates from the English Department

This has been an exciting semester for the English department. In mid February the English Department attacked the entire school with poetry.  From scribing snippets of poetry across windows, reciting riddles during announcements, crashing classrooms with love poems and preparing a poetry slam, including workshops at the end of the week, English teachers were buzzing with poetic energy.  The poetry slam itself was spectacular, with three slam poets, whose words were “off the hook.”  Later that day, two of the poets conducted Spoken Word workshops for all interested students.  These students were treated to writing and performance techniques that only Spoken Word professionals could provide.  All in all, it was a memorable week.

April 23rd was William Shakespeare's birthday, and on that theme, several Sullivan Heights English classes were fortunate to participate in amazing Bard on the Beach Shakespearean workshops. Activities ranged from hurling Shakespearean insults, to acting out scenes from plays such as Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet, to discussing the historical context of the Bard's plays. The workshops allowed students (and teachers!) to view Shakespeare's plays in a new light, as theatrical dramas with intricate and expressive language, rather than simply a dry and boring text to be read in class. A big thank you to the PAC for funding these inspiring workshops!

Some neat activities have been occurring in classrooms as well.  In Ms. Farrant’s class, Grade 10 students made pins during their study of The Hunger Games.  Ms. Garr’s class made bookmarks with “Macbeth” and “Romeo and Juliet” and created graffiti walls with “Romeo and Juliet”.  Ms. Freeman’s class used twitter to do character tweets during their study of “Taming of the Shrew” and Ms. Nielsen’s grade 11 class performed scenes from “Macbeth” just to name a few.

Ms. Nielsen - English Department Head

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