Teaching Secondary English: Readings and Applications

By Daniel Sheridan | Go to book overview

APPENDIX E
Comparison Assignment: Then-Now/There-Here Papers

THEN-NOW/THERE-HERE ASSIGNMENT

This assignment was given to a class of tenth grade students. In many respects it is a standard comparison-contrast paper, but unlike most such assignments, it moves in the direction of autobiography. Students were asked to compare and contrast two things that they have experienced: an activity now and back then (in their younger days or in the era of a parent or grandparent); a place they know now and a place they lived in previously. They had considerable freedom in choosing topics and were given about a week to complete the assignment, from brainstorming through peer response to revision of those drafts. These ten papers were selected from the class set of second drafts.

Aside from deleting students' names and altering place names, these papers are unedited. The attitudes expressed are, needless to say, students' own.

A. I'm from a city in Texas. I moved here with my Dad. I've been here since the beginning of August and I've been enjoying every minute of stay here in Valley. I plan to stay here for a long time.

I went to Washington High School but now I'm going to Valley Senior High. So far so good; I'm enjoying it here but its a big difference from the size of Washington.

Washington has about a square mile of school facilities and recreational grounds that make the school even bigger. On the other hand, Senior High is not as big but that's better than a big school because you don't get lost as easy. The first day I went to Washington I got lost. When I came to this school I found my classes without any problem.

The rules are also completely different because of all the drugs and violence and misbehavior. Washington has a tremendous amount of drug related problems. People were smoking weed in the hallways and in the classrooms. This problem isn't as bad here. There might be drugs here but not as bad as Washington.

The mental environment of Washington and the Senior High are basically the same. The majority of races in Washington are Mexicans, Blacks and, very few whites. They all get along except the Mexicans. It's kind of the same way here; Mexicans think they're superior to all people but there not.

-400-

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Teaching Secondary English: Readings and Applications
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Contents iii
  • Preface vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • 1 - English Teachers 1
  • 2 - Teaching Literature 42
  • 3 - Teaching Writing 119
  • 4 - Teaching about Language 197
  • Appendix A - Sample Outline Syllabus 220
  • Appendix B - Description of Contemporary English 222
  • 5 - What to Teach 283
  • 6 - Joining the Profession 365
  • Appendix A - Classroom Activities 375
  • Appendix B - Childhood Toy Papers 381
  • Appendix C - Hundred-Year Birthday Papers 386
  • Appendix D - Early Drafts: Changes in School 395
  • Appendix E - Comparison Assignment: Then-Now/There-Here Papers 400
  • Appendix F - Sentence Exercises 408
  • Index 419
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