Sunday, January 27, 2013

Friday, January 25

Dear Students,

After much deliberation, and as you already know, I have decided to not collect your SSA's today, Monday, January 28th. However, if you are prepared to do so, please come ready to turn in your essay with all your rough drafts included to class. Only if you hand in your essay today, you do not have to read the below and can skip down to the *** at the bottom of the page. Also, you do not have to do the assignment listed below.

After our in-class meeting on Thursday, I must admit that I was quite crestfallen after noting the lack of progress and polished quality of your work, but your lack of progress also indicated to me that perhaps you needed more time. Thus, I'd rather give you an extension than get back papers that were rushed and do not reflect instruction.

It is essential that you recognize the manner in which your class and yourself have not worked within the time allotment and must identify this misappropriation of time as something
utterly un-dismissible. In fact, it was an egregious error on the part of your class collectively to be
unprepared to turn in a summative piece. If there were any deficits in your understanding of how to write an analytical essay, the obligation to seek instruction beyond what was offered in class belongs to the student. However, requests for appointments have only recently flooded my inbox.

This isn't a hand slap. This does not change the way I believe in all of you as talented, kind and warm-hearted young people who I intensely believe in and am proud to teach. I want to celebrate your learning with you. However, I must react to your actions because I would not be a good teacher, mentor, fellow human if I did not hold you to a certain level of expectation. So, please take responsibility by completing the following assignments.


1. Please reflect on the above and respond on this blog no later than Wednesday, January 30th. A suggestion would be not to make excuses or assign blame. Instead, demonstrate that you have understood in 75 - 100 words by summarizing the key points above.

2. Also include in your comments your due date assigned by Mrs. Lee for your individual paper and list three areas of your essay you intend to fix and how. You may want to refer back to your outline or ask Mrs. Lee to see your midterm to help you articulate your needs.

3. In reflection of the way you used your time, indicate 3 or more concrete method you intend to use going forward to make sure you meet your due dates (e.g. allot 2 hours a weekend just for editing, journal about my topic before attacking the conclusion or introduction, keep my lecture notes out while writing my essay so I know I am fulfilling the writing expectations of an analytical essay, hold myself accountable for my actions, ask a peer to be my partner so that we would both keep each other on track, set my own due dates for myself for preliminary steps, etc.)

*** Some of you have been asking how to write a Conclusion Paragraph. Please take note of additional instruction indicated below, a review of our lectures and adapted from

Conclusions vary widely in structure, and no prescription can guarantee that your essay has ended well. If the introduction and body of your essay have a clear trajectory, your readers should already expect you to conclude when the final paragraph arrives, so don’t overload it with words or phrases that indicate its status.

Below is an outline for a hypothetical, abstract essay with five main sections:

V: Conclusion
    1. Transition from last body paragraph
    2. Sentences explaining how paper has fit together and leads to a stronger, more emphatic and more detailed version of your thesis
    3. Brief mention of the counter argument, to be dismissed by (e.g. Although Mr. Kapasi's actions may suggest he struggled to maintain emotional fidelity, under close inspection Lahiri rather presents a man whose central motivation was [reinsert observation in thesis]).
    1. Final comment or BIG SO WHAT
    1. Why is the essay important or may be interesting to a wider audience?
    2. What are areas your essay highlights? An ethical dilemma that is universal?  A practical applications that was overshot? Mores or scruples that were overlooked? A political/moral stronghold?


  1. I have read and understood the text above.
    It was a problem of the whole class that we did not do our homework in time. We've been given a lot of time on writing it, but most of us either fear to hand it in or know that they can not finish it in time but tring their best or need help . I need to work on my SSA until Wednesday. I need to add a few words and correcting my errors. I'll spare my time for the 2 days writing about 2-3 hours per day, and more I will force myself if i have spare time. I will also ask my friends to write to me every day if I spend time on writing.

  2. I have read and understood the text above.
    Like you said, it was indeed our first analysis paper. However, I also think that the amount of work that I put in was mediocre in comparison to how much I could have done. I apologize.
    My essay's faults mostly come from the aesthetic issues. Grammar and word choice, among other things. I will spice it up and go through my essay with a fine tooth comb.
    I will also make sure not to restate my thesis in the conclusion.

    Ways I could (and will) improve my studying strategies include peer editing (doing that with Daniel Lee), looking at my essay every weekend (for a new perspective and a new "set of eyes", persay), and choosing topics that I truly care about (I do care about misjudgments in Interpreter of Maladies, but yeah...)

  3. I understand the above. First we have to do our essays by the date that they are privately assigned to us. We have been given this extension because of our poor progress in class. I plan to work on the paper at least an hour a day until my due date. This way I will be guaranteed a good paper to turn in.

  4. 1. I understand that as a class we have all failed to meet the expectations beheld upon us by being generally unprepared for the assigned due date. We also failed to realize our obligation to seek instruction when our understanding was incomplete. I personally am glad that you have given us a second chance to turn in work that we all will feel proud of and confident in, as well as display our levels of skill. I will hold all of this in mind when working on future assignments.

    2. Individually assigned due date: Next Tuesday, Feb. 5th

    3. In perfecting the SSA Essay I plan to always refer to sources, such as lecture notes, that would help me construct the essay in the most efficient and correct way. I plan to take considerable, evenly-spaced, time to work on parts of the essay as to work on the assignment with a relaxed and clear mind. I also plan to dedicate the week-end to the majority of final editing so that by Monday it would be prepared and need only minimum editing in formatting. I might also ask a peer for additional feedback.

  5. 1) After winter break, I did not take responsibility and arrange an appointment with Mrs. Lee right away. Instead, I was lazy and decided to wait until the last minute in order to meet with her, despite knowing that my essay had poor structure. When the final due date arrived, I still had many major adjustments to make to my paper. I did not take advantage of winter break and the extra time I had between winter break and the due date to make an effort to make these changes beforehand. I failed Mrs. Lee's and my own expectations, and I am grateful for the second opportunity that has been given to us. I will hold all of this in mind in the future to prevent this from happening again.
    2) This Friday
    My thesis is not as accurate and concise as it can be, so I will work on fixing this.
    The topic sentences will be modified to answer the new thesis in a more appropriate manner.
    My conclusion will be edited in order to make the allusions to literary history and fairy tales more apparent. I will make this theme the foundation of the conclusion when editing it.
    3) I intend on peer editing with a friend to have a new perspective on my paper and to improve it with their advice. I will focus on one major part of the essay a day at a time in order to enhance specific important elements of it carefully. I will re-read the text in order to find hidden allusions within the text that I missed when first reading it.

  6. 1. Due to all of our overall lack of preparation, we have gratefully been given an extension that will vary based on our personal progress that we are currently in. This is very fortunate, but we need to all understand that this improper management of time is unacceptable and will not be simply forgotten. This is not a punishment though, it is simply to set the expectation expected of us. By completing this assignment we are taking responsibility for our actions.

    2. The due date i have been assigned is the 7th of February. Since my essay is still in the building stage, i plan to work on mainly the essay itself. The specific 3 areas of interest within the essay i plan to focus on are the syntax/semantics-specific comments, the conclusion, and the conclusions of the body paragraphs.These i believe are my weakest points, as they demand a definite stance on the topic which i don't usually like giving and struggle wording. Once i work on those, i feel the essay will come along well.
    3.The 3 ways i plan on going forward to certify that i will meet my due date are by setting reminders for myself on iCal, by teaming up with Maddie to make us motivate each other, and finally i have set due dates of what i need to do to accomplish this essay in a timely manor. By doing all of these, i will be able to create an exceptional essay.

  7. 1. I agree to the text above. As a class, we were supposed to have been able to write a decent Short Story Analysis paper with the given amount of lessons we got. It is our responsibility to seek the teachers help if the student is still not sure about the class material.

    2. My essay will be due this Wednesday. I still have to work on my final comment for each paragraph.

    3. In order to make things more organized for the future, I plan to make appointments with teachers ahead of time, allot a certain amount of time a week for editing, and get peers to edit my work.

  8. 1. We are very grateful that you have given us an extension for this Short Story Analysis Essay. After winter break, I did not take full responsibility in my work and waited last minute to finish my piece. During high school, I think it is very important that we all understand time managements and not to procrastinate nor complain. This is clearly not a punishment but this is to make us improve our writing. By completing this Short Short Analysis assignment, we take full responsibility for our actions.

    2. The due date I have been assigned is the 5th of February. The main improvements I need to fix in my essay is the topic sentence for every body paragraph because it does not relate to my thesis. Another thing I should improve is the pivot sentence, where we have to include the setting and actions. I plan to focus on my conclusion and wrapping up the body paragraphs. I believe that these are my weakest points in my essay. Fixing these problems will improve my essay.
    3. In perfecting the Short Story Analysis Essay, I plan to go through all the lecture notes we went through class thoroughly and to rewrite all the awkward sentences in my essay. However, I plan to finish all my other homework so that I could make time for my essay. I would also ask other students in my class to help or edit with my essay.

  9. 1. I am very thankful for the extension that I was given and I am sure that everyone else is too, despite the fact that we as a class should have been ready by Monday, the assigned due date. I believe that one reason that many people procrastinated on their essays was that, in comparison to other homework pieces, the analytical essay was very large and imposing, so people may have been averse to tackling it. I know that I was a bit scared of doing so at some points during the editing process.

    2. My due date is Wednesday 30th for my essay, and the three main points I will focus on in my essay are some punctuation errors that I missed, the fact that one of my topic sentences is not one sentence but two, and the fact that one of my pieces of evidence would most likely do better split up, with the explanation also split up and matched to the corresponding sections. I will accomplish the first by simply correcting the errors, the second by figuring out how to combine the two halves effectively, and the third by reworking that particular portion of the paragraph so as to fit the explanations of the particular sections inside.

    3. I intend to try and perfect my Short Story Analysis essay by going through the notes that I made on my essays and using them as a guide for what I need. In the future, I also plan to make appointments with teachers ahead of time and to try and allot a certain amount of time each day for English.

  10. 1. It was clearly our fault for not taking full responsibility to make this short story analysis our best. We have been given tremendous amount of time, going over each element that was required in the analysis. However we did not use these lessons as our advantage. By the end of Christmas break, I still had many major errors and mistakes to fix, and for that I am sorry. However once again we are saved by your gratefulness by giving us an extension. I will use this advice to wake up and make my short story analysis perfect.

    2. This Friday
    I still lack key elements in my introduction. For example, my pivot and thesis sentences. Since my thesis isn't precise and strong, the essay as a whole is very weak. My conclusion is also a major issue because of the final comment (the Big So What). Lastly, I will need to fix punctuation errors.

    3. I will work until my introduction and conclusion sound fluid and smooth. I will fix many of the punctuation error and try to change it to also make it sound fluid. Lastly, I will ask my peers to edit my paper to possibly have an outside perspective on my writing. Through this experience, if I ever need help or couldn't understand a specific section, I will go and make appointments ahead of time.

  11. 1. First I would like to apologize for not taking responsibility and arranging meetings to make sure my Analysis essay would be ready by the actual due date. I personally understand that I have failed to be responsible and to take the advantages when you have lengthened the due date for our essay. I take full responsibility and I am very glad/happy that you have given us a final chance to really get ourself together.

    2. My Essay is due Wednesday
    I believe that I still lack key elements in my introduction and the "so big-what" in my conclusion. To fix the introduction and I am going to expand on the generalisation more and have a stronger much more clear pivot sentence. For the conclusion I am going to follow your conclusion outline.

    3. For future reference I plan to have an appointment with you 2 weeks before the essay is due and a week before the essay is due. Through this i can be actually prepared to turn in my essay with confidence that it is my best work.

  12. 1. I have read and fully understood your expectations on this analysis paper, and future papers to come that is assigned in this class. Yes, you gave us much time in order for us to write this essay, however yes, it is our first time. Still, it was our responsibility to plan ahead of time and make appointments with you in order to enhance our writing. Next time, we will try our best to take full responsibility in the whole editing process and turn it in on time.

    2. My due date for this paper is tomorrow, Wednesday, January 30. I plan to work on several things on my paper. First of all, I will make sure everything is in high formal diction. Next, I will change the constantly repeated words in my paper. Lastly, I would like to work more thoroughly on my big so what in my conclusion, as it is condensed and not so well explained in my paper.

    3. In order to improve my writing, I must commit a chunk of my time into writing. For example, I would break up 2-3 hours in the weekend to edit and enhance my writing. It is important to take breaks so that I have a fresh pair of eyes every time I edit my essay. Also, I would have my lecture notes consisting of the structure of an analytical essay, so that I am sure that I am fulfilling all of the required parts.

  13. 1) I understand that due to our poor time management we had been given a new personal due date, an extension. We must understand that this kind of lack of preparation is unacceptable, and that if there was something we did not understand we should have consulted you beforehand, not just a few days before the task was due. We are responsible for our mistakes, and thus to further guide us, we are to complete a task elaborating our intended process and focus of our essay.
    2) My new assigned due date is Tuesday, February 5th.
    My first priority, during the time given, is to focus on the organization of the essay. Many aspects of my essays’ skeletal structure are misplaced. I should reorganize it so it makes more sense.
    Also, I plan to work on clarity. I have a tendency to make my sentences wordy, and thus the execution becomes less professional and readers become more overwhelmed. I also like to crowd sentences with too many ideas. I should make logical steps to introduce ideas.
    Lastly, I plan to focus on quotes. Some of my quotes do not sufficiently back up the claim made in the topic sentence.
    3) I intend to meet my due date with an essay I am proud of through 3 steps. I will dedicate an hour everyday to the editing and writing process, set a personal sub-schedule approaching my final due date (including an appointment with you on Thursday), and finally I will also conduct peer reviews periodically during lunches and through Skype.

  14. 1- Despite the fact that we had the whole of winter break to spend time on our short story analysis papers and had a lot of time even before the break, most of us neglected to work on our essays during that long stretch of time. It was our responsibility as well to ask you questions long before the due date, not during the class before it was due. I am personally very grateful for the extension, and will use this extra time given to edit my essay so that it will be the very best it can be.

    2- My extended due date for my paper is this Friday. Until then, I will change some of my evidence to make it match up to my thesis and support it more. I will also reword my topic sentences to make them more specific to the topic and more direct. I will also revise my essay to change the language to high formal and not colloquial, as it is at the moment. Lastly, I will apply the knowledge I gained in class to write a more effective conclusion with a “so what?”

    3- Until then, I will spend at least an hour each day reading over my essay, fixing the parts that need to be fixed. Also, I will attempt to get at least one other person to proofread my work as one of my weaknesses are small typos and errors. Lastly, I will keep my English notes open next to me so that I can constantly refer to them and subsequently not make any mistakes in terms of format or structure.

  15. I understand the stated above. You have granted us once again a grace period to ensure quality of work over bare minimum. Taking responsibility of our actions as a whole class has been called to order. We need to prioritize time and get things in at set dates. We need to seek help at appropriate times, set goals in advance, and maintain a healthy work ethic that will get not only ensure our best quality work but in the time given. Mrs. Lee has given me until February 7th to my have paper completed. To get my paper in prime condition I need to exempt certain language from my paper to rid the reader of social expectation and assumption, I need to focus on answering the question posed by my thesis, and strongly connect my macrocosm to my microcosm in a way that the reader will understand my point completely. The best way to do this is to create a new outline and edit it multiple times. In reflection of how I used my time it is seen that I need to start with a journal before anything else just to get my ideas in order. I need to stick to a buddy system as I lack self-motivation. Most importantly, I need to stay caught up in class to not fall behind. Although I am missing a few classes, the responsibility of stay caught up during these times of APAC and AMIS is all mine.

  16. 1. Mrs. Lee, I take full responsibility for not owning up to my expectations of fulfilling the time allotted to complete this assignment. It was 100% my fault for not making time to make appointments with you. These appointments were for my benefit anyways, not yours. I understand completely with the text above. Having due dates are important, especially in preparing for college. College professors most definitely will not be as understanding as you, and it's time I have a wake-up call about it. During winter break, instead of even just taking an hour or two to work on this essay, I was on vacation with my family, not even acknowledging the fact that I had a important due date coming up for this class. I need to learn to be more responsible of the actions that I take. Even though this was our first analysis paper, this was no excuse to slack and have it be expected that you will go easy on us.

    2. My due date is Friday. In my final draft I plan on fixing my introduction, due to the lack of a pivot sentence. I also plan on improving and revising my syntax/semantic-specific comments. Some comments are too descriptive and include way too much unnecessary information, and some include too little information. Also, I need to work on my entire conclusion. I have most parts ready, but the order of the conclusion and the "big so what" need improvement and better structure.

    3. I have now learned I must set personal goals in order to fulfill my due dates in the future. I intend on dedicating at least an hour or two on the editing process of my essays. I also plan on setting appointments with you at appropriate times and in an organized mannor. I will also have all my changes and revises done before the time of the appointment so more help can be achieved from the meetings. Also, I already do take very detailed notes in class, I plan on REVIEWING those notes, and asking about something I am unsure of the day of the lesson, instead of a few days before the due date. Finally, I plan on asking for my friends to peer edit more. It's important to receive help from more that just the teacher, and every opinion counts.
    Thank you again Mrs. Lee for this extension you gave us. We are, as a whole, one step closer to being prepared for college life.

  17. I have read and fully understood the key points above. I have recognized the importance in following directions and booking meetings with you. I would like to apologize for not taking responsibility and arranging meetings to make sure my Analysis essay would be ready by the actual due date. The lack of preparation was my own fault, and i need to make sure that i am more prepared for next time.
    My new assignment is due on friday. February 2nd. I plan to fully use my time and incorporate everything we learned in class and use it in my essay. I also plan on improving and revising my syntax/semantic-specific comments. Some comments are too descriptive and include way too much unnecessary information, and some include too little information. Additionally, I need to work on the clarity on my topic sentences and the connection between my introduction and my conclusion.

    In order to improve my writing, I plan to use my peers more through peer edits and book meetings with you.I will also ask my peers to edit my paper to possibly have an outside perspective on my writing. I also plan to make appointments with teachers ahead of time and to try and alot a certain amount of time each day for English.

  18. 1. I have fully understood that completing this assignment is not to punish us but to lead us to the right way. Surely, after such poor work on our effort to complete the essay, we deserve to know what we have done wrong and to not make the same mistake the next time we are handing in an essay. I am very glad that Ms. Lee is giving us a chance to redo our failed attempt in such a way that is constructive.

    2. Due date: Feb. 1

    I have to fix my essay in multiple aspects. I have to reword my topic sentences in a way that would answer my thesis if worded in a question. Also, I would like to fix my syntax/semantic in a way to describe why such evidence (quote) matters to prove my point. Lastly, I would like to improve my comments. Currently, my comments lack the ability to wrap up my points. I would love to reword my comments in a way that impacts the readers to agree to my point.

    3. In order to meet my due date more efficiently, I would like to change three things. I will try working at least 2 hours on my essay during to weekend. I will trade essays with my peers to include peer edits on my essay. Lastly, I will set my own due dates for preliminary steps.

  19. Mrs. Lee, I sincerely apologize for being irresponsible by turning in a draft that was not to my best potential. I know that it is disrespectful to turn in homework of bad quality to the teacher, when the teacher has taught me many skills that I should be able to follow. I should not use the excuse of a later due date to turn in mediocre quality work. I will respect my teacher, and be sure to work hard on my drafts, even when I know that it will not be graded.
    My final draft is due on Friday, February 1st. I think that this due date is quite reasonable, concerning that I have many parts of my essay I have to work on. I plan to work on the word choice of my essay. The structure of my essay, I believe, is bearable. My vocabulary, on the other hand, is not. I will improve my vocabulary by using a thesaurus. I will take a more creative approach to my essay, so that it will not be boring but enjoyable and entertaining to read.
    I have not managed my time working on my essay, and I wish I could have done better. I will sacrifice a certain amount of time every day, instead of piling up my time in a single time period. I will make sure that I ask friends and family to proofread, and give their opinions on my essay. They will help me catch errors that I missed. Just as teachers have taught me in middle school, I will divide my work into drafts, such as 1st draft, 2nd draft, and final draft.

  20. 1. I understand completely that we have failed to produce work good enough for publishing in the generous time that was given. However, thanks to the extension, we all can really refine our paper multiple times to make it the best it can be. I also agree that if you were to let it go, you wouldn’t be fulfilling your job as a teacher that really strives for their students’ success. Thank you for giving us an extra week to work on our essays.
    2. I was given until Friday, February 1, to work on my analysis essay. I intend to fix the entire tone of the essay from neutral to high formal, make sure that all of the necessary features of an essay are present, and lastly just edit the piece as a whole.
    3. Being a teenager, frequent, short periods of time of working is much more effective than an entire hour or two consecutively. I am going to always have my essay open in word whether it’s in the front of my screen or behind another window, whenever I feel like I need to change something I can automatically go and do so. I also will try to see if any of my friends will be willing to look over my essay for me. Then, I will make sure that I did everything I could be looking over all of the past drafts see that I really did improve.

  21. I have fully understood that we were given an extension in order to revise our work for the better. Without our extensions, we would all be turning essays that have no sense of direction. I'm sorry for not meeting with you and asking for more help. Thank you so much for extending our due date and allowing us to correct our errors.

    2. Due date: Feb. 5
    I have to fix my essay in multiple ways. Two of my three body paragraphs are misleading and I therefore have to reword the topic sentences and make my arguments more relevant. Also, I have to fix my syntax/semantics to provide better evidence for my argument. I also need to close out my analysis essay with a better conclusion in order to strengthen my essay even more.

    3. In order to create the best essay possible in the given amount of time that I have, I will work on editing my essay during the KAIAC basketball tournament while having my English notes by my side. I will also brainstorm a bit on the bus ride in order to think of better arguments and also reread the story a few times to fully dominate it and create a strong analysis paper.


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