about… what this Class is about…
Language. Words. We use them every single day, yet people rarely analyze the hell out of them. George Carlin has, though. And we all know how tough it is to make someone laugh with just words, but David Sedaris does. This course dissects language, students’ thoughts, and encourages writing in many different forms.


find me:
Sybil Priebe, Assistant Professor Office: Haverty 223 Phone: 671-2346 Office Hours: TBA & by appointment. Email: sybil.priebe@ndscs.edu Blog: www.xanga.com/teacher47 + Check the blog and your email often for class updates and bonus opportunities.

egally… what it’s about, Legally…
Course Description: An introduction to college-level writing as a process of drafting, revising, and editing. This course emphasizes critical reading, writing, thinking, and research skills as students write for a variety of audiences and purposes. Students will receive guided instruction in the writing process as they begin writing based on personal experiences. An introduction to proper crediting of source material and research will occur toward the end of the course. Goals: Through writing from personal experience and reading examples of others’ self-discovery, students will develop their ability to read, think, and write critically by applying knowledge, skills, and abilities gained through guided practice and teamwork, inside and outside the classroom. General Education Learning Outcomes: Written and oral communications Tie to Program Assessment Outcomes: This course contributes most directly to the Liberal Arts Program outcome involving communication. Reading and writing exercises will be completed to assess student ability in those areas. Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to: - Restrict a subject to a manageable size. - Express a clear main idea. - Focus, organize, and develop a short piece of writing effectively. - Apply the editing and revision process to written work. - Participate actively in self and peer essay evaluations. - Demonstrate the use of good sentence structure, paragraph structure, and grammar. - Recognize and utilize transitional words and phrases in the writing process. - Demonstrate comprehension in essay readings by recalling discussed elements. - Practice pre-writing strategies for written assignments. - Use basic MLA formats for written assignments and crediting of sources. - Improve writing and critical thinking skills by practice with a variety of genres. - Use assigned readings as models of composition in writing assignments.

stuff you need:
Books: ---Brain Droppings, by George Carlin, ISBN-13: 978-0786883219 ---Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, by David Sedaris ISBN-13: 978-0316010795 ---The New, Well-Tempered Sentence Other items: ---USB. ---Stapler. ---Good attitude & humor. ---Honesty. ---No excuses.

scale*: the grade scale*:
100 - 90 = A 80 - 89 = B 70 - 79 = C 60 - 69 = D 59 and below = F *Since extra credit is offered throughout the semester, the instructor does not “round up” at the end.

+ All documents uploaded or emailed should be in .doc or .rtf formats. + In the event of a flood or other major disaster, the instructor will email you information on how class will continue.

These are just words.

3.5 big rules:
Pull weeds. Plant new seeds.

the brief schedule:
Week 1: Introductions & first assignments. Week 2: Intro to P1. Week 3: George Carlin. Week 4: First project/paper due. Writing conferences? Week 5: P1.5Intro. Week 6: P1.5 Due/Research for P2. Week 7: Research for P2. Week 8: Presentations of P2. Week 9: P3 Intro. Week 10: P3 Due/Intro to P4. Find group mates. Week 11: P4 Presentations. Week 12: David Sedaris & P5/P5.5 Intro. Week 13: P5 Workdays. Week 14: P5 Presentations. Week 15: P5.5 Due/Intro to P6. Week 16: P6 Due/P7 Intro. Week 17: P7 Due/Final stuff.

- No late work accepted. - Plagiarism not accepted. - If the requirement is 1000 words, 999 words are not acceptable. -This is an English class; therefore, any work riddled with errors (spelling, punctuation, etc.) could possibly not earn a single point. Proofread; you know how!

lateness policy:
No late work will be accepted without an excused absence & proof (doc’s note, military, funeral, schoolrelated activity). Calling instructor or dean’s office does not constitute an excused absence.

attendance policy:
Regular and punctual attendance is an integral part of the learning process. Poor attendance is likely to affect students’ quality of work and overall success in the course. In order to support a positive and comfortable learning environment for students and fair practice in our English and Humanities Department courses, the following policies have been adopted: 1) Since coursework can be both individual and collaborative, regular attendance is vital. If students have five unexcused absences, it will be considered excessive and may result in their withdrawal from the course. 2) Excused absences: a) Students are permitted to make up daily coursework, quizzes, and tests due to documented* illnesses, mandatory military duty or religious obligations, recognized college-sponsored activities, or funerals. b) Students must be aware that merely notifying the appropriate Division Dean’s office or their instructor of their absence does not equate an excused absence. 3) Unexcused absences: All other reasons for absences.

projects and papers:
P1: Report. 50pts. P1.5: Profile = Magazine-style. 50pts. P2: Stretch Project = Research. 100pts. P3: Lyrics/Poetry + Analysis = 50pts. P4: GKL + Group Project. 50pts. P4.5: GKL “Rhetorical Analysis.” 50pts. P5: Visual Essay/PPT MusicVideo + Assessment Letter to Instructor. 150pts. P5.5: David Sedaris + Visual = Literary Analysis. 50pts. P6: Personal Research + Multi-Genre = Answer to “Who Are You?” 100pts. P7: Combination of Bits & Pieces? = Something Different? 100pts?

*To document your excused absence(s), you must email the instructor with two items: 1) the missed homework attached (within a week of last excused class date), and 2) proof – doc’s note, email from coach, phone number, link to funeral announcement, etc.

college expectation of attendance:
Regular attendance, promptness, and participation in classes is expected of each student. A student missing three consecutive or five non-consecutive classes will be referred to the Division Academic Counselor.

Nimrod is a wonderful word.

warning warning!
=Not ALL assignments will be completed / introduced on eCompanion. = Students will not be allowed to use computer problems as an excuse as to why their work is late. They are responsible for backing up their work. = Papers will be graded within 2 weeks of their due date, usually. = Emails to the instructor must be error-free.

other assignments:
BP=Bits and Pieces. Daily writing practice or daily reading activities, essentially. Worth between 10pts25pts x about 30-40 class times = 300-500pts? My Words (MW). 5 words you don’t know meanings to. Research the following: 1) Where you heard it/found it/read it, 2) Definition, 3) Part of Speech, 4) History/Etymology, 5) New original sentence using word. 20pts (4pts per word). Peer Review (PR). Sharing drafts of papers aids the writing process. You will be expected to share drafts with classmates & your instructor. 1025pts possible per session.

disabilities & special needs.
If you have a disability for which you are or may be requesting an accommodation, you are encouraged to contact both your instructor and the Disability Support Services Office, Mildred Johnson Library (phone 671-2623) as early as possible in the semester.

plagiarism a.k.a. don’t steal… steal…
Integrity is an NDSCS core value and there is an expectation that all students, as members of the college community, adhere to the highest levels of academic integrity. Dishonesty in class, laboratory, shop work or tests is regarded as a serious offense and is subject to disciplinary action by the instructor and dean of the respective division. For more information, refer to the NDSCS Student Planner or College Catalog under College Policies and Basic Regulations of Conduct. Essentially, if any amount of plagiarism is found in a student’s paper (copying from the internet without quotations or parenthetical citations, copying parts or whole pages from another student, or any other sign of plagiarism), that student will be subject to disciplinary action which could result in no credit for the paper or a complete revision of the paper with a large reduction in points. If a student repeatedly plagiarizes, more severe actions will take place.

breakdown of points:
BP. 300-500pts. MW. 20 x 7? = 140pts. RPR. 25 x 3 times = 75pts? P1 – P7. About 700pts. (Bonus) Tests and Quizzes? Approximately 1300-1700 total points.

code of conduct:
Students will come to class on-time and prepared for discussion. All students will be respectful of others’ ideas and opinions. Participation in class is expected. Cell phones, pagers, and MP3 players will be turned off when you enter the classroom. No tobacco products are allowed in NDSCS buildings, and, when you’re outside - in designated areas only.

Learning is not illegal. Yet.

additions… chart: This schedule is subject to changes, deletions, and additions…
Week January 10-14 January 17-21 Monday Classes start at 4pm. MLK Jr. Day. No Classes. Wednesday Introductions. Assign first BP*. Pre-Test? “Modern Man,” via YouTube. BP. Bedford St. Martin’s video (re:writing) on Organization? Essays that need work? “Shitty First Drafts.” Intro to Brain Droppings& George Carlin. 101 Greatest GC Quotes. BP. Share BP? BP. “Strongbad,” “Totally Like Whatever.” “Shitty First Drafts,” My Words = “Erin McKean Redefines The Dictionary,” TED talk. BP. Peer Review for P1. Sign up for WC. Sir Ken Robinson video on education and George’s video on the American Dream? P1 Due Saturday. Bonus Spelling Test. BP. “The Impotence of Proofreading.” Baseball versus Football, G.C.? P1.5 Due Next Monday in class. WC in class? Bonus Test? BP. Continue to research P2. Animoto Video Trailer assigned for Wednesday. Work on P2. P2 Presentations. BP? Lucas Self-Assessment/Doc Sharing. Peer Review. BP. Last Day to Add = Jan. 20! Friday Notes:

January 24-28

Intro to P1. Dave Eggers essay. Steve Carell essay. BP. BSM: Revising?

January 31 – Feb. 4 February 7-11 February 14-18

WC = Writing Conferences. Read more of Carlin w/BP attached? Intro to P1.5: Profile. Samples from magazines? BP. Dave Chappelle. P1.5 Due. Intro to P2. BP. BSM videos? “Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics,” TED talk, 6 min. Sir Ken Robinson, “Experts.” President’s Day. No Classes. P2 Presentations. BP? George Carlin’s videos on expressions? Intro to P3/Intro to Poetry Booklet. “James Geary, Metaphorically Speaking,” TED talk, 9 min. Spring Break. No Classes. P3 Due. BP? Intro New, Well-Tempered Sent. P4 Presentations.

WC. A student will show how to place papers in the Dropbox on Friday. BP. Workday for P1.5 after a quiz and a look at the mini-interviews? Library Day. BP due online?

February 21-25 February 28 – March 4 March 711 March 14-18 March 21-25 March 28- April 1 April 4-8 April 1115 April 1822 April 2529 May 2-6 May 9-13

Works Cited pages = WTH. BP. Peer Review. Test PPTs. P2 Presentations. BP?

Food Carton Poetry Reading. P3 Research. Look at: The Rosa Parks of Blogs blog? BP.

Intro to P4: Essays on texting (Mar/Apr’08 on Delicious). “Pay Attention”/“Does Facebook Unite Us or Divide Us?” TED talk. Instructor at Writer’s Conference, UND.

P4 Work. BP online via Class Blog? Bonus Test on New, Well-Tempered Sent? Instructor at Writer’s Conference, UND. P5 Workday. Bonus Test on Sedaris. P5 Presentations. BP = Sedaris. Easter Break. No Classes. BP. Bonus Test? BP. Bonus Test? Finals Week.

P4 Presentations. Intro to Sedaris. BP. P5 Workday. BP = Sedaris. P5 Presentations. BP? Easter Break. No Classes. P6 Workday? Student Evals? Final Test.

Intro to P5. Intro to P5.5. P5 Workday. BP = Sedaris. Test PPTs. P5 Presentations. BP? P5.5 Due in class. Intro to P6. BP: ABC Experiment. P6 Due in class. Intro to P7: BP Combo? Finals Week. P7 Due. Bonus Test emailed out?

*BP = Bits and Pieces = Writing activities and Reading activities = Ideas and possibilities follow this chart.

BP = Bits and Pieces = Writing and Reading Activities. Here is a list of the possible Reading Activities.

Idea: This activity visualizes the reading. Students will find an image that connects to the quote/statement they find most interesting. Using the Creative Commons area of Flickr, they save the image and add text (or a quote) by using Pixlr.com. From there, they could upload the image to eCollege or Insert it into a document to be handed in.

READING ACTIVITY: Facebook Status(es)

Flickr.com Pixlr.com

Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: Students will create a Facebook status of the topic or person in the reading. Perhaps there will be comments to that status by other people in the reading.

Idea: The instructor will create a small selfexam for the students to take pre-reading. This will prepare students for the reading as well as see where they stand before they read. True/False questions are best, but the self-exam could include shortanswer.

Idea: No matter the pre-reading or reading activity, the students must come to the next class prepared. This means whatever they needed to answer or create needs to be ON THEM PHYSICALLY THE MINUTE they enter the classroom. They will need a Passport to enter the Country of Further Learning. Without a passport, they can’t participate.

Handout Pen/Pencil

Handout Pen/Pencil

READING ACTIVITY: Tweet from Your Seat


Handout Pen/Pencil

Idea: Bring the crazy brevity of Twitter into the classroom by having students, in 140 characters or less, sum up what they read. *This activity would be conducted after they’ve read or, maybe, while they are reading (?).

Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: Some students learn through repetition, and some also don’t like to mark up their textbooks. So, this activity asks students to type (or write) up a piece of the reading they’d like to respond to. After typing or writing up the piece, they can then circle things they don’t get or really find interesting. Instructors should specify word count and amount of questions to circle, etc.

READING ACTIVITY: Animoto Video Trailer



Idea: Just like how movies have previews, maybe discussions should too? This activity asks students to create a trailer or preview of the upcoming discussion by reading and then putting related images and text into Animoto.com. Their 30second videos are free and easy to use. From there, they could upload the URL to eCollege to be viewed in class.

Prezi.com or PPT

Idea: In order for the students to prep for the upcoming discussion of the reading, have them create parts of the possible discussion by putting together a piece such as a PowerPoint slide (or slides) or Prezi presentation. They could upload those Prezis/PPTs to a specific area in eCollege in order for the instructor to pop them up on the big screen in class.

READING ACTIVITY: Visual Definition


MS PPT Flickr Images

Idea: Students naturally increase their vocabulary by reading, so this activity asks them to pick a specific amount of words to create visual definitions of. Each slide = new word made visual with images, stories, quotes from the reading, definitions, etc.

MS Word

Idea: In order to create a quality quiz, you need to know the material. (A Spanish teacher I met has students who miss his tests create the test, and they rarely miss now because putting together a Spanish test is harder than just taking one.) This could be done in many different courses. The instructor could ask for a few levels of difficulty as well.

BP = Bits and Pieces = Writing and Reading Activities. Here is a list of the possible Reading Activities.

Idea: *This activity needs to be completed in a computer lab. Essentially, on each computer screen, a question would be displayed. Each student would type in their response. Each student would be asked to respond differently than the student before him/her. This activity would be timed as well using http://www.onlinestopwatch.com/.

READING ACTIVITY: Welcome to the Buffet

Comp Lab MS Word

Web Access MS Word

Idea: Students could get a few different options as to what to do while reading. Maybe they can create: a) a Timeline, b) a Chart, or c) Tweet from their Seat.

Idea: After students have read, ask them to become an expert on something in the reading material. From there, they would create a step-bystep guide on the topic. If they read something about Buddhism, perhaps they would have to write a guide on how to be a good Buddhist follower, for example.

READING ACTIVITY: (Fake) Interview

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: Students could either be required to interview someone about what they’ve read or they could create a document which shows a fake interview with the author about the piece.

READING ACTIVITY: Survey the Masses

READING ACTIVITY: Reconstruction!

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: After students read, they would conduct a survey of those around them (f2f or email or Facebook) about the topic(s) covered in the piece. They would report their findings at the next class time.

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: After reading, have the students reconstruct parts of the text into chunks. Calling them stanzas may scare them, but basically that’s what they are. Slices of the text, fragments, put into poetic bite size bits.

READING ACTIVITY: Dear Some Dude/Advice


Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: Have the students write a letter to the author of the piece. OR mimic a “Dear Abby” column that is related to the piece read.


Idea: If the instructor wants students to find certain ideas or topics in the piece, ask them to do so before they read. Have them keep a list of quotes, perhaps, that give details of the topic, etc.


READING ACTIVITY: Do you know your ABCs?

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: While reading, have students create Jeopardy questions or maybe a whole game with points assigned (200 level questions versus 400 level questions). What would be the question that players would bet $$$ on? These could be placed on the board in class & used for discussion?

Pen/Pencil MS Word

Idea: Students will create a table in MS Word and place all 26 letters down the far left column. From there, they have to find things in the reading that pertain to each letter. For instance, while reading about Buddhism, they would talk about the Afterlife in the corresponding A row.

READING ACTIVITY: Reality Show Vote-Off


Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: This activity asks students to take the reading and create a Reality Show out of it. They will, then, present the idea to the class. The class acts as entertainment producers – Who’s show will get voted off? Which show will air?

Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: Students will create a mad lib, or a few, (tell them to Google that term if they’ve never used a Mad Lib before) based on the reading. Then, in class, the students could get into small groups and “take/complete” each others’ mad lib(s).

READING ACTIVITY: Email/Discussion Board

READING ACTIVITY: Vanna White on Steriods


Idea: If instructors really want to know what students are thinking (or what problems they are having) when it comes to the reading, they could be required to read and email the instructor before class time. This way, the instructor can print off the problems and questions and use them in class. Same goes for discussion boards.

Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: While students are reading, they will take out quotes/statements they like. In class, they will get into groups and present 1-2 statements on the board, using the Wheel of Fortune as their format. The group who wins the most could get a treat or bonus points. This takes up more class time than “Diet Vanna.”



Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: While students are reading, they will take out quotes/statements they like. Before class, they’ll turn those statements into the Wheel of Fortune format and then in groups exchange statements with one another. This could lead into a larger group discussion.

Pen/Pencil or MS Word and Library

Idea: While students are reading, instructors could have them seek out a topic they want to learn more about. From there, they should head to the library and research a book on that topic. Then, in class, orally or on paper, they would talk about what the book contained.

READING ACTIVITY: Factoid/Something Cool

READING ACTIVITY: Pictionary or Art

Google or Bing or the Library

Idea: Ask the students to search the text for someone or something. From there, they should find something cool or some factoid about that topic. Ex: If they are reading about World War II, they could look online for something interesting to them about the fashions of the time or what people drove (if they are into fashion/cars, for example).

Pen/Pencil or MS Word

Idea: This activity would ask students to draw out what happened in the reading. It could lead into a game of Pictionary lead by the students in class as well?

MS Word and Web access Idea: This activity asks students to find multiple genres that connect to the topic(s)/theme(s) in the reading. Ex: Finding a cartoon, a non-Wikipedia article, and a chart based on Buddhism/WWII/STDs, etc.

Pen/Pencil or MS Word or Web access Idea: Using www.makebeliefscomix.com (or paper & pen/MS Word?) have students create a comic strip based on a theme or some dialogue that occurs in the reading. This could add a bit of humor to any subject.

BP = Bits and Pieces = Writing and Reading Activities. Above is a list of the possible Reading Activities.

BP = Bits and Pieces = Writing and Reading Activities. Here is a list of the possible Writing Activities. Some may be done online, called Class Blogs.

Activities Pieces: Writing Activities = Bits and Pieces:
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Be bad: Write a bad essay. Attempt writing badly. Minimum: 500 words. Single-spaced please. Interest Inventory: What are your favorite things? Favorite movies, musicians, stores, foods, etc. Dear Abby: Write an essay modeled on an advice column, like Savage Love, Dear Abby, or the like. [Steve Carell’s essay?] New Student Questions: If there was a new student in class and you could only ask that person three questions to get to know them, what would you ask them? George Carlin: a. [GC] Watch your language: What are the words you love, or the phrases you wish would come back in fashion? b. [GC] Play favorites: Create some top ten lists. c. [GC] Be yourself: What are the things that you think only YOU love? d. [GC] Promote truth: Give us some of your own unique beliefs. [Steve Carell’s essay?] e. [GC] George Carlin Fun:“People Who ___” List (pg2), “7 Things I’m Tired of,” List (Pg4), “A Few Things I Like” List (Pg7), “Things You Never See” List (pg?)… f. [GC] Quotes Project w/George. Find a Creative Commons image on Flickr that isn’t of Carlin, but relates to a quote of his (chosen by you). Then use Pixlr.com to add the quote to the image. Save to desktop before uploading to eCompanion. Project/Paper-Based: a. [Before P1] Two sides to every story: Pick anything, any topic, and list all the Pros and Cons. b. [Before P1.5] Collect people: Interview someone you admire but don’t necessarily know. [leahpeah.com/blog] c. [Before P1.5] My Family: Write about the members of your family. Describe each person and what they mean to you. d. [Before P1.5] Make your timeline: Make a personal timeline of your past. e. [Before P1.5] Surveys: It can be so satisfying to test people, and then put them into neat little categories. [surveymonkey.com] f. [Before P1.5] Make contact: You miss real mail; send postcards to readers, etc. g. [Before P2] Become an expert. On something. You have a foolproof hangover cure, and you’re keeping it from the world? [www.43folders.com] Ex: Sybil’s Guide To ___ (Brain Droppings, pg 8). h. [Before P3] Show us your B-side: What is the soundtrack to your life? [Before P3]Musical Experiment:Use the lyrics of a favorite song to write an essay on a topic completely different than the topic of i. the song. Additional words may be used, but every word from the lyrics must be in the essay. [Before P4] Language is Fun: Verbs (Brain Droppings, Pg66), Word Usage (Brain Droppings, Pg67), and Unnecessary Words (Brain j. Droppings, Pg69). k. [Before P5.5]Homosexuality: Brain Droppings, Pg64-65. [Before P6]Name Experiment: Using your first name only, in an essay explain how your name describes who you are (or does not). l. Use each letter of your first name (in order) as the first letter of each sentence. There should be the same number of sentences as there are letters in your name. You cannot state your name in the essay, but you may make the first letters of each sentence bold. Ex: Personally I feel my name… Also, ... My mother decided to name … [Brain Droppings, Pg21-28] m. [Before P6]ABC Experiment: Alphabetical Essay. Each letter should connect to a quality of yourself. A could stand for “Artistic” for example. See how many letters (out of 26) you can connect something to. n. [For P7] Change your outfit: Take some bits&pieces you’ve already created and make it into something different. Like, make an essay into a poem or a poem into a newspaper article or an essay into a tabloid/gossip article, etc. Address the public: Revive the lost art of letter writing by addressing fellow citizens and/or classmates. Move them to action! Examine your paperwork: Find an old note or journal entry or email – Exploit ‘em. [queserasera.org] Make it easy: Tell us about the small habits you’ve adopted to make your life run more smoothly. [lifehacker.com] It’s classified: Create an ad for something you need or something you’d like to get rid of. Show some love: Tell us who your friends are and why they are a part of your life. Blow your budget: You’ve come into ten million dollars – How do you spend it? Spread the words: Pull out great paragraphs and quotes from things you are currently reading. Even headlines from the newspaper work. Timecapsule: Take a pic of your current cell phone so years down the road your kids can laugh at the size. What else do you think will change? Opposite Day: Always sunny & happy? Write a serious/sad post. Share the Joke: When something makes you laugh, take note. Brain Droppings, Pg63. Leave the House: Go spend a day in the world. Report back. Reading Experiment:Write a mini-essay using sentences from our assigned reading for today. Racial Experiment: Discuss how one element of your life would be different had you been born into a different race. Blue Collar Comedy Bit: “You Know You’re _____ When _____” List. Brain Droppings, Pg21. Book Titles: Create Your Own. Brain Droppings, Pg44. Metaphors: Baseball vs football. Brain Droppings, Pg53-63? Connect the Dots: Of what we’ve read thus far, what connections can you make? Make a list of 10 for full credit. Like, Yeah, Like: Write some dialogue like a “Californian Ditzy Blonde.” 100+ words. Cliché creation: Create a list of ___ new clichés. Instead of “I was running around like a chicken with my head chopped off” you could use/say, “I was running around like a soccer mom with ten kids and two blue mini-vans.”


7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25.

100 words that all high school graduates should know
BOSTON, MA — The editors of the American Heritage dictionaries have compiled a list of 100 words they recommend every high school graduate should know. "The words we suggest," says senior editor Steven Kleinedler, "are not meant to be exhaustive but are a benchmark against which graduates and their parents can measure themselves. If you are able to use these words correctly, you are likely to have a superior command of the language." The following is the entire list of 100 words: abjure abrogate abstemious acumen antebellum auspicious belie bellicose bowdlerize chicanery chromosome churlish circumlocution circumnavigate deciduous deleterious diffident enervate enfranchise epiphany equinox euro evanescent expurgate facetious fatuous feckless fiduciary filibuster gamete gauche gerrymander hegemony hemoglobin homogeneous hubris hypotenuse impeach incognito incontrovertible inculcate infrastructure interpolate irony jejune kinetic kowtow laissez faire lexicon loquacious lugubrious metamorphosis mitosis moiety nanotechnology nihilism nomenclature nonsectarian notarize obsequious oligarchy omnipotent orthography oxidize parabola paradigm parameter pecuniary photosynthesis plagiarize plasma polymer precipitous quasar quotidian recapitulate reciprocal reparation respiration sanguine soliloquy subjugate suffragist supercilious tautology taxonomy tectonic tempestuous thermodynamics totalitarian unctuous usurp vacuous vehement vortex winnow wrought xenophobe yeoman ziggurat

10 spelling mistakes that make you look stupid

These days, we tend to communicate via the keyboard as much as we do verbally. Often, we’re in a hurry, quickly dashing off e-mails with typos, grammatical shortcuts (I’m being kind here), and that breezy, e.e. cummings, no-caps look. It’s expected. It’s no big deal. But other times, we try to invest a little care, avoiding mistakes so that there’s no confusion about what we’re saying and so that we look professional and reasonably bright. In general, we can slip up in a verbal conversation and get away with it. A colleague may be thinking, Did she just say “irregardless”?, but the words flow on, and our worst transgressions are carried away and with luck, forgotten. That’s not the case with written communications. When we commit a grammatical crime in e-mails, discussion posts, reports, memos, and other professional documents, there’s no going back. We’ve just officially gone on record as being careless or clueless. And here’s the worst thing. It’s not necessary to be an editor or a language whiz or a spelling bee triathlete to spot such mistakes. They have a way of doing a little wiggle dance on the screen and then reaching out to grab the reader by the throat. So here we are in the era of Word’s red-underline “wrong spelling, dumb ass” feature and Outlook’s Always Check Spelling Before Sending option, and still the mistakes proliferate. Catching typos is easy (although not everyone does it). It’s the other stuff — correctly spelled but incorrectly wielded — that sneaks through and makes us look stupid. Here’s a quick review of some of the big ones: 1. Loose for lose No: I always loose the product key. Yes: I always lose the product key. 2. It’s for its (or god forbid, its’) No: Download the HTA, along with it’s readme file. Yes: Download the HTA, along with its readme file. No: The laptop is overheating and its making that funny noise again. Yes: The laptop is overheating and it’s making that funny noise again. 3. They’re fortheir for there No: The managers are in they’re weekly planning meeting. Yes: The managers are in their weekly planning meeting. No: The techs have to check there cell phones at the door, and their not happy about it. Yes: The techs have to check their cell phones at the door, and they’re not happy about it. 4. i.e. for e.g. No: Use an anti-spyware program (i.e., AdAware). Yes: Use an anti-spyware program (e.g., AdAware). Note: The term i.e. means “that is”; e.g. means “for example.” And a comma follows both of them. 5. Effect for affect No: The outage shouldn’t effect any users during work hours. Yes: The outage shouldn’t affect any users during work hours. Yes: The outage shouldn’t have any effect on users. Yes: We will effect several changes during the downtime. Note: Impact is not a verb. Purists, at least, beg you to use affect instead: No: The outage shouldn’t impact any users during work hours. Yes: The outage shouldn’t affect any users during work hours. Yes: The outage should have no impact on users during work hours. 6. You’re for your No: Remember to defrag you’re machine on a regular basis. Yes: Remember to defrag your machine on a regular basis. No: Your right about the changes. Yes: You’re right about the changes. 7. Different than for different from No: This setup is different than the one at the main office. Yes: This setup is different from the one at the main office. Yes: This setup is better than the one at the main office. 8. Lay for lie No: I got dizzy and had to lay down. Yes: I got dizzy and had to lie down. Yes: Just lay those books over there. 9. Then for than No: The accounting department had more problems then we did. Yes: The accounting department had more problems than we did. Note: Here’s a sub-peeve. When a sentence construction begins with If, you don’t need a then. Then is implicit, so it’s superfluous and wordy: No: If you can’t get Windows to boot, then you’ll need to call Ted. Yes: If you can’t get Windows to boot, you’ll need to call Ted. 10. Could of, would of for could have, would have No: I could of installed that app by mistake. Yes: I could have installed that app by mistake. No: I would of sent you a meeting notice, but you were out of town. Yes: I would have sent you a meeting notice, but you were out of town.

Six Common Punctuation Errors that Tork Off Bloggers
by Daniel Scocco Proofreading your text for misspelled words and grammatical mistakes is essential. What about the punctuation, though? Despite being more subtle, these errors can equally hurt your credibility. I’m going to point out six common punctuation errors that you shouldn’t be making, and give you examples so you’re sure about the right way to handle these situations. Ready? Let’s go.

1. Apostrophe for Plurals
This mistake is particularly common among foreigners who are learning English as a second language. After all, you would expect native English speaks to know how to form plurals (right?). The apostrophe is used to form contractions (e.g., It’s time to go) and to indicate possession (e.g., Mary’s car is blue), but never to form plurals. Wrong: The boy’s will go to the school tomorrow. Right: The boys will go to the school tomorrow.

2. The Comma Splice
When the comma is used to separate independent clauses, there must be a conjunction connecting them. If the conjunction is not there, we have a comma splice. You can fix this mistake by using a period instead of the comma, or by adding a coordinating conjunction. Wrong: The car costs $10000, I am going to buy it. Right. The car costs $10000. I am going to buy it. Right: The car costs $10000, and I am going to buy it.

3. Quotation Marks for Emphasis
Quotation marks are mainly used to quote speech, sentences or words. They can also be used to denote irony. They can’t be used, however, to add emphasis to a word or sentence. It is not rare to find advertisements or promotional flyers carrying this error. If you want to add emphasis to a word, use the boldface type and not the quotation marks. Wrong: This gift is “free”! Right: This gift is free!

4. Multiple Punctuation Marks
Unless you want to sound like an overly emotional teenager writing on MySpace, you should limit yourself to one exclamation point, regardless of how excited you might be when writing that sentence. The same applies to question marks and to the ellipsis (which should have only three dots). Also, keep in mind that exclamation points are not used that frequently in business and formal writing. If your text is loaded with them, you probably should review it. Wrong: This is amazing!!!! Wrong: The man was silent…… Right: This is amazing! Right: The man was silent…

5. Punctuation Outside the Quotation Marks
If you are writing in American English, other punctuation should go inside the quotation marks, even if it is not part of the quotation itself. British English, on the other hand, places punctuation that is not part of the quoted sentence outside of the quotation marks. Wrong in American English: Uncle John said, “My car is blue”. Right in American English: Uncle John said, “My car is blue.”

6. The Missing Comma After Introductory Elements
Sometimes you want to give an introduction or provide a background to a certain sentence. That is fine, but do not forget to place a comma after that introductory element. Notice that an introductory element can be a sentence (like in the example below) or a single word (e.g., however, moreover and so on). Wrong: Before going to the school Joe stopped at my house. Right: Before going to the school, Joe stopped at my house. What other punctuation mishaps do you make, or what drives you crazy when others fracture the rules?

More Stuff About Sybil’s Rules Because Repetition is Fun
Yes. Read for every class period? Yes. Why? Practice makes perfect. Students are allowed more errors in these small activities. When assessing daily writing or reading activities (or Bits and Pieces), I look for quality of thought. If a student writes ten awesome sentences, cool. If another student obviously is just filling space with fifteen crappy sentences, they may be deducted points.

Reading & Writing Activities /// Bits and Pieces /// BP: Write every class period?

Formats: I like creative formats, so don’t be afraid of the landscape layout or wide margins or single-spacing. This goes for papers and projects too. Please shy away, however, from the font Times New Roman. I think it’s ugly. Thank you. Papers and Projects: The paper or project should WOW me; I have many to read, so be bold. Be different than the rest. Papers and projects also need to be in on time, have less than 5 errors, and be the correct length. Missing any of these things can lead to a big ugly deduction, and no one likes those. All papers must be typed or word processed. Computers are available on campus in computer labs. Find them and use them; you paid a technology fee for them. Turn in sources (if used) with the paper. OR link to the sources via your own Delicious.com site. Assessment: Almost each paper or project has its own rubric. Usually, I’m looking for organization above all else. It’s got to be logically put
together or at least be put together in a way that makes sense. There should be flow. There should also be details and back-up information. It can be creative, too.

In The First Two Paragraphs: Typically, you will have a thesis statement. That statement should be highlighted or underlined, so I
know what your goal is and I know you know what your goal is. Yeah.

Activiti Daily English Classroom Activities That are Good for You
Time: Students should be given the time to write and or read daily, working through their ideas and developing their abilities by working as

Choice: Choosing their subject and what to say about it engages writers; they feel a sense of ownership. Response: Responding to students’ writing throughout the composing process signals that people—students, teachers, other readers—take
them and their ideas seriously. Students need to hear how others, beyond the teacher, to what they are writing and how they are writing.

Demonstration: The teacher will demonstrate via samples how to write well, how projects in the past have been completed, etc. The teacher may also demonstrate through his/her own writing how writers write. Expectation: Students are expected to try. Students are smarter than they think, and the teacher knows this. If students are smart enough to make up excuses, they are expected to be smart enough to complete all tasks in the class. The classroom must be a place where students and teachers continually revise and raise their expectations of each other and themselves. Room structure: Students need to know what to expect so they know how to—and then they can—work on their piece of writing. He describes this as making the room “predictable” for productive work. Evaluation: Students should self-evaluate at mid-term and at the end. What did they learn? How did they learn? Why?

The 5 Features of a Great Education
Feature 1: Students learn skills and knowledge in multiple lesson types. Feature 2: Teachers make connections across instruction, curriculum, grades, and life. Feature 3: Students learn strategies for doing the work. [Problem-solving!] Feature 4: Students are expected to be generative thinkers. [“Gen·er·a·tive” = adjective = capable of producing or creating.] Feature 5: Classrooms foster cognitive collaboration.

The 5 Modes of Writing in 5 Paragraphs
…by using the Theme of Shopping. 1.Narration = a story. My love for shopping started when I was very young and has followed me throughout my teen and college years. Back when I was younger, and didn’t have a credit card, I had to rely on my mom to take me shopping. I remember getting very excited when she and my dad would announce a trip to Fargo because that meant we’d go to the mall. Although I wasn’t’ a shop-a-holic back then, I did love the simple act of wandering through racks of clothes as well as trying on a pile of them even if they didn’t fit. When I was in high school, I started shopping on my own at places that suited my budget. The local thrift stores became my favorite places even thought my mom disapproved of us buying secondhand items. Once I came to Fargo to go to college, I still shopped at thrift stores (there were so many more up here!), and slowly, as my income increased as well as my amount of credit, I made my way to the mall more often and started online shopping too. Although I have expanded the variety of stores I shop at, my sister and I still to this day love going to thrift stores to find cheap tees, funky bags, and weird furniture. 2.Illustration or Example = explanation or argument through the use of examples. Many non-shoppers claim that it’s hard to find what they are looking for. Well, I disagree. There are many different places a person can shop for clothing at, and those places fall into categories. Let’s start with the simple challenge of finding running shoes. A person could start at… [Example #1- Thrift Stores, Example #2- Target, Wal-Mart, and K-Mart, Example #3-Department Stores like Gordman’s, Kohl’s, etc and Example #4Malls … example #5: online?] 3.Comparison/Contrast = explanation or argument through the use of comparing or contrasting items. While the outcome is the same, online shopping is quite different from physically shopping in a mall. [Online Shopping- Weather doesn’t matter; don’t have to walk around and get crabby, more stores to look at that aren’t in your area. Physically Shopping- exercise, alone time away from home, get to try on things.] 4.Cause and Effect = explanation or argument through the use of showing cause and effect. The effect of a good shopping trip are both beneficial and detrimental to a shop-a-holic. [Good: exercise, new clothes, good attitude, research for future purchase. Bad: costs money, wastes time that could be used doing something else, and could make you stressed out from spending money or trying on clothes that don’t fit well.] 5.Definition = argument or explanation through the use of defining something. The definition of “window shopping” is not necessarily walking by a window, peering in to see what’s for sale. Oh, no. Window shopping can be expanded to simply mean “shopping by looking and not necessarily buying.” One can window shop and purchase items or one can window shop for days without buying a dang thing. Window shopping can be done at yard sales, thrift stores, malls, department stores, and, yes, while walking down Broadway peaking at window displays. [etc]

More Bits and Pieces
[Beginning of Semester.] New Student Questions: If there was a new student in class and you could only ask that person three questions to get to know them, what would you ask them? If I Were a Teacher: Write a page on what you would do if you were a teacher for a day. What subjects would you teach and how would you teach them? My Family: Write about the members of your family. Describe each person and what they mean to you. My Town: If an out-of-town visitor was coming to visit, where would you take your visitor? Describe the best places around your town and why they are so interesting. Write about parks, museums, lakes, stores, restaurants, and other places you enjoy. [After a reading AND/OR use for Peer Review.] -Create a dialogue with an essay by talking back to it or writing a metacommentary alongside it. Explore what she/he really wanted to say or meant to say. [Anytime.] - Experiment: Write an essay modeled on an advice column, like Savage Love, Dear Abby, or the like. - Experiment: Think of something you hate. Something you cannot stand; something that makes you extremely angry. Now, write "On" in front of that something and you have the title of your essay. Do not edit, do not stop to think. Just write. Ex: "On Disrespecting Elders" [Before P1: What is an essay? What is a report? What is a review?] -Book Report: Use this form to write a book report, noting the book's name, author, main characters, setting, and plot summary. -Movie Review: Review a movie. Include a description of the characters, the story, the scenery, and what you liked the most and the least about the movie. [Before P2: The Stretch Project.] - Experiment: My idea for the essay writing experiment is to have someone ask 15 or 20 people if they could have one wish what would it be. After collecting their answers formulate an essay on peoples number one wishes. - I'm an Expert: Everyone is great at something - write about what you do best. It could be a hobby, a sport, reading, playing chess, or anything else you excel at. [Before P5: PPT MusicVideo.] - Experiment: Write an essay as graffiti on a piece of computer paper or use Microsoft Word. [Before P6: Who Are You?] - Experiment: Write an essay about the most "scandalous" thing that happens to you in the course of a normal day in the style of a gossip columnist/blogger. Writing in the third person is suggested but not mandatory. Including easily misconstrued photographs might be a nice addition. Exaggerate, make up catch phrases/nicknames, speculate, perpetuate stereotypes, be offensive etc. See PerezHilton.com for reference. - Experiment: Using your first name only, in an essay explain how your name describes who you are (or does not). Use each letter of your first name (in order) as the first letter of each sentence. There should be the same number of sentences as there are letters in your name. You cannot state your name in the essay, but you may make the first letters of each sentence in bold so they will spell out your name. ex: Personally I feel my name… Also, ... My mother decided to name … I Wonder Why: Think of something you have wondered about and write about it. Write About a Number: Pick a number, then write about it. Invent an Animal: Invent a new animal -- describe what it looks like, what it sounds like, how it moves, and what it eats. Is it scary or cuddly or something else altogether? Would it be a pet or live in the wild (or in a zoo)? Invent a New Holiday: Invent a new holiday. What would this holiday celebrate? How would you celebrate it? Would there be any special food or symbols for your holiday? If I Had a New Name: If you could give yourself a new name, what would it be? Write about why you chose this new name and how it might change your life. The Best Thing I've Learned in School: Write about the most valuable thing you ever learned in school. What made it so useful for you? My Best Vacation Ever: Write a page on the best vacation or trip that you ever had. Describe where you went, who you went with, what you did, and why you enjoyed it. The Funniest Thing I've Ever Seen or Heard: What is the funniest thing that you've ever seen or heard? Maybe it was a joke that a friend told you, a comedy routine, or a scene in a movie. Describe this amusing event and tell why you thought it was funny. The Scariest Thing That Ever Happened To Me: What is the scariest thing that ever happened to you? Describe this event and write about why it scared you. The Most Annoying Things: Write about the most irritating, bothersome things in your life. A Good Personality Trait: Think of a person you really like or admire. Think of a personality trait that makes them so special. Write about this good trait and why you like it. A Bad Personality Trait: Think of a person you really dislike. Think of a personality trait that makes them so unpleasant. Write about this bad trait and why you dislike it. [Before P7? Translation of clothing choices to personality?] 14. Experiment: Write an essay based on the people you have seen, met, or been around for a day. Focus the essay on describing their personalities but only through a description of the clothes they were wearing. [MLK Jr. Week.] - Experiment: Discuss how one element of your life would be different had you been born into a different race/culture/ethnicity.

You Writing Genres You may use in this Class or in your Lifetime
[There may be more genres beyond this list… just so you know. And, basically, anything with text on it is considered a writing genre. Even visual text like screenplays.] Journal Entries /// Favorite Inspirational Quotation with a Journal Entry /// Blog Entries Personal Letters, Correspondence, Greeting Cards Business Letters or Correspondence Persuasive or Advocacy Letter Schedule, Things to Do, or Future Goals List Narrative Essay or Memoir Dialogue of a conversation among two more people IM Conversations /// Text Messages Chat Room Conversations /// Conversations Inner Monologue representing internal conflict Short Story Adventure Magazine Story Ghost Story /// Myth, Tall Tale, or Fairy Tale Picture Book Biographical Summary or Profile Newspaper or Magazine Feature Story Newspaper or Magazine Human Interest Story Home or Hobby Magazine Story Future News Story Letter to the Editor Classified Ad or Personal Ad Obituary and Eulogy or Tribute Critique of a Published Source Speech, Diatribe, or Debate Personal Essay or Philosophical Questions Chart Diagram with Explanation and Analysis Timeline /// Chain of Events Map with Explanation and Analysis Top Ten List Textbook Article News Program Story or Announcement /// Talk Show Interview or Panel Magazine or TV Ad or Infomercial Glossary or Dictionary entry Recipe and Description of Traditional Holiday Events Restaurant Description and Menu How To or Directions Booklet Travel Brochure Description Science Article or Report Business Article or Technical Report Company or Organization Publication Receipts, Applications, Deeds, Budgets Wedding or Graduation Invitation /// Birth Certificate Yearbook or School Newspaper or Newsletter Classroom Discussion /// Class Blog entries Award Nomination /// Contest Entry Application Doctor, Lawyer, Teacher, Nurse, Employer Records or Notes Character Analysis or Case Study Review for a Movie, Book, or TV Program Board Game or Trivial Pursuit with Answers and Rules Comedy Routine or Parody Tabloid Article Puzzle, Witticisms, or Aphorisms, Famous Quotes Poetry /// Posters /// Comic Strip Lyrics for a song or ballad Video /// PowerPoint Presentation /// Web Site /// Weblog Screenplay /// Short scene from a Play with Notes for Camera shots

Modern man poem
"I’m a modern man, a man for the millennium. Digital and smoke free. A diversified multi-cultural, post-modern deconstruction that is anatomically and ecologically incorrect. I’ve been up linked and downloaded, I’ve been inputted and outsourced, I know the upside of downsizing, I know the downside of upgrading. I’m a high-tech low-life. A cutting edge, state-of-the-art bi-coastal multi-tasker and I can give you a gigabyte in a nanosecond! I’m new wave, but I’m old school and my inner child is outward bound. I’m a hot-wired, heat seeking, warm-hearted cool customer, voice activated and bio-degradable. I interface with my database, my database is in cyberspace, so I’m interactive, I’m hyperactive and from time to time I’m radioactive. Behind the eight ball, ahead of the curve, ridin the wave, dodgin the bullet and pushin the envelope. I’m on-point, on-task, onmessage and off drugs. I’ve got no need for coke and speed. I've got no urge to binge and purge. I’m in-the-moment, on-the-edge, over-the-top and under-the-radar. A high-concept, low-profile, medium-range ballistic missionary. A street-wise smart bomb. A top-gun bottom feeder. I wear power ties, I tell power lies, I take power naps and run victory laps. I’m a totally ongoing big-foot, slam-dunk, rainmaker with a pro-active outreach. A raging workaholic. A working rageaholic. Out of rehab and in denial! I’ve got a personal trainer, a personal shopper, a personal assistant and a personal agenda. You can’t shut me up. You can’t dumb me down because I’m tireless and I’m wireless, I’m an alpha male on beta-blockers. I’m a non-believer and an over-achiever, laid-back but fashion-forward. Up-front, down-home, low-rent, high-maintenance. Super-sized, long-lasting, high-definition, fast-acting, oven-ready and built-to-last! I’m a hands-on, foot-loose, knee-jerk head case pretty maturely post-traumatic and I’ve got a love-child that sends me hate mail. But, I’m feeling, I’m caring, I’m healing, I’m sharing-- a supportive, bonding, nurturing primary care-giver. My output is down, but my income is up. I took a short position on the long bond and my revenue stream has its own cash-flow. I read junk mail, I eat junk food, I buy junk bonds and I watch trash sports! I’m gender specific, capital intensive, user-friendly and lactose intolerant. I like rough sex. I like tough love. I use the “F” word in my emails and the software on my hard-drive is hardcore--no soft porn. I bought a microwave at a mini-mall; I bought a mini-van at a mega-store. I eat fast-food in the slow lane. I’m toll-free, bite-sized, ready-to-wear and I come in all sizes. A fully-equipped, factory-authorized, hospital-tested, clinically-proven, scientificallyformulated medical miracle. I’ve been pre-wash, pre-cooked, pre-heated, pre-screened, pre-approved, pre-packaged, post-dated, freeze-dried, double-wrapped, vacuum-packed and, I have an unlimited broadband capacity. I’m a rude dude, but I’m the real deal. Lean and mean! Cocked, locked and ready-to-rock. Rough, tough and hard to bluff. I take it slow, I go with the flow, I ride with the tide. I’ve got glide in my stride. Drivin and movin, sailin and spinin, jiving and groovin, wailin and winnin. I don’t snooze, so I don’t lose. I keep the pedal to the metal and the rubber on the road. I party hearty and lunch time is crunch time. I’m hangin in, there ain’t no doubt and I’m hangin tough, over and out!" , ~ a comedic genius and poet extraodinaire

George Carlin

PreEnglish 110 Pre-“Test.”
Please do not write your name on this. Thank you. <-------> “YES/NO” SECTION. Please fill in the blank with a Y for Yes or N for No. _____ I know how to brainstorm to find a topic to write about or research. _____ I get writer’s block. _____ I have completed research papers in other classes (high school or otherwise). _____ I have completed personal essays in other classes (high school or otherwise). _____ I have used MLA format in other classes (high school or otherwise). _____ I know how to correctly use sources in my research papers. _____ I have created an annotated bibliography for a class (high school or otherwise). _____ I know what a “genre” of writing is. _____ I can name a “genre” of writing/composition. Here’s one: __________________________________. _____ I have created multi-genre projects in other classes (high school or otherwise). _____ I like to use slang in everyday speech. _____ I like to swear. _____ I use a dictionary (online or book) on a weekly basis. _____ I’ve been to a library at least five (5) times in my life. _____ I think the English language is very weird. _____ I can spell better than my friends. _____ I use Facebook or Twitter or MySpace, etc. on a daily basis to communicate to friends/family. _____ I text my friends/family on a daily basis. _____ I’ve used YouTube to listen to songs or learn how to do something. _____ I’m familiar with the different search engines: Yahoo!, Google, and Bing. <-------> “LETTER/NUMBER” SECTION. Please fill in the blank with your best answer or guess. _____ The longest paper/essay I have ever completed was… _____ The highest grade I’ve ever earned on a paper was… _____ The grade I think I will earn in this course is… _____ My vocabulary will probably increase this semester by ____ words. _____ My effort level in this course will be… <-------> “ABOUT YOU” SECTION. List anything you can think of in each category: Favorite Movies/TV Shows: _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________

Favorite Words: _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________

Favorite Foods: _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________

Favorite Hobbies: _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________

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