2005-01-17

A fishy blog discussion in Wonderland

Hallo everybody!

Today, Monday January 17th was the exciting date: We were given our Facharbeit-Topics.

We have to decide which one we choose until February 2nd. The variety was broad: There are topics which appeal to pupils who are interested in politics, literature, music and geography.

Furthermore, we discussed several positive and negative aspects concerning this blog! There are some disadvantages, e. g. the amount of time the correction and reading of our daily comments require. But our blog is a medium to document our lessons and it can be very useful, e.g. in connection with the oral exam after the A-Levels next year, which some of us may possibly use to improve their mark.

We thought about writing entries with the content of the five lessons over a whole week. Nevertheless, we decided against this solution to the problem that there are few volunteers, because this could make our entries superficial.

Mr. Ringeisen suggested to form a “Lang Team”, a Language Team, that is “on duty” for about a week or two. The striking advantage would be that we often see other people’s mistakes and being on the team of correctors is a possibility to improve our English – not only grammar and spelling, I suppose ;-)

*Uuh, I just noticed that I forgot an important detail!!! All of us chose a date for the presentation of our novels! Don't forget about them ... :-) There coming soon!

Afterwards, we talked about the film version of “Alice in Wonderland” we watched last Thursday. We talked about the caterpillar that blew smoky letters out of its mouth. Then we mentioned the Queen’s game of croquet and the Dormouse’s name and behaviour.

After a short break Mr. Ringeisen introduced us to “fishy stories”. One pupil draws an activity card, for example showing a person sitting in the middle of the Alps, playing the guitar, and a time card, e.g. saying "4.30 am". Then the pupil has to explain to the audience why she was playing the guitar somewhere up in the mountains, at 4.30 in the morning. It doesn’t really matter what you tell, you should pay attention to grammar and pronunciation, and let your imagination flow in order to produce a story that explains your situation.

Susi was first to tell the course why she performed as a ballerina in the morning; the next was Melanie, who reported that she visited her aunt in Africa and had to pick flowers.

Janina presented her Saturday night to us when she repaired her car because she had crashed into a tree; and finally, Elisabeth related that birds encouraged her to play the guitar in the Alps in the afternoon.

In the last ten minutes we read the first lines of “Yekl”, the second text in the chapter “New York” in our “Viewfinder Special” (p. 216 – 218).

The excerpt from this novel by Abraham Cahan tells the reader about immigrants in the USA. “Yekl” is the name of a Russian immigrant who already lives in America and after three years of separation, his wife Gitl and his son Yosselé, who had stayed in Povodye in northwestern Russia, move to their husband and father. He picks them up at the Immigration Bureau of Ellis Island. The text shows estrangement, the feelings of all members of the family and the differences in life-style between Russia and America.

Until tomorrow,
Caro

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