Monday, November 30, 2009

Agenda: Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2009

Quote of the Day:  

More than two million AIDS related deaths reported globally in 2008 - two million children under the age of 15 now live with HIV

December 1st, is World Aids Day.  
You can make a difference.

Learning Targets:


Video from last spring 2009:
Aids in Africa - Period 5 from Mr. Duez on Vimeo.
Video that details the horrible disease of HIV and Aids in Africa.

Video from 2008 spring:
Aids in Africa - Michelle from Mr. Duez on Vimeo.
Aids in Africa is a terrible problem. Michelle does an excellent job of capturing the pain that the continent is in and inspiring all of us to help.

Your purchasing power is POWERFUL. Join Product(Red) to help:

USC Draws Inspiration from No. 1 Fan

Great story. Reminds us to be thankful for what we have. And we can all be inspired by each other.

Agenda: Monday, November 30, 2009

Quote of the Day: "There is no medicine to cure hatred." ~ African Proverb

1.  Goal of the Week
2.  We'll watch the inspirational Story of a  homeless teen in LA.  (Embedded video on this blog on previous post)
3.  Juniors will do Socratic Seminar on two selections.  They will read each selection and summarize them and then come up with two collective points about it to share with the class.

A.  Newsweek Article:  Making the Right College Work for You:  "Passions, Friends, and Great Profs:  After you arrive on campus, the real decisions begin."
excerpt from article:  For four years of high school, dreams of college life kept me persevering through what seemed like unbearable times of teenage torment. So when I got to college, I felt a lot of pressure to make sure it was the best four years of my life. Although I made an excellent choice in Washington University in St. Louis, it was really the decisions I made once I arrived that made my college experience what I hoped it would be.
B.  "Student Success Stories" from this website:
The students will meet in their tutor groups and read the stories aloud and then discuss them.  They will circle things they don't understand and underline main points.  Then they will find at least "2 Things" from the success story to share with the class.
Sophomores will do a Socratic Discussion surrounding the inspirational story of Terry Fox.  We will discuss how he overcame his disadvantages and  how his message is one that we can learn from. 
Terry Fox Foundation

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Inspirational Story

NFL's $45 million man helps Skid Row teen's college dream link

Happy Thanksgiving

The History of Thanksgiving:

The Puritans, George Washington, FDR?  Nahhh, the real hero here is Sarah Hale.

1924 is the date of the first Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York.
1934 is the first Thanksgiving Day football game for the Lions.  (Of course, I'm not going to mention that other team that plays on Turkey Day.)

It is uniquely American.

But, of course, it's about family.  I'll be spending my Thanksgiving at home with my wife and son.  Yesterday we took a trip to Discovery Green in downtown Houston and had a nice picnic lunch and a special day together.  It's what Thanksgiving weekend is all about.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Agenda: Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Quote of the Day:  “It isn't what you have in your pocket that makes you thankful, but what you have in your heart.” - Annonymous

Juniors - We will tutor in the flex area for students who need it for tests today.  In the classroom students will work on finishing their Thankful Letter -or- Road Trip Nation Curriculum.  We will watch a couple of these interviews:

Andrew Steele - AstroBiologist
"Life is a gift. And your life is a gift. No one has the right to tell you how to use that gift. And no one has the right to try and place you into a mold or into a position that they see right for you. You have already got the biggest gift there is: you are made of stars." - Andrew Steele

Ann Telnaes, Puliter Prize-Winning Political Cartoonist, Humors Edge

"Just be ready to look at other doors. I had a lot of doors open to me that I never thought about when I was a student, and I took them. It worked out really well."  - Ann Telnaes

William Morris, Glassblower & Artist, William Morris Glass
"Would you rather have one year of utter vitality, or would you have ten years of just sort of ho-hum mediocrity? Either choice is fine. . . . Live the choice that you make." - William Morris

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, Drummer, The Roots
Philadelphia, PA"I don't know if anyone who's truly successful feels a sense of completion. I think it's just a constant mission to stay ahead."

Sophomores will finish their Thankful Letters and Watch Road Trip Nation interviews.  They will be thinking up questions that they will ask the people that they interview this spring.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Agenda: Monday, November 23, 2009

Quote of the Day:  “One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying.” - Joan of Arc


Both Soph & Juniors will write "Thank You" Letters to a tutor, teacher, counselor, or principal at school who has helped you this year.  Must be 3 paragraphs and must list at least 2 specific reasons why you appreciate them.  Be as detailed as possible.  Close with Happy Thanksgiving.  Date it and sign it. 

Juniors will then present college videos.

Sophomores will do Road Trip Nation lesson #12.

Agenda: Friday, November 20th, 2009

Jrs - present college video projects.  Watch RTN interview.
Sophs - RTN Lesson #10 and #11.

Monday - We are going to write "Thank You" letters for Thanksgiving to a teacher, tutor, counselor, principal or someone you are engaged with at school.  These will be handed in on Tuesday for a test grade.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Agenda: Wed & Thu Nov. 18/19, 2009

Quote of the Day:

1.  Tutoring for first 1/2 of the period.
2.  Juniors will present their Video Projects on the college of their choice.  If time remains we will watch RTN Lesson #7
Sophomores will watch Lesson #9 "Making it Work":

We will read this from the Website:
    Making it work is about putting all of the other Axles together.  By now, you have been exposed to a lot of insights from the road and hopefully you have a better grasp of the common themes that bind the Leaders’ stories together.  What is important to remember as you continue on your journey is that these themes will forever weave themselves into your own life.  Now that you are familiar with them, you’ll be able to recognize that the role each of these themes plays in your life constantly evolves as your circumstances change and you continue to refine your road.  Allowing this evolution is not easy – there will be compromises and decisions you have to make along the way, you will have to maintain focus and balance, and you must continually be an active participant in order to make it all work.
    While ”making it work” includes finding creative solutions so that you can continue paying the bills while doing what you love, it also includes the ability to recognize when things need to change, knowing when circumstances are out of your control, and not being hard on yourself when things don’t work out the way that you planned.  All of these things require persistence, dedication, stamina, tenacity, and the ability to find a balance between dreams and reality.  While the ability to bring all of these qualities into your life on a daily basis seems like a tall order, the cost of the alternative – living a life that does not align with who you are – far outweighs the constant practice of making it work.
     As you begin defining life for yourself, there are going to have to be a lot of compromises you make.  For example, if you’re like most people, you may have to work to support yourself while in pursuit of what it is you are passionate about.  You might have to take a low-paying internship, or even work for free just to be a part of something you are interested in – and that’s OK.  It’s this hard work and dedication that will enable you to continue building a life around what you love, and eventually you will be able to get to a place where you do not have to make these compromises.  Just like many Leaders have done, the more dedicated you are to incorporating your passions into your daily life, the more you will set yourself up for opportunities that align with what you want to do.
Students will discuss these questions when the video ends. (We will use the RTN books to help us)

1.  Using what you have learned from the Axles of The Roadtrip Nation Experience, now how are you going to respond to the question, “So what do you want to do with your life?” 
2.  Think back to your response when you first answered this question in Lesson 1.  Now that you have had a chance to absorb the Leaders’ common themes, which, if any, of the Axles shaped your response above the most?

Agenda: Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Quote of the Day: "To have a second language is to possess a second soul." - Charlemagne

Tutoring! Bring a good question. Lots of tests in the next week.

Things to do:
If you are signing up for the ACT/SAT see your counselor for waiver forms.
Do not sign up without one.

Also, be thinking of a teacher, counselor, or principal that you would like to thank. We will be writing "Thank You" letters for thanksgiving next week. I'll be putting the letters in the teacher's boxes.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Agenda: Monday, November 16, 2009

Quote of the Day:

Both classes will write their Goal of the Week.  We will correct them in class - peer edit.

Juniors will present their video projects on the college of their choice. Then we will watch:

Lesson 8 : Self-Confidence

Self-confidence is an Axle that touches all others. Without it, you are more likely to fall asleep at the wheel and less likely to take risks; with it, you’ll be able to define your life’s work and have the self-assurance necessary to continually work hard defining a path for yourself. Self-Confidence can be inconsistent – some days it may feel like you can do anything and then the very next day you might feel hopeless, confused, and unsure. While this may be frustrating, this is normal, and is part of the process of taking an active role in building your own self-confidence.

Developing your confidence is a continual process of learning to trust yourself in making decisions that are consistent with who you are. Living a life that is consistent with your core is empowering and will become its own self-fulfilling prophecy; the more steps you take to align your life in the right direction, the more positive thinking will consume you. The real challenge, however, is that often the good feelings of being on your own path lag behind the actual point of action; in other words, feelings of hesitation, self-doubt, and nervousness are often felt before the good feelings, which makes it hard sometimes to take action or envision the outcome of that action.
Sophomores will watch lesson 8 - Self Confidence and also an additional interview and we will discuss self-confidence.

Agenda: Friday, November 13th, 2009

Computer Lab Time for both Juniors and Sophomores.

The Juniors are working on finishing their college videos. We will start presenting on Monday.

The Sophomores will be working on the Road Trip Nation dot org website to answer feedback questions and assignments.

On Monday both groups will do lesson #8 of Road Trip Nation - Self Confidence.

Be prepared for a binder check next Tuesday. Take Cornell Notes!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Agenda: Wed & Thu Nov. 11/12, 2009

Agenda: Tutoring and then AVID class for...

Sophomores - Road Trip Nation Lesson 7
Juniors - ACT prep and discuss the College Video Project

Friday we will be in the computer lab.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Agenda: Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Quote of the Day: "Veni, Vidi, Vici!" I came, I saw, I conquered - Julius Caesar, 47 BC

Agenda:  Tutoring today.  Bring a great question.  Get some help.  First tutoring session of the new six week's period!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Agenda: Monday, November 9, 09

Quote of the Day:  "Sail away from the safe harbor.  Catch the trade winds in your sails... Explore, Dream, Discover."  -- Mark Twain


Juniors 4th period --
1.  Goal of the Week
2.  Road Trip Nation interview - The inspirational story of Damon Dash
Damon Dash claims he still doesn’t know what he’s going to be, yet he has always been sure of one thing: he's going to be successful. Growing up in Harlem, he acquired the entrepreneurial skills he would need to capitalize on those opportunities when they did arise. Instead of hanging out on a stoop in Harlem, as he once did, he now hangs out at his plush office in downtown Manhattan and gets paid handsomely for being there. As Dash recounts, personal tragedy also shaped his rise to the top. A turning-point occurred after his mother died. Only a teenager, he lost his sense of security and knew he had to take care of himself. Obliterated by the loss, he became fearless. At the same time, he tried to follow the Golden Rule by treating others as he wanted them to treat him. For someone who was the class clown and to his high-school peers probably the most unlikely to succeed, Dash has come a long way—without formally studying music, fashion, business, film, or any of the other enterprises with which he has been engaged. He combines an unflagging belief in himself with a strong work ethic.

 Damon Dash's Quote:  "You have to work hard - Always work hard. Don’t expect anyone to give you anything. If you really believe in something, then fight for it... Don’t let anybody tell you anything different."

3.  We'll pass out the ACT practice test books and work through those for the final part of the period.  We need to start setting our dates for when we want to take the ACT and SAT this spring.

 Sophomores - 
1.  Goal of the Week
2.  We'll catch up on some examples of Road Trip Nation lesson interviews.  Over the past week of working with Road Trip Nation our conversations have gone longer than expected and we have not gotten to a few of the video examples Mr. Duez was hoping for.   Jeff Adams, Olympic Wheelchair racer, is one of those interviews.  We'll take Cornell Notes.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

District Football Champs!

Way to go Eagle Football!  31-7 win over Kingwood.
The Eagles finish the regular season 9-1 overall, 5-1 in district and will be the top seed in the Class 5A, Division II bi-district playoffs next week. They open against Chavez at 7 p.m. Thursday at North Shore.
See the Chronicle Game article here.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Agenda: Friday November 6, 2009

Quote of the Day:


Sophomores 7th Period:

Lesson 6: Hard Work Versus Luck
     What is more important, hard work or luck? It’s no secret that luck can often play a big part in positioning you for success – being at the right place at the right time, making connections with people, stumbling across something randomly that interests you. However, it’s your hard work and talent that keep you there and allow you to take advantage of opportunities when they come your way. As world-renowned film editor Walter Murch says in this lesson video, “The world is full of people who are talented, who were not lucky and did not work hard, and washed out.” In other words, there are people all around you that may have found themselves in situations where luck may or may not have played a role; but either way, they did not have the necessary foundations in place to sustain their talent in order to take advantage of opportunities and thus could not make anything of themselves.
     In order to understand the concept of how hard work can actually position you to take advantage of luck, we must first explain what working hard means. It is easy to label things that are tedious, laborious, difficult or even boring as “hard work.” But the real question is working hard for what? If you’re working hard at something that doesn’t matter to you, there’s little value in how your time is spent. The goal is to find ways to put hard work in the larger context so that you can see the big picture of where that commitment is taking you. You want to be working hard for something that you believe in.
We will watch the video that goes with the lesson and also see this video:

Walter Murch, Film Editor and Sound Designer; Apocalypse Now, Ghost, Julia, House of Cards

Fortunately for Walter, he discovered at an early age that he had a gift for sound recording, even though he didn't take his youthful experiments seriously until after he had explored other paths, including architecture and oceanography. Always eager to push things and see what happens, he found himself in good company at USC film school, where he met George Lucas, another graduate student whom instructors identified as a troublemaker for daring to challenge cinematic conventions. Impressed by Ingmar Bergman's Seventh Seal, a film Walter saw while at USC, he had the revelation that maybe he could create something equally moving and monumental and at the same time earn a living. He had his chance as the sound designer for Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now, one of many award-winning productions with which Walter has been involved during a long and fruitful career. Known for taking risks and breaking the rules, he attributes his success to three main factors: luck, talent, and hard work. Each factor, he explains, functions like a leg of a tripod. The trick is to keep the tripod balanced, a skill he has mastered.
Junior AVID Students will be getting 3 materials:
1)  Road Map to College
2)  Financial Aid Information Packet
3)  The practice test for ACT
We'll spend the first 1/2 of the period working on Road Map and Financial Aid information in groups.  The second 1/2 will be working silently on ACT practice test.
On Monday we'll work on the first group of ACT practice test questions in our tutor groups.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Agenda: Wed/Thu November 4 & 5, 2009

Quote of the Day:

First 45 minutes - Tutoring (Any reassessments of binders/cornell notes - See Mr. Duez)
Second 45 minutes -  In Class Timed Writing Essay for Test Grade

Sophomores will write about a Road Trip Nation interview, lesson, or the RTN field trip this week.
Juniors will be writing the MLK "Friendly Letter."

Each essay will need to include:
1)  Paragraph Form
2)  Thesis underlined
3)  At least 3 paragraphs
4)  Name, Date, Period

The Road Trip Nation essay will give specific examples of what you learned and how you related to the interview, lesson or field trip.

The MLK "Friendly Letter" needs to answer the prompt:

Prompt: Your chosen leader - Martin Luther King, Jr. - had major concerns about problems, issues, or events that occurred during the period in which he lived. After studying one of these and the leader’s life, prepare a friendly letter, written as if it were from the leader to a specific audience, in which he or she discusses the problem related to an issue or event and some of the possible causes and suggests a solution. Both the problem and the solution must be consistent with the leader’s views, actions, and goals—and the historical period.

You may use the two packets given to you in class as a resource.  They contain "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" and also the "I Have a Dream Speech."

Agenda: Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Quote of the Day:

& Binder Check

Monday, November 2, 2009

Agenda: Monday, November 2, 2009

Quote of the Day: "Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare." - Japanese Proverb

Learning Target:  
* Create a definition of "failure"
* Understand Road Trip Nation's definition of failure and how it can actually be turned into a learning experience and an opportunity.

Lesson 5:  Road Trip Nation "Success, Risk, and Failure."

Think for a minute about writing an essay.  In school, you are asked to rewrite and rework drafts before you make your final submission.  There is a tangible end, and if you don’t make revisions or follow specific directions, you won’t receive a passing grade.  Life really works that way.  In life, you are constantly rewriting, redrafting, evolving, and adjusting where you want to go and who you want to be.  You never turn in a final draft; you’re just living with a working copy that you keep revising as you change and grow.  Once you get into your head that there is no definite endpoint, that there are no wrong answers on your path to success, it is much easier to shed the fear of failing.  Roadtrip Nation has defined failure as one of the greatest opportunities to learn and improve ourselves, or an acknowledgment that you’re pushing yourself outside your comfort zone.  It is that push outside your comfort zone in which you are making your life happen, not waiting for it to happen to you – that will always be a success regardless of the little failures that occur along the way.

Students will answer these two questions in class:
1.  Read Roadtrip Nation’s definition of failure above.  Now, redefine failure for yourself.  Through this new lens, what does the word “failure” now mean to you? 
2.  Think of a situation when you made something happen for yourself, and it didn’t work out the way you had hoped. What did you learn from that experience? Did the fact that you “failed” really matter in the long run? Explain.