Day 121: Writing a Literature Review

1. Homework check. Students got out their green citation cards, which were checked for a HW grade, either for 100, 80, 70, 60, or 0. If you did more cards than required (3+ for Honors, 2+ for Regular), you got 1 point of extra credit for each additional card. If you got a zero today, show me your completed cards tomorrow for a 60.

2. Tense. Students all received W34, Literature Reviews. A literature review is a summary of everything everyone has ever written about a topic. Granted, you haven’t read everything about your novel, but you’ve at least read a few things. Now you summarize. We took a few key notes:

When writing about literature itself, always use PRESENT TENSE.

When writing about literary criticism, always use PAST TENSE.

3. Keywords. Students received on W34 a list of words to use instead of “said.” There were three lists: positive, neutral, and negative. Students identified and labeled each list of words.

4. Writing warm-up. Students copied and pasted the sample quotes below (see Thursday Warm-up) into a Word document. Then, we practiced typing those phrases into complete sentences using the keywords and syntax examples found on the Literature Reviews worksheet.

Here is an example of a good completed warm-up:

The Lightning Thief received mostly positive reviews. Eoin Colfer, author of Artemis Fowl, called the novel “[a] fantastic blend of myth and modern” (Janet 1 – Eoin Colfer, author ofArtemis Fowl). Publishers Weekly complimented the novel, by saying that it would ”leave many readers eager for the next installment.” (Ruth 1 – Publishers Weekly) Similarly, Kirkus said “[r]eaders will be eager to follow the young protagonist’s next move” (Bill 2 – Kirkus). A reviewer for the New York Times praised The Lightning Thief as “perfectly paced, with electrifying moments chasing each other like heartbeats” (Bill 1 – New York Times). In the same vein, Publisher’s Weekly noted its style was “swift and humorous” (Ruth 1 – Publishers Weekly). Common Sense Media rated the novel with four out of five stars, admitting some weaknesses. For instance, the reviewer criticized Riordan’s “choppy” writing and his shallow characterization.

5. Work time. Students decided who needed to write which section of the article (Major themes, Style, Background, Publication history, Reception, or Adaptations — for more information on each click here). Then, students shared citation cards, each author typing up the quotes gathered about their assigned section by the other teammates. We made sure to number each card, so that your citations should simply be a groupmate’s name and their card #. We will continue citations tomorrow in class.

HW: Type up your quotes into a paragraph/sentences. Due tomorrow at the beginning of class.

Tomorrow we meet in the media center.

Absentees: Download W34 and follow the directions on the back.