Halfway to 3-day Weekend!!!

Happy Friday! I know we had a rocky week with me being gone, projects being due for English 1, REACH exams for English 2, starting our new books (Swallowing Stones and Hole in My Life) and other circumstances, but THE SHOW WENT ON, and you performed so well!  Let’s keep the same energy going when we get back from our little break! Here’s what you need to do at some point this weekend for me to keep those brains working!  Enjoy your weekend!!!


  • Complete any missing work!!!
  • Write the prediction for your new Independent Reading book if you didn’t finish it before you left
  • Finish Reading and annotating up to Chapter 3 of Swallowing Stones
  • Use this template for the double entry journal:

Ch. 1 Question: What influences Michael’s decision to hide the gun? What could be the consequences of his actons?

Ch. 2 Question: How does Jenna’s dad’s death affect her decisions?

Ch. 3 Question: How does guilt influence Michael’s decisions?

Quote Response


  • Complete any missing work!!!
  • Read Chapter pgs. 22-24, 27-31

Stop near the top of p.22, after “lugubrious,” and discuss: How would these diaries and their sections help Gantos in his writing and his independent learning? What was the benefit for keeping these diaries and in this way? Explain.

Comment Response Quote

Stop at the bottom of p. 24 and discuss:  Gantos says, “It was sexy to imagine myself in prison.” How might this impact his future decisions? What about the experience would he find appealing? 

Comment Response Quote

Stop at the top of p. 28, at the end of the first complete paragraph and discuss:  If we consider his statement, “I certainly had no interest in becoming a criminal,” and take into consideration his statement above about prison, how does this create a potential for dissonance in possible future decisions? Think of dissonance as being a conflict between attitude and decision, or the tension that a decision makes us feel. Explain.

Comment Response Quote


Read pg. 36-38. Why does Gantos choose not to go in? On pg. 38, he says, “… I knew I had made the right decision.  But I didn’t know entirely why…” Why does he say this? What do you think he is foreshadowing?

Comment Response Quote

Read pg. 48-54.   What does Gantos’s trip symbolize?  What does he mean by, “I figured I was a dead man too…”

Comment Response Quote

Reminders for everyone:

  • PRIZES for SPIRIT WEEK!!! If you show up dressed up for Spirit week I will be giving away homework passes, extra credit, and other SURPRISES!!!


Tuesday, 10-15-13“Roll Out of Bed  Day”(wear your favorite P.J.’s).   Costume judging will take place after school in the gym every day.  Prizes will be awarded to the 4 best dressed.


Wednesday, 10-16-13“Hawaiian Day”(wear a Hawaiian shirt or a hula skirt) in which we will be selling leis.


Thursday, 10-17-13, SUPERHERO/Villain DAY (Dress up as your favorite super hero/Villain or just wear a t-shirt with a picture of your favorite super hero/Villain). 


Friday, 10-18-13, “Hancock Spirit Wear Day” a Pep Rally“Pep Rally Pies”, and a Homecoming Dance.

  • Your grades are ALWAYS changing!!! CHECK YOUR GRADES AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE!!! You can always raise your  grade by going to lunch tutoring or Scholar Hour.  See me for more details and a pass. Then, I will send you down during lunch or after school.
  • Build On Meeting Tuesday in Room 101!
  • Build On applications for Trek are in room 101.  If you would like to apply they are due October 31!
  • Culinary Club will meet on October 16! We have 2 field trips coming up- Chicago Cares Senior Dinner on Oct.24 and Chicago Youth Programs on Oct.19.  If you would like to come please make sure you are present on Thursday!

About jvpilar

Here's a little info about your teacher. I worked really hard to become your teacher. I went to UIC to get a degree in English, but decided to work as a writer in California. While I was there I realized I would rather work with kids than work in an office all day, so I decided to come back to Chicago and become a licensed, fully certified teacher. I earned a Masters Degree in Teaching and Education from Dominican University and got my first job at Hancock. During my 4 years at Hancock, I have taught English at every grade level. I started the Culinary Club and also sponsor BuildOn, both clubs do community service projects all over the city. I also have a cat named Duke that I rescued during one of our BuildOn service learning projects and a dog named Duchess.

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