English 111 & English Fundamentals (ENF) 3, Spring 2018
M & W 7:00-9:00, Williamsburg Campus
Rick Dollieslager, Thomas Nelson Community College
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Why take college composition? To communicate professionally!

Mon & Weds Office Hours 1:00-2:00 and 6:00-7:00 in classroom 233
Tues & Thurs Office Hours 11:00-2:00 in room 207Q
Office Phone: 757-258-6506

Email me at dollier@tncc.edu
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I am an Equal Opportunity Educator: I refuse to discriminate against, condone discrimination against, or participate in, or support, or tolerate discrimination against any person based on ethnicity, religion--or lack thereof, age, gender, national origin, political affiliation, physical disability, learning disability, sexual identity, or sexual orientation.

Last Updated, 23 April 2018, 8:00 p.m.

Important Notice!!

At the start each class, open this web page to look at the agenda for the day. At the end of each class, return to this web page to get your homework assignment and view the agenda for the next class. You'll never miss an assignment, a due date, or an important announcement if you come to this page every day.

Class Video Resources
Class Web Resources
Jump-Links to Weekly Schedule

Plagiarism and Citing Videos

  • Assistive writing and editing technologies:
  • The "Speak" function in M.S. Word
  • Speechnotes Chrome browser and cell phone voice-to-text app
  • You will find Paper Rater useful in providing computer feedback on your papers
  • Grammar/spell check with both M.S. Word and Grammarly

Week 1

--Week One--

Wednesday, 1/10/18
In-class activities: 1] Review syllabus, course policies, overview of course. 2] Registration and introduction to the Little Seagull Handbook/InQuizitve lessons (class set # is 48230) and the Norton Write lessons (class set # is 48222)

Homework assignment for Wednesday, 1/17/18:

Week Three

Monday 1/22/18 In class: 1] Discuss survey results. 2] Take the DRP

Homework for Wednesday. 1/24/18:

Wednesday 1/24/18 In class: 1] Discuss Richardson's and DeCoster's advice. 2] Begin the learning unit on the NHLP. 3] Draft the first two body paragraphs of the brain development essay OR finish the DRP. 4] Save the drafts to Google Drive

Homework for Monday. 1/29/18:

Week Four

Monday 1/29/18 In class: 1] Discuss synaptic firing and growing dendrites. 2] Begin drafting the next two body paragraphs.

Wednesday 1/31/18 In class: 1] Workshop. Finish drafting the body esays 2] Discussion: Introductions and conclusions 3] Activity: Find the Handbook resources in Little Seagull.

Homework for Monday, 2/5/18:

Week Five

Monday 2/5/18 In class: 1] Discuss thesis statements, transitions, essay unity. 2] Reconstructing Bertrand Russell's essay. 3] Peer review, editi, revise, perfect your essay.

Homework for Wednesday, 2/7/18:

  • READ all the instructions for researching and writing Critical Thinking Journals. Preview the grading rubric at the bottom of the lesson page.
  • Write Critical Thinking Journal #1, Henry Ford's quote.
  • Submit the Critical Thinking Journal entry #1 and the NHLP essay at the start of class on Wednesday.

Wednesday 2/7/18: Mark-up and note-taking for "close reading": (A) Preview the essay using SQ4R in Cornell format (B) "Showing" vs. "Telling" in writing; marking up "The Battle of the Ants." Copy the story into MS Word and highlight the sentences that "tell" in a light blue background, and highlight the sentences that "show" in a yellow background.

Homework assignment for Monday 2/12/18:

Week Six

Monday 2/12/18 In class: 1] Discuss "The Battle of the Ants" 2] Preview Langston Hughes

Homework assignment for Wednesday 2/14/18:

Week Seven

Monday 2/19/18 Tonight's agenda, prepping for revising and editing NHLP esays. Group Projects: 1] Does punctuation really matter all that much, or is it just some English teacher thing? Let's ask John!! The Dear John Letter. 2] Big Money: How much would YOU pay for a comma? A $million? Two $million? A $2 million comma?! 3] The Grammar Crossword. Find the sections in the Little Seagull Handbook that correspond to and can help you to answer the following questions, and pencil in the section number next to the clue. Across: 1, 5, 17, 33, 41, 51, 56, 66. Down: 4, 10, 12, 25, 49

Homework assignment for Wednesday 2/21/18:

Wednesday 2/21/18 Editing and revising: Read about thesis statements in the Guide to Grammar and Writing. Then do this Thesis statements activity.

Homework assignment for Monday 2/26/18:

Week Eight

Monday 2/26/18 Agenda: Begin Errors Analysis Project. 2] Discuss the transitions activity and using transistions in the revision of the NHLP/brain development essay.

Homework assignment for Wednesday 2/28/18:

Wednesday 2/28/18 Agenda: 1] Troubleshoot any problems you had with the Errors Analysis Project. 2] Discuss the transitions activity and using transistions in the revision of the NHLP/brain development essay. 3] Perfect and submit the Errors Analysis Project and your revised, perfected essay on the NHLP.

Week Nine

Wednesday 3/14/18 Agenda: 1] Submit the Errors Analysis project and the revised NHLP essay for grading. 2] Together re-read and summarize "Salvation," and discuss how to document the summary. 3] From your timeline of significant life events choose a "defining moment" (or turning point, or milestone) and begin drafting your own defining moment essay.

Week Ten

Monday 3/19/18 Agenda: 1] Peer review and then complete the defining moment essay. 2] Mid-term progress reports. 3] Preview/begin next essay/learning unit.

Wednesday 3/21/18 Agenda:

Group I: Begin Unit on George Orwell.

Read and discuss "A Hanging" (1931), a short essay written by George Orwell, first published in August 1931 in the British literary magazine The Adelphi.

george orwell 

Homework assignment for Monday, 3/26/18:

Group II: 1] Peer review and then complete the defining moment essay. View videos on the Creator mindset and the Victim mindset (as defined by Dr. Skip Downing and others): You will be writing about this, so take notes! Dominic, Jesse, the Professors. What got Jesse back on course? What got Dominic back on course? What is the most notable quote from any of the professors? 2] Read and highlight the topic sentences of each paragraph of these three pages excerpted from Chapter 2 of Dr. Skip Downing's book called On Course: Strategies for Creating Success in College and in Life: "Adopting a Creator Mindset." While Dr. Downing does not give his specific definition of a Creator or a Victim (capital C and V), he describes their behaviors. How do you think Dr. Downing defines a Creator and a Victim? E.g., "Dr. Skip downing defines a Victim (capital V) as a person who . . . Whereas he describes a Creator (capital C) as a person who . . ."

Homework assignment for Monday, 3/26/18:

  • Finish highlighting and note taking on Chapter 2, "Adopting a Creator Mindset," from Dr. Downing's book. Your notes should include YOUR paraphrase of Dr. Downing's definition of a Creator or a Victim (capital C and V).
  • Read, highlight, take notes (per instructions above) and be ready to discuss my essay called "Succeeding Against the Odds." Would you say Patrick was a Victim or a Creator? Why do you say so?
  • Read Prof. David Mirman's teaching blog essay called "Do You Think Like a Creator or a Victim?"
  • Use Speechnotes (Chrome browser only) to summarize Mirman's essay that he wrote in his blog for his students


Week Eleven

Monday 3/26/18 Agenda: No class tonight due to illness.

Wednesday 3/28/18 In-class activities: 1 Discuss/begin webfolio project using Google Sites or Wix.com


Group II Homework assignment for Monday, 4/2/18:

  • Write the following paragraphs:
    • Write a paragraph defining the Victim mindset and the Creator mindset, and giving examples of Creator behavior and Victim behavior from Dr. Downing's book's excerpt and from Prof Mirman's article.
    • Body Paragraph 1: Defines what Dr. Downing means by a "Creator" and a "Victim" and attributes him as the source of these definitions. This is from his book excerpt, posted on 3/19 above.
      • Describes/gives examples of Creator and Victim behavior from the three sources we read--The excerpt from Chapter 2 of Dr. Downing's book (posted 3/19), my essay "Succeeding Against the Odds" (posted 3/19), Prof. David Mirman's blog essay written for his students (posted 3/21).
      • Gives at least one example from each of those three sources, and describes the source of your information so that the portfolio readers will know what you are talking about and where you got the examples from.
  • Write a personal experience paragraph describing a Creator whom you know personally--not Oprah, Michael Jackson, Donald Trump, but someone YOU know personally.
    • Body Paragraph 2: Describes a Creator whom you know personally, SHOWING what this person has done that makes you call him or her a Creator.
  • Body Paragraph 3:
    • First, view videos on the Creator mindset and the Victim mindset (as defined by Dr. Skip Downing and others): You will be writing about this, so take notes! Dominic, Jesse, the Professors. What got Jesse back on course? What got Dominic back on course? What is the most notable quote from any of the professors?
    • Discusses the impact of adopting the Creator mindset and how reading Dr. Downing's book influenced the two students from the videos that I accessed from the On Course website.
    • It describes what got the student Jesse off course, and what she did to get herself back on course. It also describes what got the student Dominic off course, and what he did to get himself back on course.
  • Concluding Paragraph: This will describe your own rules for success in college and in life with reference to the models you discussed in the body of the essay--i.e., your own example of a Creator (Body Paragraph 2), as well as what the Creator students did in the articles we read and the videos we watched.

Week Twelve

Monday 4/2 In-class workshop: 1] Finish the essay "Adopting the Creator Mindset" by writing the introduction. The introduction will include what you think is the most notable quote from any of the Professors in the video from Dr. Downing's On Course web site. It will provide any other background information needed in order for your portfolio readers to understand the context of what will follow, and it will clearly state your thesis about the value of adopting the Creator mindset. 2] Take good notes when we view the video again in class, and we will discuss the quotes that you found most notable.

Homework assignment for Wednesday, 4/4/18:

Some of the quotes from the video, which we talked about in class, follow. Remember that when you use a direct quote, it has to display inside of "quotation marks."

Week Thirteen

Monday 4/9 In-class workshop: 1] Finish editing essay #3 2] Webfolios workshop. Sample webfolios and your class index page:

Homework assignment for Wednesday, 4/11/18:

Wednesday 4/11/18 In-class activities: 1] Safe Assign. Post Essay #3 in BBd to run it though the Safe Assign plagiarism checker. Make any revisions needed after using Safe Assign, then print the final draft for grading. 2] Begin "This I Believe"essay project.

Week Fourteen

Wednesday 4/18 In-class: 1] DRP post-semester reading comprehension test 2] Edit/revise returned essays and post them to your webfolio, or finish "This I Believe" essay.

Week Fifteen

Monday 4/23/18 In-class activities: 1] This I Believe is due. 2] Research and draft CTJ #3, 4, or 5 (one of these--your choice)

Wednesday 4/25/18 In-class activities: 1] CTJ due. 2] Research and draft CTJ #3, 4, or 5 (one of these--your choice)

Webfolio of Revisions


  • Your home page, which will identify you and the purpose of this web site you are developing. It will include:
  • A brief introduction (some things about yourself)
  • An image of you or an image that in some cogent way represents you
  • Links to your class page and the TNCC website
  • Your college email link or a Wix form for emailing you if you used the Wix webpage builder
  • An index of links to your posted projects

Four Essays

  • Essay #1: "The Natural Human Learning Process"
  • Essay #2: "A Defining Moment in My Life"
  • Essay #3: Either "Adopting the Creator Mindset" OR "George Orwell's Defining Moment"
  • Essay #4: "This I Believe"

Three Critical Thinking Journals

  • CTJ #1: Henry Ford quote
  • And two from these three CTJs:
  • #3 Paulo Coelho quote
  • #4 Heraclitus of Ephesus quote
  • #5 William Penn quote

Grading criteria (10 points):

  • The homepage has all of the information and details stipulated above (1 pt.).
  • The homepage is unified, and it is easy to navigate to the other pages (1 pt.).
  • The homepage is well edited and grammatically correct with information presented in complete sentences where it is appropriate to do so (1 pt.).
  • Revisions of essays and Critical Thinking Journals: 1 pt. for each essay or CTJ which is revised and edited per the grading marks and suggestions for improvement.
  • Note: Extra consideration will be weighed into the grade for pertinent material voluntarily added to the webfolio.


Week Sixteen

Monday 4/30/18 In-class activities : Webfolio conferences?

Wednesday 5/2/18 In-class activities: Webfolio conferences?


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