TNCC English 109 (Tues. & Thurs.) Fall 2006

You did it, friends. Now step forward into your bright future.

Last Updated, 13 December 2006, 10:00 p.m..

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Class resources

English 109 syllabus (including graded assignments and grading criteria.)

Webster's Dictionary Online

I use the On Course Student Success index as a resource for teaching and supplementing this class.

The "On Course Principles" are excellent guidelines for keeping yourself on course to academic success and to success in life!

Advice and guidelines for analytical reading of texts: SQ3R

The Cornell note-taking method: how to use and modeling the process.

While designed for working professionals, the Mind Tools web site has many useful self-help links, including techniques for memorizing.

Contact Mr. D. by email (, by phone (825-3543), or in person (room 874, first floor of Templin Hall)

Week One

Thursday, 8/24
In class:

  1. Turn in New Equations assignment
  2. Take the 109 Colleagues quiz
  3. Take this self-assessment and then print it out for your journal.

Homework for Tuesday, 8/29:
Learn how to take note that you can actually use later, the Cornell note-taking method. Here are links to two sites that describe how to use the Cornell note-taking method and that model the process. I even have some blank templates: One is a lined template, and one is unlined. You should always use unlined paper when taking notes in a math or physics class, or in any other situation in which you will be writing mathematical formulas because the lines themselves can restrict how you take the notes or detract from how you read your notes back later. (Note: the Cornell templates appear to have lines when viewed normally on MS Word, but they will not print out that way. You can view them on "Print Preview" to see what they will look like.)
Bring to class: Two folders for use in English 109 and one folder for each of your other classes (or a binder if another professor has required you to use a binder for his or her class)

The most effective methods of learning*

Our goal is to move learning from the 5% retention rates of lecture alone, toward the 90% retention rates achievable by immediate use or "teaching others," the most effective means of retaining material learned.


*Research on learning and retention of information from the National Training Laboratories, Bethel Maine

learning pyramid

Homework for Tuesday, 8/29:
Write: Journal entry #1, responding to the highs and lows of the self-assessment.

Week Two

Tuesday, 8/29

In class: 1. Discuss the two quizzes from week one (combined and averaged for one weekly quiz grade). 2. Discuss "The Late Paper" case study. 3. Discuss Cornell note taking. 4. Practice Cornell note taking while discussing the job of a college student.

Homework for Thursday, 8/31:
Read: Introduction and Chapter 1 of On Course text book. In class on Thurs. we will write journal entry #2 (Journal entry 1 was already assigned).

Thursday, 8/31
In class: 1. Discuss journaling. 2. Write journal entry #2, page 19.

Homework for Tuesday, 9/5:
Read Chapter five, “Employing Interdependence,” pages 109-130. 
Write journal entries 15, 16 and 18
Due: On Course journals (entries 1, 2, 15, 16, 18) at the start of class on Tuesday, 9/5

Week Three

Tuesday, 9/5

In class: an Interdependence activity

Homework for Thursday, 9/7:
Read: This collaborative activity having to do with the myth of Icarus.

Tuesday, 9/7

In class: Do this collaborative activity having to do with the myth of Icarus. You may collaborate in a group of any size as lon as it includes you and at least two of your Eng. 109 colleagues.

Homework for Monday, 9/11 (YES, that says MONday):
“Employing Interdependence" I will need help at 9:30 on Monday to set up for the drumming workshop in the auditorium, located at the other end of Templin Hall on the first floor. Please email me if you are available to help set up at 9:30. (If the previous email link does not work, copy and paste the following link into the "To:" line in your email reader: )

Photos from the March 2006 Drumming workshop

Participants comments from the March 2006 Drumming Workshop

Week Four

Tuesday, 9/12

In class: Discuss interdependency and the drumming workshop. Do a case study.

Homework for Thursday, 9/14:
Read pages 24-34 of Chapter II, "Accepting Personal Responsibility"
Write: I. A response/reflection on the drumming experiences. Send this to me via email ( II. Journal entries 3 and 4
 Self-assess: (this is a contemplative assignment, not necessarily a writing assignment) One-fourth of the way through the semester, how are you doing? What problems have you encountered? What resources have you used to address any problems you may be encountering? What things do you need in order to be successful in your classes?

Homework for Tuesday, 9/19:
Read pages 35-45 of Chapter II, "Accepting Personal Responsibility"
Write journal entries 3-6

Week Five

Tuesday, 9/19

In class: Discuss Creator and Victim language. Begin identifying Victim language and Creator language. Discuss "How'm I doin'?" Write a letter to myself.

Homework for Wednesday, 9/20:
ATTEND Tuskegee Airman's Presentation at Mary Christian Theater (1st floor Templin Hall) at 10-11 a.m. There will be an assignment (or multiple assignments) based on this presentation. Take notes! I will evaluate your Cornell notes as one of the assignments.
Here are links to two sites that describe how to use the Cornell note-taking method and that model the process. The blank templates are on the shelf near the door, or you may make your own, of course.

Homework for Thursday, 9/21:
Take-home quiz: Finish handouts on indentifying Victim language and Creator language. On the blank sheet, write your name near the bottom, and make a cover that is appropriate to the assignment. You may reject up to three of the sets of song lyrics and replace them with song lyrics of your choosing, focussing on why or how the lyrics identify Victim or Creator characteristics.
Write: A letter to myself: "How'm I doin'? What's my plan?"
Write: Cornell notes on the Tuskegee Airman presentation

Thursday, 9/21

In class: Discuss Revising Creator and Victim language in popular song lyrics. Turn in the asignment for this week's quiz grade. Discuss "a letter to myself." Where do you need any help? What is your plan for getting it? Place the letter in your class notes folder following the discussion (not your journaling folder). Keep it to refer to in a few weeks for another progress self-check. Discuss Cornell notes on the Tuskegee Airman presentation. Discuss: What happened to the Icarus project in my absence?

Homework for Tuesday, 9/26:
Read pages 49-67 of Chapter III
Write Journal entries 7 & 8

Homework for THURSDAY, 9/28:
Turn in Cornell-style lecture/discussion notes from one of your other classes. If not a class lecture, you may take lecture notes at a Student Success Seminar (check your student email for a list of these), from a sermon in church on Sunday, from a lecture you attend at teh Mariner's Museum, etc. I will grade these notes, so make them complete and follow the instructions for Cornell note taking.

Week Six

Tuesday, 9/26

I will not be in class so here is your chance to show your autonomy and shine! First, access the template to "Guess My Dream" and you may either save it to your disk and open it in MS Word, or you may print it out and write by hand on the printed sheet. Place it in my mailbox in room 852 at the end of class today. Second, referring to page 62, access this template for a life plan. Again, you can either save it to your disk and open it in MS Word, or you may print it out and write by hand on the printed sheet. Once complete, label it as Journal Entry 9 and place it in your journal.
Very important: Provide a quiet working atmosphere in the classroom today so that your colleagues can concentrate and get their work done. Be responsible. I want to put praise of your work ethic and autonomy on the Wall of Success in our classroom, so be praiseworthy.

Homework for THURSDAY, 9/28:
Turn in Cornell-style lecture/discussion notes from one of your other classes. If not a class lecture, you may take lecture notes at a Student Success Seminar (check your student email for a list of these), from a sermon in church on Sunday, from a lecture you attend at the Mariner's Museum, etc. I will grade these notes, so make them complete and follow the instructions for Cornell note-taking. .
Read Pages 67-71
Write Journal entry 10

Thursday, 9/28

Turn in Cornell-style lecture/discussion notes from one of your other classes to be graded for a weekly quiz grade.
In class: Visualizing our dreams and making them real, an on-line workshop.

Homework for Tuesday,10/3:
Email me Your personal affirmation (from step 4 of journal 10)
Turn in Journals at the start of class, through entry #12
Read pages 77-89
Research on the Internet to find images of your successful life 15 years from now, and save them to a diskette or jump drive so that you can bring them to class. "What images?!" you ask. What will your job be? Find a picture. Where will you live and what will your house look like? Find a picture. What will you drive? What will you eat? What will your family look like? Your spouse (if any)? In other words, look at your journals and picture the life you are designing for yourself and find photos that correspond to that great life you are creating; the images will help you to stay focused on achieving your dreams. This will be the start of your personal success web site. Here are some web pages created by the Eng 109 students in Spring 2006. Your site is going to much more detailed and much, much cooler than these were. This article will describe some other things you can do, both academic and personal, with your own web site.

Week Seven

Tuesday, 10/3

In class: Watch and discuss "Celebrate What's Right." Write and Send via email (during class) your personal affirmations.

Homework for Tuesday,10/5:
Turn in Journals at the start of class, through entry #12
Read pages 90-100
Write journal entries 13 and 14 (but do not turn them in on Thursday.)

Thursday, 10/5

Turn in Journals at the start of class, through entry #12
In class: Discuss personal affirmations. Discuss pages 77-100. Activity: Posting our desires.

Week Eight

Tuesday, 10/10

In class: Internet research workshop: Making an annotated "webliography"

Homework for Thursday, 10/12
Read pages 135-148
Write Journals 19 and 20
Write your responses to "The Goose Story," label the handout as "Journal 17," and place it in your journal in numerical order.

Note 1: This is assignment amnesty week!! If you have anything you have not turned in, I will accept it this week without a punitive grade. One time and one time only. This week and this week only. No extensions, no exceptions, no excuses. Period.

Note 2: Always bring a jump drive or 3.5 inch storage disk with you to class.

Thursday, 10/12

In class assignment: Internet research workshop: Research and save annotated webliography entries for at least two sites related to problems you wish to overcome in each of your classes and in life management in general. (That is, at least two sites for math, at least two for writing, at least two for reading, etc.). Again, this will be the start of your personal success web site.

Homework for Tuesday, 10/13
I. On-line research. My Spring 2006 English 109 class did a similar on-line resources project, but your resources web page will be much more thorough because you will have much more time to work on it. Nonetheless, take some time to look through the web pages created by the Eng 109 students in Spring 2006 because you may find some resources that you will want to add to your own web resources project.

Keep working on this site!! We have started it in class but you will keep developing your resources as an on-going homework project. Whenever your professors direct you to an on-line resource, they are telling you what you need to know and where to find it. Save those to your resources index. All of your professors know of valuable on-line resources to help you with any problems you are having, so consult them.

How do you know if the site you are accessing is viable for academic purposes? Here is some advice for analyzing web sites: 1]. Guidelines from technology research librarians Esther Grassian (UCLA) and 2]. Elizabeth Kirk (Johns Hopkins) 3]. Link three is an interesting journal article on that topic from educational technologist Alan November. A warning about taking the link to November's site though: if you go to it, you will dead end there. In other words the "back" button on your browser will not bring you back to the 109 class web page. It's a good article though, and I recommend reading it.

II. Read pages 149-160
III. Write journals 21 and 22

Note: There will be a (closed book) readings quiz on Chapter 6 on Tuesday. You may NOT use your book, but if you have written SQ3R/Cornell-style notes from Chapter 6, you MAY use your notes.

Week Nine


Mid-term Course Correction: Our foci hereafter are professionalism and personal responsibility. No more slacking off and hoping for a break. No excuses for missed or late work. No extensions on assignment deadlines. No exceptions.

Taking Responsibility

"Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it." George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

"The price of greatness is responsibility." Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

"Character--the willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life--is the source from which self-respect springs." Joan Didion (1934- )


Tuesday, 10/17

In class: 1. Chap. 6 "open notes" quiz. 2. Puzzle exercise followed by discussion. 3. Introspective writing from the puzzle exercise. Save these and label them as Journal 20.1, and place them into your journals. Journals will be collected on Thursday of this week.

Homework for Thursday, 10/19
Write: Open
this link to Journal entry 21.1 (this is in addition to the regular Journal entry 21 in Chap 6). Save it to disk and open it in MS Word. Write your responses, save it to your disk when it is complete, print it out, and place the printout in your journal folder as journal 21.1.
Read These selections on making oral presentations, from Rice University and from computer science professor Mark D. Hill at U. of Wisconsin, who has some suggestions about using PowerPoint that you can probably adapt, and also includes some humours "don'ts" at the end. Here is another resource from a Concordia University Business Communication class.

Show up on time for Thursday's class!

Thursday, 10/19

In class: 1. Guest lecture with Prof. Hayden on making oral presentations. Prepare for this by reading and taking notes from the "oral presentations" links above. Show up on time, and take notes, which will be turned in to me for evaluation as a quiz grade. 2. Discussion of oral presentaion topics. 3. Begin research and development of oral presentations. Here are a couple of sites that should help you to find resources on the academic skills upon which you wish to become experts. The first link is to a VCCS Teaching and Learning Resources site, and the other links to the index page of the Spring Eng 109 classes. If you go to the students web pages, they have links to resources that they found, some of which may not be on the VCCS Teaching and Learning Resources page. The first of the oral presentations will begin with COL Ambassadors groups on Oct. 30 and Oct. 31, the week that advising starts.

Note: I will collect journals today that are up to date through entry 21.1. If your journal is not up to date, get it up to date because I will collect the rest of them next Tuesday.
Homework for Tuesday, 10/24
Read pages 161-179 (Chapter 7)
journal entries 23-25
Research sites related to the "Academic Experts" oral presentation you will be making and also gather the resources to save in your developing annotated webliography of success resources.
Decide what the topic for your oral presentation will be and the venue in which you will present. If you don't decide yourself, I will assign you a topic, you will become an expert on it, and you will present it in the venue that I arrange.

Week Ten

Tuesday, 10/24

In class: Research workshop on oral presentation topics. Try some of these sites to look for resources for your oral presentation and your webliography of success resources.

Homework for Thursday, 10/26
Research at least six sites to use for your oral presentation and add these to your annotated webliography of success resources. I will look at your annotated webliography either on Thursday or next Tuesday.

Thursday, 10/26

In class: I have a conference to attend in Williamsburg this afternoon and I thought I would be able to meet with you for class and go there afterwards, but I have been asked to help with the set up this morning, so I will not be joining you for class. Nonetheless, be responsible and use the time wisely as follows:

Work on your oral presentation. Presenting the topics will be spread out over the ensuing two to three weeks, but we will not devote much class time to their development since we started discussing them last week and devoted class time to them this whole week. Take these links to a Power Point and a MS Word handout about making great presentations. Oral presentations will constitute 20 points of credit.
Keep developing your annotated webliography of success resources. I will look at (but not grade yet) your annotated webliography either on next Tuesday, so have a fairly well developed resource. The final resources web pages will constitute 30 points of credit.

Week Eleven

Tuesday, 10/31

In class: Pre-advising workshop (and other activities)

Homework for Thursday, 11/2
Read pages 161-179 of Chap 7 (Previously assigned on 10/19, I add this reminder: Take notes as you read the final three chapters of the book because I will give in-class quizzes and allow you to use your notes for the quizzes, but not the book itself.)
journal entries 23-25
Prepare for advising by [1.] finding an outline of your curriculum from the 2006-2008 TNCC Catalog, [2.] writing out, separately, an outline of all classes you have taken at TNCC, including those you have this semester, and the grades you have earned in each (except for this semester, obviously), [3.] logging in to "MyTNCC" using your EMPL ID and password prior to coming to class on Thursday, so that you know how to do this before class and, therefore, don't waste class time, my time, and your colleagues' time during our advising class session.

Thursday, 11/2

In class: Pre-advising workshop.

Homework for Tuesday, 11/7
Read pages 180-194 of Chap. 7
Write journal entry 26
Write notes on Chap 7. There will be a 20-question open-notes (not open-book) quiz on Chap. 7 on Tuesday, worth 10 points (equal to two ordinary quiz grades)

Week Twelve

Tuesday, 11/7

In class: 1.] Open notes quiz (20 questions) on Chap. 7. 2.] Register for Spring '07 classes

Homework for Thursday, 11/9
Read pages 194-207 of Chap. 8
Write journal entries 27 & 28
SQ3R notes on Chap 8. Next week, I will collect your SQ3R notes on Chapter 8 as the equivalent of two quiz grades (10 points) so take good SQ3R notes on this chapter.

Thursday, 11/9

In class: 1.] Jennifer and Alena will instruct us on SQ3R note taking 2.] Discuss the VARK/Learning styles questionnaire and study help pages

Homework for Tuesday, 11/14
Save the Making Course Corrections document to your disk or jump drive.
Write your responses to the document, save it and print it out, label it as Journal 28.1, and place it into your journal folder
Read the rest of Chap. 8
Write SQ3R notes on Chap. 8 DUE at the start of class on Tuesday, these notes will constitute two quiz grades (10 points)

Week Thirteen

Tuesday, 11/14

In class: 1.] What happened to the notes quiz on Chap 7? (20 questions) 2.] Oral presentations. 3.] Annotated Webliography of success resources due today. These annotated webliographies will contain at least 20 personal success resources. (I will extend the due date until noon on Wednesday 11/15/06, delivered to my hand in my office during my office hours, 12-2 p.m.).

Homework for Thursday, 11/16
Read an overview of Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligences research, and the Intelligence Profiles (take the links and read this material).
Write the MI inventory and assesss your own innate intelligences. This is due on Thursday as a quiz grade. Turn it in at my mailbox in room 852. Do NOT bring it to my office in room 874.
Read this essay about a student who was determined to be successful no matter what: "Succeeding Against the Odds"
Write journal entry number 30.1

Thursday, 11/16

In class: Draft the final paper
I won't be in class today since I have a meeting in the Richmond area. Please use your time wisely, and make a quiet working environment for your colleagues. Take chatting outside of the classroom, please.
Turn in the Multiple Intelligences Survey at my mailbox in room 852. Do NOT bring it to my office in room 874.

Homework for Tuesday, 11/28
Read Chapter 9, 224-234
Write Journal Entry 31
Finish journaling. Final journal collection will take place on Tuesday 11/28.

Week Fourteen

Tuesday, 11/28

In class: 1. Turn in Journals for final time, completed. 2.] Any oral presentations to finish? 3.] Work on Annotated Webliography or Final Essay. Both are due Thursday, by the end of class.

Thursday, 11/30

In class: 1. Finish Annotated Webliography. Turn it in both by the end of class today.

Week Fifteen

Tuesday, 12/5

In class: First, Katie and Jessica will prepare you for your final tests with a presentation on test-taking techniques. 2. Turn in final essay at the start of class today. 3. Post assessment due at start of class Thursday 4. Geocities workshop.

Thursday, 12/7

In class: Geocities workshop: Finishing webfolios
Due at the end of class: Webfolios (to be evaluated)

Week Sixteen

I am available to help you with your webfolio project ALL week. Come to my office to find me, and I will help you get a perfect grade on this project.

A note about Eng 109. This course is not only about how to be successful in college and in life, but additionally, I have designed it to be a successful experience for you. You should have an A or a B for the course. Here is why: While we had 50 assignments, we had no major projects, mostly very small assignments for very small credit. The message: make BIG projects into small ones by taking small steps instead of thinking you can make one GIANT leap and finish a big project. With 50 assignments and 46 class meetings, that averages about one assignment per class. If you have kept up with assignments as they were made, you will have a very good grade. Additionally, I hope that I have challenged you to do work beyond what you thought you were capable of doing (e.g., the webfolios). College is supposed to be a challenge! If you come to classes and do things you already are comfortable with and know how to do, there would be no purpose for taking college classes. If you were frustrated, good. If you had to struggle, good. If you were asked to do something that was outside of your comfort zone, good. Rise to the challenges of college and you show the whole WORLD the stuff you are made of.

Thursday, 12/14, 12 p.m.-1:45 p.m. ("finals" meeting time)

In class: First, discuss SDV 100 and Eng 109: "should the SDV 100 credit be incorporated intoEng. 109?
1. Write course evaluations. 2. Pre/Post assessments due. (These are Journal 31) 3. Revise and
publish webfolios 4. Set up evaluation conference. Bring ALL of your work to it so that I can assure that my records are accurate and you can know your final grade. Here is the grades sheet; fill it out before you come for your conference.

Class web page for Eng 109, Spring 2006

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