Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Dear Students, I have updated an assignment on Teams.  Grand Rounds for Chapters 8 and 9.  Due date (flexible if need be): April 24th.  I have added another shorter assignment that’s due April 29th.

Please email if you have any questions.

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Sharing another meme connected to The Great Gatsby:

Monday, April. 6, 2020

Dear Students…. Good morning.  Please feel free to check here from time to time. But I also encourage you to use Microsoft Teams.  Login into Office.com and you’ll find an icon with “Teams”.  Go from there…. I have posted an assignment (not worth any works – more of a welcome note) under our class.

Also, I’ll likely assign the last two chapters of The Great Gatsby – Grand Rounds style.  This assignment was initially due April 3.  But since so much has changed for our learning I am adjusting this due date.  Stay tuned.

Ms. Brett

Saturday, April 4,  2020

Found this meme and thought I’d share…. Ms. Brett


Friday, April 3, 2020

Dear Students,

Welcome back to our new way learning. I have included a welcome message and a brief assignment (not worth any marks) uploaded on Teams. Students, please familiarize yourself with Teams if you haven’t yet already.

I hope you are all keeping yourselves well in these are very unusual times. I’m sorry we can’t connect in the class but it’s my hope we can find meaningful ways of interacting through Teams.

Please email me at abrett@vsb.bc.ca or chat with me through Teams if you have any questions.

Ms. Brett

March 11, 2020

Dear Students, Please have Grand Rounds completed for Chapters 8 + 9 — due Thursday, April 2nd. After the break.

Ms. Brett

March 6, 2020

Dear Students, Please be sure to complete Grand Rounds for Chapters 6 +7 for Wednesday, March 11th.

See you Monday. Ms. Brett

March 4, 2020

Dear Students,

Chapter 4 and Chapter 5 due tomorrow – March 5.

Great Gatsby Grand Rounds

Ms. Brett

Feb. 26, 2020

Chapters 1-3 will be due on Friday, Feb. 28th. Please use the Grand Rounds format I showed you in class.

You can find the rubric here:

Great Gatsby Grand Rounds

And the format for Grand Rounds:

Grand Rounds Format

Ms. Brett

Feb. 20, 2020

For homework, please be sure you can speak to the following questions related to e. e. cummings’ poem: “pity this busy monster,manunkind”.

Discuss imagery.

Discuss punctuation.

Discuss theme.

Discuss tone and attitude.

Discuss the use of literary devices.

Discuss the title.

Due Monday, Feb. 24th. Have a good weekend! Ms. Brett

Feb. 18, 2020

Dear Students,

Please read through “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” and answer the following questions:

  1.  What do you think the theme of the poem is?
  2. Please find three heroic figures that Prufrock compares himself to. Discuss the significance/importance of these comparisons.
  3. What is the question occupying “J. Alfred Prufrock”? Find evidence from the text to justify your response.
  4. What is the mood of the poem? Find textual support.
  5. Why is the poem called “A Love Song”?
  6. Compare J. Alfred to Prufrock. How are both sides of the speaker characterized?

Due Thursday, Feb. 20th.  Ms. Brett

Feb. 12, 2020

We will discuss “The Second Coming” today as well as Auden’s “Musee des Beaux Arts”.

A preview of what we will be studying this afternoon:

“Musee des Beaux Arts” by W.H. Auden

With your group,  answer the following questions. Each group member should be responsible for one question. Write down all answers in your notebook. You will share your group’s answers aloud.

Allusion (noun) A passing or casual reference to something well-known; an incidental mention of something, either directly or by implication.


1) List all allusions in the poem. Why does Auden allude to these things/events/people?

2) Who is “they” and the “old Masters”?

3) List important diction in the poem and explain why these words stand out.

4) What role does imagery play in the poem? Give an example.

5) What’s Auden’s overall tone, and how do you know this?

Please read “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot for Tuesday, Feb. 18th as well as the questions to “Musee des Beaux Arts” by . W.  H. Auden (in the above section).

Have a great long weekend! Ms. Brett

Feb. 6,  2020

“The Second Coming”

Read the poem aloud to students 2-3 times. After the first time through, pause after each line. Reflect on/define vocabulary:

falconer (a person who trains birds of prey), /falcon (bird of prey), gyre (spiral), anarchy (absence of authority), vexed (annoyed), indignant (annoyance of unfair treatment), Spiritus Mundi (world spirit or universal memory)

Read the poem aloud once more. Please answer the following questions:

  1. How would you describe the mood of the poem? (In other words, what feeling or atmosphere does it bring about?) What are some adjectives that might describe it?  What are some ways the author achieves that mood? Give specific examples of imagery, diction, sentence structure, etc. and explain how they contribute to the poem’s mood.
  2. The poem was written in Europe in 1919. How would you describe the historical context of the poem? Does this context help you understand it?
  3. Does the poem have meaning outside this context?
  4. Is what Yeats describes inevitable (impossible to avoid) in any society? Will generations in time always be like a “widening gyre,” with people growing further and further away from the teachings and principles that bind their communities together?
  5. The poem is entitled “The Second Coming.” Is the “rough beast” (a desert sphinx) approaching Bethlehem a savior, or something else?  Why did Yeats choose a desert sphinx in this part of the poem?
  6. What is the most powerful image in the poem? Explain why you chose that image. You can draw this image too.Due Monday, Feb 10th. Thank you. Ms. Brett

Feb.3,  2020

Dear Students, please meet me in the library once again tomorrow.  Three more presentations to go!

Ms. Brett

January 23, 2020

Dear Students,  please read this article:


Also, presentations begin on Wednesday, Jan. 29th. See you next week!

Ms. Brett

January 21, 2020

Hi Students,

Projects are due on Wednesday, Jan. 29th. Consider using Prezi, Powerpoint or Pechakucha. Slides should be image-based and not too wordy.

You may want to challenge yourself with Pechakucha:


Great Gatsby Research Assignment


Block 2.2 . (long block) please meet in the library Tomorrow – Thursday, Jan. 23rd.

Ms.  Brett

January 16, 2020

Dear Students, Please meet me in the library on FRIDAY, January 17th.  Thanks –   Ms. Brett

January 14, 2020

Sorry for my delay in updating the blog. Here are the questions for “The River Merchant’s Wife: A Letter”:

Part I. What connections do you observe between the speaker and the imagery of nature (as seen in these natural objects)?

Consider the monkeys, mosses, leaves, river, and butterflies:

a. monkeys → Why does she notice the monkeys? How does it match her feelings and create a mood?

b. moss / leaves → Why does she notice these? How do they match her feelings here? What mood is created?

c. the river → Besides being the river merchant’s job location, what could the river represent/symbolize?

d. paired butterflies → Why does she notice them? How do they match her feelings and create a mood?

Part II. How is this wife shown as a dynamic character through her thoughts, feelings, and actions? What about her letter that allows us to relate to her experiences?

DUE tomorrow – Wed. Jan. 15th. See you in class. Ms. Brett

January 7, 2020

Happy New Year!

Please meet in the library on Thursday,  Jan.  9th as you will be writing/revising “The Loons” paragraph.

See you then.

Ms.  Brett

Dec. 12,  2019

Dear Students,  On Monday, you will be asked to write an in-class paragraph on “The Loons” by Margaret Laurence.  See you then, Ms. Brett

Dec. 10, 2019

Dear Students,

We will continue watching “Indian Horse” on Thursday.  Monday, Dec. 16th, we will write an in class paragraph on “The Loons”.

Ms. Brett

Dec. 6, 2019

Dear Students,

Please remember we will write a paragraph in class on Tuesday on “The Loons”.


In the Margaret Laurence’s short story, “The Loons”, the key theme is the portrait of a sociological reality – some have everything, others have nothing.

In the short story, “The Loons”, by Margaret Laurence, differences of privilege are revealed when two diverse walks of life spend a summer together.

In Margaret Laurence’s “The Loons”, social disadvantage is revealed through the characters of Vanessa and Piquette.


“The Loons” by Margaret Laurence, the power of privilege is strong as two girls from diverse backgrounds aren’t able to connect.

In Margaret Laurence’s “The Loons” by Margaret Laurence, sadness and poignancy are the result when two diverse backgrounds fail to connect.

What is a paragraph?  7-11 sentences. One topic sentence that reflects a thesis. TAG – title author genre in that topic sentence. Developing sentences that support topic sentence.  Please provide support/evidence and explanation with each point made. Please use transitional words (first, next, finally, on the one hand,  on the other hand). Write in present tense.  Be analytical.  No use of I, you or me. Be formal. Stay objective. Concluding sentence should echo topic sentence.  But do include some new insight, understanding.  Use short, direct quotations from the text in your developing sentences.

Have a good weekend!   Ms. Brett

December 4, 2019

Dear Students,

Please work on comparing Piquette and the loons in the story.

See you Friday. Ms. Brett

Monday, Dec. 2, 2019

Dear Students,

Please be sure you have completed the questions assigned to “The Loons”.  We will discuss next class.    Plus, please remember to return “Indian Horse”.

See you Wednesday. Ms. Brett

Thursday, Nov. 28th, 2019

Dear Students,   Welcome to Term II!

Please be sure to return your Indian Horse text next class. Thank you!

Also,  please read “The Loons”by Margaret Laurence. There are questions at the end of the story –  please complete.

See you Monday.  Ms. Brett

Friday,  Nov.  22,  2019

Dear Students,

Please continue to reflect on your learning for Term I.  2.1 class please be sure to meet at the Vancouver Art Gallery on Tuesday,  Nov. 26th at 10:30am.  2.2 see you in class on Tuesday.

Have a good weekend. Ms.  Brett

Monday, Nov.  18th, 2019

Dear Students,

Let’s continue to reflect on our end of term learning.   On Wednesday, we will look at metaphors.   See you then. Ms. Brett

Thursday, Nov. 14th, 2019

Dear Students,

Six word story/summary of the novel due Monday, Nov. 18th

Here are three examples:

“What a nice priest; never mind”.

“Hockey.: His output and a frustration.”

“Indian Horse treated like a mule”

Also, be sure you have the Hero’s Journey (Saul’s Journey) completed.

Have a good weekend.  Ms. Brett

Tuesday, Nov. 12th, 2019

Dear Students,

2.1/2.2 – we will discuss the last assigned chapters of the book on Thursday.  Also, we will review Saul’s Hero’s Journey.

2.2 – we will also discuss your Vancouver Art Gallery visit.

See you Thursday.

Ms. Brett

Wed. Nov. 6th, 2019

Dear Students,

Chapters 41-56 questions/plot points and imagery/metaphor collecting due Nov. 14th.

Chapters 41-56 Indian Horse

Block 2.2 please remember we are meeting at the Vancouver Art Gallery at 10:30 am on Tuesday, Nov. 12th.

Block 2.1 – we will meet in class.  See you then!

Have a good long weekend. Ms. Brett

Tuesday, Oct. 29th, 2019

Dear Students, Please meet in the library on Thursday.

Also, continue reading Indian Horse to the end of the novel.

Ms. Brett

Tuesday, Oct. 22nd, 2019

Dear Students, Reminder – we are heading to the Writers Festival on Thursday, Oct.24th. Meet at Granville Island around 9 am.  Hang out for a bit and meet me and Ms. Sandhu at 9:45 am at Arts Club Theatre (1585 Johnstone Street – right next to the Public Market.  The performance begins at 10:15 and concludes at 11:45.  Please head straight to school for your 2.3 class.

All Roads Lead to Writing

Michael Christie (Greenwood) was a professional skateboarder before his Giller-longlisted debut. High school dropout Jesse Thistle (From the Ashes) struggled with homelessness, crime and addiction before he turned his life around—and channelled it into his extraordinary memoir. Between the two of them, Robyn Harding (The Arrangement) and G. Willow Wilson (The Bird King) have experimented with almost every form, from journalism to superhero comics, while Karen McBride (Crow Winter) balances her passion for novel-writing and teaching. Sharing their surprising paths to the page, this conversation offers refreshing perspective on the age-old question “What should I be?”, underlining that while we may not know what our careers will be, passion is paramount for both good writing and good living.



Friday, Oct. 18th, 2019

Dear Students,

Continue to work on the assignment/questions attached to Chapters 15-40.  Due Oct. 29th.

Precis Writing Due Oct.22/24.  Writers Festival next Thursday!!!

Have a good weekend. Ms. Brett

Wednesday, Oct. 16th, 2019

Dear Students,

Precis Writing – due next week – the 22nd or 24th.  See me for assistance if you need it.

“I am” poems were returned with feedback.  You are welcome to re-do/re-write and re-submit sometime next week.

Also, today I distributed the handout that accompanies Chapters 15-40.  This assignment is due on October 29th.


See you Friday! Ms. Brett

Friday, Oct. 11tth,

Dear Students,

Please remember that your practice precis for the article we discussed today is due on Wednesday, Oct. 16th.  Four (4) sentences in total.  See sample found here in this assignment: Precis Writing

Also, the handout for Chapters 11-14 for Indian Horse is due on Wednesday.

Your election/reconciliation precis assignment is due Oct 22/24.

Field trip forms and $ due ASAP.

Have a great long weekend.  Ms. Brett

Wednesday,  Oct.  9th

Dear Students,

Today you submitted your “I am” poems.  Thank you very much!  Next up, Precis Writing and Precis assignment.  Due on Friday Oct. 11th: Exercise 1 Conciseness Removing Deadwood 1 . Please reduce paragraph of 200 words approximately to 80 words approximately.  Thank you!

Another activity is due the week of October 22nd.  Here it is: Precis Writing

To help you with precis writing, please practice by reading this article and reducing it to 4 sentences.


This is due on Wednesday, Oct. 16th.  I’ll give you feedback on your precis writing.

Additinally I asked you to re-read Ch. 9-10 for homework.  Please look for 4 similes/metaphors in those 2 chapters.  We will discuss this on Friday,  Please do not worry about Chapters 11-14 until instructed.  Thank you!

Chapters 9-14 Indian Horse

Finally I mentioned our next field trip to Vancouver Art Gallery (Nov. 12/Nov. 26) depending on your block.  Please see here for more information: Vancouver Art Gallery Field Trip form

Ms. Brett

Monday, Oct. 7th,

Dear Students, Today we had a guest speaker – Mr Allan Buium, a retired Social Studies Teacher from Eric Hamber.  I look forward to hearing your thoughts on Wednesday.

On Wednesday,  your poem is due – “I am”.  See you then!

Ms. Brett

Email: abrett@vsb.bc.ca

Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019

Dear Students,

“I am Poem” assigned.  Rough Draft due on Monday, Oct. 7th.  While working on this, please recall the following poems we studied in class “I lost my talk”, “And my heart soars”, “The Lonely Land”, “The Forsaken”, and “Poem for Duncan Campbell Scott”.  Really reflect on the use of repetition, punctuation, content (ideas), expression, tone, title of poem, and VOICE.

REMEMBER: Sound, Image and Idea – THREE INTENSITIES TO POETRY by Ezra Pound.

Good copy is due on Wed. Oct. 9th.

We have a guest speaker coming in on Monday: Allan Buium.

Have a good weekend!  Ms. Brett

Tuesday, Oct. 1st, 2019

Dear Students,

Today we looked at “The Forsaken” and for homework I assigned “Poem for Duncan Campbell Scott” by Armand Garnett Ruffo.


Please read to find examples of religious imagery and allusion plus references to the Crown/British control.

Please remember to bring your signed field trip forms for the Writers Festival.

See you Thursday!

Ms. Brett

September 27th, 2019

Dear Students,

Today we looked at poetry by Chief Dan George “My Heart Soars:  and AJM Smith “The Lonely Land”.   For homework, I assigned “The Forsaken” by Duncan Campbell Scott:


Please read the poem carefully several times and pay attention to Ezra Pound’s Three intensities to Poetry: Sound, Image, Idea.



Writers Festival: October 24th.  Meeting at the Arts Club for Event 31: All Roads Lead to Writing.  Please meet at 1585 Johnston Street at 9:45am.  Please arrive earlier to enjoy the Public Market.  You will be dismissed at 11:45am and please hurry back to Eric Hamber for your 2.3 block.

Writers Fest

Screen Shot 2019-09-19 at 1.43.39 PM

Please pay $11 online:  https://www.schoolcashonline.com/

Permission form to be completed/signed and returned ASAP.

Many thanks, Ms. Brett

Monday, Sept. 23, 2019

Dear Students,

Today we looked at “Shebandowan” and annotated it carefully as a class.  We also spoke of “The Writer’s Burden” – Unity, Cohesion, Transition, Variety and Emphasis.

Next class we have Kyle Ross joining us.  If you want to start preparing for his visit, please reflect on the following:

write down a value, cultural object, or other symbol of your culture and be prepared to describe its history to you and your family,

Thanks for a great class today.   See you Wednesday.  Ms. Brett

Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019

Dear Students,

Today we discussed “I lost my talk” by Rita Joe.  Then we read Richard Wagamese’s autobiographic essay “Shebandowan”.  There are two questions on the handout – 1) expand on what the essay means to you.  Connect to your own life.  2) Please annotate the essay and look for stylistic devices such as metaphor, simile, alliteration, imagery, repetition, variety in diction (word choice) and syntax (sentence structure), transitions, emphasis (key words). Tone, too.  Please do this on a separate piece of paper.

Due Monday, Sept. 23.  See you then. Have a great weekend.  Ms. Brett

Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019

Dear Students,

Today we reflected on the following:  What landscape stays with you? What location do you recall most reverently? Think about places you’ve been to that continue to stay with you.  What makes that place/location/spot so important?  Explain in detail.

We also read Chapters 9 and 10.

I assigned “I Lost My Talk” by Rita Joe for homework.

Ms. Brett

Sunday, Sept. 15th,

Dear Students,

Last class I was at the VSB for a meeting.  Your task was to read Chapters 5-8 and work on completing the handout.   We will explore poetry soon and some picture books/graphic novels connected to our study of Indian Horse.  Please continue to think about story telling.  Why is our story important?  How does language shape us? What’s our relationship to the land and/or the land we come from?

Your reflection pieces/discussion exercises are important.  I have them and we will continue to work on them.

See you Tuesday. Ms. Brett

Hi everyone, Nice to meet you today!

Here’s what is due next Monday, September 9th:

-reviewing this blog/website 🙂

-working on your folders and handout

-thinking about an artifact/image from your family (a representation of your family’s past) – Please bring this in!

Have a good weekend. Ms. BrettIMG_8727