THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 15 In class today, students shared and discussed their topics for their public policy report and common-ground argument essay. In 5B, students shared their analyses of an opinion piece by Michelle Malkin and began presenting their conclusions to the class; we will finish and start this in 6B on Tuesday. I also assigned homework, due Tuesday, Feb. 20, in which students will examine annotated examples of argument essays and practice analysis. The homework reading guide is posted on the textbook readings page. The analysis helpers are posted on the literary analysis page.
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 13 Today, we reviewed terms and elements of rhetorical analysis in preparation for practicing rhetorical analysis of written texts, beginning with letters to the editor and opinion pieces. We then read and discussed how slogans and even single words carry messages and "warrants" to an audience. We read and discussed two letters to the editor, and I assigned an opinion piece by columnist Michelle Malkin to be read and analyzed, using the terms an analysis elements we reviewed. The analysis is due in class on Thursday. Additionally, the students' articles and op-ed logs and topic decisions are due on Thursday.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 9 Today in class, students wrote two short essays of rhetorical analysis of a political cartoon. If you were absent, write the essays in the library during Homeroom on Monday. It will not be accepted after Monday. Keep reading articles and op-eds about policy issues in the media: Your topic decision and final log is due Thursday, Feb. 15. Period 6B students turned in their logs for a log check today; 5B students will turn it in Monday.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7 Today in class, we discussed sound argument, propaganda, and political cartoons as another kind of persuasive text. Students then practiced rhetorical analysis of political cartoons. On Friday, students will complete an assessment of their ability to engage competently in rhetorical analysis by choosing two political cartoons (several will be provided) and writing a short essay of analysis of each, using their terms charts. If you are absent for this, complete the assignment in the library during Homeroom on Monday. You must take this test by the end of the day on Monday.
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 5 In today's classes, I reviewed the first rhetorical analysis (of the Kindle / Mayonnaise advertisement) and how to analyze a visual text's symbols. Students then practiced rhetorical analysis of political cartoons, which we will continue in class on Wednesday. The student's log of news article and op-ed reading is due on Feb. 15, along with a public policy issue topic decision.
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 1 Today in class, we had an excellent follow-up discussion sharing ideas and impressions from Mayor Pike's presentation on Tuesday. Following that, students learned about three types of claims: claims of fact, claims of value, and claims of policy. They practiced identifying which claim is being made in various statements. We also discussed how claims of value cannot be treated as claims of fact that can be proven by reason and evidence, as claims of facts can. We learned about "warrants"--the stated or embedded beliefs and attitudes that an audience may have and how to acknowledge these in argument. Students were given a packet of a few pages to finish reading and understanding as homework. Continue reading op-eds and articles in order to learn about current public policy issues and to help you decide a topic for your project. Your reading log is due on Feb. 15--as well as your topic decision.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 30 We had the privilege of listening to a presentation by St. George Mayor Jon Pike during class today. He spoke about city, state, and national politics and issues of importance to St. George and Washington County residents. We will follow up with a discussion in class on Thursday. I also gave students an opportunity for extra credit (a valuable learning opportunity), to use the president's State of the Union Address to practice rhetorical analysis. Follow the directions on the handout given in class. I will give and discuss a post-speech analysis of sound argument in class on Thursday. I have posted the handout ahead of time (also below). Meanwhile, continue reading and logging articles and op-eds to become familiar with current public policy issues in order to decide on the best topic for your common-ground argument project.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 26 Students completed an essay of rhetorical analysis today in class, so if you were absent, go to the library and ask for the assignment. Complete the assignment by Tuesday afternoon. The textbook reading homework was due also, and students turned in their logs of article and op-ed reading. On Tuesday, we will meet in Lecture Hall B for a presentation by St. George mayor Jon Pike. Please be in attendance!
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 24 Today in class, students learned how to "read"a visual argument by examining and analyzing pieces of photo-journalism. We also practices identifying various logical fallacies in statements from op-eds. HW: Textbook reading from Ch. 11 about analyzing multimodal texts--DUE FRIDAY (posted on my Textbook Readings website page). On Friday, students will be writing an essay of rhetorical analysis similar to the example in the homework reading.
MONDAY, JANUARY 22 In class today, I introduced the next set of "tools" in our "rhetorical toolbox": logical fallacies. Students learned that a sound argument is built on truthful premises and conclusions drawn from valid logical reasoning. Without beginning an argument with truthful premises, an argument will not be sound. Nor will an argument be sound when fallacies destroy logic. A chart of common fallacies is posted on the rhetorical analysis (RA) page, along with a handout of argument statements in which fallacies occur. We are working at identifying embedded fallacies, using the chart and will continue this on Wednesday. HOMEWORK: Continue a daily scanning of trusted news venues for articles and op-eds of interest for possible topics of public policy for your semester project. Complete a log entry for the articles/op-eds that you read. Bring this log to class.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 18 In class today, we finished analyzing advertisements for audience (what demographic), appeals, and rhetorical strategies. We will be applying these to other visual and written persuasive texts next week. Meanwhile, students are to be reading news for issues of public policy and op-eds arguing positions on public policy--and recording these on the Issues Reading Log (see the Rhetorical Analysis page).
TUESDAY, JANUARY 16 Today in class, we reviewed the rhetorical terms and concepts we have learned so far and moved on to learn to identify rhetorical strategies used in persuasive texts. Students matched terms to definitions and came up with an example of each. Working with a partner, students analyzed an advertisement for its audience, appeal, and rhetorical strategies. Students will present their analysis next class. HOMEWORK: Students are to be reading articles and op-eds in the news regarding current public policy issues and recording their daily reading on a log--use the document posted below. You can type or write on it. The log will be due on Feb. 15, but I may ask to see it intermittently before then. (In other words, don't procrastinate; this is daily homework.)
THURSDAY, JANUARY 11 In class today, students created an ad slogan for oatmeal that incorporated the three types of appeal (logos, pathos, ethos) for a targeted audience. In 5B, students learned about journalistic style, what is meant by "op-ed" and where this is in a newspaper, and how to determine a potential slant in a publication. Students should be able to explain the following terms: rhetoric/rhetorical, opinion, editorial, propaganda, appeal, logos, ethos, pathos, and confirmation bias. Outside of class, students should be doing a daily scan of news and opinion to learn what controversial issues are in the news and to decide which issue they are interested in learning about and writing about.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 9 Today in class, we read from the textbook (and a handout) about Aristotelian rhetoric and learned some basic terms and concepts, such as the roles of ethos, logos, and pathos in persuasion and rhetoric. The reading guide to complete is posted on the Textbook Readings page. I also assigned homework to be completed daily: Scan several news sources (we discussed some in class) to learn of current issues of public controversy. This will help you to narrow to an issue of interest to you for your semester-long project. NOTE: If you did not take ENG 1010, you will need to complete the DSU LIB 1010 online course this semester. A good option is to read the study packet and test out of the course by January 16. I posted the study packet from DSU on the Course Info page.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 5 Today in class, we read and discussed the ENG 2010 course disclosure and the course calendar. The disclosure signature page is due on Tuesday, Jan. 9. (DSU course registration is due by Jan. 10.) Students also began the Report and Common Ground Topic Worksheet, posted below. Please complete this and bring it to class on Tuesday, Jan. 9.