English 12 — Thur. Apr. 5

Today: We read Heather Monley’s short story, “Paddle to Canada” and discussed it. Students suggested the following themes for the story:

  • Families bond but are also broken up by dangerous experiences
  • Adventure can create stories for the future.
  • You have work at family identity in order to maintain it.
  • The enjoyment of risk can diminish quickly.
  • Family identity can be found through life experiences.
  • We respond to risk differently and this can create conflict.
  • Too much risk may jeopardize unity.
  • Nothing is changeless.
  • Memory is subjective.
  • Our memories may not always yield the truth.
  • Life is made up of stories.
  • Memories are altered from person to person and over time.
  • The way we view people has an impact on how we interpret our memories of them.
  • Perspectives change with time.

Upcoming assignment: Write a story (preferably based on your own experience) that explores one of the themes above. You may choose to write in the third person and fictionalize as much as you like,

Tomorrow: We will look at the punctuation (long dashes and colons) and structure of the story before beginning a first draft of our own.

Homework: Consider how the people in your family respond to risk differently. Or the stories that your family tells.

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