Archive of ‘English G8’ category

Comparing books and films: The Outsiders

In english we have spent the past few months reading and discussing ‘The Outsiders’ by S. E. Hinton. It is the story about the relationship between two rival gangs and it’s told from the view of a young teenage boy called Ponyboy. 

After we had then watched the movie we discussed if we think the movie properly captured the theme of the book.

In many ways I think that the director did a good job of turning the book into a movie. However I also think that many of the characters were not shown exactly the way that S. E. Hinton had intended. In the book one of the most important characters was Ponyboy’s brother, Soda Pop. However in the movie he hardly even appeared.

Another difference between the movie and the book is that in the book you get to see the sides of both gangs in detail as Ponyboy has an in-depth conversation with one of the Socs (the rival gang). In the movie however this conversation is missing so you do not understand the good side of the Socs and  so you think that they are all bad people.

In conclusion I would say that the movie was mainly faithful to the book as the story line was still the same. However I did enjoy the book more than the movie as you got a more in depth view of the story.

Responding to ‘The Screaming Staircase’ by Jonathan Stroud

In English we did a unit on poetry. At the end of each unit we like to combine the books we are reading with the assessments we did on that unit. This time we decided to write a ‘found poem’. Found poems are a specific type of poetry. To create one you take words and sentences from other texts making them sound and look like poetry. You can do this by leaving out certain words, changing the length of the sentences, etc.

There are many people who have done this and there are also many reasons why they would do thisimgres. One of the reasons why someone would write a found poem is that this might make the text that they are reading easier to comprehend. Also it would make them think more deeply about the text. Some people also might like making serious texts e.g. a legal text more fun and interesting. 

So as at the moment I am reading a book called ‘The Screaming Staircase’ written by Jonathan Stroud. I decided to try to make a found poem of my own.

This is what it turned out to be:

The weight of substance pooling in the ceiling

Drips breaking loose in a second place

The rate of falling getting faster

I flicked my flashlight


I saw the floor stain spattered out

Broken fingers of blood reaching in our direction

Quick, follow me

We approached the door

It was closed.

It is pretty obvious that this book is a horror story. However it also has a lot of adventure and mystery in it. Jonathan Stroud used many literary techniques in his book. You could easily imagine what was happening which is why I think that Rick Riordan’s comment (you’ll want to keep the lights on) is so truthful. The story really gripped me and I didn’t want to stop reading. One of the techniques he used was personification. He did this a lot which again made it a lot easier to visualize. Proof of the fact that he used personification multiple times in his book is that even just in the one scene that I selected he used this technique; ‘Broken fingers of blood reaching in our direction’. This was used in a very effective way as it makes it more threatening than if he would have just said ‘the blood was coming towards us’. Also the mood he created by saying this was rather scary and made you anxious to know what was going to happen next. Another technique that I used in my poem was sentence length and punctuation. The very last line was the only one where I put a full stop. I did this to make it sound more dramatic and so that it has a bigger effect on the reader. Also the exclamation mark after blood (also in caps lock) made it more powerful.

Overall, I think my text shows the theme of the book effectively. However it was hard to create a poem with just limited vocabulary. I will admit that I change a few words so that the sentences will make sense, but I did try to stick with the actually text from the book.

“River Readers.” River Readers. N.p., 26 Dec. 2013. Web. 29 Jan. 2015.

‘Changing Minds: Changing Worlds – Language for emotional effect and change’

In this unit in english we discussed how words and images can effect your emotions. We also looked at how ads and poems can influence how we feel and what actions we take. To understand this more thoroughly we did a comparison of a poem and an ad. We focused on the ways that the texts influenced your emotions to make you become aware of a certain issue, such as deforestation or poverty. This could help us later in life as it will mean that ads/poems will be less likely of bribing us into buying something as we will be able to recognize the techniques they are using to do this.

Another activity that we did in this unit was when we create our own original texts.We could choose if we wanted to make a poem or an ad. I liked this as it let us be creative and use the techniques that we learned about. When we were done with this we looked at the texts of our peers and chose one to analyze. I chose to look at Lisa’s poem about poverty. There are many types of poverty. The one that Lisa focussed on was hunger. It is an important issue to address as it is becoming an increasing issue. The gap between the rich and the poor is becoming larger and larger each year.

The author of the poem chose to use imagery. She effectively described what it felt like to live in poverty by writing a description using most of the five senses. The tone was angry and insulting. She wanted the reader to understand what it would be like to live in hunger. The mood she created was sad. I as the reader felt sympathy for the persona.

I think pathos techniques could definitely have an influence on society if they appeal to the readers emotion. However I think that ads are a lot more effective than poems as many more people look at ads than people who read poems.

Responding to ‘Sapphire Battersea’

The book ‘Sapphire Battersea’, is the sequel to ‘Hetty Feather’. It was written by Jacqueline Wilson and is about a young girl who grew up in a foundling hospital and now has to go out and work as a servant to earn a living. She final has the name she has always longed for and has gotten rid of her old horrid name ‘Hetty Feather’. But does her new name also mean that she gets a better life? This book tells the story of her new life as a servant and her excitementimages when she is finally rejoined with her childhood sweetheart, but then another boy appears in her life.

I personally liked the book because it is very entertaining as there are many ups and downs to her life. Also it tells you a lot about life in the victorian times and you can learn many things that could also help you in  your life.

I believe the main theme of this book is growing up and finding your place in the world. Hetty Feather, now known as Sapphire Battersea, grew up in a foster home for the first five years of her life and since then she has lived in the foundling hospital. She still has a very childish attitude and an extrealy wild temper. Also she has two sweethearts and has to decide between them. But even thought he book focusses on Sapphire growing up it also shows the very close relationship between her and her mother.

One important symbol in this book is Sapphire’s red hair. It is mentioned multiple times and is always linked to her feirce temper. Many people miss judge her because of her red haircolor. But her hair did not only bring bad things into her life. It was actually the thing that made her mother recognize her in the hospital. I think her hair represents her own will to do things her way. But sometimes she also needs to calm down. Often when she was calm she was actually combing her hair and trying to stop it from standing in every direction.

Another symbol that represents growing up, is the very ladylike, silk, green dress she made for herself. She stitched it all by hand and it was the first thing she ever made and actually used for something. Also as it was her Sunday dress it was the one she always wore to church. I believe that the church can also be related to growing up and finding your place in the world around you.

This book made me feel many different emotions. One of the main emotions was sadness. Later in the book, when Sapphire’s mother dies she is very upset and as the book is written in the first person’s view it effects the reader even more. At certain points, the book also made me feel surprised at the way she and the people around her acted.

I think this book can be read by many different age groups as it is very easy to read (I read it for the first time when I was 9) so even people who have a harder time reading in english should be capable of reading it.

“Hetty Feather (character).” Jacqueline Wilson Wiki. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2014.