Author Research Powerpoint
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Author Exploration Presentation Mrs. Terry Language Arts
Your Goals and Instructions:
Use the internet to research the author of the independent book you have chosen to read for first quarter. Create a PowerPoint presentation to share this information. Following these instructions, you will see an example based on the short story “Seventh Grade” by Gary Soto.
Include slides for the following: Information about the author’s life, background, education, family, etc. Information about books and stories they have published, including any awards A quote from the author Information about the setting and historical/context of your book (when and where) An excerpt from the book or another work by the author (I used a poem for my example) 10 vocabulary words from what you have read so far in the book, their definitions and pictures to represent them
The following slides will give you an idea of what I am looking for in your Powerpoint. Be sure to save your work in your Server Documents and give it a title you will remember. Be sure that your name and hour appear on your first slide. Include pictures to enhance your presentation.
By Gary Soto PowerPoint by Mrs. Terry
Is the author of three novels, a memoir, several young-adult and children’s stories, and eleven poetry collections. He has won numerous awards for his work. As “the writer Joyce Carol Oates has said, "Gary Soto's poems are fast, funny, heartening, and achingly believable, like Polaroid love letters, or snatches of music heard out of a passing car; patches of beauty like patches of sunlight; the very pulse of a life."
About his Life…
Gary Soto was born in Fresno, California, in April, 1952, to working-class MexicanAmerican parents. At a young age, he worked in the fields of the San Joaquin Valley. He was not academically motivated as a child, but became interested in poetry during his high school years.
His Life, Continued…
He attended Fresno City College and California State University at Fresno while working toward an undergraduate degree, and later studied poetry at the University of California, Irvine, where he earned his MFA Master’s of Fine Arts) in 1976. His first collection of poems, The Elements of San Joaquin, won the United States Award of the International Poetry Forum in 1976 and was published in 1977.
A Quote from Gary Soto…
Where do you get your ideas for your novels, stories, and poems? I’m also a listener. I hear lines of poetry issue from the mouths of seemingly ordinary people. And, as a writer, my duty is not to make people perfect, particularly Mexican Americans. I’m not a cheerleader. I’m one who provides portraits of people in the rush of life.
Setting of the story “Seventh Grade”
“Seventh Grade” takes place in a school in Fresno, California, which is the fifth largest city in the state. Fresno, which means ash tree in Spanish is located in the center of the San Joaquin Valley in Central California. There is no particular time era mentioned in the story, which leads the reader to assume that it takes place at the time it was written, in the 1980’s. The story takes place on the first day of school.
Historical Context of “Seventh Grade”
This story likely took place in the 1980’s Clues: computer cards, crackling loud speaker, GQ Historical and Cultural Highlights of the 1980’s: the Cold War, conflict in the Middle East, space shuttle Challenger tragedy, E.T., Flashdance, Michael Jackson, Madonna, the cola wars (Coke vs. Pepsi), the preppie look, punk, neon, spandex, leg warmers, computer technology still new and evolving.
This is a screen from an Atari video game. We thought this was very cool in the 80’s!
The main characters are are Mexican-American. The characters attended a Catholic school as children “…since they were in catechism classes at Saint Theresa’s…” pg. 1 The characters are probably not wealthy. According to the text, the boys picked grapes in order to buy their fall clothes.
An Excerpt from the poem “Oranges” by Gary Soto
Outside, A few cars hissing past, Fog hanging like old Coats between the trees. I took my girl's hand In mine for two blocks, Then released it to let Her unwrap the chocolate. I peeled my orange That was so bright against The gray of December That, from some distance, Someone might have thought I was making a fire in my hands.
Vocabulary Words from “Seventh Grade”
elective: optional course or subject
sheepishly: in a shy or embarrased way
Sibera: a region in northern Asia known for its harsh winters
portly: large, heavy, rounded
ferocity: having great force
linger: to stay; to remain
scowl: an expression of anger; frown
Spanish Words Used in the Story
raza or “race” refers to people of MexicanAmerican, particularly MexicanNative American descent
saludo de vato: Spanish gestures of greetings between friends
French Language Used in the Story
Bonjour: “Hello” or “Good Day”
Très bien. Parlez-vous français? “Very well. Do you speak French?”
Le bateau est sur l’eau: “The boat is on the water.”