English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  
  If you took a scoop and dipped it into the vast pool of the english language and took out a word,
you might end up picking the word "scoop". When most people think of the word scoop, they
think of a spoon-like untensil that is used to pick up objects, or perhaps they think of a scooping
action in which you would pick something up, but the word scoop actually has more meanings then
these simple ones. The word scoop is a good example of the way that the English language is ever
changing because the word was used about 14 different times in the 677 years it has been around.

Every single dictionary that I have looked at says that a scoop is a ladle-like or spoon-like
instrument, when the word is used as a noun. When "scoop" is used as a verb two out of
three dictionaries said that it means to take up or out as if with a scoop. On page 772 of the
Webster's New Seventh Collegiate Dictionary it lists scoop as meaning: a large ladle, or a deep
shovel or a similar implement for digging, dipping, or shoveling. In General, it seems that all the
definitions are about the same for the word scoop.

The Oxford English Dictionary has a couple of unusual usus of the word scoop. For example the OED
listed a couple dead uses for the word which are a gunner's ladle and a kind of basket. It also
lists definitions that aren't in any other dictionary that I have looked in; it said that scoop
can also mean news as in a current event or a journalist's story. Also the OED listed scoop
with the unusual meaning of an instrument with a spoon-shaped or gouge-shaped blade, used for
cutting out a piece ffrom some soft material, or for removing a core or an embedded substance and a
varitey or coal-box. By doing this the OED retains its title as the king of dictionaries.

Along with the meaning, spelling, examples of the word in a sentance, and the etymology the Oxford
English Dictionary gives a list of authors who have used the word that you are looking up. For the
word scoop the OED says that Mark Twain wrote "One was a woman in a slim black dress... and a
large scoop-shovel bonnet". (Mark Twain, Huckelberry Finn xvii 154) Henry Stephens used the
word scoop twice in his book saying "the buckets.. are...scoop-shaped", and "Any
loose soil... should be... taken out by a scoop spade. (Henry Stephens, The Book of the Farm II.
203) Glancing at these authors, the word scoop must be pretty important if famous authors like these
used it.

Over the 677 years that the word scoop seems to have been used, it has pretty much stayed the same
except for a couple different uses and some "hip" slang being put into the dictionary. But
as we look closely at the word and the meanings we see that as the times change so does the word and
its meanings. So the English language as a whole will probably continue tochange aslong as
civilization continues to change.











Dear Mr. Shakespeare,

First off, I would like to say that I admire your work very much but I am extremely sorry to inform
you that your play Macbeth cannot be published in our next edition of Prentice Hall Literature: The
British Tradition. There are three main reasons as to why we feel that your play is not acceptable
to be put in our literature books. The first of these reasons is that there is too much violence in
your play; I know you are just trying to make it more interesting with fight scenes but we feel that
it sends the wrong message to our readers. The second reason is that there is a lot of deceit and
lying in your play. Finally, the third reason for rejecting your play is that there are many little
characters and by that I mean there are characters that serve no purpose in the play.

Starting at the second scene of the play and ending the last scene, the play is satiated with
violence and death. During Act I scene ii, Macbeth is defending Scotland from invaders from the
north, which is not that bad it shows that he is loyal to his country but it promotes violence and
we could do without it. Then in Act II scene i, Macbeth murders King Duncan while he is sleeping in
order for to take over the Scottish kingdom. This promotes an evil way to get ahead in life; it
shows readers that it is okay to murder people if they stand in your way. In Act I scene vii, Lady
Macbeth says,
“I have given suck, and know/How tender ‘tis to love the babe that milks me/I would, while it was
smiling in my face, /Have plucked my nipple from his boneless gums, /and dashed the brains out.”
The other editors and I at Prentice Hall feel that that line is to gruesome to print in our books.
In Act IV scene ii, Macbeth slaughters Lady Macduff and her son. The last scene of the play, Act V
scene viii, is the fight scene between Macbeth and Macduff during which Macbeth is slain and Macduff
becomes king. These are only some of the situations that violence is involved with in this play.

The second reason stated for us not to use your play was that there was too much lying and deceit.
In Act II scene i, Macbeth murdered Duncan who trusted his hosts to keep him safe during his stay
at their castle but instead they deceived him and killed him in his sleep. Then in Act III scene
iv, Macbeth sees Banquo ghost at a banquet he has and when Macbeth gets frantic Lady Macbeth lies to
all the guests and tells them that he is under the weather. In Act IV scene i, the second
apparition told Macbeth, “The pow’r of man, for none of woman born/Shall harm Macbeth.” (pg. 358)
The second witch was being deceitful because she makes it sound like Macbeth will not die unless it
was by natural causes but she really means that someone that had a C-section could kill him. Also
in the same scene the third apparition says “Macbeth shall never vanquished be until/Great Birnam
Wood to high Dunsinane Hill/Shall come against him.” (pg. 359) This is deceitful because it makes
it seem like he will not be killed until the forest moves toward which is impossible. All the
deceit might make the reader think that it is okay to tell untruths and be deceitful if you will
benefit from it.

The third reason for us to not put you in our book is because of all the small role characters.
Such as King Duncan’s son and Malcolm’s younger brother, Donalbain, we feel that he plays no special
role in the play. I do not even think he has any major lines in the play, the only thing he does is
move out of Scotland to Ireland. Also we believe that Hecate could have been cut out of the play
because she only helps the witches with their schemes which the witches could probably do on their
own. The Porter is another character that we feel you could have done without, or you could have
given him more of a role than just a drunken doorman because it’s good to have a little bit of comic
relief in a very tragic and serious play, like Macbeth.

Hopefully you can see our reasoning behind our actions. In your play the two main characters are
the worst characters in the whole book and the readers may pick up on their evil deeds and think
that they are alright because some tenth grade students can be very impressionable. To end on a
good note we are keeping your sonnets in the next edition and we are looking forward to adding other
works of yours to our later editions, such as The Tempest, or The Merchant of Venice.

Ryan Cavella









According to the World Book, Snowboarding originated in Michigan in 1965 when a man named Sherman
Poppen made boards for his children to surf on snow. At first, it was known as snurfer, a
portmanteau word of surfing and snow. Since its beginning, snowboarding has become more popular,
now over 20% of all visitors to ski resorts are snowboarders. Now over 3.5 million people worldwide
take up snowboarding as a sport. During the 70s and 80s snowboarding pioneers came up with new
designs for boards and safety equipment. Then in 1979, the first snurfing championship took place in
Vermont, and then in 1985 snowboarding officially became recognized as a sport after the World Cup
of Snowboarding in Austria. But despite these giant leaps in the popularity of snowboarding, the
United Kingdom has not really caught on to the snowboarding trend.

Although snowboarding is not popular in Britain, there are still people who enjoy it. Such as Jenny
Jones, from Bristol, England, who is currently competing in the Ticket to Ride (World Snowboarding
Tour) and is in 2nd place. But in former competitions, she has taken 1st place in categories such
as slope-style and big air. Another well-known snowboarder named Lesley McKenna is taking
snowboarding by storm as Scotland’s most famous snowboarder and most successful snowboarder, she has
not won many competitions but she has taken podium positions in World Cup circuits, including first
place in 2003. When there are professionals in a sport that means there also has to be amateurs,
such as Tyler Chorlton and Laura Berry who competed in the Junior World Championships in 2004

Even though snowboarding is uncommon in British books and poems, there have been a few movies put
out about snowboarding. These movies are The Last Winter, Dropstitch, and Transfer. All those
movies star Jenny Jones as a snowboarder. There is also another movie with Jones in it but it is
still being made, its working title is Float.

In the London Times, the last article specifically about snowboarding was written over a year ago on
January 14th, 2007, and it was about avoiding injuries while snowboarding. In the Sun, the last
article written about snowboarding was written during the Winter Olympics in February of 2002,
saying “Because McKenna, 27, is world-ranked ninth at the half-pipe discipline and she is determined
to become the first Brit to climb the podium”. In the Telegraph, the most recent article about
snowboarding was written back in August of 2007.

In conclusion, I am willing to guess that snowboarding will have to become more popular
because it is currently not too popular. A Possible reason that snowboarding is not popular is
because it does not snow too often in England. Or maybe it is because England only has a few
mountainous areas and the mountains are not really that tall. No matter what the reason is, I
believe snowboarding will fade in the UK if there is not a sudden boom in popularity















Mr. President, as it stands now we have English 10: British Literature. It fits into a
larger English program which is English 9: World Literature, English 10: British Literature, English
11: American Literature, English 12: Contemporary Literature. I am currently taking English 10:
British Literature as a course, and I learned that the word “scoop” has been used in fourteen
different ways over the last 668 years. I also learned all about romanticism, and the Victorian
ages of literature. I believe that English 10: British Literature should be abolished as a course.

Over the year my peer Hamadi Cantave learned the history of the word “animal”. Before
he did the research I’m positive he had an idea as to what the word “animal” meant so and learning
about the history of the word served no purpose to his life and seemed like a waste a of time to me.
Also He learned about the sport of alpine skiing. The last time I checked skiing is not a very big
sport in Britain and the sport has nothing to do with the literature. Another one of my peers,
Jimmy DeMoura, researched the sport “American Hockey”. Even the title goes against Britain; it is
called American Hockey so that definitely does not pertain to Britain.

A Local School named Boston Trinity Academy who does not teach British Literature and
the student who have graduated from that school are very successful. 100% of the students who have
graduated have been accepted into a 4 year college, and they did it without British Literature.
Another prestigious high school in my area is Boston Latin Academy. They do not teach British
Literature to their students. Also Boston Latin School does not teach British Literature in its
classrooms. If these schools can be great without British Literature than I believe we can too.

A customer service representative from the Telegraph newspaper, Emily Jordan, said, “I
believe that it is good that you are learning about British Literature in your schools because the
English language was around in Britain longer than America was even colonized so it shows the
development of the language throughout the years.” My only comment is of course he is going to
think it is good because he is British.

A teacher at Catholic Memorial who currently teaches British Literature told me that she loves
British Literature but does not agree with all of the choices literature that we are reading she
would rather other works of literature. But like the British author, the teacher will be biased
towards British Literature because she teaches the subject so she will probably favor it compared to
any other subject.

Some students would prefer British Literature to any other subject, so you should give students the
choice of which course they would like to study. If you are still unhappy with the course than you
can abolish it but you should give it a fair choice and not deprive students of subjects the want to