November Newsletter

ADLC and VV English Department

New! English Homework Hotline!

The English department is excited to announce our brand new Homework Hotline.

Students with questions or needing general course assistance may call the English Homework Hotline toll-free at 1-866-774-5333, ext. 5355. The Homework Hotline is available to all students Tuesday and Thursday evenings, 4:30 to 8:30 pm for any Grade 10-12 ELA questions.

Markers, feel free to add this information to your G-mail signatures.

Much thanks to Emily Wong who is covering Tuesday evenings and Kim Ridley who is covering Thursday evenings.

ESR: Enhancing Student Relationships...the new buzzword

What do we want? Successful Completions!

How are we going to get them? By building and enhancing student relationships!

We realize that there are a myriad of ways to establish, nurture, and enhance student relationships that foster successful completions. Student contact (phone, e-mail, Skype, assignment feedback) is a major component. We'd like to thank you for your continued commitment to enhancing student relationships. Please remember to add any and all forms of contact with students to the SIS Communications area. This is the primary tracking place for student contact for all staff (teachers, markers, administrators, support staff, etc.).

Suggestions for When a Marker Might Make Contact with a Student

• After submission of first assignment. This is actually a contractual obligation for markers. Introduce yourself, maybe give some interesting background info about your interests or hobbies. Consider notifying students of your office hours and contact information. This communication must be placed in SIS communication.

• Perhaps midway through the course to touch base about their progress or provide encouragement before the midterm.

• Right before they start the last week or two's work. This will give them a chance to maybe go over what's on the exam, correct issues that have lingered all course long, or provide feedback that is important before finishing the course.

• To congratulate them on an improvement in an assignment.

• To encourage students to continue in the course if they might have stalled.

• To thank them for submitting another assignment after a long period of non-submission.

• To congratulate them on a great mark.

• To discuss a student's mark which has dropped considerably from previous work.

• To see what they are working on currently in a booklet.

• When the student is close to writing the film study module...find out what film they're choosing.... same could go for novel study.

Tid Bits

CHECK YOUR LINKS: If you have a link to the ELA Department homepage ( in your G-mail signature or other documentation please know that this link is broken. Please replace with the url: Edmonton Public won't accept e-mails with's in them.

Did you know....that ELA 30-1 has the most student completions of any other course offered at ADLC? That's impressive news! It takes work...teamwork from everyone at every level because we can't do this alone. Thanks for all that you do for our students!

Speaking of ELA 30-1, there's a new E-text. View it here. Thanks goes out to Carey Klassen for re-vamping this important resource!

Absences & Events

Lead teachers

Carey Klassen Nov. 1-4, 10

Catherine Euston Nov. 7-10

Shelley Grey-Sortland Nov. 1, 16-18, 23-25

Heather Miller Nov. 8-Jan. 7

Michelle Pisoni Nov. 2 (2-3 pm)

Kyla Coulman-Absher Nov. 3, 9, 16, and 30


Emily Wong Nov. 10-15

Kathleen McNeil Nov. 29-Dec. 19


Daylight Saving Time ends Nov. 6

Remembrance Day Friday, Nov. 11

PD Day Nov. 14

Diploma Exams Part A (written) Wednesday, Nov. 2 (9-12)

Part B (multiple choice) Friday, Nov. 4 (9-12)

Marker Reviews


It is necessary for the English Department to monitor how our markers interact with our students and assess their work, so that it is consistent with department policy. In all of our courses we have rubrics which are associated with assignments and we need to ensure that students are being assessed according to those rubrics.

Students are very important to us and often the markers make significant contacts with students that will either contribute to the students’ success or lack of it. Our responsibility, then, is to ensure that markers are doing what we want them to be doing and provide gentle guidance in the performance of their duties.


Lead teachers will begin marker reviews and hope to have them completed before Christmas. Typically, lead teachers will select a number of assignments (approximately 8 to 10) that the marker has marked. A wide variety of students in D2L/Moodle and assignments from a variety of courses and sections will be considered. We can select from the beginning, middle, and end of a course and choose different types of assignments. We examine the average grades, comments, and supplementary suggestions. Markers are also evaluated on average turnaround time and we take into consideration how many students you have on your class list and what courses you mark for. Along with assessment of student work, we also examine contact with students, parents, facilitators, and staff. There are also different types of marker reviews depending on experience (full reviews, check list, or no review needed). If there are any concerns, markers will be notified first and discussion will take place before reviews are finalized.

Congratulations to Shelley Grey-Sortland!

Shelley has been selected to work on Alberta Education's Curriculum Re-design committee. This is awesome news. We are so proud of you, Shelley!
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  • Remember to enter marks in Moodle on the assignment page itself rather than through the Grades page.
  • Notify lead teacher if asking a student to revise.
  • Remember the difference between reverting an assignment in Moodle to draft and when to give a second attempt. The latter will be treated as a re-submission and you will only get paid half the amount for the gradable.

Marker SIS & LMS Manual

In case you need to review any processes here's the link to the pdf manuals:

D2L Extrication Plan

D2L has been good to us but all student work needs to be finished by the end of June 2017. There will be a heavy push in second semester (February) for students to complete. When D2L expires, all information will be gone and no migration possible.

Counselling Info

ADLC’s Academic Advising department offers a wide assortment of advice on exam writing, financial aid, graduation requirements, careers, and more. We also provide assistance to aboriginal, international, and LGBTQ students. If you believe that a student you mark for might benefit from counselling, feel free to pass along this information.


1-866-774-5333, extension 6120

Academic Advising Resources -

Academic Advising Videos -

Marks Focused Students

We all have had experience with the student(s) who are so focused solely on their mark that they lose sight of the essence of the English Language Arts program. Many times I've had to remind students that ELA is more than a to-do list that you check off to attain a certain percentage. It is a progression and scaffolding of skills and learner outcomes. Often students fixate on the percentage rather on the rubrics and feedback provided. It is important to learn from the feedback a marker provides and examine the rubrics as they progress through the course.

Typically, an average student between 60-65% is within the satisfactory area on rubrics. To move into the “thoughtful” or “insightful” areas, characteristically the 80% and above range, students will focus on subtle nuances in text, literary devices the text creator so effortlessly incorporates in the text creation, and on interesting and perceptive details that often go overlooked by mainstream examination.

A satisfactory category typically states that

• ideas are relevant and straightforward

• support is adequate and general

• straightforward arrangement of ideas

• adequate diction & clear syntactical structures; matter of fact voice

• control of the basics (sentence construction, usage, grammar, & mechanics)

A proficient category typically states that

• ideas are thoughtful, well-considered

• support is relevant, accurate, & occasionally deliberately chosen

• a considered arrangement of ideas, competent, controlled discussion

• specific diction & effective syntactical structures; capable voice

• competence in control of correct sentence construction, usage, grammar & mechanics

An excellent category typically states that

• ideas are insightful, demonstrating a comprehension of subtle text distinctions, perceptive & illuminating literary interpretations

• support is explicit, precise, & deliberately chosen

• effective arrangement of ideas; fluent, controlled and shaped discussion that concludes skillfully

• precise & effective diction; polished and effective syntactical structures; confident composition & convincing voice

• confidence in control of correct sentence construction, usage, grammar & mechanics

Showing how students can move from one category to the next often empowers and encourages them to strive for excellence. Students will want to ensure that they examine each lesson's criteria (explanation, tutorials, exemplars, rubrics, etc.) carefully and take their time with submissions.

Talk to your Accountant

ADLC and VV campuses are overcrowded this year and many lead teachers have been asked to share desks and telecommute part-time at home. As markers who work from home or telecommute regularly, you understand the benefits and limitations of this work environment. Talk to your accountants about personal items and expenses that can be claimed on your income tax. Perhaps keep a spreadsheet of expenses such as the following:

  • mortgage
  • utilities
  • cleaning services
  • mileage to the campus
  • internet/phone bills
  • courier services
  • office furniture
A portion may be eligible.

Check out this article about creating a distraction-free work space!

Little Libraries

Coming soon to an ADLC campus near you...little libraries! Take a book, leave a's that simple. The English department wants to encourage reading literacy.

There are nearly 40,000 Little Free Library book exchanges around the world, bringing curbside literacy home and sharing millions of books annually.

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