Working With Frances Dowell


Story Cover

For a while my LA class has been working with an author, Frances Dowell. She is a great author and has written many books, one of them being “Ten Miles Past Normal”.

Since around the beginning-middle of the school year we talked with her about making stories. We learned how to start a story and pull in the reader, to making big scenes where people run from giant monsters.  My opening scene is a man reading the newspaper, not intriguing? Read the next sentences. Frances showed us how you can make a good start in scene just from someone sipping tea on their couch.

Sticks and stones, as we learned are amazing additions to your story. Which is better?

The monster came, then the super hero attacked yay they win. OR

The monster came, the super hero attacked! His attacks weren’t working! The monster was absorbing his power!

That is a “stone” problem. The monster is absorbing his power, so he has to find another way to beat him. Stick and stone problems can make your story longer and make people want to read more. I am very happy we got to speak with Mrs. Dowell. And without further ado, here is part of my story…



Story Cover





Chapter One – The Invite


    Professor Plum was sitting on his white and purple couch wearing a purple suit, as always. He was reading a newspaper, New York Times. That was the only paper he read. As he flipped to page 4 of the paper he heard a knock on the door. He got up mostly using his right leg, the next day he had a doctors appointment. He walked to the door and answered it. 

“NOW SIR, this oughta be important because YOU interrupted my 30 minutes of reading the paper!” He exclaimed not even looking at the man at his door. The delivery man’s face was straight. He knew Professor Plum had a schedule but frankly, he did not care. 

“You got an envelope, don’t know who it’s from and I don’t care,” Then he continued “Somethin’ important,” He handed the envelope to Professor.

“Better be important!” Plum fought back. The delivery man shook his head and turned around. Plum opened the envelope, it read





“What in tarnation!” Plum exclaimed to himself. Then he continued to read the letter,








“Island? Plane?” Plum was confused. He went to his purple kitchen and drank some grape juice.

“4:55 tomorrow, is this guy insane? That’s my newspaper time!” Plum exclaimed

“SHUT UP I’M TRYING TO STUDY FOR MY CASE!” Mrs.Plum exclaimed. Plum rolled his eyes, he went upstairs to his room and got packed.


I hope you liked the start of my story.  It was amazing working with Francis and I hope you learned a little from this post.

Here’s the link to her website!: 

Have a good day!

Window Or Mirror Book




    Right now I’m reading The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson. Is this book a window or mirror? What is a window or mirror book? No, It’s not a literal window or a mirror. A window book is a book that doesn’t relate to you, but it shows you another story. Like looking out a window at home and seeing a deer run around, you aren’t the deer, but you can see how the deer lives. A mirror book is a book that reflects your life. Let’s say you were adopted and the book is about another kid who was adopted. That “mirrors” your life. 


    The Vanishing Stair is a story about the protagonist Stevie. In the first book Stevie is sent to Ellingham Academy, made by the one and only Albert Ellingham. He was the richest person in America and made a school on top of a hill in Vermont for only the finest students. Though, most of them were his friends’ children. Stevie gets invited to this school, while she’s there a series of murders go on. Stevie being Stevie puts herself into the investigation to try and solve the murders. Now, this book would be a window for me. I don’t go to a school made by the richest person in America. Not to mention it’s in Vermont. At my school there isn’t a series of murders going on. So, I think it’s safe to say this book is a window for me. It’s very good you should read it. (Amazon links here)


1st book: Truly Devious


2nd Book: The Vanishing Stair (Book I’m reading)  


Daily Habits

Habit Tracker for February

At the beginning of the school year, we started daily habits. The class did. Daily habit together. What was it? You might ask. We did planks. Now, WHY IN THE WORLD would we be working out in Language Arts class? Well, my LA teacher decided that instead of having us do daily habits and not seeing the progress, she would make it physical. When you plank every day, let me tell you, you notice the difference. Planking was a nice experience and I got to see that when you do something every day you’ll only get better at it.

Here comes January, and no more planks! Now, we are coming up with our own daily habit. We had a January habit tracker that my wonderful LA teacher made for us. (I will link her blog). So I decided that my daily habit would be working out daily. Yes, I know, I know I do gymnastics and soccer and I have them 6 days a week. BUT, if I don’t have a game or competition on Saturday or Sunday, I’m super lazy. Like really lazy. Like I had to force myself to do it. It did feel nice to get moving more though. Honestly, January went 1,2,3,4,5,6,15, 20, 21,22,23,27,28,29,31. 

Now, it’s February. We had to come up with a new daily habit. So I decided (because I’m super unflexible) to stretch every day. So far it’s going pretty well. I haven’t missed a day, yet. For me stretching is just a good way to relax and well, stretch. I think you should come up with a daily habit. (If you haven’t already)  Are you up for the challenge? 


What Punctuation Am I?

Exclamation Mark





Question Mark

What punctuation am I? That was the question that I saw. Who knows what I am. I could be a period, a question mark, a comma, an exclamation point. I could be anything. But, if I had to pick one, I would say I am an exclamation point. Why, you may ask. I am very loud, I mean VERY. I talk a lot and make my point. I make sure I am seen and my opinion is heard. When you see an exclamation point, what do you think? When I see it I know someone is emphasizing something or making their point or argument heard. Let me be clear with you, I make my arguments heard. It’s just great when people can hear you! See exclamation point. Are you more likely to hear someone being loud with an exclamation mark, or quiet with a period? Now that I’ve explained myself, what punctuation are you?



Daily Habit

In my LA class, we did a daily habit, planking. To show that doing something every day makes you better at it my LA teacher decided to show it in a physical way. Every 2 days we would go up by 10 seconds. Towards the end we went up by 10 seconds every day.  It was a cool experience and I definitely saw the difference from the beginning to end. If there’s something you want to get better at, take as couple minutes out of your day to practice. It’s worth it.

Now that we are finished with our planking daily habit, everyone gets to start their own. We have a daily habit tracker. Every day that we do it, we mark it in our tracker. My daily habit is working out everyday. This one is something I though I should do, even though I have gymnastics 3 days a week. When I’m not focused to perfecting my skills and I’m at home, I like to go on our treadmill and run. Even for gymnastics I have terrible endurance. I cannot run for long periods of time. Like I said in the first paragraph, daily habits are worth it. You should try them.

My Interests

As you can tell from the photo, I have an interest in soccer. Specifically, goalkeeping. In this photo is Hope Solo, she was an amazing goalkeeper who played for the US National Women’s team. She is now retired and is a commentator for soccer matches. Why am I talking about her, you may ask. She is the goalkeeper I look up to. Now about me. I play for an NCFC Classic Gold team. I one of the teams goalkeepers. This year I started playing 11 v 11 on the big goals. Now let me tell you, I’m pretty short, I’m an ant compared to it. Not to worry because I am working on high balls. Soccer is super fun, and just being there for the team saving goals is great.

Wisdom Tale Comic


This is my Wisdom Tale comic. It is The Red and Blue Coat from Africa. I made it using the apps Sketchbook, for drawing, and Comic Life, to make the comic. I chose this wisdom tale because I thought it would be fun to draw.  This wisdom tale also has a deeper moral, I’m sure we have all heard it before but do you ever apply to it.  Overall, the experience of making this comic was fun, but not something I would do again. Think of it as a one time roller coaster. Anyway, if you haven’t already enjoy the comic!

At Home Week

At Home Learning


For one week, everyone at my school was fully remote. Here’s my experience.

November 30th through December 4th, I had a fully remote week. Every day I had back to back calls for every class, and to be honest, it was pretty exhausting. For a week like that, you have to be prepared. I didn’t make a calendar, so I was just trying and trying to make time for my work. I think the main problem was, we didn’t do work on the call rather do it after. I do wish we had done work on the call, but it’s too late to change it.  During my work week, I would do work during my breaks, and during lunch.

My advice for at home people? Make a calendar, keep track of time. It is hard to get work done when you have back to back calls. I get it, people might say, “Keep working on it after school”.  If you’re like me, I have sports after school.  Overall, the work load doesn’t affect much. If you have a lot of work, keep track of time. Of course you need to give yourself breaks. Maybe make a calendar. In the end, my fully remote week, was decent I just didn’t keep track of my work as I should have.


What I’m Grateful For

Be Grateful. Not just during Thanksgiving, but always.


I’m grateful for a lot of things. If I had to narrow it down I would say I am most grateful for my family.  If it weren’t for my parents, I would have no home or food. If it weren’t for my sister, I would be lonely and unprepared; I would have no one to look up to. I’ve taken a lot of things for granted. If you really think about it, you wouldn’t have anything if it weren’t for your family. It doesn’t matter if your adopted or not, you’ll have something.

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