Peep the Standards and Consider the Clouds

Learning Targets:

1. Key ideas and details: RL.8.3 Analyze how particular lines of dialogue or incidents in a story or drama propel the action, reveal aspects of a character, or provoke a decision.


2. Author’s craft: RL.8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts.

  • The definition of “tone” is the way the author expresses his attitude through his writing. The tone can change very quickly, or may remain the same throughout the story. Tone is expressed by your use of syntax, your point of view, your diction, and the level of formality in your writing.
  • See this link for more on literary allusions!

Group Work:

(RL 8.3) First, look for examples that capture “key ideas and details” about a character or an event that happened the chapter “missing the feed”?

(RL 8.4) Second, look for examples of word choice that capture the “author’s craft” and attitude about a subject (a person, society, etc) in the chapter “missing the feed”.


Key Ideas and Details: The author reveals a key detail about the danger in how the feed operates and controls society through Titus’ narration. For example, when Titus is explaining what he thinks is the best (or the “braggest”) thing about the feed, he says, “everything we think and feel is taken in by the corporations, mainly by data, ones like FeedLink and OnFeed and American Feedware, and they make a special profile, one that is keyed just to you, and then they give it to their branch companies, or other companies buy them, and they can get to know what it is we need, so all you have to do is want something and there’s a chance it will be yours” (pg 48).  This is a significant detail that shows how the author feels about the feed.  It reveals how the feed takes over the characters’ minds by telling them what it is that they want.  It shows how big corporations today want to consolidate their power over people via consumerism, and demonstrates the author’s dislike for how people are taken advantage of by big business.

Author’s Craft:  The author uses incorrect grammar and profanity to demonstrate how the characters have become too dependent on the feed and can no longer think effectively.  For example, Titus states, “that’s one of the great things about the feed – that you can be supersmart without ever working.  Everyone is supersmart now.  You can look things up automatic, like and science and history, like you want to know which battles of the Civil War George Washington fought in and shit” (47).  By using poor grammar, “automatic” versus “automatically”, and using curse words, like “shit”, the author shows how the character’s use of limited vocabulary mirrors the slang and instant message short-hand that 21st teenagers commonly use today when communicating with each other. Additionally,by associating George Washington with the Civil War, the author shows the irony in Titus’ statement that he is smarter without trying because we know that George Washington was not involved in the Civil War – it was actually Abraham Lincoln.

How fiction-y is science getting?

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