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Sonia Tilley's Home Page


Welcome to
Ms. Sonia Tilley's

- Home Page -

Sonia Tilley's Home Page


This is the home page for Ms. Tilley's student teaching of English 8, 11, 12 and Communications 12 at Cambie Secondary School, Richmond, BC, for the Spring of 2003.

Course Outlines

Expectations & Course Outlines

Parent's Page

Student Resources

Teacher's Resources

Email me!






Course Outlines



Sonia Tilley's Home Page: Course Outlines


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General Course Expectations and Guidelines


Thanks to everyone for welcoming me into your classrooms for 2 weeks in October! Iím looking forward to spending the spring teaching and learning together!

Here are a few guidelines that will hold true for all my classes:

Due dates: all assignments are due by 3:00pm on the assigned due date unless otherwise negotiated. Late assignments will NOT be accepted unless you have made arrangements with me in advance.

Appointments: if you need to speak to me about an assignment, absenses, due dates, etc, you MUST make an appointment.  Come see me during class to make an appointment.

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Parent's Page


Welcome parents!  Some of you may be a little concerned knowing that your son or daughter will have a student teacher for a good part of this term.  For parents of Grade 12ís, you may be especially concerned that this student teacher doesnít jeaopardize your son or daughterís chances of graduating or getting into college or university!  I am sympathetic to your concerns and so Iíd like to try to put your mind at rest by telling you a bit about myself.

I graduated from UBC with honours standing from my B.A. in English Literature in 1998.  Since then, I have worked and travelled in 5 continents teaching English and developing educational materials and programmes for museums, parks, zoos, and non-profit organizations.  Iíve helped Guatemalan students pass the TOEFL test and Iíve taught young Canadians how sailing can be a metaphor for life.  I am passionate about English Literature and I am realistic about the aims and outcomes of high school English Language Arts programmes.  I know what students will need to get into and safely through university Ė and to navigate through the ideas and texts we encounter in daily life.  My underlining goal in teaching is always to promote critical thinking so that students can approach univeristy, jobs, the media, politics, and literature with an open but critical mind, bent on exploring, discovering, evaluating, and understanding their own values and beliefs as well as those of others.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to work with your young adults Ė I know they will teach me just as much as I hope to teach them.  I am honoured to be a part of their life long educational jouney!

One of the units your son or daughter may participate in this term is ďLiterature Circles.Ē  If you are interested in learning more about this book-club style, innovative approach to teaching and learning about literature, please check out the Lit Circles Resrouce Centre, Seattle web site at


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Links: Student Resources


Sonia Tilley's Home Page: Student Resources

Oxford English Dictionary Online - The Oxford English Dictionary is the standard I use for spelling and word use.  Look up definitions, spelling, and synonyms on this site if you donít have your own hard copy of the OED.

WriteExpress Rhyming Dictionary - Having trouble with a poetry assignment?  Check out this rhyming dictionary!  Itís not perfect, but it can get you going.

Wordsmyth Online Educational Dictionary-Thesaurus - This is a helpful tool if you are looking for new or better words for a piece of writing.  Itís not the official OED, though, but itís geared towards writing so itís sometimes useful

Online poetry - What is poetry?  Just words on a page?  Maybe not.  Check out some of this new, innovative poetry on line. 

Hereís a cool one to get you started

On Line Summaries, Notes, Cheat Sheets, etc.

Hey, guys, I know you arenít stupid.  I know that, if youíre having trouble getting through a novel weíre reading, youíll find ways of getting around reading it:  Coles notes, web pages, summaries, whatever.  But with the internet, you have to be careful because anybody can post whatever garbage they want, and you might end up looking pretty silly if you rely on just anything you find!  Here are some online resources Iíve checked out which seem to be fairly reliable.  But please make an effort to read the actual texts, too, ok?

Shakespeare - synopses, summaries, and notes on Shakespeareís most popular plays and poems.

Lord of the Flies - some great pictures, maps, and other resources, as well as some fairly accurate character sketches and summaries if you need them.  There are a few typos and errors, though, so take it with a grain of salt.

Lord of the Flies WebQuest - One of the grade 11 unit assignments will be to do this web quest online.

Check out for one of the most extensive online literary resources Iíve found.

Spark Notes are a little better than Coleís or Cliffís.  Check them out online if you need a little extra help.

Thinking of Plagiarising?

Aside from the fact that itís actually illegal and could get you into a lot of trouble, plagiarising means that you wonít learn or remember anything from the assignment and may fail other assignments as a result of not knowing the material.  Especially donít waste your time with papers you can purchase online.  We have very sophisticated software which can detect these papers as well as inconsistancies between your in class writing style and your ďtake homeĒ writing style.  If youíre having trouble with a writing assignment, please, please, please, just come and see me, ok? has some excellent antiplagiarism techniques and software. This web site is also a great resource with a glossary of literary terms, punctuation rules, and essays on such subjects as purposes of language arts education. I've also made use of and You're welcome to check them out!

Writing the LPI or TOEFL this year?

There are lots of great on-line LPI and TOEFL practice tests and tutorials.  Check out Cert 21 for starters. Please let me know how you like these practice tests or if you find some better pages and Iíll put them up on my site for other students!


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Links: Teacher's Resources

Ministry of Education IRPs for Grade 8-10

Ministry of Education IRPs for Grade 11-12

Richmond School District Website

BC Teacher's Federation (BCTF)

Attention Deficit Disorder information


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Sonia Tilley's Home Page: Questions? Comments? Concerns? E-mail me!

Questions? Comments? Concerns?  Email Me!