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schedule spring 2012 contemp lit

Page history last edited by west0524 8 years, 6 months ago



Week Nine:



What's Due Today

Goal For Today


Understanding the role of "truth" vs "fiction

 - in seeing an adaptation/fictionalization between a true

story and a film, we see a lot of changes.  Things are altered for

the sake of drama.  But not always...sometimes things are altered

to hold to a pre-conceived idea of heroism.  In this lecture, we will

explore the idea of adapting a person from reality into fiction, and how

we have a compulsion to either iron out wrinkles/character flaws, or

delete heroic qualities for a more "even" portrayal.  In short, why

do we as people feel the need to ignore one set of traits or another

in a person?  Can't a heroic person, in reality, have less-than-heroic

traits?  Can't a "bad/villainous" person have some good qualities?


Viewing - The Pursuit of Happyness.


Finish - the pursuit of happyness


When we finish with the film, we will be in the English Lab.  Students

are expected to continue work on their essays for I am Legend, which

are due Wednesday by midnight.

   - a note on turn-ins - you MUST turn this in via your website.  Do

NOT cut/paste the body text of your essay into a page on your site,

and do NOT just type the whole thing onto a page.  I expect you to

create a .doc or .rtf word file and type your essay onto that.  When you

finish, UPLOAD the essay onto your website.  If you make your essay

a genre (and I hope you do - you'll need 3 self-created genres by the end

of the term) then make a page with the trait expressed and upload it

there.  Otherwise, I recommend just uploading the document to the front

page on the bottom.  Link it as "I am Legend" and name the document

firstname.lastname.i am legend


I Am Legend Essay

 - by midnight!

Mac Lab - final projects/essays

 - by this point, many students should be finishing their essays.  From this

point, the rest of the week will be spent working on final projects.

Remember: this project is weighted SIGNIFICANTLY and is worth a large

section of your grade.  I don't expect you to one-off any of this.  Go back

to old genres and check to make sure they still fit.  Revise and edit, making

sure each genre fits.  Make sure your front page links to each quality you have,

and make sure each quality has a paragraph in which you go through

the genre you chose, the quality you chose, and what it means to you (see

checklist for details on writing these body paragraphs).  You also MUST

make sure that you have something to do during classes.  As needed, make

sure, at home, you put things in place so that you can work effectively in

class.  Upload videos or photos onto your school server space for easy access.

If you have issues uploading or streaming in school, take care of that at home

and concentrate on the writing component of your project in school.

 - this project is due no later than Monday, May 28th...yes, that's AFTER

we meet for the last time.  You have the weekend, if you need it, to take

care of this project.  I will be grading them on the final week of school.

  Mac Lab - Final Project

Mac Lab - Final Project

 - A note - as you finish your projects, you will have one final component

to add: the conclusion.  Considering your front page an "essay", with the

definitions serving as your thesis and qualities serving as body paragraphs,

your conclusion should not only "sum up" your research, but also comment

about how this project and way of thinking has changed you as a person.  I

expect something in the nature of 7-10 sentences, and I want you to answer

the following questions:

     - How did you see the idea of villainy before starting this project, and

how has this perception changed?

     - In what ways do you see "villainous" traits in yourself?  Do you feel it's


     - Is villainy about the cackling mad scientist, or the smaller things?

        - Which is more threatening to you?




A note - Due to concerns with students using their work time effectively, the itinerary is adjusted slightly from what is seen here.  Tuesday's itinerary has been pushed off and replaced with an in-class timed writing exercise.  the prompt: is neville capable of trusting anyone?  This will be a traditional five-part essay.  Each body paragraph MUST use textual support (quotes) as well as analysis of the quotes to support each point.  this essay is due at 3.05.  students who finish early can use the rest of the hour catching up on their reading.  violators of the "no talking during testing" rule will go to the office and forfeit all points.


Week Eight:



What's Due Today

Goal For Today

Movie Monsters

Quiz - Parts 1-2, "I Am Legend"


 - Discussion - Neville's state of mind, his goals, the effects

of isolation

 - "yellow journalism" - propaganda - why cover up horror?

 - Discussion - Movie Monsters - what is most terrifying?

    - The traits of a fictional villain

       - vampires vs. zombies

       - how does this list of traits fit into I Am Legend?

          - Why does Matheson make his own vampires different

from the norm?

             - horror of nature


Reading Time - I am Legend - ch 15-18 (119-156)

I Am Legend - Part 3

"Bacteria can mutate"

 - why does Matheson end part 3 with this statement?  How does

this make Neville's situation more desperate?


Reading - Part 4 - 157-170


I Am Legend - Part 4

Quiz - parts 3-4


Discussion - villainy as a point of view


Essay Prompt - I am Legend

  Viewing - I Am Legend

Finish - I am Legend

 - Viewing Quiz


Lab - Projects


A note - Next week is our last week together.  Wednesday-Friday

will be ENTIRELY in the lab, finishing projects.  Monday and a little

bit of Tuesday will be a film which comprises our last text.


With this in mind, you do not have "homework" in the traditional

sense for this last week.  Instead, your homework is to ensure you

are prepared for class every day.  That means you need to make

sure anything you can't access on the school's computers is taken

care of at home before class.  I don't want to have to ask "what are

you doing", only for you to respond that you're stuck because the

school's firewalls won't let you access some site.  this is something

you need to do AT HOME.




Week Seven:



What's Due Today

Goal For Today

Viewing - horror 

Discussion - the role of modern horror

 - how can we learn what we are afraid of from what we view as entertainment?

 - the psychological idea of "the other"


Viewing - "The Dummy" (season 3 - The Twilight Zone)


Assign copies of "I Am Legend"

 - Students are responsible for the short story "Mad House" on pg. 226


Additionally, we will be in the Mac Lab again this Friday - students are expected to spend the week

preparing for our visit - for this encounter, all students must upload TWO ORIGINAL genres.  That is,

I expect you to make it yourself.  You can interpret this however you want.

 - As we head into this final unit of the class, ask yourself - what are you afraid of?


"Mad House"

Viewing - "Two" (season 3 - The Twilight Zone)


Discussion - fear identification - how can we use the identification of plot events

and character fate in order to learn what we are afraid of?


How does our fear translate into cultural value?


Homework - "The Funeral" - pg. 261

 - fear identification


"The Funeral" fears

Discussion - Fears to be found in "The funeral"

 - what is the role of genre in figuring out our own desires?


Viewing - "Nightmare at 10,000 Feet" (season 5 - The Twilight Zone)


At this point, we have a large database to begin working with.  Students will begin

comparing works, looking for similarities between different pieces.  What fears

and desires recur?


Homework - Begin "I am Legend" - part 1, chapters 1-5 (13-47)



Viewing - "Poison" (Alfred Hitchcock Presents)


Discussion - Fear of betrayal; fear of the monsters; fear of the dark

 - what are the monsters in our own world?  Why do we find them evil?

 - Neville's introduction - who is he?  How long has he been here?  What does his

situation tell us about what we fear?

   - The vampire vs. the zombie - which is scarier?


Homework - Begin Part 2 - chapters 6-9 (48-77)



Viewing - "Nick of Time" (season 2 - The Twilight Zone)


Mac Lab - Senior Project


Homework - Finish Part 2 - chapters 10-14 (77-117)

 - I highly advise you to be finished with part 2 of "I am Legend" by Monday.  There will be a quiz,

and I expect you to begin tying these ideas of fear, our desires as people, and what we see in the

real world in a discussion format. 

 - Additionally, on Monday you will receive your final essay's prompt.  It will have to do with "I am Legend",

the supplementary horror pieces we've seen, and your own understanding of fear.





Week Six:


What's Due Today
Goal For Today

Tuesdays With Morrie should be


 - Students should also have FIVE

short personal responses (all but one

done in class)

  - the "homework" personal response

is listed on Friday's itinerary as "homework"

    - students should have chosen between the

two options

Discussion - Cause/Effect Essay results


Quiz - Tuesdays With Morrie

  - I expect a legitimate essay to go along with

this.  The bulk of the hour is devoted to this quiz.


English Lab (2pm)

 - Students are responsible for not only two

genres, but also the accompanying justification

paragraphs on the front page.

     - This should put you at EIGHT genres total.

You should have eight villainous or heroic

qualities on your site, with eight varied pages

that show those qualities in action.  In addition,

each quality should have, on the front page,

a paragraph of justification/explanation.



Begin - Friday Night Lights


As we watch, students are expected to keep notes

and tell me:

  - what does this movie tell us about the cult

of athletics?  Why do we attach ourselves as a

society so much to something like high school

sports?  Do you see anything like this at work in

our own school?

     - choose three characters from the film.  You

don't have to name them (some of the names

blow right by, it can be hard), but you do need to

make sure I know who you're talking about.  Chart

their journey throughout the film and tell me:

how are their lives improved or hurt as a result of

their devotion to a high school sport?  What

personal conclusions can you draw? 


This short personal essay is due at the conclusion

of the movie.


Finish - Friday Night Lights


Begin - Modern Horror.


What makes us afraid?  What purpose does horror



Homework - by monday, students are expected

to view one horror movie of their choice.  You

may interpret "horror" however you want.  Think

about the things that scare you.  After watching this

movie, briefly tell us: what about this movie was

scary?  How does it express fears that we as a

society have?


Mac Lab  - All students are shooting for TEN

pages after today!



Week Five:



What's Due Today

Goal For Today


Cause/Effect Essay


2 Genres

Completion of Research Essay in Mac Lab


For students who are finished, I expect you to work towards

adding two more genres to your sites.  Both of these items are due




Notes - Code Talker

I highly recommend you be finished with code talker today, and have

your notes ready to turn in.  Today we begin "Tuesdays with Morrie", with

a rigorous reading schedule.  I plan to be finished with this book in

approximately one week (end May 1st).


This novel is about what we expect from life, what we can learn from

others, and the role of "teachers" in our lives.  With that in mind, we

will be adopting the note style to a new purpose.  Rather than your

typical notes from previous novels, we will be composing a series of

personal essays, in class, which relate to the day's reading.


Today's personal essay, which will also be on the board, is:


"Where do you see yourself in ten years?  What job do you aspire to, where

will you live, and what values will you have?  How do you see  yourself

changing and what obstacles stand in the way of this happiness?"


Tall order.  This will form the basis of a short discussion, with the

rest of the hour being devoted to reading pages 1-40.

1-40 - Tuesdays

"What mentors have you had in your life?  Go past your parents and family.

Think about those people you've met in life so far.  Who have you learned

from, and what did you learn?  Shoot for things you've learned which, you

feel, have changed your way of thinking.  How do you imagine life would be

different if you'd never met this person?"

41-113 - Tuesdays

Today's Topics:


1.  "What is the meaning of money, to you?  What effect does it have on

you and your life, and do you see aspects of your personality motivated

by it.  Is this a good or bad thing?"


2.  "What does losing someone mean to you?  This might mean death, or

it might just mean going away.  Think about someone you've lost.  What

did that person mean to you, and what's missing now that this person is

gone?  Does it measure up to Morrie's own experiences with his father?

How about his mother?  His brother?"

114-158 - Tuesdays

Today's Topic:


"Morrie says, "people are only mean when they're threatened...that's what

our culture does..."  Do you agree?  What about our culture brings out the

ugly side in you, in the people around you, or us as a whole?  Be specific."


Mac Lab - Snr Project

  - by the end of today, you should have the start of a front-page essay

on your site.  See the checklist for more information.


Homework - over the weekend, you need to finish the novel.  You also

need to work on the following topics:


1.  "What is your perfect day?  If this was your last day on earth, what would you

do?  Don't think bravado - you're not trying to impress anyone.  What would

you do?  Who would you talk to?  Does forgiveness or good-bye have time

in your day?"


2.  "Do you believe Morrie when he says that Mitch needs to find his brother?

Is it important to reconcile?  To forgive?  Look at this question in two ways:

First, look at it in terms of ideals.  Second, look at it realistically.  SHOULD

you forgive and love, and DO you follow through?"







Week Four:



What's Due for Today

Goal For Today


Quiz - code talker (1-15)


Intro - Cause/Effect Essay

 - this will be a research essay.  A large amount of time is

given in class for its construction.


Discussion - 1-15 code talker


lab - research

 - you will need at least three sources, and these sources

need to be academic in nature - use the BHS research tab.


lab - research

 - you will need 3 sources.  at this point, you should have a

concrete idea of what your topic will be.


lab - research

 - by this point, you SHOULD be able to begin writing a draft

of your essay.  While this paper is not due until monday, you are

welcome to turn it in as you finish.


Mac lab - 2 genres

 - you should have six pages filled by this point.  On Monday we'll

be looking at what the front page needs to be.


A note - at this point, we've been doing a lot of independent

reading on Code Talker.  On Monday I will be collecting notes

again, and the primary goal of Monday is discussion of the novel's

conclusion as well as its role as "fiction". 


Our cause/effect essay will be due Monday night. 





Week Three



What's Due Today

Goal For Today


Conclusion: The Rifle

 - Notes - The Rifle

Discussion: The Rifle

 - Discussion will focus on who is to "blame", writing technique, and student-generated

questions.  Students are expected to come prepared!

   - What conclusions can we make about the novel being from the gun's point of view?

Why do so many people change when they see it?  Is the gun a supernatural force, or a metaphor?


Essay: The Rifle


Hand out Code Talker


Intro - Code Talker - Language and culture


Work Time - The Rifle; Code Talker intro/1-3


Rifle Essay



Discussion through ch 8- Introduction of Ned


Native American Schooling


Discussion - World War 2 and Culture




Lab - Senior Project

 - Students are responsible for two genres by the end of the day.  This puts your tally right now at 4 total.




Week Two



What's Due Today

Goal For Today


Senior Project Page

 - To be turned in, this page

must be linked via my website


Continue introduction - Senior Project.  The checklist is here.


Rehash - what are you doing?  Why are you doing it?

 - How to upload to a page.  Editing, Organizing, Page creation


For those of you who finish building the website, and finish the short

story essay (due tomorrow), we have a new novel we will be reading this

week.  "The Rifle" will be handed out in class, and part one will be due

in class tomorrow.


Short Story Essay

Collect Short Story Texts


Proper Notes

 - For the bulk of the term, class will be generated by group discussion.

In order to be prepared for this, you need to take proper notes.  These notes will

be regularly collected after discussions.  We will begin this work with "The Rifle".


Students will need to have the following:


 - characters - who are the characters?  Why do you think the author included them?

How does their presence and action play into a theme as you understand it?


 - Basic plot - why does the author choose to focus on the elements he/she focuses on?


 - theme - elements of the story which support your understanding

     - "theme" need not be a full sentence.  For example, a story may focus on the idea of

"love" or "revenge" or even a more modern idea like "gun control".


 - Word choice - look carefully at how characters, setting, and situation is portrayed.


 - Heroes and villains - who do you see as villainous or heroic, and why?


 - Discussion questions - 3-4 open-ended questions.  These should not be "what" or "who"

questions.  Instead, they should be broad, inference-based "why" and "how" questions.

You do not need to necessarily "know" the answer


I am not necessarily "looking" for any one thing in your notations, beyond the standard

bullet list above.  I am also not looking for 20 pages of notes per chapter.  If you have

approximately 1/2 page per section of reading, you're probably ok.


A note on discussion - Last week, we began discussion.  We will continue this as a regular

activity in class.  I expect students with a contrary opinion to make an effort to express it.

Regardless, I expect ALL students to contribute.

Part 2

Discussion - Parts 1 and 2


Hand out - Rifle Essay

 - Students are expected to have the Rifle finished by Monday, with all accompanying notes,

for a final discussion.  This essay will be due on April 10th.


Mac Lab - Senior Project


HW - Each student will need two genres by the end of the day.


HW - Rifle Essay





Week One


 - Introductions - Short Story unit - Begin Final Project (see march calendar)

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