This Week in Class: September 19-21

A calendar, but not our calendarOh, what a dismal week it is shaping up to be, to me at least. Between the holiday (Shana Tova, for my friends who are celebrating) and the fact that all o’ y’all (save Journalism) drop this week, I’ll have very little time with you. But this isn’t about my profound despair; this is about the joy you can anticipate in the time that we do have together.

AP English
You’ve rehearsed your out-of-context Oedipus roles, and this week will provide the delightful surprises of seeing it all put together. We have three classes this week; in the first, we’ll introduce ourselves to the choral odes we’ll be chanting, and then begin the play. Our second class will find us plowing through the play without a whole lot of discussion, as we want to finish by Friday to feel the full effect of the tragedy.

I’ll be asking you to record observations in your notebooks and in the Google Docs stations set up around the classroom. Outside of class, you’ll be reading the parts of Poetics that are essential to our inquiry into tragedy.

As we proceed through the various stages of these two texts, I’ll be posting some purpose-guiding questions and ideas on Our Tragedy Forum.

On Tuesday, we’ll have an opportunity to play a little catch-up. Be prepared for a quiz about monsters first thing (no, there are no monsters in the book). I’ll return your responses with some feedback, and remind you that you’re using that feedback to improve your next response. But the bulk of the class will be spent making sense of what’s been going on in the first three chapters, and we’ll get back to the big paper we started writing on.

To prepare for Wednesday’s class, I’ll ask you to read chapter 4 on Tuesday night, and to write a response about one of the prompts I will post on our class blog. Chapter 4 is a key turning point in the story, and it will demand some close reading on our part. On Wednesday night, you’ll read chapter 5, and you’ll choose to look at the perspective on the Beast from the point of view of ONE of the boys. You will write this response in class on Thursday. Between our dropped class on Friday and the holiday on Tuesday, I’ll be forced to ask you to do some reading over the weekend.

For a little enrichment, I will be writing some posts on this site that will deepen your understanding of Golding’s purpose while you’re reading, or serve as a resource when it comes time to write your essay in early October.

As you know, you’ve been promoted to Varsity Journalism. On Tuesday, you’ll be brought up to speed on what’s going on with the Courant and As we begin the next cycle, you will build on your story-proposing expertise by finding the stories that we’ll report on for the October cycle. Story proposals will be due at the beginning of class on Thursday, when you will experience our interview workshop. Stories for the next cycle will be assigned on Friday, which will also serve as your first “Courant day.”

If you’re in J-II and J-III, we’ll spend a little bit of time taking a look at the CSPA critique – congrats on the Gold medal, mi amigos. We’ll use CSPA’s feedback to fine-tune Section guidelines that editors will give on Monday to reporters assigned to their sections. These dates are subject to change based on the overall condition of story proposals.

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