Ms. Gallagher British Literature (Honors) I Course Description British Literature Honors offers a rigorous course curriculum that focuses on understanding the historical context of a piece of literature, analytical reading, critical theory, vocabulary development, and both the writing and research process. II Titles from the course curriculum you may expect to study this year: Beowulf Grendel John Gardner King Arthur (film) Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Pearl Poet excerpts from The Canterbury Tales Geoffrey Chaucer Hamlet William Shakespeare excerpts from Gulliver’s Travels Jonathan Swift excerpts from Paradise Lost John Milton Sense and Sensibility (film) Jane Austen The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Samuel Taylor Coleridge Frankenstein Mary Shelley Dracula Bram Stoker Jekyll and Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson Animal Farm George Orwell Poetry and selected short pieces of literature III Course Outline British Literature functions as both a course in history and English; for each text we read, we will also examine the time period in which it was produced. Thus one of the topics we will focus on throughout the year is how literature reflects culture and how some authors challenge the ideals of their culture. We will also be continually evaluating the changing image of man: who is the ideal man for each time period? What characteristics does he embody that make him ideal? The changing image of man is a point that you will need to keep coming back to throughout the year; the final exam for this course is comprehensive in terms of content---that is, you will be required to reflect on the course as a whole and demonstrate your breadth of knowledge. You will also be required to read 2-3 full length works outside of class to fulfill the independent reading requirement for this class. IV Grading Rationale Tests: 40 % (“tests” = the research paper, journals, essays, blogs, independentreading projects, some creative projects and presentations, unit exams) Homework: 25 % Preparation and Participation: 20% Quizzes: 15 % V Materials 1. Books. Each day you should bring to class the current text that we are studying and your independent reading book + journal. 2. Binder. The binder will serve as your class notebook. A binder with pockets is a good idea. You will need separate sections in your binder, so you will need dividers of some sort. All your papers for class will stay in this binder—notes, quizzes, tests, written assignments, etc. You must bring this to class every day. Organize your binder into the following sections: Section 1: Class Notes-all your class notes for the current text of study are to stay in this section. Date each page of notes and list the focus questions for that particular day. Your notes will be a valuable study guide for tests and exams. (I keep the same notebook and go back to our focus questions when I create our tests and exams.) Keep extra paper in this section for in-class assignments that will be turned in. Section 2: Handouts -all handouts given to you the first week of school and thereafter are to stay in this section. Section 3: Vocabulary- vocabulary words, definitions, and exercises must be recorded in this section of your binder. Section 4: Returns – any tests, quizzes, or assignments that are handed back to you should be stored in this section for future reference. VI Classroom Policies 1. BE PREPARED. Come to class ready to work and to participate in class discussions. In order to do this, you must keep up with the reading assignments and complete your nightly homework. I expect you to come to class on time and with the necessary materials. NO 2. FOOD is allowed! BE RESPECTFUL. Be polite and fair in your dealings with your peers and with me. Act in a mature and responsible manner. Speak up, but also listen. Work quietly. Stay on task. Be respectful of your classroom. When the bell rings, this class becomes your priority. 3. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY. My greatest pet peeve is when an individual does not take responsibility for his/her own actions. If I can impart any life wisdom to you, it is this: take responsibility. When you are talking, and asked to stop, do not argue—take responsibility. When you are absent and miss work, it is your responsibility to ask for your make up work. VII Classroom Guidelines Assignments Late work and Make-Up work must be turned in to me---not my mailbox! Late work is given a grade penalty of 1 letter grade (or 10 points) lower for each class day late. (This means that if you turn in work 1 class day late, the best you can hope for is a B+.) No late papers, projects, or homework will be accepted four days after the original due date. Extensions. Extensions are given only when there are extenuating circumstances and ONLY when I am asked well before the due date of the assignment. Period. If you are absent, I will put a manila folder marked with your name on the corner desk. In this folder, you will find any handouts and work you missed. Students who are absent must meet with me to discuss tests and quizzes they missed. Do not expect me to remind you to make up your work: it is your responsibility Tests, Quizzes, and Class work It is impossible for a teacher to know the subject of a conversation which occurs during a quiz or test; therefore, ANY talking during a quiz or test, whether related to subject matter or not, will result in a grade of 0 on the assignment, test, or quiz, and an office referral for all parties involved. Plagiarism. Any paper with your name on it signifies that you are the author---that the wording and the ideas are yours, with exceptions indicated by quotation marks and citations. Plagiarism is the unacknowledged use of others’ material (words and ideas). We will discuss how to avoid inadvertent plagiarism. Evidence of plagiarism will result in a 0 for the assignment and a report will be filed with the school administration JUST BUSINESS. NOTHING PERSONAL. MHS policy regarding absences and tardies will be followed. Each absence, cut, early dismissal, and tardy translates into points; if a student accumulates 7 or more points in a class period in a marking period, that student automatically fails the class for that marking period and receives a 50 percent as an average. No cell phones or IPods are to be used or seen in class. Extra Help Extra help is encouraged and will count positively toward your participation grade. I am available most Tuesdays and Fridays after school. Please let me know a day in advance. September 2009 Dear Parents or Guardians: Please take an opportunity to read the information regarding class policies and expectations. I encourage you to contact me by email if you have any questions or would like to discuss your student’s progress. Urge your students to seek extra help, if necessary. Let me know if I can help you in any way. Sincerely, Amanda Gallagher English Teacher: Masuk High School E-mail: [email protected] Phone Extension: #3060 Parent or Guardian Signature_____________________________________ Students: I have read the class policies, guidelines, and course outline and agree to work my hardest this year to meet the high expectations of English class. Student Signature: __________________________________ Date: ________________________ Students: Please return this form by the next class period. Honors-level expectations As honors-level literature students, I expect that you: Are familiar with and can use MLA format Know how to write and organize an essay Know how to complete a basic research paper in MLA format using outside sources Understand that homework will be given every night and over holiday breaks. Anticipate reading quizzes and as such are prepared each day to be tested on your knowledge Can multitask. This means keeping up with the reading in class while working on other projects, including outside reads, for this class. Can work collaboratively with others. Are Prepared to participate in daily discussions. Know how to put together a multimedia and/or creative presentation Complete and submit assignments on time. Overall, at the honors level, more is placed on the student. This means presenting papers, discussion questions, creating multimedia presentations, etc. In other words, you are expected to function in large part as active and independent learners; I will act as your facilitator. Be prepared to have a large amount of work placed on you. This means you must take ownership for your own learning. I am here as a guide. I will not give you the answers but I will help you find them for yourselves.