Course Outline - Honors - 2011-2012

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:
Grendel John Gardner
King Arthur (film)
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Pearl Poet
excerpts from The Canterbury Tales Geoffrey Chaucer
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
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
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.
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
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
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.
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
 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
 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.