I have no idea what I'm teaching next year and probably shouldn't spend much time thinking about it; it's really totally out of my hands. However, I'm really excited about the prospect of teaching World Literature IB 3 again, and went so far as to make a summer reading assignment for my hypothetical new students today. I just was walking around Barnes & Noble yesterday and got so excited about it that I jotted stuff down and came up with this. I think this is what I'd do.
I really like the idea of incorporating some student choice into this assignment, as well as giving me an option as a teacher not to read the same essay 80 times. Summer reading is supposed to be able to be handled by the student without a teacher, so why not use the opportunity to let them choose something on their own? That option is much more limited during the school year.
I'm curious as to which option most kids would choose. Option B is the shortest option, but also contains Joyce - albeit accessible Joyce. Option A contain two page turners but both are long. Option F are both modern but both are very long works, especially The Corner. The mix modern works with older works. It would be interesting, and I think each kid could find at least something. This is for incoming smart Juniors:
Summer Reading English 3 IB
All incoming students must read How to Read Literature Like Professor by Thomas J. Foster and complete the activity on the back of this handout. For your other two texts, you may choose from several options below. Choose the option that interests you most, and feel free to change as often as necessary, as long as you have completed the two texts and the assignments by the time the school year begins.
For each book that you read, complete the following and be prepared to turn in for a grade during the first week of school:
1) Text-mark your books for author’s style, structure, and other authorial choices that strike you as intriguing.
2) Keep a spiral notebook where you record and clearly label the following for each text:
a. Five “Striking Elements” from each chapter (or 30 pages) or story that you read. These can be any five things that draw your interest – a certain style the author uses, an intriguing image, a line that you like, an authorial choice that strikes you, etc. Include page numbers.
b. A list of characters and their role in the story.
c. A list of several ideas that link the two texts together. The more concrete your link – the author’s use of food, for example – the stronger your eventual essay will be.
You will take a multiple choice test over both books during the first week of school, and writing a practice Link Essay on your two texts will be a major component of your first quarter grade.
Option A: Study of the Modern American Epic
The Known World by Edward P. Jones
The Namesake by Jumpha Lahiri
Option B: Study of Short Story Collections
Runaway by Alice Munro
Dubliners by James Joyce
Option C: Study of Dystopian Novels
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Option D: Study of Grim Fantasies
Kindred by Octavia Butler
1984 by George Orwell
Option E: Study of the Autobiography
Dreams of My Father by Barack Obama
The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X with Alex Haley
Option F: Study of Non-Fiction
The Corner by Edward Burns and David Simon
The Devil in the White City by Eric Larsen
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