Syllabi

BRITISH LIT (JUNIORS)

Honors British Literature

Mr. Hausman (Rm 314A)

alhausman@cps.edu

www.mrhausman.com

@mrhausman (Twitter)

 

FIRST, A SILLY BUT SERIOUS CLASS CODE TO REPEAT ZOMBIE-LIKE AS A GROUP:

 

  1. There is almost never a correct answer when analyzing literature
  2. It’s not about what the author wanted us to think – but what we think of personally when experiencing a text that matters
  3. There is no simple playbook to being a strong writer – but there are some simple rules
  4. Reading is fun – seriously, no seriously, it is
  5. If I don’t feel awkward at some point (and usually, many points) in this class, I must be asleep

 

ATTENDANCE/BEHAVIOR EXPECTATIONS

Two General Rules New To This Year:

— Lateness. Tired of it.  Not in my door by 30 seconds after bell, ya late. Ya go to detention.

— Everyone needs a physical copy of book in class every day we study it. No exceptions.

Attendance and Makeup Work – While I certainly understand that at some point during the year, you will need to miss class for a variety of reasons, I cannot stress enough that you should do everything in your power to notify me ahead of time, or as soon as possible after, an absence.  It is significantly easier to avoid missing assignments or turning them in late if I know of your absence ahead of time.  Especially with the ACT looming large this year, I want to be able to help you navigate the crowded waters of your junior year, but you need to let me know.

With this in mind, I will not accept missing work that is more than 2 weeks overdue unless we have discussed the missing work in person.  With online gradebooks and most of your homework being completed through Google Docs or via email, 2 weeks should be more than ample time to make up any work that may be missed. As an added note, a deadline means that a document has been submitted successfully to me by that time.  Corrupted files, mistaken document submissions, or email issues must be ironed out prior to the submission deadline – these are not acceptable reasons for late work.

Classwork/Assignments – Between the class website, my Twitter feed, and of course your fellow classmates, it is your responsibility to find any work or assignments you may have missed and ensure you are keeping current with the workload. Also, as this is a literature class, do not expect to be able to participate successfully unless you have DONE the reading. 100 minutes is a long time, and trust me, it will be much more pleasant for both of us if we can avoid the awkward moment of discovering you haven’t come in prepared for the day’s discussion or work.

Starting this year, ALL UNIT/MAJOR ASSIGNMENTS MUST HAVE A HARD COPY SUBMITTED.  There is one thing you should have learned in your first 2 years at NCP- the printers WILL have long lines.  Please be sure to leave yourself time to ensure you can get the assignment to me, as every class period it comes in late will result in an automatic 5 point deduction.

PLAGIARISM POLICY

Lastly, DO NOT attempt to plagiarize any assignment, large or small, in my class. Between the wonderful technological resources available to teachers today, as well as the trained eye of an English teacher, you will be caught. Plagiarizing can put you in serious academic and disciplinary hot water, as well as cause you to lose the respect of your peers and myself (which is the worst part about it).  What could be more terrible for a writer, serious or not, than losing their validity in the eyes of their audience?

Remember, plagiarism extends not only to copying things off the Internet, but also to others writing essays or even sections of essays and having that material submitted under your name.

Please, do not put any of us in this position. We will be utilizing Turnitin.com to monitor this issue.

 

CENTRAL TEXTS FOR THE YEAR

  • Children of Men (film)
  • 1984, by George Orwell
  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Anonymous
  • The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer (Prologue and excerpts)
  • Macbeth, by William Shakespeare
  • Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte
  • Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad
  • White Teeth, by Zadie Smith
  • The Time Machine, by H.G. Wells

GRADE CATEGORY BREAKDOWN:

Vocabulary (quizzes throughout the year) – 15%

Journals/Reading Assessments/Classwork – 25% (2 R.As per major text)

Projects/Groupwork – 25%

Essays – 35%

SURVEY LIT (FRESHMEN)

Survey Literature

Mr. Hausman (Rm. 314A)

www.mrhausman.com

alhausman@cps.edu

@mrhausman (Twitter)

Overview

            It’s my pleasure to welcome you to high school English, and specifically to our Northside English program! In Survey of Literature, we will have the privilege of taking a look at a wide variety of literature, literary forms, and authors from around the world during the course of your freshmen year.  We’ll traffic in the realms of the gods and mythology to begin; move on through classic authors like Shakespeare, Golding, and Achebe; and take extended visits to the realms of poetry, short story, and oratory as well.  One of the most critical things we will accomplish during your freshman English class is developing the foundation for being (gasp!) a successful college writer and analytical thinker.  In other words, this means vocabulary work, grammar work, and drafting and feedback work as we navigate the essay process.  It may sound like quite a bit of work – and it will be.  But the wonderful thing about literature is, there’s always moments for surprise, for drama, and even some fun.  I’m happy to have all of you with me this year, and I look forward to working with yourselves and your families to kick off your Northside English career the right way :).

Centerpiece Texts

  • Bulfinch’s Mythology (summer reading excerpts)
  • The Odyssey, Homer
  • Oedipus Rex, Sophocles
  • Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare
  • Lord of the Flies, William Golding
  • Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe
  • A Mystery Novel To Be Named Later
  • “12 Angry Men”, Reginald Rose
  • Various poetry
  • Various non-fiction essays and oratory pieces

Rules, Regulations, and General Class Information

Attendance and Missing Work This is covered first because for many, it may be the toughest part of the transition to high school coursework.  While I certainly understand that at some point during the year, you will need to miss class for a variety of reasons, I cannot stress enough that you should do everything in your power to notify me ahead of time, or as soon as possible after, an absence.  It is significantly easier to avoid missing assignments or turning them in late if I know of your absence ahead of time.

With this in mind, I will not accept missing work that is more than 2 weeks overdue unless we have discussed the missing work in person.  With online gradebooks and most of your normal homework being completed through Google Docs, 2 weeks should be more than ample time to make up any work that may be missed. As an added note, a deadline means that a document has been submitted successfully to me by that time.  Corrupted files, mistaken document submissions, or email issues must be ironed out prior to the submission deadline – these are not acceptable reasons for late work.  We will go through our Google Docs procedure on the first day of class, so no worries – I’ll make sure everyone knows exactly what to do to get their work in on time.  An added note here – all major assignments (essays) will require a paper copy submission too. We will discuss essay procedures more when we arrive at our first here in a few weeks.

  • Also, I despiiiiiiiiiiiise consistent tardiness. If you are late more than once or twice (without speaking to me ahead of time or with a very good reason) than tardies and detentions will follow.  It’s high school, folks.

            The Wonderful and Terrible Chromebook One of the greatest resources available to us this year in Survey Lit is our ability to work and collaborate as a class online, thanks to our Chromebooks.  However, with this great resource comes great responsibility – you MUST bring your Chromebook, charged, to class every day.  Most of your essays and projects will be worked on, edited, and submitted via Google Drive, meaning it is essential you not only bring your Chromebook, but treat it with love and care as well.  We will use our Chromebooks for a lot of great activities through the course of the year, so please make sure to keep tabs on the Chromebook itself, its case, and its charger no matter where you go with it.

Books and Readings – Our book room has copies of all key texts for the class, and fortunately most of our readings are also available in free PDF form online.  That said, I’m a bit of a romantic and still believe on reading a good old hard copy of a book, so we will be checking out books to you throughout the year.  Any book for class will be checked out by me – the librarian has expressly asked that we handle these rentals ourselves, to better keep our books in stock.  So please make sure to talk to me if for some reason you did not receive a copy of the reading, or are in search of a digital copy to use as well.

MrHausman.com – In order to best organize and share important class information, I’ve utilized www.mrhausman.com as my class website for the past few years.  You will find a page for your specific class agenda, links to any texts or resources needed for class, as well as forum and chat room features that we will use for class activities.  Take a look at it and get familiar with it when you get a chance.  I’ll also post class updates, links I find useful or relevant to class, and homework reminders through my class Twitter feed, @mrhausman.

GRADING

Your grade in the class will be based on four key areas of work:

VOCABULARY (20%) – Every 2-3 weeks (depending on other class work and the calendar) we will work through and complete a new vocabulary unit.  These lists can be found in the Power Plus blue book you receive at orientation.  We will focus on word roots, synonyms, antonyms, and other vocabulary structural components, but more importantly we’ll focus on using these words and building our latent vocabulary.  Oh, and I happen to know quite a few good vocabulary review games as well.

JOURNALS/READING ASSESSMENTS (20%) – Over the course of the year, we will engage in a variety of in-class grammar and journaling activities, both based in our readings and in the skills demonstrated from your writing.  We will also complete two Random Reading Assessments (more on these later) per major text we cover.

GROUP PROJECTS/ GROUP WORK (25%) – You’ll have a chance to work on several collaborative group projects throughout the year, including our famous in-class debates (I’m the debate coach, and so you all have to suffer – sorry J).  We’ll also do a number of group activities (both competitive and strictly academic) throughout the year in regular class time.

ESSAYS (35%) – The most important part of your grade will be comprised of the various long form essaysand  individual writing projects that will wrap up each literary unit we tackle.  We will experiment with a variety of analytical essay styles, following the claim-warrant-evidence style of argumentative writing that will help gear you toward AP and college-level writing in future classes.

PLAGIARISM POLICY

Lastly, DO NOT attempt to plagiarize any assignment, large or small, in my class. Between the wonderful technological resources available to teachers today, as well as the trained eye of an English teacher, you will be caught. Plagiarizing can put you in serious academic and disciplinary hot water, as well as cause you to lose the respect of your peers and myself (which is the worst part about it).  What could be more terrible for a writer, serious or not, than losing their validity in the eyes of their audience?

Remember, plagiarism extends not only to copying things off the Internet, but also to others writing essays or even sections of essays and having that material submitted under your name.

Please, do not put any of us in this position.

 

CREATIVE WRITING

Creative Writing

2015-2016

Mr. Adam Hausman

www.mrhausman.com

alhausman@cps.edu

@mrhausman (Twitter)

Class Overview

I am absolutely thrilled to welcome you all to Creative Writing, the class where we say what we want! (And learn how to say it creatively and effectively :)).  Back in the dark days when I was an angsty high school poet, I found out how important writing could be for me to express my frustrations, excitements, hopes, failures, and dreams while navigating the corridors of my own high school.  Creative writing, to me, is an incredibly rewarding and exciting endeavor – the chance to build worlds, explore hopes, navigate nightmares, or campaign for a better future through the pen, or more accurately now, the keyboard.  Over the course of this year, we’ll look at a variety of units centered around themes and formats explored by creative writers – and create our own creative portfolio that represents our own interaction with these styles and formats.  We’ll share stories, workshop stories, present stories, and have the chance to hear from some great writers (both in person and through the Interwebs) on their own view on the writing process.  I’m happy to welcome you to Creative Writing, and I look forward most of all to hearing your stories, your voices, and your words throughout the year.

Thematic Units (and some authors/texts we’ll explore with them)

 

  • Satire (In Which We Judge And Mock Mercilessly, But Intellectually)
  • Perspectives (In Which We Shine A Light On Our Corner of the City/Planet)
  • Speeches, Poetry, and Spoken Word (In Which We Learn That We Can Write A Pretty Sweet Poem If We Relax and Go For It) –
  • Short Stories and Narratives (In Which We Express Ourselves and Our Angsty Spazzy Awkward Teenage Selves) –
  • The One-Act Play (In Which We Write For the The-ate-er) –

 

  • Writing for Visual Presentation (Making Funny YouTube Videos 101) –
  • Mysterious Guest Units For Halloween, the Holiday Season, and The Year’s End

THE INTRO UNIT: We’ll do some games designed to make you uncomfortable and awkward to introduce the following building blocks for our first quarter:

  • Narrating   – Character Building      – Setting a Setting -Dialogue/Voice
  • Drafting/Editing – Performing – Adapting/Homaging

GRADING AND PROCEDURES

Most of the work you do in this class will be kept in your Drafting Journal – which I’d prefer to be kept via Google Docs, but can also be a plain-old hard copy journal if you prefer to feel the page under your hands still (perfectly understandable in creative writing).  Since writing is in the title of the class, you should anticipate doing it – nearly every day we meet.  Now, some of the time we’ll be doing brief quick writes or creative activities.  But throughout the year I will ask to see your journals, and assess your work holistically.  

Last year this was not enforced strictly, and the worst sides of NCP students came out.  So this year, consider this a helpful guideline for how to approach grading and assessment in this class:

A – Assignments that are submitted on-time, and reflect effort.  If I ask for a short story and get 6 sentences on a torn-out notebook page, that generally indicates a lack of effort (or a frantic last-minute one at that).

B – Submitted on-time but lame effort noted above, or one class period late.  Each successive class period your assignment is missing will be another 5 points off, which is sad because you hopefully took this class specifically because you want to write.

C or lower – Why are you in this class if you didn’t want to write :( ?

At the end of the year, we will organize our various drafts and projects into an organized creative writing portfolio, something that you can share with others or simply keep for yourself to look back on through the years.  We will organize, design, and edit these portfolios together – with the goal of creating either a printed final product, or a custom website to display your creative work as well.

As with any class, I do expect to be notified of absences or the need to make up assignments with as much advance notice as possible.  While certain drafts and assignments will have more flexible deadlines, some of the assignments (especially those that will be collaborative) will be critical to make up if missed, promptly.