Mahonri Stewart - English

Instructor: Mahonri Stewart

E-mail: mstewart@venturelearning.org

Room: 207

Office Hours: Tuesdays and Thursday until 4
(Except when I am in rehearsal for a play.
In those cases, set up a time with me for an appointment)

 

                               

Course Description

In the second year of English 9/10 we have a focus on international myth and literature, as well as units in writing (fiction and non-fiction), grammar, and 20th century playwrights.

 

Course Goals

Students who complete this course successfully will be able to:

  • Write in various genres of non-fiction and fiction writing, including essays, short stories, reviews, book reports, 10 minute plays, etc.   
  •  Read, discuss, analyze, write, and demonstrate knowledge about the purpose and meaning of mythology in cultural and literary terms.  
  • Read, discuss, analyze, write, and demonstrate knowledge about literature from various cultures around the world.  
  •  Read, discuss, analyze, and demonstrate knowledge about 20th century playwrights.

 

Required Texts, Materials, or Equipment

  • Mythology by Edith Hamilton (provided in class)
  • Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (provided in class)
  • One of the following possible texts for literature circles/groups: Les Miserables (abridged) by Victor Hugo; Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini; The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan; Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky; Life of Pi by Yann Martel; Inside Out and Back Again by Thanha Lai; The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende; Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton; or Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro (provided in class)
  • The Crucible by Arthur Miller, A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry, and possibly a Tennessee Williams play (provided in class)
  • Although much of our work is done online on Google classroom, students should have writing materials such as pens/pencils and paper on hand when it becomes necessary.
  • Students will occasionally have presentations and projects that will require things such as tri-folds, etc. that students will be asked to obtain on their own. If this causes a financial hardship, students are encouraged to approach me privately about the issue, so that other arrangements can be made.

 

Daily Work/Homework

Students are required to do outside of class homework, particularly when we are engaged in a novel and daily reading will be expected. Although time will also be given in class for various assignments, certain major projects will require outside work, reading, and study.

Major Assignments

  • Mythology Project: As part of their learning about world mythology, there will be two major projects attached to the unit:
    • A report on the mythology of a culture of their choice.
    • A creative project where they will create their own mythology that includes a pantheon, creation story, apocalypse, heroes, nature myths, cautionary myths, etc.
  • Short Stories/Essays: During our writing unit, there will be a number of essays written; a short story; a first person, non-fiction narrative; as well as other possible projects in various genres.
  • Literary Essays and 10 minute Plays: The writing skills learned will be brought over and used in other units, including literary essays during our international literature unit; and a 10 minute play during our 20th century playwrights unit.  

 

Tests and Quizzes:

In my opinion, tests and quizzes are, in part, meant to see if a student is prepared by a deadline. Also, once a test is seen, then a student knows what is on the test and obtains an unfair advantage. Thus, I do not allow re-takes of tests or quizzes, as it defeats the purpose of those exercises. However, in certain cases, I may allow certain kinds of extra credit of equivalent merit to make up those points, if I judge a student’s desire to learn and improve merits another chance. Also, excused absences can be taken in account, but a student must be ready to take the test as soon as they return from the excused absence.