Seysl 704 literature across the curriculum fall 2012


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Seysl 704 literature across the curriculum fall 2012

  1. 1. SEYSL 704 Literature Across the Curriculum Initial Tentative Syllabus Instructor Information: Amy Jo Southworth Email: Course Type: Asynchronous Online Course Purpose of the Course This online course will acquaint participants with the vast field of young adult literature. We will explore the characteristics of a wide variety of YA literature from diverse authors and about diverse populations (in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, disability, and sexual orientation). Many of the themes in these texts also provide opportunities to get adolescents thinking and talking about important societal and cultural issues. Because it is discipline based, those teaching in middle and secondary grades will find materials particularly geared to them. In this course, you may encounter ideas that vary somewhat from those you hold dear or from those you once believed were "etched in stone." Be assured that there is no underlying goal to change your way of thinking. I only ask that you explore and clarify issues for yourself. Notes - This syllabus is a general plan for the course: deviations will be posted on BlackBoard under “Announcements.” -Students with disabilities who require accommodations should contact me as soon as possible. Course Objectives The course is designed to provide opportunities for students to: 1. Read a wide variety of trade books including traditional and multicultural literature. 2. Read professional literature concerning young adult materials. 3. Become familiar with major authors/illustrators/poets and awards of children's literature. 4. Select and evaluate children's literature for school use. 5. Develop an understanding of how to develop literacy through literature. 6. Create cooperative interdisciplinary units focused around a singular theme. This course is aligned with the Education Unit’s commitment to preparing educational professionals to work in diverse urban and suburban communities. Specifically, the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that candidates will develop/demonstrate at the successful completion of this course are directly linked to the Education Unit's seven principles: 1) discipline specific competencies, 2) learning and development, 3) families and urban communities, 4) diversity, inclusion, democracy and social justice, 5) language and literacy, 6) curriculum, instruction, and assessment, and 7) technology.
  2. 2. Required Readings: In addition to the trade books which are listed below, you will be required to read and work from the following book as well as selected course readings that will be posted: ***From Contemplation to Action: Promoting Social Justice Through Children’s Literature (Rhodes, Wolf and Darvin, 2008) Cummings and Hathaway. This book is available from All of the royalties (which are very, very small) will be donated to Sunrise Day Camp which is a camp for children with cancer. Required Readings: Historical Fiction Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor The Book Thief by Zusak Markus Tibet through the Red Box by Peter Sis Kira Kira by Cynthia Kadohata Nonfiction Henry's Freedom Box by Ellen Levine Children of the Great Depression by Russell Freedman Carver: A Life in Poems by Marilyn Nelson Contemporary Problems Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan, Dystopian/Science Fiction Feed by MT Anderson Group Assignment (you will be assigned to read one of the following texts) The First Part Last by Angela Johnson American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang Tangerine by Edward Bloom Bait by Alex Sanchez The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman Course Requirements: You are required to check Bb at least biweekly and are responsible for all assignments and notes that may be included. I will be available via email and should any question arise, please contact me at Except when noted, you may read the books at your own pace and post your reactions and responses at any time. Check your QC email regularly. Relationship of Course to the Education Unit’s Conceptual Framework This course is aligned with the Core Values of the Education Unit of “promoting Equity, Excellence, and Ethics in urban schools and communities.” More specifically, the Education Unit is committed to preparing teachers and educational professionals who:
  3. 3. 1 Build inclusive communities that nurture and challenge all learners (Equity) 2 Demonstrate professionalism, scholarship, efficacy, and evidence-based and reflective practice (Excellence); and 3 Value diversity, democracy, and social justice (Ethics). Through the exploration of literacy as well as through the exploration of exemplary practices in curriculum design, adaptation, and instruction, this course also embeds the Standards for Reading Professionals established jointly by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the International Reading Association: 1. Foundational Knowledge 2. Instructional Strategies and Curriculum Materials 3. Assessment, Diagnosis, and Evaluation 4. Creating a Literate Environment, and 5. Professional Development Additional Information: ADA Statement Students with disabilities needing academic accommodation should: (1) register with and provide documentation to the Special Services Office, Kiely 171; (2) bring a letter to the instructor indicating the need for accommodation and what type. This should be done during the first week of class. For more information about services available to Queens students contact: Pratik Patel, Special Services Office; 171 Kiely Hall; 718-997-5870 (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.). E-mail address: USE OF STUDENT WORK All teacher education programs in New York State undergo periodic reviews by accreditation agencies and the state education department. For these purposes, samples of students’ work are made available to those professionals conducting the review. Student anonymity is assured under these circumstances. If you do not wish to have your work made available for these purposes, please let the professor know before the start of the second class. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated. Note on Plagiarism: Any student who includes material not his or her own in papers, without proper citations, will automatically receive a failing grade in the course. CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity Academic dishonesty is prohibited in The City University of New York and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion as provided at: id=11L9 **Syllabus is subject to change. Weeks 1-7: 1 Becoming acclimated with Blackboard 2 Posting introductions 3 Obtaining reading material and reading the texts
  4. 4. 4 Responding to forum prompts Week 8: Two page synthesis of Core Text due: submit via email and post to discussion board forum Week 9: Digital Book Group Project due: submit via email and post to discussion board forum Week 11: Final individualized paper due: submit via email The requirements for the course are: discussion board interactions and responses (30%), CORE text synthesis (15%), Book Group Collaboration and Digital sharing (25%), and final paper with lesson plan (30%). Requirements in order of due dates: Blackboard reader responses based upon paperback texts/media and participation via blackboard and email (30%) 1. Reading Posts- For each of the assigned trade books/multimedia texts you will be expected to post your personal responses as well as address any specific prompts that may be posted for the books. Your personal response should briefly describe how you responded to each selection and offer a thoughtful engagement with the issues and themes raised in the literature using the course’s conceptual framework. If there are prompts for a particular book, they will be posted on the discussion board. PLEASE make sure to compose your responses in a word processing program and then cut and paste them into Bb. Doing so will avoid the unfortunate situation of losing your data. Grammar, spelling, and diction, must reflect attention to detail. For each reading assignment you should write a minimum 250 word personal response and a minimum 50 word response to at least two other classmates postings. All posting will be done in the designated “discussion section” of Bb. 2. Trade Books/multimedia should be read by week 6 of class (read in order LISTED) Reading Synthesis for Core text (2-3 pages) due during the 7th week (15%) Reading Synthesis: Please write a 2-3 page synthesis on the core text (From Contemplation to Action: Promoting Social Justice Through Children’s Literature. You will reflect on the meaning and practice of literacy, as well as literacy and identity. You may reference additional readings. This paper will allow you to consider dominant school based assumptions of literacy. You will also evaluate how your beliefs concerning literacy are developing and changing. **It is expected that your response will refer to specific passages ie. be textually-based. Due: 7th week of the course; submit as an attachment to discussion board and
  5. 5. This paper may be written in first person. It should adhere to APA format. Digital Book Group Project: (25%) Collaboration As a group, you will be assigned a text from the list above. Each member of the group will create a short plan for teaching an aspect of the text germane to his or her specific subject. Each plan will be part of your group's unit. For example, a group assigned Roll of Thunder... would have a social studies teacher mapping the historical concepts such as injustice of segregation and the hypocrisy of Plessey vs. Ferguson or the levels of radical resistance in a movement, while the teacher of English might teach the various degrees of memoir and the allegory of the text, the math teacher would try to figure monetary equivalents or figure the budgets of Mr. Granger and his tenants, while a music teacher would focus on slave songs, the health teacher on foods, medicine, the physical education... The central idea is that you are using literacy to highlight the ideas essential to your discipline and to explore the various aspects of the human condition. It could be as short as a week for an art teacher, or as long as three for a teacher of English. It should include a day-by-day plan including objectives, activities, assessments and possible extensions. Keep in mind that your plan should reflect the concept that you are teaching it as a collective unit; your lessons should not overlap. **Please use Common Core State Standards to help you select texts and create the unit. Part B: Write a collective 5-7 page paper that connects the text to 5-6 others that have not been assigned. You should select one major theme that ties the works together. The paper should reference specific parts of the texts you are using. Include an annotated bibliography of all texts. You may want to use a collaborative paper-writing utility like Google docs. Due: Week 9 Individual Final Paper: Applying Core Text due week 11th (30%) The paper should be about 5-7 pages. Be sure to use direct quotes from the books. Be sure to explain the quotations and analyze them in relation to the purpose of the paper. Part I. Topic: Daniels and Zemelman (2004) argue for a balance of "mirrors and windows" when presenting literary texts. They believe that "some of what students read in school should hold up a mirror to them, by including their story, their culture, their experience. Also, books should act as windows where students look at not their own reflection, but upon other people's, other time periods, other stories, and values, and ways of life" (59). Deconstruct this quote. How do parts of this quote relate to some of the texts read this semester? Avoid summarizing the texts. (Suggestion: discuss 2-4 texts.) Part II. A. As you conclude the paper, facilitate a discussion based upon support in Part 1. Include your discussion prompt in this section. Then, synthesize and reflect on how the discussion evolved.
  6. 6. B. How will aspects of this course be useful to your teaching life? (Reflective) **You may label sections of the paper Part I and Part II. Due: Week 11 Set-up of Blackboard: *During the first week, I would suggest navigating through the site. Click on the side tabs to view the content of each section and understand its function. During this week: introductions should be posted, list of e-mail verification will be built, and book groups will begin to be formed. Syllabus: Posting of the initial syllabus and any syllabus updates Assignment: Written Assignments are posted on the syllabus and will be individually posted under this tab. Course Documents: Any additional information for the trade books or any supplemental course material (articles) will be posted under Course Documents. Discussion Board: For each assigned text a forum will posted. In order to respond to a forum, please click on the forum on the title, then “thread”. Cut and paste post. In order to respond to a peer’s comment, click on the peer’s thread and click on “reply”. -Other forum prompts will indicate to upload an attachment so that the class may be able view to your work. Please be sure to save the content of the work in a Word Document. -The synthesis, digital collaboration, and final paper should also be submitted to me via email at -Any questions that you may have please submit via email as well. Instructions for all submitted work: 1 Typed, double-spaced with a one-inch margin. 2 Page number on every page (including appendices or attachments, if any), at the right side. 3 Size 12 standard font. 4 Include a standard cover page. 5 Include a reference list. Use the APA reference style that is described in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. Evaluating Coursework: Satisfactory work: All deadlines met, assignments meet requirements, participation in all activities and learning experiences, general understanding of course content shown in reflection papers, preparing for class with readings and ongoing assignments. Above Satisfactory work: High quality work that shows time and effort, thoughtful reflections in written work and discussions, showing insight and perception, applications of readings and class
  7. 7. discussions to assignments, active participation in activities, and work beyond the expectations outlined above. Below Satisfactory work: Assignments do not meet all requirements, poor participation in activities and learning experiences, assignments submitted past deadline, weak evidence of content knowledge shown in reflection papers, ill-prepared for discussions of readings, unprofessional/disrespectful comments during class discussions. You will be informed if you are performing below satisfactory work. An essay is not like a math problem in which there is only one right answer. Grades, therefore, depend on a number of variables: the material being emphasized in class, the expectations of students at the point in the course the assignment is given, and the essay’s accomplishment of the goals of the assignment. Content Coherent controlling purpose Sufficient and relevant development Logical assertions Organization Clear sense of unity and order Well-developed paragraphs Logical transitions between paragraphs Effective introductions and conclusions Style Smooth, readable prose throughout Minimal wordiness Absence of clichés Appropriate of clichés Appropriate word choice Grammar and Mechanics Agreement of subjects and verbs Agreement of pronouns and antecedents Verb forms Sentence structure (no comma splices, fused sentences, fragments) Spelling, punctuation, and capitalization Standard English usage and idioms A: Excellent This essay is characterized by masterful control of purpose and by graceful expression. The content is of compelling interest; the organization and style enhance the meaning. The author regards his or her audience as intelligent and discriminating. The essay has no mechanical problems. B: Good This essay has the clarity and coherence of a competent piece of writing, yet also has depth of content. The organization is logically and rhetorically effective. It displays independent thought and a concern for careful expression with no mechanical problems. C: Competent or adequate This essay is characterized by clarity of purpose and coherence of structure. It contains some originality of thought, yet the content is usually not developed beyond the obvious, and the organization is predictable. It has few, if any, mechanical problems (no more than three or so). D: below expectations This essay is characterized by any number of the following problems: Unclear purpose Incoherent organization Inadequate, irrelevant, or illogical development Little originality of thought Reliance on clichés Inappropriate word choices
  8. 8. Ineffective sentence style Many or significant problems with grammar and mechanics F: unacceptable This essay is characterized by several problems in one or more of the areas specified in the “D” essay
  9. 9. Suggestions for Constructive Discussion Board Responses Discussion board responses: The discussion has two parts: a) original response to readings, b) replies to peers. Helpful Hints in developing reflections: 1 Two Key Points I Have Questions About/Found Confusing/ Disagreed With: Cite at least 2 specific pieces of information from the reading noting the chapter/page/author and what remaining questions you still have, why you are confused, why you disagree. Cite how these points relate to your specific teaching situation with personal reactions/analysis. 2 One Point I Would Like More Information About: Cite at least one piece of information from the reading that you would like to explore further. Cite how this issue relates to you in your specific teaching learning situation with personal reactions/analysis. Some ideas for improving the quality of your discussion… 1 I recognize the importance of . . . 2 It is important to learn/know about . . . 3 I see this . . . in my classroom For the most part, when you start with openers such as these, you are not adding anything additional/new to the discussion. Provide some specific examples of what you are seeing in school/class or in your environment related to the reading/discussion. Following are some ways to elaborate on the discussion (these were offered by a graduate of our program, Suann Claunch of FWISD). 1 I agree with___ because____ 2 I disagree with ___ because ____ 3 I wonder about _____ because ____ 4 According to ____ 5 The evidence shows___ 6 In my classroom, I see _____ and this seems to confirm/contradict _____ In other words, don’t just state an opinion. Support your point of view with specific examples and connections to other readings, discussions, etc.