Sophomore English

Welcome to Sophomore English! Recognizing both contextual (i.e. historical, biographical, cultural) and formalist (i.e. literary devices, techniques, elements) approaches to literature, English 10 requires a more informed and insightful discussion of literary craft. Through the study of craft, students make grammatical and stylistic choices in their writing in order to produce clarity, concision and cohesion ultimately leading to more purposeful, powerful, and elegant prose. In addition to analytical essays, students complete written and visual creative projects that provide another means of literary interpretation as well as self-expression.

Due 9/27 (9/28 for 10G): The Yellow Wallpaper

English 10

Here’s what you should have completed thus far:

  1. Read the course syllabus
  2. All supplies should be in place
  3. Registered for class website
  4. Posted a response to the Welcome thread on the class forum
  5. Completed in-class writing assignment
  6. Read and annotated Where are You Going
  7. Read and annotated the two poems by Emily Dickinson, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath.
  8. Read the bios for Sexton and Plath

You should have the following handouts printed and in your binder:

  1. Course syllabus
  2. Literary Terms
  3. Where are You Going, Where have You Been?
  4. Annotating Guidelines
  5. The Bell Jar Unit Poetry
  6. Confessional Poetry Guide

Completed Last Class Period:

Read and annotate Her Kind by Anne Sexton and Lady Lazarus by Sylvia Plath. As we use these poems and those of Emily Dickinson to practice writing topic sentences, keep in mind that we are laying the thematic foundation for our first unit. I remind you that this involves sensitive subjects such as depression and suicide.

After reading the poems, in bullet form identify the primary devices (i.e. metaphor, symbolism, etc) used in each poem to develop theme.

9/26: To be completed during Monday’s class–Poetry Discussion and Topic Sentence Practice

Small Group Discussion (20 minutes): Begin class in small groups and pick up where you left off last Wednesday. Discuss both poems focusing (Sexton and Plath)  on the theme in each poem and how the poet develops that theme.

Topic Sentence Practice: To begin, a topic sentence should feature both an observation and an argument. For example:

  1. In Her Kind Anne Sexton’s witch, a misunderstood outcast, depicts how women are made to feel like strangers in their own body. (observation=the witch; argument= women are made to feel like strangers in their own body)
  2. In Sylvia Plath’s Lady Lazarus, suicide attempts present a way for the narrator to take control over herself and the crowd. (observation=suicide; argument=suicide allows the narrator to take control over herself and the crowd)

Using the four poems (2 by Sexton and 2 by Plath), write one topic sentence per poem for a total of 4 poems.

HW:

  1. Research and take notes on Charlotte Perkins Gilman, author of The Yellow Wallpaper.
  2. The Yellow Wallpaper–Print the short story.
  3. Feminist Criticism–Print this handout and be sure to have it with you in class!

My Apologies, One More Delay

Hello folks,

First off, let me apologize for the added delay. I love my job and am desperate to begin the year with you, but I must see to it that my family is ok first. So, hang in there. I will do my best to make it worth your wait. In the meantime, here is the plan for the next two days:

9/19: My Life has stood – a Loaded Gun and I felt a Funeral, in my Brain by Emily Dickinson

Both poems are in the The Bell Jar Unit Poetry. In class read and annotate both poems. Then, answer the following questions in one paragraph (be sure to have a proper topic sentence):

How are the poems thematically related? How does Dickinson develop the theme in each poem?

Conclude class with small group discussion.

HW: Print and read the following sections of the Confessional Poetry Guide:

  • Introduction
  • Anne Sexton (Bio and The Truth the Dead Know)
  • Sylvia Plath (Bio and Ariel)

9/20: Read and annotate Her Kind by Anne Sexton and Lady Lazarus by Sylvia Plath. As we use these poems and those of Emily Dickinson to practice writing topic sentences, keep in mind that we are actually (and more importantly) laying the thematic foundation for our first unit. I remind you that this involves sensitive subjects such as depression and suicide.

After reading the poems, in bullet form identify the primary devices (i.e. metaphor, symbolism, etc) used in each poem to develop theme.

So, if you have taken all assigned work seriously and completed it meaningfully, we will be good to go on 9/25! Can’t wait to meet you!

Due 9/14 (9/15 for 10G): Where Are You Going Discussion

Hello folks! The first week is almost in the books. If all goes as planned, I will see you on Monday and this class really begins! It is imperative that you have taken care of all responsibilities by then. This includes:

  • Registered for the website
  • Posted a response in the Welcome thread on the class forum
  • Completed the in-class writing assignment
  • Read the course syllabus
  • You should have supplies for the class
  • All handouts: (Literary terms, Where Are You Going, Annotating Guide, Bell Jar Poetry Unit)

Tomorrow, you will do the following:

Day 5: Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Discussion

(15-20 minutes) In small groups of four, discuss what you annotated and WHY?

(10-15 minutes) Whole group share.

(10 minutes) Individual Writing: What is the primary theme of the short story and how does Oates use conflict to shape that theme?

(10-15 minutes) Back to small group discussion. Share your thoughts on theme.

HW:

  • The Bell Jar Unit Poetry: As part of The Bell Jar unit, we will read selections from Emily Dickinson, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath. Tonight, print the handout and be sure to bring it to class tomorrow.

Due 9/13 (9/14 for 10G): Where Are You Going…

Now that the in-class writing assignment is done, let’s read a short story together:

1. Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? By Joyce Carol Oates: Print and have in class for Wednesday, Sept. 13th.
2. Annotating Literature: Print and closely read this handout on annotating literature. Keep it in your binder ALL YEAR!

10G, keep in mind that you start each week with me on a Tuesday, so homework assigned to 10F will be due for you a day later. So, while 10F completed the in-class writing assignment today in class, you will do it tomorrow, 9/13. And while 10F will read Where Are You Going… tomorrow in class, you will read it Thursday in class.

Due 9/12 (9/13 for 10G): In-Class Writing Assignment

Most of you have registered successfully and posted on the class forum! Good start! Those of you who have not, be sure to do it today. If you are having problems, email me at sleon@beaconschool.org.

10F, you should have completed the following in class today (10G, you will do this tomorrow).

Day 2: In-Class Assignment Prep

For the following, feel free to use your book and any notes you may have taken. Do not use someone else’s work for this assignment. What you complete in class today will be left with the substitute teacher at the end of the period. You are not expected to address the following in paragraph form. You are merely gathering ideas. For each of the following, use evidence when appropriate:

  • List and briefly discuss two of the primary themes in the novella.
  • Describe the narrator
  • List off conflicts in the novella
  • How is conflict related to a discussion of the title?
  • What is the setting? What are the narrator’s general thoughts on the setting?
  • How do the photos help to enhance or detract from the narrative?

HW: Be ready for in-class writing assignment! (10G, your in-class writing assignment will be Wednesday.)