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June 11, 2008

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Dr. Laura L. Runge
Office: CPR 360 D
Phone: 813-974-9496

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LAE 6389 Practice Teaching Literature

Summer 2008
Time: Tues/Thurs
12:30 - 4:00 pm
Room: BSN 1304

  • Assignments
  • Related Sites
  • Teaching IDEAS from 2004
  • Annotated Bibliography from LAE 6389 2004 and 2006

    1. Course Description

      This course is designed to introduce students to practical concerns in teaching literature. We will review constructing a syllabus, setting teaching objectives, organizing a course, teaching methods, evaluation and assessment, and problems and pitfalls. This course prepares students to teach in the General Education Curriculum, and it will also address particular issues associated with teaching introduction to literature, poetry, fiction, drama, and short story. The discussions will be based upon light reading assignments, practical activities, student reports and weekly writings. The class will form groups and teach a short literary work to the other members of the class. Students will be responsible for several presentations throughout the term and the students will be expected to turn in a on-line portfolio through Blackboard.

    Required Materials

    Elaine Showalter, Teaching Literature (Blackwell, 2003)

    Wilbert J. McKeachie and Marilla Svinicki, Teaching Tips: Strategies, Research, and Theory for College and University Teachers 12th edition (Houghton Mifflin, 2006)

    Selected readings from the teaching journals such as Pedagogy, available through Project Muse

    Electronic Media

    For an general introduction to electronic formats for teaching/learning, see USF Academic Computing Home Page.

    Electronic Discussion We will be using the USF Blackboard system and the discussion board I have created for this class. You can gain access to it through My USF. You are automatically registered by virtue of being registered for this course.

    My website: information on class, assignments and links to other important sites on literature, etc.

    Other important websites are listed following the assignments.


    Notes for each class will be updated throughout the term

    May 13

      Class 1: Choosing Texts
      Sample Anthologies
      Meet with Houghton Mifflin: Lunch Provided
      In-class reading
      Introduce Syllabus assignment
      General Education Overview
      Introduction to Literature, Poetry, Fiction, Drama, and Short-story
      Form post groups A&B

    May 15

      Class 2: Why teach Literature?
      Meet with McGraw Hill: lunch provided
      Review parts of the syllabus
      Showalter, chaps. 1-2
      McKeachie, chaps. 1-2
      Assignment: Practical on Editions
      Review peer review
      sign up for Syllabus and literature review presentations -- on WIKI
      Post #1 Groups A & B

    May 20

      Class 3: Organizing the course
      Guest Panel: What I Wanted to Know Before I Started Teaching Poetry (or Fiction, Drama...)
      Showalter, chapter 4-7
      Discuss Reading schedules - themes
      Assignment: draft course description and theme (peer review)
      Form teaching groups- select short text - sign up for teaching dates
      Post #2 Group A

    May 22

      Class 4: Course Objectives
      Read selected texts in Course Docs: ch. 1 in NAEL teaching Guide, and TBA
      Discuss How to prepare a text for teaching
      Assignment: draft course objectives (peer review)
      Student Presentations: Literature Review - Akeyla Post #2 Group B

    May 27

      Class 5: Teaching Methods
      Showalter, chapter 3
      McKeachie, chaps. 3-6
      Discuss Active Learning strategies
      Student Presentations: Literature Review: Simons, Good
      Student Presentations: Syllabus Check: Quigley, Silver
      Assignment: sample assignment (peer review)
      Post #3 Group A

    May 29

      Class 6: Teaching Methods, cont.
      Showalter chapter 8
      McKeachie, chaps. 15-18
      Student Presentations: Literature Review:Hunt-Logan, Bryant
      Student Presentations: Syllabus Check:Tartaglia, Bryant
      Assignment: List of supplemental readings for course
      Post #3 Group B

    Jun 3

      Class 7: Practice Teaching
      Groups TBA - teaching unit
      Student Presentation: Literature Review: Quigley, McKee
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check: McGowan, Roy
      Assignment: Statement of innovative teaching methods (including technology)
      Post #4 Group A

    June 5

      Class 8: Practice Teaching
      Groups TBA - teaching unit
      Student Presentation: Literature Review: Tartaglia, Benson
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check: Hunt-Logan, Simons
      Assignment: Obtaining a student paper
      Post #4 Group B

    Jun 10

      Class 9: Evaluation and Assessment
      McKeachie, chaps. 7-11
      Discuss: Matching Learning objectives and outcomes
      Student presentation: Literature Review: McGowan, Roy
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check: McLeod, Benson
      Assignment: Group evaluation of purchased student paper
      Post #5 Group A

    Jun 12

      Class 10: Problems and Pitfalls
      Showalter, chaps. 9-10
      McKeachie, chaps. 12-14
      Student Presentation: Literature Review:Mitchell, Ellman
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check: Good, McKee
      Post #5 Group B

    Jun 17

      Class 11: Rubrics Guest Lecture: Felix Wao and Terri Flateby (tentative)
      Peer Review CLAQWA, rubrics - assessment
      Student Presentation: Literature Review:Ricci, McLeod
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check: Mitchell, Ellman
      Assignment: Make your own rubric for student essays
      Post #6 Group A

    Jun 19

      Class 12: Teaching Philosophy
      Student Presentation: Literature Review: Auger
      Student Presentation: Syllabus Check:Ricci, Augur
      Assignment: Statement of Teaching Philosophy -- peer review
      Post #6 Group B

    Jun 26 -- Deadline for turning in on-line portfolio

    ** Students who anticipate the necessity of being absent from class due to the observation of a major religious observance must provide notice of the date(s) to the instructor, in writing, by the second class meeting.

    Graded Assignments

    Attendance/Participation 25%

    Weekly Posts (6) 10%

    Syllabus Presentation 5%

    Review of Teaching Resource 10%

    Group Teaching Unit 10%

    Online Portfolio 40%

    Description of graded assignments

    Attendance and Participation

    Students are expected to be present and to participate in group activities, classroom practicals, discussion and evaluation of peers. Success in the class is dependent upon this. If students anticipate missing a class, they should prepare and submit work in advance of the class. Diligence in the remaining classes may offset the failure in attendance.

    Weekly Writings – Class Discussion Board

    All members are required to participate in the electronic discussion board maintained through Blackboard. Writing assignments will vary from week to week, depending on the topic and activity for each class. In general, each student will be expected to write a 200-300 word, original document in response to the readings or topics for the week. These are due to be posted by the day before class, either Monday or Wednesday by midnight. Students are expected to engage in a class conversation rather than to submit isolated essays; therefore it is also expected that students read each of the posts before class. This forum is also open for other relevant discussions.

    For general information on weekly posts to discussion board, including instructions, click on Postings.

    Because we will be meeting two times per week for six weeks, I will separate the class into two groups. Group A will post for Tuesday's class; Group B will post for Thursday's class. Everyone will read the posts for each class. Read the posts of your classmates before composing your post (obviously, not everyone will be able to do this in entirety.) Contribute something original to the discussion, even if it is only a relevant question. As you will discover, I believe the key to learning is asking the right questions.

    Posts are graded on a scale of 1 to 3 for effort, not rightness or wrongness. If I do not respond to your post, then you can assume it received full credit. Please devote some thought to these posts, because they will constitute a large part of our discussion material.

    You will be responsible for reading ALL the posts before class discussion, even if (especially if) you posted early.

    ** In case of server malfunction, bring a hardcopy of your post to my office by noon before class.

    Syllabus Presentation

    Each student will be responsible for constructing a workable syllabus as part of the online portfolio. Because the syllabus is the backbone of a course, it is the most significant element in the course portfolio. Each student will be allowed the opportunity to present the syllabus-in-progress to get feedback on its development and to solicit ideas for improvement.

    These will be scheduled 2 per class starting May 27. The presentation need not be formal, but you should outline what you have accomplished and be prepared with specific questions for the class. Due to the number of students, these presentations must be strictly limited to 15 minutes; so please practice and time your presentation.

    Your syllabus should contain the following minimum elements:

  • Course information, title and description
  • Instructor contact information
  • Required and recommended texts and materials
  • Course objectives
  • Schedule of readings and assignments
  • Description of course assignments and grading weight
  • Course policies

    Presentation on Teaching Resource:

    Each class member will make one presentation on a teaching resource (literature review) to be selected through the bibliographies in Showalter or McKeachie, or through your other course reading. I highly recommend that you explore the journal Pedagogy which is available online through Project Muse. Please review the Annotated Bibliography from LAE 6389 2004 and 2006 before making a selection. We will be continuing to build this resource during our course. Subjects for review can be in the form of an article, book, website, DVD or CD or video (or other). The student will be responsible for providing access to the material in some form so that other members of the class can participate in the evaluation. In other words, provide copies of an article (online or on paper), bring in the book to share, have the CD to play in class, etc.

    In the interest of coherence, the resource should reflect in some way the concerns of the topic for that particular day, but this is not restrictive. In general choose a resource that you are genuinely curious about and believe will be helpful.

    Your presentation can be informal, but provide some basis of evaluation for class members to discuss. Due to the number of students in the class, these presentations must be strictly limited to 15 minutes (10 minutes presentation, 5 Q&A); so please practice and time your presentation.

    Please provide answers to the following questions:

    • What is the resource? Title, author(s), format, publication information including date, price, availability, etc.
    • What is it about? (Summary of contents.)
    • How is it organized?
    • How is it helpful?
    • What is the audience?
    • In what situations could it be used?
    • What are its strengths/weaknesses?
    • How would you rate it?

    Students will be responsible for signing-up for review presentations; there will be 2 scheduled per class beginning May 22. The student should prepare an evaluative statement based on the above information to be included in the online annotated bibliography.

    As a class, we will be continuing the online annotated bibliography begun by the LAE 6389 class of S04. Please see Annotated Bibliography from LAE 6389 2004 and 2006 and 2007. After each presentation, students will be asked to submit a formal entry into the annotated bibliography that we will construct as an ongoing project during the class. Final date for last entries will be the Thursday following the last class, or Jun 26.

    Entries should follow standard MLA formatting. The annotation should be written in clear, full sentences. These annotations can be as long as the resource merits.

    Please submit as Microsoft Word Files or RTF so that I can format it easily.

    Teaching Unit

    The parameters of this assignment will be discussed in class and decided as a group.

    Online Portfolio

    Throughout the semester, students will be asked to draft different materials for planning and teaching a course, and these will be submitted for peer review in class. After review, students are expected to revise and submit the materials in their portfolios. This online portfolio will demonstrate the progress the student makes in preparing to teach literature, and it will also serve as a resource for the student as he or she begins to teach his or her own literature classes. Minimum contents of the portfolio are:

  • Syllabus (see description above)
  • Sample assignments
  • Description of organization, theme
  • Supplemental readings
  • Statement of teaching methodology (including use of innovative technologies)
  • Grading policies-methods; assessment rubric
  • Teaching "philosophy"
  • Self-assessment

    This syllabus is subject to change.

    Related Sites

    PET (Project for Effective Teaching) Resources: bibliography of pedagogy resources aimed to help the new teacher in his or her craft. Maintained by Williams College for its new faculty.

    Teaching, Learning and Technology at SUNY. Lots of resources for using technology in the classroom.

    Alternatives to Lecture short list of instructional options

    Teaching Bibliography from the Center for Teaching and Learning at Cornell University

    Electronic Archive for teaching the American Literatures The Electronic Archives are created and maintained by the Center for Electronic Projects in American Culture Studies (CEPACS) at Georgetown University's American Studies Program.

    NCTE homepage National Council of Teachers of English

    Teaching Literature Bibliography Linked from the syllabus of a (far more structured) Teaching Literature class by Prof. Byron Hawk at George Mason University

    Teaching Temperaments:

      On learning Styles: From the Georgia State Master Teacher Program, this site offers information on how temperaments inform different learning styles and strategies for adopting teaching methods to meet these different styles.

      Jungian Typology test: an online test from a site entitled Humanmetrics.

      Kiersey Temperament Sorter: Commercial website that provides updates Kiersey's Please Understand Me, including "A Modern Guide to Temperaments."

    There are numerous other resources available. Please contact me with additional information.

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