English 12 Children’s Literature

During the first half of this course, students will explore classic fairy tales and children’s stories through a new perspective by reading, researching and deconstructing the original grotesque and dark writings of the Grimm Brothers and Hans Christian Andersen. Through the eyes of people such as Walt Disney, students will investigate how various folktales and gender stereotypes developed and became classical models for children and adults, and how these classic models reflect the social views of society today. With their new-found knowledge and understanding of the evolution of children’s literature, students will write a present-day children’s literature book for a student in the BP Primary School.

The second half of the year will be dedicated to reading “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking Glass,” and studying surrealism and Freud’s theories on dreams and reality. Students will end the course with a taste of young adult (YA) literature by reading Harry Potter—and drawing on connections they’ve made throughout the entire year.

Required Text

  • None. All reading materials will be provided to students.
  • Suggested reading:
    • Variety of children’s literature: Grimm Brothers, Hans Christian Andersen, Walt Disney etc.
    • “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking Glass” by Lewis Carroll
    • “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” by J.K. Rowling
    • YA contemporary Literature Circle-themed novels
    • Informational texts that relate to content covered during specified units

Required Supplies

  • One three-subject composition notebook
  • Pencils and pens with blue or black ink
  • One folder
  • College-ruled paper
  • One pack of sticky notes
  • Highlighters

Course Format and Procedures

The course meets daily for 42 minutes, and students are expected to make full use of class time. Students will have some periods of lecture but most of class time will be spent reading, writing or conferencing (in groups, pairs or with the teacher.) Students are expected to participate in discussions and share select pieces of their work with their peers and, on occasion, with a larger community audience.

Grading Procedures

  • Summative assignments will include essays, short stories, tests, quizzes, oral presentations and performances. All summative work will be assessed using a rubric.
  • Formative assignments are intended to help students learn skills and practice using them before a summative assessment. Formative assessment will require students to read and write daily, participate in groups, participate in peer-editing activities and participate in class discussions.
  • Grading:
    • Tests/essays/projects: 40%
    • Quizzes: 25%
    • Participation/classwork: 35%

Student and Parent Resources

Student Resources

  • After-school help available is Monday through Thursday, and during first and sixth period by prior arrangement.
  • Class website: Google Classroom Children’s Literature\

Parent Resources:

  • Email (vincentc@bpcsd.org), is the best way to contact the instructor, who will respond within 24 hours.
  • Parent Portal is a great resource to track your child’s grades, as well as Parent University, which offers opportunities for parents to learn skills to help make their children successful.

Course Outline (tentative)

Quarter 1 (~7 1/2 Weeks)

  • Week 1: School begins. Hand out materials list on Thursday
  • Week 2: Policy and procedures
  • Week 3: What is children’s literature?
  • Week 4: Literacy and its impact
  • Week 5: CR individual books
  • Week 6: Lit Circle stories
  • Week 7: Lit Circle stories
  • Week 8: Lit Circle stories
  • Week 9: Projects
  • Week 10: Essay ( first-quarter grades close)

Quarter 2 (~8 Weeks)

  • Week 11: Interviews & intro to writing a children’s book
  • Week 12: Brainstorm story ideas (Thanksgiving break)
  • Week 13: Intro to writing a children’s book
  • Week 14: Interviews & drafting
  • Week 15: Peer reviews (five weeks close)
  • Week 16: About the author
  • Week 17: (Christmas break)
  • Week 18: COMP LAB peer review/final edits
  • Week 19: COMP LAB/workshop/putting book together
  • Week 20: BOOKS DUE: Read books to class; vote on winners (midterm)
  • Week 21: Awards Intro to Alice (second-quarter grades close)

Quarter 3 (~8 1/2 Weeks)

  • Week 22: “Through the Looking Glass”
  • Week 23: “Through the Looking Glass”
  • Week 24: “Through the Looking Glass”
  • Week 25: (February break)
  • Week 26: Finish “Through the Looking Glass” (five weeks close)
  • Week 27: “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
  • Week 28: “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
  • Week 29: “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
  • Week 30: “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
  • Week 31: Projects (third-quarter grades close)

Quarter 4 (~7 Weeks)

  • Week 32: Intro to “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”
  • Week 33: (April break)
  • Week 34: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”
  • Week 35: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”
  • Week 36: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” (five weeks close)
  • Week 37: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”
  • Week 38: Projects
  • Week 39: Project presentations
  • Week 40: FINALS BEGIN

Note: The content of this syllabus is subject to change in accordance with the needs of the class and/or instructor(s).