Description: Continuation of GER 115. Class reading of short stories, plays, and essays. Grammar review, oral and written composition.
Prerequisites: GER 115
Credit Hours: 4
General Education: LH - Language in the Humanities
IAI Code: IAI H1 900 Foreign Language IV
Dates: 01/13/2020 - 05/02/2020
Building: Adlai E. Stevenson Hall 214 (STV 214)
Instructor Name: Jonathan Martin
Section Note: When we stop to consider, even briefly, the influence that children’s texts have had on our own lives, we start to get a sense of how this literature can influence the psychological, moral, intellectual, and emotional development of individuals and communities. Because of this incredible influence, adults spend a lot of time, in public and in private, debating what kinds of books children should read. In this course, we’ll be furthering our sense of the richness of children’s literature by analyzing, through writing and discussion, samples of a variety of genres written for and read by young children. It is my hope that you will leave this class better able to discern how children’s texts function, whether you use that discernment to enjoy the literature yourself, choose books for any children in your life, or participate in debates about the societal and personal benefits of complex and diverse children’s literature. We will analyze a variety of works written for young children (what are now considered standard reading levels for ages five to nine), including multicultural picture books, fairy tales, poetry, and chapter books. Texts will include variations on Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and Snow White tales; Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith’s The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Fractured Tales; Mo Willems’s We Are in A Book!, Sharon Creech’s I Hate That Cat!; Lenore Look’s Ruby Lu, Brave and True; and Andrea Beatty’s Rosie Revere, Engineer. While we analyze these and other texts, you’ll be gaining experience in using your writing and speaking to interpret texts, apply theory, demonstrate relationships between primary and secondary texts, and think about the connections among textual worlds and our world outside the text. Keep in mind that although this class is required for some who are pursuing careers as teachers, it is not a methods course in how to teach these novels to younger students. It is required because the expectation is that the skills mentioned here, in addition to being valuable in their own right and vital to anyone interested in the study of literature, will also enhance future teachers’ ability to design and teach their courses. Whether you are hoping to be a teacher or parent, or you intend your direct interactions with children to be minimal, the goals of this course include the development of skills that will benefit you in other courses as well as your life beyond college.