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ENG230YYJ - The Literature for Children Collection

ENG230YYJ – The Literature for Children Collection

Contact

Professor Heather Fenneyweather                 Office Room: E1555A

                                                                        Office Hours: MWF 9AM-10AM & 12PM-1PM

*****No appointments are necessary during office hours. If you need to come in at another time please speak to me and we shall arrange another time. Contact me through e-mail or come and see me during class time.*****

Class Meetings: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays 10:10AM to 11AM

Please e-mail me whenever you wish to contact. I will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Course description: This is a second-year English course which analyzes literary works that have been written for children. Our main units of study will focus both on poetry and prose aimed towards children with an emphasis on stories written about animals. We will also look at stories from other parts of the world as well as fairy tales and children’s novels. Historiography and cultural paradigms will play crucial roles in this course as we will try to connect some of our stories with societal issues and trends, mythologies, research and the like. Students will gain a significant appreciation for children’s literary texts and the amount of information that they give us about the ways in which children look at the world, adults look at children and how we are organized into a system according to transitions in our life cycles. We will also make time to view some screenings of our favourite fairy tales in an effort to analyze how script is turned into film and how directors capture the world of literature through film.   

Required Textbooks: All of the required textbooks are available at our UBOOKSTORE. This year, we will be using anthologies, some individually-sold books and online print available for free and through our course site. The required textbooks are:

Harold M. Covell, Anne Grady, and Phyllis Moore eds., Fancy Free (The Ryerson Press, Toronto, 1967)

Carl B. Smith, Virginia A. Arnold and Ronald Wardhaugh, Full Circle (Collier-Macmillan Publishing Company, 1986)

E.B. White Stuart Little

*****Special Notice: ALL REQUIRED TEXTBOOKS ARE OFFERED AT DISCOUNTED RATES, BUT ONLY IF YOU PURCHASE THEM AT THE UBOOKSTORE!*****

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Children's_literature on the history of children’s literature

http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dKBrown/stories.html we will use for children’s stories/fairy tales. I will post more readings online as necessary on the course site. Please check there often.

The following are the core goals of this class:

·    To acquaint students with the proper mechanisms by which to analyze and study children’s literature.

·    To improve close-reading skills.

·    To give students more information and insights into the relationship between history, societal issues, multicultural paradigms, cultures and children’s literature.

·    To improve student’s analytical writing skills.

·    To aid students in becoming better writers.

Course Requirements: This is a large-sized class in a large classroom. Here are some rules to follow to succeed in this course:

·    Arrive having read the works in question. Be prepared to comment on some of the readings. The more you participate the more you will get out of the course.

·    You should attend all classes. We tend to build on items from lecture to lecture. The lecture points are important as you may wish to use them for your essays. This is why it is important for you to attend all classes.

·    Share your thoughts and feelings about the readings in question. See sentence 3 of bullet-point 1.

·    Turn all cell phones, pagers, and communications apparatuses off. If you are caught (for instance if your phone off goes during lectures) I shall take it away from you and you must come to my office hours to pick it up at the end of class.

·    I am here to help you. Always make an appointment to see me if you cannot see me during office hours or come in before or after class to see me if you need assistance in any way whatsoever.

·    If you are using a laptop please sit in the first few rows of the lecture room. Please also use laptops only for the purposes of taking notes for ENG230YYJ – The Literature for Children Collection. Do not surf the Internet to play games, watch videos, look at your e-mails, browse the internet, use FACEBOOK or chat using messengers. I would, however, recommend students to use paper and pen to make notes rather than laptops as laptops tend to distract others frequently. If laptop use becomes a distraction, I will ban the use of a laptop in this course.

·    Be a proactive learner. This means, finishing your work on time (readings, assignments) and come in for office hours if you require help.

·    Do not be late for class. If you need to leave early for a class you should sit in the front of the classroom and closer to the door so as not to make a distraction.

·    Do not consume foodstuffs in lectures. Water is the only permissible liquid that you may consume.

·    Do not commit academic fraud. If found you will be expelled.

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Course Assessment

Test                             10%            This test is in-class. Contact me if you miss it. See below.

Essay 1                        20%            Fairly Short        

Essay 2                        20%            Fairly short

Essay 3                        20%             Longer               

Final Examination      20%            Date To Be Announced

Participation               10%            Throughout the Session

Totals                        100%

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Course Assessment – Details

Test                             10%                      In-Class

This test will be a close-reading exercise of a passage that we will be studying and analyzing in class. I will provide students with a passage ahead of time and we will practice writing the kind of essay that you will write for the test in groups. I will also provide you with the actual passage ahead of time so that you can formulate your own coherent and succinct arguments and have them ready to study for ahead of time. No aids will be allowed for this assessment, but you may use the sight passage to create your arguments and even perhaps write an essay that you may want to memorize the main points. This test will be similar to a section of your final examination in which you will have to do the same thing; namely close read a passage from a particular story that we have looked at within our readers for this term.

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Essay 1                        20%                3 – 5 pages

You will pick an essay topic from a wide-range of topics from a list provided. All essays should be written using MLA style.

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Essay 2                        20%                3 – 5 pages

You will pick an essay topic from a wide-range of topics from a list provided. All essays should be written using MLA style. Use analysis and proper close-reading.

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Essay 3                        20%                5 – 10 pages

You will pick an essay topic from a wide-range of topics from a list provided to work from. For this third and final essay, you may even pick an essay topic of your choosing as long as it relates to topics we have studied within the context of the course. You may also choose to look at how certain stories were portrayed in film and relate them to cultural, social or historical constructions during that period of time. Independent essay topics must be discussed with the course instructor and, or teaching assistant(s) ahead of time to receive approval.

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Final Examination    20%                Date TBA

The course final assessment will consist of close-reading essays, definitions, and analyses of passages in relation to course themes. The final examination will not ask you to identify specific passages from specific texts or specific texts based on the passages provided.

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Participation              10%                Throughout the academic term

Students are expected to attend class. This is one part of participating in this course. The next part includes your active involvement in course activities such as speaking and group work. The more you share your ideas with the class and the more classes you attend the higher the grade will be for participatory purposes. Please try to participate as much as possible. Note that you will be graded on your attendance and your participation as a whole for this class. There will be a sign-up sheet for the purposes of taking attendance.

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All essays should be typed double-spaced in size 11 or 12 Times New Roman Font. Essays should be in black/automatic ink. Pages should be appropriately stapled and not paper-clipped to avoid loss of certain sheets. You must utilize MLA-style accurately and appropriately throughout the context of your essays. Please include a title page to go along with your essay and give your essay an appropriate title that properly reflects the content of your paper. The paper should be either white or off-white in colour. Number your pages! No exceptions will be made to these rules under any circumstances whatsoever.

WWW.Turnitin.com  and Academic Honesty – A Few Words

This website is used primarily for the detection of plagiarism intentional or unintentional. Since this is a fairly large class, I shall use turnitin and so will my TAs on a regular basis. This means that all three essays will be screened for plagiarism. Please be certain that you are familiar with this online software. If you are not, then you should please see me as quickly as possible and I will show you how to access the website and setup your account if need be. If it is found out that you have committed plagiarism under any circumstances whatsoever/howsoever, I shall report you to the Dean. There will be no exceptions made to this rule. I will allow you to submit your work to turnitin until a day after you have submitted your paper copies to me in class. Do not change anything which you will be submitting to the database. If the paper copy of your essay is different from the one on turnitin.com to a large degree, we will not mark it you will receive a grade of “0” and will be referred to the Dean immediately. The terms to which we use turnitin are set out in the academic calendar. Please refer to it and the turnitin website. I will provide students with the course id and password before they turn their papers into the database.

Here are a few ways to avoid plagiarism:

1.   Always cite information that does not come from you. If it is not your idea, cite it!

2.   Quote if you use text word for word. You will have to quote quite a bit since this is an English course. Paying particular attention to the language, diction, syntax and grammar in each of the texts will therefore be fundamental and above all necessary for you to acquire a good grade.

3.   Learn to use proper citing tools for the course in question. Some courses may ask you to use MLA, others Chicago Manual of Style; on the other hand others will ask you to use APA.

4.   If your instructor uses www.turnitin.com get to know the software, how it is used, what it does and how to avoid infractions. Similarly, cite everything, by this I mean cite every sentence in the papers. It is better to be safe than sorry.

5.   ALWAYS ASK WHEN YOU ARE UNSURE OF WHETHER OR NOT YOU SHOULD CITE SOMETHING!

Please be aware that your teaching assistants and I will not tolerate academic dishonesty in any way whatsoever!

Late Assignments and Make-Up Test Rules

Late assessments will be penalized 2% per day (excluding weekends). You must provide appropriate documentation from the registrar if you miss the test. You will have to complete the test outside of class on your own time. Please come to my office hours, e-mail me or come and see me after class so that we can arrange a time.

Course Schedule

Note: The Schedule below is only rough. Themes/stories/and the like are subject to change at the discretion of the instructor. Please also note that at times there are many readings. Make a concerted effort to finish them all for the class meeting. If you cannot do so, then please come to lecture and listen carefully to what is being discussed. You should know the contents of these readings for all assessments. Certain adjustments may be made to the reading list so as to even out the amount of material that we will be focusing on from one week to the next. Treat the following schedule as a preliminary idea of what to anticipate. Do not fear the amount of material. Most of the readings are quite short. The poems are about a page or so in length. Most poems will complement the readings in some way or another.

Week One: Introduction

Lecture 1: Welcome to the course! Syllabus distributed. Themes are discussed. Course policies outlined.

Lecture 1: Beginnings: Davis: Phoebe’s First Duet, Anastasio: What’s the Matter with Thurman, Poems: You, You, Caribou (author unknown), Stevenson: The Land of Story-Books, Untermeyer: Questions at Night, Wise-Brown: Wait Till the Moon is Full

Lecture 2: Lindman: Snipp, Snapp, Snurr and the Red Shoes, Garrett: Angelo the Naughty One, Poem – Ross: An Indignant Male, Elkin: Six Foolish Fisherman, Poem – Miller: Foal, Reeves: The Four Horses, Anderson: Blaze and the Forest Fire, Author Unknown: Fortune and the Beggar, Stephenson: Not a Mouse in the House, Ruskin: South-west Wind Esquire, Uchida: The Rooster Who Understood Japanese

Lecture 3: Poem – Fisher: Butterfly Wings, Levy: Hot Enough for You? Devendorf: Margarita’s Gift, Charlip and Supree: Harlequin and the Gift of Many Colors, White: Walter in Love, Poem - Spilka: Don’t Tell Me That I Talk Too Much!, Anastasio: The Friendship Game, Poem – Giardi: The River is a Piece of Sky, Geis: The Girl Who Found A Dragon (an article), Suhi: Simon Boom Gives A Wedding

Lecture 4: Rowland: The Whispering Falls Dog Race, Poem – Coatsworth: Winter Is In The Wood, Author Unknown: The Three Sillies, Carlson: Luc Boulanger’s Spotted Pig, Poem – Ault: The Pig’s Tail, Coatsworth: Spiders, Author Unknown: How Spider Outwitted Leopard, Haywood: Eddie and His Big Deals, Collodi: Pinocchio, Poem – Eastwick: Timothy Boon, Alberts: Ring Neck the Lame, Fyleman: The Princess Who Could Not Cry, Elliott: The Number of Spots

Lecture 5: Poem – Wadsworth: Over in the Meadow, Bell: Dr. Naismith’s Game, Weisner: Sillibill, Nash: Adventures of Isabel, Sobol: The Case of the Whistling Ghost, Anastasio: Hit and Run, Brauner: Silent Visitor, McCloskey: Make Way for Ducklings, Theriault: Nauya and the Great Sea Serpent, Poem – Dearmer: Whale

Lecture 6: Hale: Elizabeth Eliza’s Piano, Poem – Thackeray: A Tragic Story, Poem – Simple Simon, Poem – Man of Thessaly, Author Unknown: The Flying Carpet, Poem – Holland: When I Grow Up, Defoe: Robinson Crusoe, Poem – Richards: The Monkeys and the Crocodile, Author Unknown: The Brahman, the Tiger, and the Six Judges, Cunningham: The Little Scarred One, Carroll L. Fenton and Mildred A. Fenton: Comets from Afar

Lecture 7: Chaplina: Nyurka the Walrus, Poem – O’Neill: The Sound of the Night, McGivern: The Ultimate Auto, Poem – Spilka: A Hippo Yawned, Parnall: The Great Fish, From BB: The Princess and the Pea, From BB: Cinderella, BB: Hansel and Gretel, BB: Rumpelstiltskin, BB: The Little Mermaid, BB: Little Red Riding Hood, BB: Frog Prince, BB: Thumbelina

Lecture 8: SCREENINGS and DISCUSSIONS (please bring readings from lecture 7):

LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpL1C7ljzo0

HANSEL AND GRETEL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqfOb8Yrqr0

RUMPELSTILTSKIN http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9axf6JhVE0

HEIDI or CINDERELLA - class choice or both

Other required readings: Uchida: Momotaro: Boy-of-the-Peach, Poem – Fyleman: Momotaro, Sypri: Heidi

Lecture 8: Sanburg: How the Letter X Got into the Alphabet, Poem – Lear: O Was Once a Little Owl, Poem – Lear: F Was Once a Little Fish, Rapaport: A Little Too Much, Poem – Jaques: There Once Was a Puffin, Author Unknown: Daedelus and Icarus, Seaforth: The Foolish Fir-Tree, Poem – Rogers: Wishes

Lecture 9: Warburg: Growing Time, Garelick: Where does the butterfly go when it rains?, Author Unknown: The Lad who Went to the North Wind, Author Unknown: The Story of Aladdin, Brooks: Freddy and the Spaceship

Lecture 10: Select Poems on BB, BB: The Emperor’s New Suit, BB: The Ugly Ducking, BB: The Red Shoes, BB: Rapunzel, BB: The Little Red Hen, BB: Goldilocks and the Three Bears, BB: Franklin the Turtle (Select Stories), BB: Arthur (Select Stories), Select Stories from the Aesop’s Fables Collection

Lecture 11: Poems from the Anthology I: Macy: The Peppery Man, Conkling: Dandelion, Boyden: Mud, Fyleman: The Dentist, Fyleman: Mrs. Brown, Baruch: Automobile Mechanics, Krows: The Lesson, Coatsworth: Sea Gull, Ciardi: The Reason for the Pelican, Baruch: Riding in a Motor Boat, Riley: A Sea-Song from the Shore

 

Lecture 12: Poems from the Anthology II: Milne: The Wind, Ciardi: How to Tell the Top of a Hill, Aldis: The Picnic, Roberts: The Woodpecker, Farjeon: Mrs. Peck-Pigeon, Stevenson: Bed in Summer, Stevenson: My Shadow, Milne: Furry Bear, Roberts: Mumps, Aldis: I Have to Have It, Hubbell: Our Washing Machine, Tietjens: Moving

Lecture 13: Novels for Children BB: Garfield’s Pet Force: The Outrageous Origin by Jim Davis

Lecture 14: The Rise and Fall of Cartoon Heroes: Animals and Kids as Heroines in Popular Television and Culture: Novels for Children BB: E.B. White: Stuart Little (and others)

Lecture 15: Notions of the “Other” in Storytelling: Novels/Short Stories for Children BB: Gulliver’s Travels, Defoe

Lecture 16: Sendak, Where the Wild Things Are BB

Lecture 17: Legends in Children’s Literary History: Seuss: Yertle the Turtle, Seuss: Oh, the Places You’ll Go!, Seuss: The Cat in the Hat, Seuss: And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, Seuss: Green Eggs and Ham, Seuss: Scrambled Eggs Super!, Seuss: How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Seuss: Horton Hears a Who!, Seuss: Horton Hatches the Egg, Seuss: One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish all on BB

Lecture 18: Legends in Children’s Literary History: A Selection of works by Marc Brown à Arthur BB

Lecture 19: Legends in Children’s Literary History: Milne: Winnie the Pooh (Selections) BB

Lecture  20: Carle: The Very Hungry Caterpillar and FINAL REVIEW

Querying Marks

If you have questions, comments and, or concerns about your marks you must e-mail the instructor only regarding this issue. I will ask you to come in for office hours or another time as made and agreed upon by the two of us and we will look at your work. The following can happen if you wish me to look over your papers:

1.   Your grade for the paper or test in question will increase.

2.   Your grade for the paper or test in question will decrease.

3.   Your grade for the paper pr test in question will stay the same.

It is important to note that item #1 tends to happen more than the other 2 items as posited above.

My promise to the class is that every effort will be made to grade fairly. I will upon receiving the marks for your papers as given by the teaching assistants go through the papers to make sure that everyone has received the marks that they deserved. Please always inquire about your grading whenever you need further explanation. Come to office hours prepared with specific questions so that we can give you an idea of how you can improve. Note that assignments are not marked by effort, but by performance. Therefore, you must have legitimate reasons for coming into office hours to query a mark. This means that you should be honest with yourself about your performance before coming in.

In-Class Screenings

We will be looking at some video clips throughout the term which deal with the course content. However, lecture 8 will be fully devoted to looking at how literature has been interpreted by film makers. Please be sure to attend all screenings. I have provided the link for the videos for those of you who may be absent. However, I would advise you to come to class as there will be an elaborative discussion throughout. We will look at the filmic influences that we see by comparing the films to the actual works that we will have read. We will also discuss the cultural settings as well as the social and historical settings when considering how the stories are presented through film and interpreted by the directors of them.

Accessibility Policy

All students are welcome in ENG230YYJ – The Literature for Children Collection. Please let me know if you need any help in note-taking, test-taking and the like as quickly as possible. Those of you who have learning disabilities must consult with me and the Academic Skills and Resources Facility as quickly as possible so that we can accommodate you fully and completely.

Note on Recording of Lectures

Please do not record my lectures unless you have my permission to do so. You must send me an e-mail to ask for my permission to record my lectures. I will need your name and student number. If you do not come and speak to me about recording my lectures, I will not allow you to do so and you will be asked to drop the course by the head of the department and the Dean if you decide not to adhere to this rule.

Grading Procedures/Evaluation Information

A few notes:

·    The teaching assistants and I will be as prompt as possible in returning to you your marked assignments. Please allow for at least 1 week from the time you have submitted your assignments before asking about them.

·    We do not grade based upon any “bell curves” or other such techniques. We mark based on the quality of the arguments that you make within the context of your paper and based on the kinds of observation you make. Remember to provide quotations to support an opinion that you have on the text so that you can accurately argue for the text. We will be looking for your close reading and close analysis skills.

·    A rubric will be provided for every single assignment in this course. It will accompany the actual essay topics/assignment information. Assume that all assignments for this course are out of a possible 100 marks. Read the rubrics carefully in order to understand what you have to do to get the marks you want. If you have questions, comments and, or concerns about the rubrics please feel free to talk to me in this regard.

·    Ask questions about your marks, the comments on your papers, etc. whenever possible to get the most of out the course and to figure out how you can improve.

·    Query a grade only if you feel like it is absolutely essential to do so. Do not make up excuses for why you might have done poorly on a particular assignment. Avoid misunderstanding the assignments and what they are asking you to do by asking several questions before they are due and during the writing process. I would be more than happy to work with you to develop your essays, your writing and the like. Please come and speak to me whenever you need help.

Extensions

I will give extensions to students only on an as-needed basis. You must come and see me if you need an extension. If you happen to be ill you need to provide proof from a valid source. In this case you need a doctor’s note. If, however you urgently need an extension for other reasons, you must come and see me and we will arrange something. The term tends to be significantly busy, over-bearing for some and I will be as accommodating as possible to every student. I will also give extensions to everyone at times, as I see fit for certain assignments. All students should plan things accordingly to avoid vexations with due dates for assignments and tests. If you will be absent on some of the dates that assignments are due or when the test is held you should contact the instructor as soon as possible to avoid penalties of any sort. Making excuses about why your work is not ready for submission the day before it is due and on the due date is not acceptable and will not be tolerated in any way whatsoever.

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Essay Topics for Essay #1

Please note that the following are just a few of the many you can select from. I shall add the full list for essay 1 later.

ENG230YYJ – The Literature for Children Collection Essay Topics

Possibly essay topics for paper #1:

Readings:

Lecture 1: Beginnings: Davis: Phoebe’s First Duet, Anastasio: What’s the Matter with Thurman, Poems: You, You, Caribou (author unknown), Stevenson: The Land of Story-Books, Untermeyer: Questions at Night, Wise-Brown: Wait Till the Moon is Full

Lecture 2: Lindman: Snipp, Snapp, Snurr and the Red Shoes, Garrett: Angelo the Naughty One, Poem – Ross: An Indignant Male, Elkin: Six Foolish Fisherman, Poem – Miller: Foal, Reeves: The Four Horses, Anderson: Blaze and the Forest Fire, Author Unknown: Fortune and the Beggar, Farjeon: Invitation to a Mouse, Pomeroy Chipmunks, Stephenson: Not a Mouse in the House, Ruskin: South-west Wind Esquire, Uchida: The Rooster Who Understood Japanese

Lecture 3: Poem – Fisher: Butterfly Wings, Levy: Hot Enough for You? Devendorf: Margarita’s Gift, Charlip and Supree: Harlequin and the Gift of Many Colors, White: Walter in Love, Poem - Spilka: Don’t Tell Me That I Talk Too Much!, Anastasio: The Friendship Game, Poem – Giardi: The River is a Piece of Sky, Geis: The Girl Who Found A Dragon (an article), Suhi: Simon Boom Gives A Wedding

Lecture 4: Rowland: The Whispering Falls Dog Race, Poem – Coatsworth: Winter Is In The Wood, Author Unknown: The Three Sillies, Carlson: Luc Boulanger’s Spotted Pig, Poem – Ault: The Pig’s Tail, Coatsworth: Spiders, Author Unknown: How Spider Outwitted Leopard, Haywood: Eddie and His Big Deals, Collodi: Pinocchio, Poem – Eastwick: Timothy Boon, Alberts: Ring Neck the Lame, Fyleman: The Princess Who Could Not Cry, Elliott: The Number of Spots

Lecture 5: Poem – Wadsworth: Over in the Meadow, Bell: Dr. Naismith’s Game, Weisner: Sillibill, Nash: Adventures of Isabel, Sobol: The Case of the Whistling Ghost, Anastasio: Hit and Run, Brauner: Silent Visitor, McCloskey: Make Way for Ducklings, Theriault: Nauya and the Great Sea Serpent, Poem – Dearmer: Whale

Lecture 6: Hale: Elizabeth Eliza’s Piano, Poem – Thackeray: A Tragic Story, Poem – Simple Simon, Poem – Man of Thessaly, Author Unknown: The Flying Carpet, Poem – Holland: When I Grow Up, Defoe: Robinson Crusoe, Poem – Richards: The Monkeys and the Crocodile, Author Unknown: The Brahman, the Tiger, and the Six Judges, Cunningham: The Little Scarred One, Carroll L. Fenton and Mildred A. Fenton: Comets from Afar

Lecture 7: Chaplina: Nyurka the Walrus, Poem – O’Neill: The Sound of the Night, McGivern: The Ultimate Auto, Poem – Spilka: A Hippo Yawned, Parnall: The Great Fish, From BB: The Princess and the Pea, From BB: Cinderella, BB: Hansel and Gretel, BB: Rumpelstiltskin, BB: The Little Mermaid, BB: Little Red Riding Hood, BB: Frog Prince, BB: Thumbelina

Topics:

1.     Davis: “Phoebe’s First Duet” – Using Davis’s “Phoebe’s First Duet” discuss in an essay how Phoebe’s grandfather grows by talking about the specific ways in which a child, Phoebe, helps him to become more aware of himself.

2.     Analyze Anastasio’s “What’s the Matter with Thurman?” by specifically arguing whether or not there really is something “wrong” with him. What are the themes that this story is trying to get at here? For example, you may choose to discuss the idea of differences and how they create conflict in the story as a whole. How does the fact that Thurman is “different from the rest” aid his growth process? Analyze fully by carefully reading the text.

3.     Discuss the development of conflict in “What’s the Matter with Thurman?” Be succinct.

4.     Discuss the imagery in “You, You, Caribou.”

5.     Discuss the role of rhythm/rhyme, imagery and genre in “The Land of Story-Books.” Pay particular attention to the role of “play” as talked about in lecture.

6.     Examine the notions of night in Untermeyer’s poetry and argue whether or not the poem is a good segue into the Wise-Brown’s “Wait Till the Moon is Full.” Defend your position with specific examples.

7.     What role does the full moon play in “Wait Till the Moon is Full” Discuss.

8.     What makes “Wait Till the Moon is Full” a “cautionary tale?” Why?

9.     How does the notion of “childhood” come to light in Lindman’s “Snipp, Snapp, Snurr and the Red Shoes”?

10.  Explain the several reasons/ways in which Angelo is referred to as “The Naughty One” in Garrett’s text. Is he really “naughty” or just being a child? Is there a middle ground in the way one can label him?

11.  Link Ross’s “An Indignant Male” to Garret’s text. You may talk about issues related to theme, plot and if applicable, the creation of conflict.

12.  Discuss theme, genre and characterization in “Six Foolish Fishermen.” How do these work to create a humourous story for children readers?

13.  Do Miller’s “Foal” and Reeves’s “The Four Horses” form good segues into Anderson’s “Blaze and the Forest Fire?” Why or why not? You can also look at how the two poems help or do not help in setting up the plot and characterization in the story.

14.  Elaborate upon the notion of human and animal heroism in “Blaze and the Forest Fire.” How do the plot, theme and characterization help to steer the story?

15.  What themes come to mind when reading the short story entitled “Fortune and the Beggar”? What are the different things/morals that this story can teach you as the reader as well as children who read this and, or are read this story? The author does not pinpoint the morals that come out of this story, but they do exist. Explain some of the morals that you get out of reading this story and discuss their importance to society today.  Specifically talk about how applicable this story is to us.

16.   Relate either Farjeon’s “Invitation to a Mouse” and Pomeroy’s “Chipmunks” to “Not a Mouse in the House.”

17.  Close read the themes in “South-West Wind Esquire.”

18.  Discuss the notion of multiculturalism in “The Rooster Who Understood Japanese.” You may look at this by focusing on the use of language or any other paradigm you choose.

19.  Imagery plays a large role in setting up the plot in “Butterfly Wings.” Discuss.

20.  How do children play adult roles in Levy’s “Hot Enough for You?” Furthermore, what does this tale try to tell our children?

21.  Explain the notion of feeling out of place and how this is evident in Devendorf’s “Margarita’s Gift.” How do Margarita’s circumstances change from being excluded to being included in the group? What does Devendorf try to teach children in this story? (Here, you may discuss multiple themes as you see fit).

22.  Discuss how Charlip and Supree’s “Harlequin and the Gift of Many Colors” develops themes such as caring, sharing, hoping and helping. Use specific examples from the text. Argue how these themes are prevalent and how they contribute to children’s growth and understanding of their world.

23.   What are some of the major themes that come to mind in “Walter in Love” and how do they and the characterization as well as the plot fuel the story and give meaning to it as a whole? Discuss using several examples. You can also talk about how the plot helps to fuel out notions of love between the two main characters.

24.  How are the ideas of loneliness carried out in Anastasio’s “The Friendship Game”? Discuss the main literary themes that allow children to relate to the main character. What are the issues that the main character goes through which one can relate to?

25.  We have discussed ideas pertaining to children playing adult roles in the past. Talk about how the main character in Geis’s “The Girl Who Found a Dragon” does this.

26.  Explain the use of “the best” and “the very best” in “Simon Boom Gives a Wedding.”

27.  What are some of the lessons that children can learn from Rowland’s “The Whispering Falls Dog Race”? Thoroughly examine each you come up with paying particular attention to the genre of the text.

28. How does the author develop the theme of silliness in “The Three Sillies”? Discuss the nonsensical approach in the story.

29. What is Jean LeBlanc trying to teach his children in  Carlson’s “Luc Boulanger’s Spotted Pig”? What does the story reveal about Jean LeBlanc and his fourteen children? How is Jean LeBlanc himself a representation/embodiment of notions of childhood? What other themes come up? Discuss.

 30. Using Ault’s “The Pig’s Tale” as a starting point write about how this poem relates to Carlson’s story.

31.    Discuss how Coatsworth’s “Spiders” and “How Spider Outwitted Leopard” relate.

32. What is “How Spider Outwitted Leopard” trying to teach children as audiences of the story? Explain clearly with a well-developed thesis that explores these idssues.

33. How does the plot help to fuel “Eddie and his Big Deals”? Discuss the different themes that arise.

34. “Pinocchio” is a famous story. Discuss using thematic and cultural paradigms what the significance of the story is as part of children’s literature.

35. Read the version of “Pinocchio” available in our course text and another version available on Bb. Compare and contrast the two versions of the story by looking specifically at plot, characterization, theme, conflict, diction, etc.

36. Does Timothy Boon’s behaviour relate to Pinocchio’s? Why or why not?

37. Discuss how the first two sentences of “Ring Neck the Lame” develop the plot. What does the title reveal?

38. Explain the notions of class in “The Princess Who Could Not Cry.” How does the plot and characterization help to bring out themes in the story?

39. “The Number of Spots” tries to teach children some key ideas. Through a careful reading of the story, identify at least 3.

40. Discuss the role of history, sports, and sportsmanship in Bell’s “Dr. Naismith’s Game.”

41. What are the themes that help to shape “Sillibill” into a great children’s story? How does his silliness open a way for his society to see their world in a different light? Discuss fully.

42. Sobol’s “The Case of the Whistling Ghost” has been described as a “strange little mystery for children.” Explain why you think this is the case.

43. “Silent Visitor” beings to mind notions of mystery, enchantment, enlightenment and perhaps even fear. In an essay discuss why this may be the case and what role(s) the audience plays.

44. McCloskey’s “Make Way for Ducklings” brings connections between animals and humans as one of the themes that help fuel the plot. Discuss how this is done and how do people form relations with the mallards? Focus on the actions of both people and animals and the morals the story tries to being for the young audiences.

45. How do geography and society play a role in “Make Way for Ducklings”?

46. Discuss the importance of historical narratives as part of children’s literature.

47. Talk about the plot, characterization, themes, and conflict development in “Nauya and the Great Sea Serpent.”

48. What seems to be the connection between Elizabeth Eliza and her piano and how does this develop the plot of the story?

49. Examine ideas that come from “The Flying Carpet” using a cultural paradigm. Begin with the idea that there have been many differing interpretations of the story across cultural lines as discussed in class and then analyze our text.

50. “Robinson Crusoe” is an interesting tale because some literary critics suggest that it is difficult to “sell it” to children. By close-reading our version of the story, defend or reject this argument.

51. One can argue that “Robinson Crusoe” is a story of morals. Explain this by focussing on what we discussed in lecture and then connect these ideas together as you see an interpret them. What can the story teach children? That is to say, what are the morals embedded in the story? You may wish to read a longer edition of the narrative to get more detailed information out of it. Keep in mind that the novel itself was considered to be a story for children at the time it was written.

52. What grounds do the animals and the tree have for killing the Brahman who let the tiger out of the cage? What does this story teach children about the nature of humankind? By close-reading the story develop a thesis based on whether or not the story is appropriate for younger audiences. What does the story tell us about humankind and the natural world? What morals come out of this story? Who do the tiger and jaguar symbolize? What are the underlying relations between humankind and beast; humankind and the environment?  

53. What are the issues that steer the plot in “The Little Scarred One”?

54. How does “Comets from Afar” fit in to the category of children’s literature? How does it allow these readers to questions and become participants in science?

55. How is Nyurka’s sense of play described by Chaplina in “Nyurka the Walrus”?

56. What issues arise in McGivern’s “The Ultimate Auto”? How are they solved? What role do characterization and plot play in the story in development of themes and arising conflict?

57. What themes come to mind after reading Parnell’s “The Great Fish”? What is the connection between humans and their natural environments in this story and how does it differ from other stories we have read this term? How is the story similar to others studied?

58. Conceptualize some of the fairy tales we have read through cultural, social, historical and socio-cultural paradigms. Furthermore you can broaden up this topic by answering: how are fairy tales interpreted via a media lens (i.e. film)? Does the filmic eye omit important ideas/structures/characterizations/plot fixtures or does it add something new? Explain using examples from class.

Please note that there are more than enough topics here for students to pick something that interests them. If you have an idea for a topic of your own you are more than welcome to use it, however, you MUST have the topic approved by your INSTRUCTOR well before the due date.

*****Some topics may appear more than once.*****

*****Students are encouraged to discuss their essays with the instructor and the teaching assistants throughout the writing process this term.*****

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