I teach high school English and my students come from all parts of Baltimore city, some taking more than one train and/or bus to get to school everyday. They have been selected after being tested to attend a National Blue Ribbon, STEM school, which also means that my students think a failing grade is among the worst things in the world.
B course is where students who score under 85% the year before land themselves and for junior year, this class tends to be a mix of disheartened overachievers and reluctant readers.
In the past, teachers have interspersed essential texts with shorter essays and other non-fiction works. In an effort to boost the number of students who would attempt and pass an AP exam in their senior year, my colleagues and I have created a curriculum that includes novels that are known to have appealed to students and kept their interest long enough to get readers till the end of the novel. Getting students to stay interested and finish reading a book goes a long way in terms of morale. I would like to cover the horror genre since students are already drawn to it.
Junior year for high school students is key in terms of developing skills that attest to their college readiness. Its also the year students feel a kind of fatigue that makes maintaining their grades at the end of the year challenging. To ameliorate some of the pain, I plan on assigning a text from the genre of horror that would recruit interest and not make students feel overwhelmed.
Matt Ruff's "Lovecraft Country" would be an ideal book for students who need the allure of horror to lift them out of the mental morass of junior year.
Students will first be introduced to the genre of horror through sections of Stephen King's "Danse Macabre" and short story by H.P. Lovecraft - "A Color Out of Space."
For the school year, students will read "The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass", Toni Morrison's "Sula", Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby" and Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire" before we end the year with "Lovecraft Country". Matt Ruff's simplistic writing style allows readers to digest his critical analysis of modern American history and race relations. It may be considered not rigorous enough but Matt Ruff's book is certainly not lacking in literary merit. The book is ideal for assignment at the end of the year.
If you donated to this project, you can sign in to leave a comment for Ms. Mukhtar.
DonorsChoose is the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.
As a teacher-founded nonprofit, we're trusted by thousands of teachers and supporters across the country. This classroom request for funding was created by Ms. Mukhtar and reviewed by the DonorsChoose team.
DonorsChoose makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests, and you can give any amount to the project that inspires you.