College Prep English Class notes for September 18, 2014

Dear Homescholars,

This week’s feed has been added to the playlist for our 2014-2015 classes:

To learn more about the class, please visit:, see the links and watch the video.

The playlist of 2013-2014 classes is also on Youtube:

Class planning

A starting point:

  1. How much homework is enough? Just announce if you need more.
  2. In what direction should our reading/watching/listening go initially? Let’s at least start on a Shakespeare play.

Essay Writing

We discussed an essay from
the book: Essays That Worked edited by Boykin Curry, ISBN: 0449905179. We will be reading and excerpting from this book in class, but you might like your own copy. These demonstrate consistently excellent language: metaphor, collocation, coordination constructs, felicitous vocabulary, concision and concinnity. We will examine all of these and practice them in both writing and speech. Let’s start by examining these devices as used by the masters.

High Priority Assignments

(Note: these assignments should be enjoyable. Do only as much as you find enjoyable. If you find them to be onerous and pointless, please help shape future assignments with your suggestions)

Please look through the list of suggested debate topics further and propose specific instances for debate in class. Please think of debate topics that would not require a great deal of research. Feel free to explore any of the many other debates posted in our classroom.
Alan Dershowitz

Please watch the newly added debate on US surveillance with Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz and constitutional attorney and journalist Glenn Greenwald. Enjoy watching this epic eloquence battle between eristic giants.

A classroom page for examples of successful essays contains a couple of examples from the essay book, Essays That Worked edited by Boykin Curry, ISBN: 0449905179. We did read parts; please read them more thoroughly and prepare to speculate upon the characteristics that make them successful.

Please consider Shakespeare plays for watching, dramatic readings and discussion. Suggestions: Much Ado About Nothing, As You Like It, The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Taming of the Shrew, MacBeth, Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet. Please refer to Masefield’s Guide to the Shakespeare Plays for a quick overview.

Please be sure to write and post something this week. Consider perhaps the writing projects at the end of chapter 1 in the text.

Please let me know if you need more homework.

Older Assignments (please do these if you haven’t already)

Please read the first chapter in our textbook: SAT ACT TOEFL College Prep English Practice, available at the EIE bookstore and

Please watch this High School Debate Contest, the City Club of Cleveland’s High School Debate Championship. Debate is on whether the US should support and comply with the International Criminal Court.
This is a very fine debate with positions well presented and justified. The commentary is also very useful, particularly for it’s explanation of the judges’ evaluation of the contestants.

Please watch the Oxford Union whistleblower debate.

Our online classroom contains a vast trove of English language resources ranging from full text books and audiobooks to films, plays, software and all of the assignments and activities generated in previous years. Please feel free to explore and suggest any specific items for inclusion in our high priority assignments.

Please post questions, suggestions and discussion

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