Category Archives: Freshman Humanities

Introduction to The Koran

Today we started looking at the first sura in The Koran.  We discussed the background of the Koran and its place in the Islamic religion.  Very quickly we saw how the words and verses can be interpreted and twisted by different people.

We will continue to look at The Koran this week.

There is no homework tonight.


Grammar Review

We started our review for our upcoming exam on subject verb agreement.  The exam will be on Friday March 31, 2017.

We will continue to review throughout the week.

Click here for the review packet we’ll be doing in class.

For homework, please look over Chapter 20 in To Kill a Mockingbird.   When you’re finished, please write a paragraph explaining the following:
-What is the main idea of the chapter?
-What literary elements does Harper Lee use to get that idea across?
-How does she use those literary elements to get that idea across?

When you’re finished, please send to me *P


The Death of Beowulf

We wrapped our reading/listening of Seamus Heaney’s translation of Beowulf.  We looked at Beowulf’s final battle with the dragon and his last words.  As a class, we discussed what was important to Beowulf upon his deathbed.

Click here for lines 2510-2537

Click here for lines 2669-2723

Click here for the video clip we watched in class

Click here for the lesson from today

DONT FORGET – Chapters 17-25 will be discussed in class on Monday

Grendel’s Mother

Today we looked at the fight between Beowulf and Grendel’s mother.  We discussed the motivations of both characters and how those motivations reveal fatal flaws.   Once again, Beowulf is victorious, but at a price. Is he in danger of becoming the very monsters he fights?

We’ll finish up Beowulf tomorrow

Your unit exam in next Wednesday.  Possible topics for the exam include:

  • The Gospel of Matthew
  • Book of Revelation
  • The Gnostic Gospels
  • The Beginnings of Old English
  • The Seafarer
  • Beowulf

The exam will be the same format as the other unit exams, 15 multiple choice questions and two short answers.

Your Beowulf project is due on March 23, 2017.  Click here for a copy of the assignment.

Your only homework is to complete and upload your Nemesis essay.

Click here for a copy of today’s lesson


Mockingbird Monday

We will wrap up our presentations on TKAM tomorrow.  I hope to have the vocabulary tests back to you before Friday.

Upcoming Dates:

Friday 3/10 – Nemesis Assignments Due

Monday 3/13 – Mockingbird Chapters 17-25 should be completed

Wednesday -3/15 – Unit exam on The Growth of Christianity & Beowulf.

We will wrap up Beowulf this week.

Please click here for the lesson

There is now homework, but stay on top of

John Gardner’s “Grendel”

Today we looked at a selection from John Gardner’s 1971 novel, Grendel. In novel, Gardner retells the story of Beowulf from Grendel’s perspective. Click here for the selection we read.

We sought to answer a few different questions:

  • Aside from the obvious issue of perspective, how are the two accounts of the battle similar? How are they different?
  • What new insight do we get into Grendel’s character?
  • What insight do we get into Beowulf’s character?

As an in-class activity, I asked you to find the central idea of Gardner’s Grendel. Then explain how that central idea is conveyed through literary elements and techniques.  That should have been emailed to me before the end of class.

Finally, we discussed The Nemesis Assignment:

Due on Friday 3/10
Your Assignment: Create a story like John Gardner did with Grendel. Tell the story of the final confrontation between the hero and his or her “nemesis.”
Your story should be between 2-3 pages, double-spaced, and should be narrated by the “nemesis” figure. You may use a “nemesis” from one of the works we have read in class (Humbaba, the Cyclops, etc.), or from any book or movie that features this sort of showdown between hero and nemesis.
All papers must be uploaded to
Don’t forget: Mockingbird Monday on Monday (Chapters 9-16)
Vocabulary Test on Tuesday.

Beowulf Fights Grendel!

Today we looked at the battle between Grendel and Beowulf.  We discussed what each character is thinking at the moment of battle.  Was it right for Beowulf to kill Grendel? Should he have simply let Grendel go?

For homework, please retell the story of the fight on lines 662-835 from Grendel’s perspective.  Make sure you write in the first person. What is Grendel thinking? Feeling? Make me feel empathy for Grendel.

Click here for the audio for lines 662-835

Click here for the video we watched in class

Don’t forget:

Complete chapters 9-16 for Mockingbird Monday

Tuesday is our vocabulary test.

Grendel Attacks!

Today we continued to dig more deeply into Beowulf. We examined lines 144-300 and finally met out title character, but we still haven’t heard his name.

Click here to listen to lines 144-193

In this portion, we learn about the toll Grendel has taken over the last 12 winters.

Click here to listen to lines 193-300

Here we meet our hero, Beowulf as he arrives on the Danish shores. Imagine what this must have looked like for the watchman. Why does he suddenly become trusting of Beowulf and his crew of 14 men.

There is no homework, but you do have Mockingbird Monday coming up.  By 3/6, you should be done with Chapter 16. We also have our vocabulary test on Tuesday.

Click here for today’s lesson