Oral Training II  Spring 2005
Audio-Visual Center ť] 204
Tuesdays 10:20am-12:10pm
Instructor: Karen S. Chung


     There will be 16 classes this semester, plus an additional class during finals week.
Holiday: April 5, Tomb-sweeping festival. Cancel-add: March 7-11. Mid-terms: April 18-22.
Last day of class: June 20. Final exams: June 21-27.

     Routine work: You will continue to recite and learn a poem or prose passage, mark your listening assignment, and receive the new listening assignment every class during first hour. Occasionally, when there is time, there will also be recorded class improvisations, followed by playback, correction and evaluation. Note that this syllabus is subject to change.

     Click here for the Poems and prose texts for memorization and reading aloud handout for Spring 2005; click here for the poetry handout in Word format suitable for printing out.
     Click here to read your own poems online!
     Click here for the About Poetry: English Prosody Plus Selected Literary Terms handout. (Refer to this for definitions of terms like iambic, doggerel, and synaesthesia.)
     Click here for Debate resources.
    
         
     February 22:
Share your choice of material for listening homework with the class, hand it in; hand in debate topic idea; hand in your outline of play idea.
Taped class improvisation; playback, correction and evaluation of performance. Poem: "Lilian".
     Listening assignment: Choose and listen to a radio drama from:
http://www.billsparks.org/OldtimeRadioTheater/Live_and_On-Demand_Old_Time_Radio_Shows/index.html
and write a summary of it and your reaction to it. Also listen to: MPR: Shakespeare songs; you don't need to write out the answers in the exercise.
      Prepare: Play outlines (by e-mail); title, author of book for oral book report in correct MLA bibliographic format, to be handed in next class. Practice and memorize "Lilian"; mark stresses in poem "St. Clement's Day Song".

     March 1: Turn in book title for oral report. NTU News.
     Listening assignment: Choose an audio news report of the BBC World Service at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/index.shtml
on a country other than Taiwan and the United States; summarize the report and give your reaction to it. Also watch and listen to: Seasonal Strategies with Robert Brodman, PhD.
     Prepare:
Print out play ideas, choose five favorites to vote for next class. Turn in three poems for poetry reading: one English/American (etc.); one in Chinese, translated by you into English; one original one, written by you. NTU News.


     March 8:
Turn in poems. Vote on play ideas. NTU News.
     Listening assignment: Choose an audio interview with an author and/or a reading from a book from the Author Interviews and Readings index of the "Books" section of the New York Times online; you will need to register (it's free) if you haven't already. Write a summary of the interview and/or reading you choose and your reactions. If you choose just a reading, do a Google search and find out something about the author and include it in your summary. Also listen to NPR: A Teen-Aged Marine Falls in Iraq.
     Prepare: Oral book report. Start writing plays. Prepare reading of play Close to Home (pdf file).

     March 15: Play reading: "Close to Home". Poems will be returned. Pick up marked homework at service desk of the AV Center.
     Listening Assignment: KPCC: Pacific Drift: Interview with Mark Sussman
     Prepare: Oral book report. Poetry reading. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     March 22: Each student will get a chance to read his or her poems to the instructor individually, and to record a model reading, if desired; during this time the rest of the class will meet in small groups and begin planning the plays to be written and performed.
     Listening assignment: NPR: Taiwan Aims to be 'Zero Waste' Society by 2020
     Prepare: Poetry reading. Oral book report. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     
March 29: Each student will get a chance to read his or her poems to the instructor individually, and to record a model reading, if desired; during this time the rest of the class will meet in small groups and begin planning the plays to be written and performed. Decide on order for oral book reports. Form debate teams, choose debate topics. Debate resources
     Listening assignment: BBC: Elephants learn by sound mimicry

     Prepare: Oral book report. Debates. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     April 5: Holiday: Tomb-sweeping festival.
     Listening assignment: NBC Nightly News: Bush Fake News Blitz
     Prepare: Poetry reading. Oral book report. Debates. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     April 12: Class poetry reading.
     Listening assignment: CBC: Autism –The Long Wait

     Prepare: Oral book report. Debates. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.
     Click here to read your own poems online!

    April 19: Oral book reports.
     Listening assignment: CBC: Quirks and Quarks with Bob McDonald: Seeing with Sound
     If you are interested, the short story we read in freshman English, written by a blind user of the vOICe, Tom Brennan, is here; Tom's homepage is here; and Mei Ma's class blog where students are giving their feedback on the story is here.
     Prepare: Oral book report. Debates. Play writing. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home. .wma audio file now available for practice.

     April 26: Hand in first draft of original plays. Oral book reports.
     Listening assignment: AL-TV: Weird Al vs. Eminem
     Prepare: Oral book reports. Debates. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     May 3: Oral book reports. Corrected play scripts will be returned.
     Listening assignment: NPR: A Chat with 'Weird Al' Yankovic
     Prepare: Oral book reports. Debates. Revise plays, hand in asap. Continue to work on reading of Close to Home.

     May 10: Oral book reports. Corrected play scripts will be returned.
     Listening assignment:
NPR: Bush Attends V-E Day Ceremonies in Moscow
     Prepare: Debates. Practice Close to Home; hand in, practice original plays.

     May 17: Last two oral book reports. Class debates.
     Listening assignment: Watch Seinfeld episode and (1) describe the structure of the show, pointing up in particular how it differs structurally from most popular sitcoms; (2) critique the show objectively, pointing out its strong and weak points; (3) choose and describe three aspects of this episode that assume cultural background you were relatively unfamiliar with. Be prepared to share a sentence or two on Seinfeld in class next time.
     Prepare: Class debates. Reading of Close to Home. Practice plays.

     May 24: Class debates.
     Listening assignment: Listen to an audio summary of current news, and write a short summary of each news item.
     Prepare:
Class debates, "Close to Home", plays.

     May 31: Last two class debates.
     Listening assignment: Design your own listening assignment: close a suitable online audio file or video that is fully accessible and free of charge; make up a vocabulary; then write and answer a set of listening comprehension questions. Note on your assignment whether you give Ms. Chung permission to use your exercise on the class Web site. If it is used, your name will appear on the exercise.
     Prepare:
"Close to Home"; use the "echo method" to practice imitating audio file; plays.

     June 7:
Reading of "Close to Home".
Listening assignment: No listening assignment, but an evaluation of the course and your pronunciation/grammar journal are due on June 21. Include in the evaluation: (1) Course evaluation: Your evaluation of what was useful, effective, and fun in the course, what was not as useful, and your suggestions for improving the course; (2) Self-evaluation: How much did you put into the course, and how much did you get out of it? Did you attend all classes, and arrive on time? Did you put reasonable effort into the assignments and complete them on time?; and (3) Your personal English learning plan: Your plan on how to continue improving your English, especially your pronunciation, speaking and listening skills, but reading and writing as well.
     Prepare: Play performances: Presentation is most important, including vowels, consonants, stress and intonation; your interpretation, acting skills and expressiveness; and cooperation and rapport between group members. Props and costumes are not important. You must memorize your lines; it is difficult to put on a good performance without this. Get a copy of your finalized script to Ms. Chung as soon as possible. A link to an audio file of a reading of your play will be sent to you and your group members when it is ready. Use the file to mark stresses, pauses, rises and falls, then use the "echo" method to practice reading your script. Make further marks on the script to help you remember the correct intonation when you are reading without the model recording.

     June 14: Play performances.

     June 21: Hand in course evaluation, self-evaluation, and pronunciation and grammar summary. Play performances.


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