Day, Time: tuesdays 10:45-11:45
Location: Game Room
Lynda Abbott, Ph.D., has secondary school teaching credentials for language arts and social studies. She was a secondary school teacher in public schools for fifteen years (teaching English, honors English, mythology, speech, and drama for grades 6-12). She also taught freshman composition courses at the college level for three years, then worked for ten years as a senior editor for Holt, Rinehart and Winston (textbook publishers), editing language arts textbooks and writing instructional materials for use by teachers. She then returned to college to earn a Ph.D. in education, focusing on instructional technology, including instructional design and effectiveness of best practices in education. She has taught for FLP for the previous two years (teaching Mythology (2013-2014) and Shakespeare’s Best Known Works (2014-2015)).
This session will focus on the mythology of the Middle Ages, including the myths of the Vikings, tales told about adventuring knights in the Crusader Era, and the legends of King Arthur. As the context for these tales, we’ll discuss feudal era culture — including the role of the ruling noble class, the idea of the “divine right of kings,” the role in preserving written culture played by the church, and the slow growth of European science through the myth-based practice of alchemy. Finally, we’ll end with study of the legends of King Arthur, a heroic tradition still strongly influencing our culture today. For example, Luke Skywalker’s story in Star Wars, Episode 4 is similar to the coming-of-age tale of young Arthur; the young Jedi’s lightsaber is similar to Arthur’s sword Excalibur; and wise old Obi-Wan plays a similar role to the wizard Merlin. Another example is Superman, who is basically a modern-day Sir Lancelot — in tights instead of armor. [Note: Although this is part 3 of a 3-part year-long series of classes, students can enroll for one or more of these sessions. The curriculum of each session can be studied in a stand-alone fashion.]
Required Skills for Students to Be Successful in This Class:
Compliance with Family Rights & Responsibilities.
Students should be interested in this kind of material. Students should be mature enough to be able to be able to handle a mostly lecture-type format.
We will have weekly writing assignments, but these are optional. (If students are writing-phobic or are too stressed by being asked for written responses, they can share the weekly writing questions with their parents as the basis for discussions about the topics the students are studying and their ideas about these topics.)
Please see our Age Variance Policy.