Secondary Worlds

Teaching, Technology, and English Education

Category: Courses

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The Writing Life: Rehearsing Some Ideas

This could be a wonderful morning for writing: we are blanketed in snow, it is quiet in the house, and day seems long. Enter the two kids: the sixteen-month-old, who has somehow found a toilet brush to play with; and the three-year-old, who is hungry and demanding a “nola bar” for breakfast. I love the […]

Courses, News

Sex, Vampires, and Adolescence

I’m spending the weekend reading final papers for my English 330 course (Studies in Fiction), which I taught as a study of vampire fiction. I was inspired to do so in part by the success of Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series, which I am only partly ashamed to admit that I read like a middle-school girl […]

Courses, News

We’ve Been Nominated

Looks like my friend Gail Desler at Blogwalker has nominated this blog for the Edublog Awards under the category “Best Use of Audio.” Thanks Gail! Her nomination came just as my 311 class contributed some excellent new podcasts on a range of young adult novels, including The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by […]

Courses, News, Web 2.0

Write Your Own Adventure: The Novel Tree Collaborative Writing Site

If you are interested in co-authoring a novel with others–or having your students participate in collective short story writing, check out The Novel Tree, a very cool site put together by writer Dave Tiesma. The site was recently featured in a Reuters news release. I’ll include the entire article here: New Writing Community Website Offers […]

Courses, News

I’m Baaack! Google Reinstates Secondary Worlds

I’ve been wondering obsessing about my fall from Google’s graces, which happened when this blog was hacked and turned into a link farm. This morning, I am pleased to say that Google has restored my good name: this site is now the first hit yielded by the search “secondary worlds.” I feel vindicated. I’m pleased […]

Courses, News

The Continuing Appeal of the Vampire

I’m teaching a course in vampire fiction this semester. Actually, the course is called Studies in Fiction, but I thought exploring vampire literature would be a great way to raise questions about fiction–its purposes and its forms in particular. Thus far, we’ve read revenant myths, Slavic folk tales, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and a handful of […]


Two or Three Great Blogs

I meant to highlight a couple of student blogs earlier this week, but I was a little obsessed with my site being hacked. Now that this is cleared up, I want to point to two exceptional student blogs. Kelly has a terrific blog on school nutrition. I like Kelly’s blog because of the sources she […]


Why I Blog by Andrew Sullivan

Andrew Sullivan, author of one of my favorite blogs The Daily Dish has a great new essay called “Why I Blog” in the new issue of the Atlantic. Given our class discussion on the purposes, voices, and collaboration involved in blogging, I particularly like this paragraph: A blogger will air a variety of thoughts or […]

Courses, Web 2.0

Fact Checking McCain (and Rozema)

Today, during a particularly good discussion on tracking that occurred in my Teaching Writing class, I took exception to something that Senator McCain said during the debate last night. On the topic of funding for education, McCain said: “You will find that some of the worst school systems in America get the most money per […]

Courses, News

Check out Timerime for Easy Timelines

Two posts in the same day: must mean the kids are with Grandma and Grandpa. Anyway, this is a short entry on a cool site (thanks again Troy) called Timerime. If timelines are as popular an assignment today as they were when I was in school, this popularity of this site should explode. Basically, Timerime […]

Courses, Web 2.0

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