MATT'S CURRENT COURSES:
POETRY (Half Year Senior Elective)
Through the exposure to and careful analysis of over 50 poems for structure and style, students will collect strategies for crafting their own work. Furthermore, through deep understanding and practice of the writing process, from freewriting to drafting to revision to workshopping to publication, students will become their own writing consultants, able to not only create but improve upon their own work. Students will walk away from this course having written over ten original poems, and armed with better reading, interpretation, writing and speaking skills, as well as an appreciation for the transformative power of expression through poetry.
MYTHOLOGY IN LITERATURE & LIFE (Full Year Senior Elective)
This course appeals to students who love mythology and who like to contemplate life’s most essential questions. Studying myths from the Americas, Scandinavia, Mesopotamia, Africa, Greece, Rome, India, the Far East, and Oceania, students will examine the similarities that unite the stories of humankind. Topics covered include creation, paradise, the Apocalypse, gods and goddesses, the afterlife, and the hero’s journey, with special attention paid to how these ancient tales affect or relate to modern civilization and students' everyday lives. In addition to ongoing textual study, students are given ample opportunity to write personally and creatively, and perceive their own lives as being both mythic and heroic. Though an English elective, this course is by nature interdisciplinary, incorporating art, music, poetry, prose, film psychology, sociology, and history into one unified curriculum.
IB ENGLISH 12HL (2nd Year of Two Year Course)
Advanced literature study in which students analyze and compare a variety of world literature texts in translation (Garcia Marquez's "Chronicle of a Death Foretold", Ibsen's "A Doll's House", Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita") and submit a Written Assignment to meet IB Diploma requirements. In the second semester, selected drama texts (Shaksepeare's "Othello", Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire", Miller's "Death of a Salesman", Fugard's "Master Harold and the Boys") are studied in depth in preparation for the final written exam in May. For more information on the IB World Program, see www.ibo.org
Pasca has also taught, since 1997, AP English Literature & Composition, AP English Language & Composition, Creative Non-Fiction, English 11-300, English 11-200, English 11-100, English 9-200, and Modern Literature. He received his IB World Training at the Glasscock School of Education at Rice University in Texas and the United Nations International School in New York, New York.
FEEDBACK FROM STUDENTS:
"Of all the classes I've taken, I have learned the most in Mythology - about different cultures, different beliefs, and myself. I don't think I was ever excited about homework until this class... You're as wise as Yoda and Gandalf and an inspiration to us all." - Tessa F.
"I came into this class clueless of what Myth even was and now I am leaving with knowledge that has somehow helped me find myself." - Kristina B.
"Hi Mr. Pasca. I am taking a World Poetry course this semester. We read a poem by Mary Oliver today in class and there was a reference to the ferryman in the underworld. Made me think of mythology. Thanks for everything you taught me!" - Ashley A.
"I finally learned how to write a good intro and thesis! Every day I looked forward to coming to your class because of the great discussions we would have. It's really been a pleasure. You have been more than kind." - Sarah L.
"I have always loved English, but this year you truly gave literature life. It is rare to find teachers who are as passionate and as in touch with their work as you, and for that I thank you." - Jill F.
A THOUSAND DOORS is a perfect text for teachers looking for poetry that is artful and challenging yet hospitable to its readers. Class sets can be ordered from www.casadesnapdragon.com.
"Matt Pasca’s poetry opens a “thousand doors" to the beauty of language –the sound, the rhythm and the sensory details--with messages that reflect our common desires, hopes and dreams. A celebration of metaphorical language and wordsmithing, this book is an English teacher’s dream." - NINA WOLFF, Retired Director of English, Bay Shore Schools:
"When I was given a copy of Matt Pasca's collection of poems, A Thousand Doors, I brought it home and figured I'd dip in and read a few. I ended up reading the book cover to cover and immediately purchased my own copy. The poems cover a broad spectrum of topics, writing styles, and moods but all of them are deeply personal and written with raw emotion. I highly recommend this book for secondary or college-level literacy educators and anyone who just enjoys reading powerful poetry." – SUSAN EHMANN, author of I Can Write Like That and Reading Specialist in Smithtown Central School District
"I read your book in an hour. I absolutely loved it. I teared up quite a few times. You've inspired me to attempt to write again. Thank you." - Allison G.
MATT'S CURRENT COURSES: