Friday, February 4, 2011

Research in Creative Writing Classroom: Topics

This is a follow-up to a previous post (Research) which describes what we are doing with research in the creative writing classroom.

My class is about halfway through their research and writing process--all of their topics have been honed to develop into potentially good stories.  However, as an aside, I think I'm losing my grip on them...since when has Google become the buddha on the mount?  I'm meeting my stiffest resistance yet regarding the use of library resources.  Library resources are "too hard" some whine.  I may have to ban Google next year...

At any rate, here is the list of story topics which have come out of our research.  All topics were 100% generated by the students.  I only guided a few to help them make their intent more focused.  As you'll see from some of the topics, I am still working...pleading...with some to make some decisions on detail.  Some are clearly much better than others...yet you may also glean a sense of the wide range of abilities and sensibilities in the classroom.

Research Story Topics:

A child's perspective of the cruelty and fighting when India attempted to break free from England.
Thomas Farynor's journey towards starting the Great Fire of London...and ending The Plague.
A young Chippewa hunter goes on a journey to a new home with his family after the U.S. Government "buys" their land, forcing the Anishinabe to find a new place to call home
A 16 year old girl is forced to immigrate illegally from Mexico with her husband.
My great-aunt and uncle elope in Tennessee
A young girl's experience during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in Pompeii.
A girl moves to California and experiences a horse round-up and is determined to save the horses.
Alisha is stuck in New Orleans with her grandmother who refuses to leave during Hurricane Katrina
A girl wants to paint for priests in Teotihuacan but the fall of the city changes everything.
A family's experience living the middle of the Love Canal incident.
A fifteen year old boy in the Confederate Army experiences toughness and loates the South.
A female artist dies while sneaking onto the crew to help construct the Eiffel Tower.
A pioneer daughter moves to Tennessee with her family.
Forbidden by her culture, a young Inca girl falls in love with a poor farmer's son.
A family struggles in a wagon train on the Oregon Trail.
A seven year old Italian boy's journey to America in the 1940s.
A homeless boy discovers a talent which enables him to stay alive on the streets.
My grandfather's experience as a paratrooper during WWII.
A starving honey badger has to steal food from a leopard in order to survive.
A little girl in Philadelphia during the yellow fever outbreak.
A 14 year old Native American girl wants to leave her pueblo in order to live her life to its fullest.
A thirteen year old boy experiences all of the horrors of a mercury spill in Minamata, Japan.
The rescue of a Chilean miner as told by a journalist.
A sixteen year old male slave on the run in the Underground Railroad
A fifteen year old boy finds a way into the seedy underworld of England.
A man is injured and needs Clara Barton's assistance.
Someone attempts to escape from Alcatraz.
David Karp's journey in developing the blogging site Tumblr.
The journey encountered by a band on the road.
A man survives after being trapped by a loose boulder during rock climbing.
A boy living through the Chinese Cultural Revolution.
The experiences of a young girl with Downs Syndrome.
A thirty year old man finds himself trapped while climbing K2.
The tragedy of the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571; its emotional struggles and the choice of cannibalism.
Molly Brown's heroic actions on the Titanic.
One's struggle with OCD in school.
Four cowboys from the King Ranch go on a cattle drive.
Nevaeh goes to America as an au pair to learn about the country she was named after and falls in love with its meaning and the people she meets.
A girl learns to cope with terrifying dreams.
A sailor's journey during WWII
A teenager's goals and dreams change when he sees Star Wars in 1977.
Seabiscuit's journey of changing the lives of millions during the Great Depression.
A wealthy girl's life in the 16th century.
A boxer sizes up an opponent in the corner of the ring before the match.
A man takes a jouney to an exotic place and chooses to become a  native.
A young teenage girl finds herself alone on the sinking Titanic.
The Kennedy Administration responds to the Cuban missile crisis.
Bode Millers journey at the 2010 Olympics.
The experience of over 1,000 dead birds falling from the sky in one knows why.
A stranger saves a person from being struck by a subway.
Herb Brooks motivates a group of college kids to beat the Soviet hockey team in the 1980 Olympics.
Two storm chasers move too close to a storm.
The experience of the idea and completion of Sweden's Ice Hotel.
A couple admires Amelia Earhart and goes to see her final take-off...and follows the search and rescue.
A thirteen year old Jewish boy is left alone to fend for himself and hide in Poland during WWII.
Lawrence of Arabia is trying to cross the desert to atack Aggaba.
My grandpa's great adventures.

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