Program for Upper Level Students

Welcome! You've found the online home for Happy Kids's Program for Upper Level Students, a course offered at Happy Kids for our secondary students.

Throughout the course of the year, the program’s students follow a curriculum that combines middle school language arts with history, geography, and civics in a manner of instruction that reflects what one would see in a typical US classroom. The curriculum, designed and facilitated by me, Mr. Brunken, follows my vision of helping today’s youth understand the changing, information saturated world around them, and the increasing importance of being able to interact positively with people from cultures all over the world and to access, interpret, and evaluate the information we receive. The increasingly globalized nature of Taiwan's society and economy that this generation will have to navigate make for problems that their grandparents couldn’t even imagine. This class is meant to educate students about important global issues, help them to learn from our past and each other to broaden their understanding of their world and help bring about a peaceful future, and learn to process and evaluate information in a way that will prepare them to be effective and responsible democratic citizens of the world.
Each year the curriculum for this class is a little different. However, the overall format of the class remains constant. Four novels are used as the inspiration for four eight-week units throughout the year. This year will look like this:

Novel, Author (Theme)
  • Poetry Speaks (Figurative language, expression, poetic forms)
  • Nothing But The Truth (Media Literacy, Nature of Truth)
  • Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare, Teen Suicide, Literary Tropes)
  • Thirteen Reasons Why (Teen Suicide, Bullying, Mental Illness)

Middle School Announcements

  • Getting Started on the Crusades with Blood Red Horse We are into a new unit in the PULS. This unit, featuring K. M. Grant's excellent novel Blood Red Horse will center around the historical event known as the ...
    Posted Jan 8, 2019, 4:33 AM by Jason Brunken
  • A Pail of Oysters and A Big Project on Transitional Justice A major topic going forward in class this year is transitional justice. Transitional justice are the actions countries take to address large-scale human and civil rights abuses in order ...
    Posted Oct 28, 2018, 2:46 AM by Jason Brunken
  • Historical Perspective When learning about conflict in history, perspective is very important. People are complicated, and in history, people rarely fit nicely in to Good Guy and Bad Guy roles. Real life ...
    Posted Oct 21, 2018, 7:22 AM by Jason Brunken
  • Unit 1: South Africa and Apartheid Welcome to a new year in the Program for Upper Level Students at Happy Kids. Each year I try to plan unique, interesting, and challenging students of this class. This ...
    Posted Sep 17, 2018, 6:20 AM by Jason Brunken
  • Activities and Discussion Questions for M. T. Anderson's Feed We are nearing the end of our unit on Feed. I know some of out there are curious about the different assignments we are working on on in class. I ...
    Posted May 18, 2018, 1:09 AM by Jason Brunken
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