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Faculty and Staff Page: One Amazing Thing

Common Reading Events

Sep. 6 (Thursday): Chitra Divakaruni, author of One Amazing Thing, speaks at Convocation: 6 p.m. on the Oviatt Lawn. Now available as a YouTube video.

Sep. 24 (Monday): "One Amazing Community" Oviatt Library Lobby Display opens at 6 p.m.; Q&A with featured community members from 7-9 p.m. in Oviatt's Ferman Presentation Room. Sponsored by Unified We Serve.

Oct. 4 (Thursday): Zumbathon, Matadome.

Oct. 14 (Sunday):Join Team CSUN for the AIDS Walk. 7 a.m.-2 p.m., Hollywood.

Oct. 27 (Saturday): MEND Super Saturday, Pacoima. (more about MEND)

Oct. 29 (Monday): Fourth Annual CSUN Campus Clothing & Food Drive begins (through Nov. 14).

Nov. 8 (Thursday): Veterans Day Letter Writing Campaign, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., USU.

Nov. 14 (Wedneday): Closing display: CSUN Campus Clothing & Food Drive.


Other campuses reading this book

Sac State (CSU Sacramento). Read more . . .

Bookmark face shows a vivid pastel sky colored by an aurora along with the author and title of the book.

CSUN bookmark, One Amazing Thing (side 1)

Resources for teaching One Amazing Thing

Cover of "One Amazing Thing" shows 3 dried long-stemmed pink roses against a turquoise background.
  1. Erin Delaney provided a three-page packet of materials as part of the March 13 book group she led. It contains background information about Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, the concept of karma, and the Sino-Indian War of 1962. Also included are pre-reading questions; themes; discussion questions; potential assignments; and a "Theme Assignment" handout for use in class. Here's a copy of Erin's packet (.pdf, 932 kb).
  2. Wayne Smith has tactfully noted that "The CSUN freshman reading for 2012 uses a vocabulary that is perhaps more advanced than recent freshman readings at CSUN." Better yet, he has written a document "to help students address potential difficulties. This document should also stimulate . . . faculty to generate one or more short exercises to assist our motivated freshmen." Wayne's packet includes sections on English vocabulary, other vocabulary, compostion (linguistincally interesting words and concepts), literary references, and music references. Here's a copy of Wayne's packet (.pdf, 131 kb)
  3. Chitra Divakaruni's website
  4. Nine Strangers, 'One Amazing Thing' by Jane Ciabatta. NPR book review. 23 Feb 2010.
  5. Reading Group Guide and author interview: pages 221-227 in the paperback edition.
  6. Chitra Divakaruni will be the keynote speaker at Freshman Convocation: Thursday 6 Sep 2012 at 6 p.m. on the Oviatt Library Grand Staircase. She will speak informally with faculty and staff at 4 p.m. that day in the Ferman Presentation Room of Oviatt Library.
  7. CBS video series (2010): Everybody Has a Story: "In 'Everybody Has a Story,' every two weeks someone threw a dart at a map of America. CBS News correspondent Steve Hartman then went wherever it stuck, flipped through the local phone book, and picked a name at random. He then did a story on someone at that house. With the help of space-age technology, Hartman goes global as he concludes, 'Everybody in the World Has a Story.'" Hartman explains, "Last November [2009], when the shuttle Atlantis took off from the Kennedy space center, it was not only carrying supplies for the international space station, it was carrying a special payload for us--a plastic inflatable globe--that Commander Jeff Williams would use to select our random locations." Thanks to Debbi Mercado for suggesting this video series and its global sequel.
  8. More about India: read fiction by Jhumpa Lahiri and Bharati Mukherjee; learn about Rabindranath Tagore; study The Discovery of India by Jawaharlal Nehru; read From Midnight to the Millennium by Shashi Tharoor. Suggested reading for Tagore: (a)The Essential Tagore. Ed. Fakrul Alam and Radha Chakravarty. Belknap Press of Harvard UP, 2011. (b) Rabindranath Tagore: Selected Short Stories. Tr. William Radice. Penguin Classics, 2005. (c) Gitanjali: A Collection of Indian Poems by the Nobel Laureate (Rabindranath Tagore). Intro. by William Butler Yeats. Scribner, 1997. And of course, Divakaruni has written many other wonderful books, too.
  9. Investigate the themes of the new (Fall 2012) GE Paths program at CSUN: Social Justice, Global Studies, and Sustainability. Each has high potential for connections to the book.
  10. What stories will your students be telling in the years ahead? Host a presentation from CSUN's Study Abroad & National Student Exchange programs and increase the odds that their stories will also be amazing. For more information, contact the Study Abroad office on campus at x 3053. (And if you are looking for the slideshow, contact Cheryl....sorry!)
  11. Lisa Riccomini prepared lesson plans in three sizes for University 100 faculty teaching One Amazing Thing: an "extensive lesson plan" (.doc file, 52 kb); a "medium lesson plan" (.doc file, 40 kb); and a "light lesson plan" (.doc file, 37 kb). Faculty can use one, two, or all three of these lesson plans.
  12. Unified We Serve (the CSUN Volunteer Program): One Amazing Community 2012-2013 Events Overview (.pdf, 204 kb, rev. 6-20-2012)
  13. Writing assignment based on "The Danger of a Single Story," a TED talk by Chimamanda Adichi. Thanks to Debbi Mercado for finding both the TED talk and the associated writing assignment.
  14. Jada Augustine shared three documents as part of the faculty/staff book group she led on July 25 in CIELO: "Questions for Discussion of One Amazing Thing" (.doc file, 39 kb); "Thematic Supplemental Readings for One Amazing Thing" (.doc file, 33 kb); and "Sample Skeleton Syllabus for Stretch Composition Semester A" (.doc file, 48 kb) (using One Amazing Thing, of course).
  15. Aurora borealis: watch a time lapse video of this astonishing natural light display. For more information about the Northern Lights (and additional videos), see Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurora_borealis
  16. YouTube video of the entire 2012 Freshman Convocation ceremony at CSUN. The Provost introduces Chitra Divakaruni at about 36 minutes, 45 seconds into the video.

Book group notes

Bookmark shows a word cloud made up of names, programs, and themes in _One Amazing Thing_ at CSUN.

CSUN bookmark, One Amazing Thing (side 2)