Missouri State and Laura Ingalls Wilder and the MOOC

I signed up for the Laura Ingalls Wilder MOOC (Massive Online Open Class) that Missouri State offered Fall 2014 with Pamela Smith Hill, but I must hang my head and admit I didn’t actually participate. I was too busy and feeling slightly regretful about it when I happened upon this YouTube Channel and there, for all the world to see, were the video postings from the  class, open and free for all without any of the fuss of the class. So I went through and watched them, put them in order, and added brief notes to let you know the main points of each one. I hope you’ll enjoy them.

I’ve also added on a short section from the other MOOC Missouri State rolled out this year on Ozark History. They had a famous Ozarkian of the lecture segment and this is the one about Laura. I hope his information in the others was more accurate.

4 Laura Ingalls Wilder

An introduction to some Ozark History class.

Promo for the class

All That I Have Told is the Truth

I think this one was an experimental post because it’s replicated below. I’m not sure if they thought there was something wrong with this version or if they wanted to standardize the upload titles or if they wanted to draw attention to this one for some reason.

Week 1 Episode 1 –

Laura Ingalls Wilder and Her Literary Legacy

How Smith Hill discovered Laura’s books, 1965 Hill first Rocky Ridge visit, 5:08 Betty Love photo journalist who took smiling photo with books, 10:25 Publishing Process

Week 1 Episode 2

All That I Have Told is True

Slight revision of “All That I Have Told” is the Truth above

Week 2 Episode 3

Mythic Beginnings: Tracking the Movement of the Real Ingalls Family

Laura’s earliest memories and how they changed for the early books

Week 2  Episode 4

Plum Creek and the Missing Years

Family moves through Minnesota, what do we know about their moving, Rothville, Missouri, but doesn’t name town, Focusing on 1876-1878, Experiences in Burr Oak mostly from Pioneer Girl

Week 2 Episode 5 Part 1

Where the West Begins (Part One)

Family moves into South Dakota, Argues that South Dakota was setting for strongest books – older when there – won Newbery Honor Books

Week 2, Episode 5 Part 2

Where the West Begins (Part Two)

Laura describing things for Mary influenced writing, First essay

Week 3 Episode 6

Missouri Sky (Part One)

Analysis of Laura’s diary On the Way Home, Images of museum interior and farm outside Rocky Ridge farmhouse

Week 3 Episode 7

Missouri Sky (Part Two)

Moving into Mansfield and adding to Rocky Ridge Farm, Using every opportunity, Laura’s chickens lead her into writing, Rose unhappy in childhood, Laura and women’s clubs, Farm Loan Association, Rocky Ridge farmhouse built from materials on the farm, Laura’s farm writing

Week 3 Episode 8 Part 1

Rose Wilder Lane: A Longing for Far-Away and Unimagined Places (Part One)

Rose’s opinion as expressed in Long Skirts, Old Home Town, Danger of reading autobiographical details from writer’s fictional work, Rose as restless spirit, Rose named after Wild Rose, Rose’s Spring Valley Photo, Almanzo’s illness, Moving to Florida, Rose’s various early professional jobs, Rose’s marriage to Claire Gillette Lane

Week 3 Episode 8 Part 2

Rose Wilder Lane: A Longing for Far-Away and Unimagined Places (Part Two)

Was Rose a reliable narrator? Lane’s vision of “biography” of Jack London was highly fictionalized, Lane’s fictionalization of her own life in Diverging Roads, How accurate Rose presented her own life even in diaries and letters and the emotional reflection of writer

Week 3 Episode 9

Rose Wilder Lane: A Longing for Far-Away and Unimagined Places (Part Three)

Rose’s history after high school, Her history in Europe, Hints at possible romantic connect with Troub, Writing Discovery of Freedom and connection to the Libertarian Party

Week 3 Episode 10 Part 1

A Shared Profession: Mother/Daughter Journalists (Part One)

Rose and Laura began writing professionally at the same time, Rose’s and Laura’s early professional writing jobs, History of choosing a professional name by Laura and other women writers, Newspaper style editing

Week 3 Episode 10 Part 2

A Shared Profession: Mother/Daughter Journalists (Part Two)

Laura’s trip to San Francisco, Comparison of Rose’s and Laura’s work fictionalizing biography, Specific instances of Rose making up newspaper stories, Lane condescending and blunt in her advice to Laura giving advice still useful to writers today

Week 3 Episode 11

Interview with Jean Coday, Director of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Home and Museum, Mansfield, MO

Interview with Joan Coday, Coday’s first visit, Rocky Ridge’s welcoming spirit, Coday’s take on Laura’s personality, Coday’s impressions of Laura as someone who lived up in Mansfield, Coday getting involved with the Laura Ingalls Wilder/Rose Wilder Lane Home Association, Plan for developing site, Chicken coop restoration

Week 4 Episode 12 Part 1

Pioneer Girl (Part One)

Reporter went to interview Rose and described their house, Rose as famous writer, Laura’s early stabs towards writing, How her reaction to Pa and Ma’s death supported her writing

Week 4 Episode 12 Part 2

Pioneer Girl (Part Two)

Mary’s death, Rose working on manuscript, Bad magazine year, Rose’s likely opinion, Targeted to adults in magazines, Process of sent out to Carl Brandt, Rose and Laura waiting for word on manuscript, Laura’s dental problems

Week 4 Episode 13

Pioneer Girl (Part Three)

Brandt returned manuscript and suggested they drop it, Rose’s continued work on it and the process with Laura and Rose, Differences of the three versions, Bender story and how it couldn’t be true, Rose’s marketing strategy

Week 4 Episode 14

Pioneer Girl (Part Four)

Bye version cut younger stories and Rose realized potential for possible children’s book. Why Pioneer Girl never published, Time in Burr Oak, Mary’s illness (2/3rds way through), Importance of Pioneer Girl

Week 4 Episode 15 Part 1

Autobiography and Memoir (Part One)

Difference between autobiography and memoir, Argument of whether Pioneer Girl is autobiography, memoir, and fiction

Week 4 Episode 15 Part 2

Autobiography and Memoir (Part Two)

Laura turned to fiction, Standards and ethics of non-fiction versus fiction, Publishing scandals – Lillian Hellman Pimiento not only had she made up fictional details but took on someone else’s life, “Every word she writes is a lie, including AND and THE.”, James Frey A Million Little Pieces, Margaret Seltzer Love and Consequences: Memoir of Home and Survival, the slippery boundary between fiction, nonfiction, and memoir

Week 5 Episode 16

‘Little House in the Big Woods’: From Autobiography to Fiction (Part One)

Laura, Manly, and Rose close communication, Rose’s changed opinion about children’s literature, Argument between Laura & Rose over how they would celebrate their wedding anniversary. Berta and Elmer Hader and their involvement. Juvenile version of Pioneer GirlWhen Grandma was a Little Girl

Week 5 Episode 17  Part 1

‘Little House in the Big Woods’: From Autobiography to Fiction (Part Two)

Juvenile version of Pioneer GirlWhen Grandma was a Little Girl, Rose identifies material as Laura’s and her role as editing, Transforming voice of novel from older Grandma to child Laura, While Rose offered to do revision of point of view, Laura refused and did the work herself. Business of publication, Role of editors in publishing industry, Rose’s time in Vietnam, Rose’s death

Week 5 Episode 17 Part 2

‘Little House in the Big Woods’: From Autobiography to Fiction (Part Three)

Rose’s experience as a newspaper editor, different from normal book editor process was more aggressive, “Rarely is the writing process one of divine dictation”, Discussion of coming up with title, The three book contract at Knopf, original Little House in the Big Woods Harper only for 1 book, Fiery extraordinarily took up the book to make sure it published

Week 5 Episode 18

‘Little House in the Big Woods’: Literary Themes and Discussion (Part One)

Changing from youth version of Pioneer Girl to Little House in the Big Woods, 60 years ago line, Expectation of shelf life of the books, Large cast of characters and lack of focus on Laura

Week 5 Episode 19

‘Little House in the Big Woods’: Literary Themes and Discussion (Part Two)

The cyclical structure of Little House in the Big Woods, Appeal to readers older than characters – unusual in children’s literature

Week 5 Episode 20

Let the Hurricane Roar

[Sound is muted on this one, adjust your volume accordingly.] – Rose taking on family stories for her writing, Rose turning to novels Courage! aka Let the Hurricane Roar which features characters Charles and Caroline Ingalls, Harpers rejected Farmer Boy and Saturday Evening Post accepted LHR, Laura felt betrayed by Rose appropriating material that Laura was herself using, Laura’s likely take on Rose’s perception that she Rose was being petty and jealous about Laura using her stories, Hill’s commentary of how close Rose’s borrowing comes to plagiarism, LHR is now known as Young Pioneers

Week 6 Episode 21 Part 1

‘Farmer Boy’: A Literary Overview (Part One)

Picking up with Farmer Boy, Rose visited Malone and sent back descriptions (for some reason illustrated by a photo of the Wilder home in Spring Valley MN), Rejection of Farmer Boy as part of publishing industry practice, Royalty rate, Farmer Boy and Little House in the Big Woods as companion books

Week 6 Episode 21 Part 2

‘Farmer Boy’: A Literary Overview (Part Two)

Process of recreating life of Wilder family that she never experienced, Focus on main character is the key difference between LHBW and FB, Theme of LHBW is that perpetual cycle while FB focuses on changing the character, Excitement of Little House on the Prairie novel

Week 6 Episode 22

Perspectives on Children’s Literature: Middle Grade Fiction (Part One)

Considered middle grade novel focused between ages 8-12, Various definitions, Lack of Newbery wins, Definitions of classifications of children books as a whole, What is considered too graphic for kids, Basic outlines of children’s literature

Week 6 Episode 23 Part 1

Perspectives on Children’s Literature: Middle Grade Fiction (Part Two)

Ingalls family books, Flowerett, Pa’s Big Green Animal Book, Millbank by Mary J. Holmes, Brief run down of children’s literature

Week 6 Episode 23  Part 2

Perspectives on Children’s Literature: Middle Grade Fiction (Part Three)

Comparison of Laura to other historical heroines, Capable girl books, Importance of illustrations, Helen Sewell, Garth Williams illustration process, Comparison of illustrations, says didn’t illustrate same scenes much [ed. note: I’ve found many of the same scenes illustrated in my work comparing the two], Illustration for middle grade chapter books dropped off in 1980s, returned with Harry Potter and graphic novels

Week 7 Episode 24 Part 1

‘Little House on the Prairie’: Literary Overview (Part One)

Laura’s drafts on reused paper, how revised, Opening lines of classic children’s literature, Close examination of Little House on the Prairie opening

Week 7 Episode 24 Part 2

‘Little House on the Prairie’: Literary Overview (Part Two)

Manipulating chronology from real life to literature, themes driving plots, Importance of neighbors in theme, Dangers of pioneer life, Laura moving to become central character and establishing the real life Laura’s voice

Week 7 Episode 25

‘Little House on the Prairie’: Historical Perspectives (Part One)

Context of Kansas settlement within Civil War, Did the Ingalls family actually live in Missouri, Osage land settlement, Photos of the Osage and their connection, Comparison of events in books and real life

Week 7 Episode 26 Part 1

‘Little House on the Prairie’: Historical Perspectives (Part Two)

Laura attempts to find Little House on the Prairie Museum site, Laura’s attempts to locate Osage chief, Briefly what is known about Dr. Tann [ed. note – see publication available through the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum in Walnut Grove for more] and Mr. Edwards, Is there any historical proof of the end of  books them being pushed off claim, Rules of Osage land settlement

Week 7 Episode 26 Part 2

‘Little House on the Prairie’: Historical Perspectives (Part Three)

Problems with Native American depiction, Garth Williams different take than Helen Sewell, Crisis of wording, Rise of objections to the books for their depiction, Native American perceptions

Week 8 Episode 27

‘On the Banks of Plum Creek’: Literary Overview (Part One)

On the Banks of Plum Creek, Foreshadowing, Overconfidence, Grasshoppers, Points out how this book strengthens Caroline Ingalls allowing her to go out on the prairie and to gently criticize Pa

Week 8 Episode 28 Part 1

‘On the Banks of Plum Creek’: Literary Overview (Part Two)

Books as literary realism

Week 8 Episode 28 Part 2

Nature is unstoppable force, Love its beauty, fear its strength, Financial security

Week 8 Episode 29 Part 1

‘On the Banks of Plum Creek’: Historical and Critical Perspectives (Part One)

Rose’s abandoned novel series, Rose’s move to Columbia and the Tiger Hotel, Rose encouraged to add more details, detailed description of girlhood dresses, Laura and Rose’s editorial decisions about  On the Banks of Plum Creek

Week 8 Episode 29 Part 2

‘On the Banks of Plum Creek’: Historical and Critical Perspectives (Part Two)

Grasshoppers, sod houses, Nellie Owens – 3 girls in one

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation.Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+,LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. She is currently acting President of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Legacy and Research Association. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

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trundlebedtales

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

One thought on “Missouri State and Laura Ingalls Wilder and the MOOC”

  1. Sarah – Thanks so much for these! Never took the class but would still like to learn it all!

    Julie Miller

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