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Tales from Tolkien: A Study of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy- Grades 8 (mature) – 12 – Spring 2022 – 10 Weeks

Tuesday, March 29 2022 @ 3:00PM Tuesday, June 14 2022 @ 4:30PM EDT


Jonathan Meola

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8 (mature) – 12

Day of Week:


Class Times:

3:00PM – 4:30PM (ET)


Spring 2022

AP / Honors / NCAA Approved

NCAA Approved Course


Tuesday, March 29 2022 @ 3:00PM EDT
Tuesday, June 14 2022 @ 4:30PM EDT
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Virtual (Zoom)
+1 203 741 8570
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Bring the movies to life! Books allow our imagination to flourish and details to be absorbed … while learning. The immensely intelligent J.R.R. Tolkien is famous for the imaginative worlds of Middle-earth and unique concept of mythopoeia. We can understand why his epic trilogy; The Lord of the Rings is so vastly popular that it has reached cult status.  Today, Tolkien’s fiction is not only a literary classic, but it’s also instrumental to the growth and popularity of the genre of modern fantasy.  Students in this course will have the opportunity to read Tolkien’s work for pleasure, as well as discover the historical, mythological and literary backgrounds of his tales.  Students will come away with a new appreciation and understanding of Tolkien’s epic stories. 

Each day, we will start with a timed creative opener.  This allows students to clear their minds and focus on the class.  We will then cover student questions from the reading or homework assignments.  Discussion is next of the assigned chapters and readings for the week, including a lecture on the topics.  Questions and discussion are encouraged.  There will be weekly projects and written assignments, 3 journal assignments, a creative project, as well as a midterm and final paper.

By the end of the class, students will…..

1.      Acquire a familial and critical knowledge of The Lord of The Rings as well as the Medieval literature that informs it.
2.      Acquire knowledge of the historical and cultural background which informs The Lord of The Rings.
3.      Read and discuss The Lord of the Rings trilogy for pleasure and for its insight into the human condition.
4.      Demonstrate the skills associated with the practice of literary criticism, including writing and formatting, research skills, and methods of analysis.

This class is equivalent to a .5 high school credit of English.

Students can expect approximately three  hours.  Homework will consist of  reading, short answer and longer answer writing prompts.

NOTE: Registration deadline is March 1, 2022.

There must be a minimum of FIVE students to run this class.

Learning to love the past

November 29, 2020

History. This was definitely not my strongest area as a homeschool mother. I knew to provide my kids with what they needed, I had to look at outside resources. Taking a leap of faith, I registered both my 7th and 8th grader for U.S. History with Jonathan Meola.

Learning history through simple short stories using. “A History of US,” has been fun to read-a-loud. With a subject I once disliked myself, I’ve been able to power through, and engage with my children learning to love the past. Mr. Meola is a phenomenally fair instructor, and has allowed our kids to use their creativity for the semester project. The kids have enjoyed this area most about the class. Seeing their creations from the past come to life is a gift in itself. Thank you, Jonathan! You have lit a fire for history within my children!

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Thanks for making homeschooling so much easier for us parents

November 29, 2020

We have absolutely loved Jonathan’s Ancient Civilizations class this year.

He is so organized, and his classes are expertly taught – my son usually makes me leave the room but I will often go back and listen to the recordings and watch some of the videos because they are so interesting.

We are thrilled that OTA is now a vendor with our charter school, and since Z will be in middle school next year, we plan on signing up for a lot more classes.

Keep up the excellent job and thanks for making homeschooling so much easier for us parents!

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July 26, 2023

What a fantastic course combining hands-on STEM & Social Studies.

I loved watching my children learn about key landmarks around the world with such eagerness and curiosity.

They dove into the history, architectural marvel, geography, and engineering in an engaging fun way.

Mr. Meola is a wonderful teacher and this class is highly recommended!

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Michael Zrihen

Best Course EVER!

January 30, 2023

During our family new year’s celebration, everyone completed a year-in-review questionnaire. One question asked, “What are you most proud of that you accomplished this past year?”

Without hesitation, our daughter blurted out “I learned to write a five-paragraph essay!”

Our daughter, who up until this past semester would only write science lab reports, should be proud of this accomplishment. She willingly dedicated days to completing required essays, and we owe this success to Lights! Camera! Action! class.

Mr. Jonathan’s enthusiasm, instruction, encouragement and feedback all generated a newfound level of confidence within our daughter. Plus, the course spurred everyone in our family (including grandparents) to watch incredible movies, which normally would not be in our Netflix queue. Mr. Jonathan’s impact reached beyond our daughter.

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LR, Florida

Amazing course!

January 30, 2023

I would like to say thank you. My daughter, Laura, was so inspired by OTA’s Lights! Camera! Action! class. She WANTS to improve at writing instead of shying away from the process that she finds so difficult. She is putting her heart and soul into trying. I am seeing improvement and I am seeing enthusiasm that just were not there before. You have no idea how joyful that makes me. This latest essay was really, really hard but a bit less overwhelming than the prior two. Slowly the elements that Laura is learning in class are sinking in. I appreciate all that you do for the class! Thank you!

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JC, Vermont

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