• HEADER

Mr. Stephen U. Lassiter    slassite@houstonisd.org

Phone: 7134174125

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

The University of Houston Bachelor of Arts (BA)Journalism Certifications: Certified Teacher, Certified Content: Journalism, Theater

Mr. Stephen U. Lassiter slassite@houstonisd.org

My father worked for the United States State Department, and I traveled all over the world,--Iran, Japan, Peru--settling in Houston when I was ten. My father met my mother in Ecuador while on assignment in South America. When we moved to Houston we lived in Pecan Park in Southeast Houston. I attended Southmayd Elementary, Deady Middle School, Milby High School, and the University of Houston. During college, I joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC). When I graduated from UH with a BA in Journalism and a minor in Theater, I received a commission in the Army, Second Lieutenant, and after helicopter training, assigned to the First Cavalry Division (Airmobile). The division moved from Vietnam to Ft. Hood, TX in1971. Besides flying the UH-1B, Huey, I was assigned to the Division as Public Information Officer (PIO) where I was the spokesperson for the division. I also wrote daily articles about the division's training missions for the Fort Hood Sentinel newspaper and published many stories in military magazines such as Army Aviation and Army Magazine. After five years in the service, I was honorably discharged and I returned to Houston where I attended UH for graduate studies in Political Science. After school, I became a broadcast reporter for KBMT-TV, ABC affiliate in Beaumont, TX, later I joined Vance-Matthews Advertising Agency as Public Relations Director in Beaumont. In 1980, I joined the sales staff at Oil and Gas Journal in Houston; in 1986 moved to the Advanced Technology Group (ATG) in San Francisco, CA. In 1988, along with three others, I founded a national mail order catalog Selective Software in Santa Cruz, CA where I hired, trained and developed incoming call center personnel. In 1992, I moved to Chattanooga, TN where I owned and operated coffeehouses modeled after the ones in Santa Cruz. I sold my businesses and moved back to Houston in 2005 where my mother, brothers, and daughter live. As a retiree, I explored several opportunities deciding to teach at my old school Deady and Milby High School, first as a substitute, then as a fulltime broadcast journalism teacher. My students produced a 10-minute, "live" morning announcement on the school-wide Channel One Network, a television in every room. In 2014 I retired as a fulltime teacher and now teaching Journalism and Theater, parttime, at East Early, Monday-Friday, till noon. 

  • Journalism

    Journalism is a course designed to provide a positive learning experience while teaching the essence of the First Amendment in America. Why? Everything that is the foundation of journalism in America goes back to 1A. But, that's the starting point. What, in essence, is Journalism? Most people understand that journalism has something to do with news, investigation, and opinion as presented through the mediums of newspapers (increasingly online), magazines (also online as well) and broadcast journalism which involves not only listening to audio/radio and/or watching video streaming on mobile devices, laptop/desktop computers, as well as television. As you know, news/journalism has changed dramatically over the past decade. We are going to learn about the impact of that change in the field of journalism, how the news is disseminated, how some sources are reliable while others are so biased is can be called "fake news." These changes also impact careers in journalism. On the one hand, there are hundreds, even thousands, of news media job opportunities;  in the 60s there were only 3 television networks. Funding, however, through paid advertising, backing by a wealthy donor, or donations like Public Radio or TV. 

    Classes will include discussions, workshops, group, and individual meetings, writing, revising and publishing news articles; writing, revising news scripts for broadcasting, interviewing, notetaking, even pitching (selling) a story to the editor..."This story is really important! I did some investigating and I found..."  Meanwhile, the practice of journalism will keep you focused on the news both BREAKING NEWS and in-depth investigative reporting. We will start the day with a current key news story, take notes as the story is heard over the speakers, and, write a story from your notes as if you were the original reporter. Every day there will be a deadline! That's the nature of the 24-7 news cycle; it changes almost instantaneously, thus you have to be quick, thorough but ready for change.

    GRADES

    Major grades: grade cycle project (six weeks work)n= 45%

    Minor grades: daily news story, vocabulary quizzes = 35%

    Participation includes prompt arrival, ready to listen and take notes, actively working on daily project =20%

     

     

    Theater

     This introductory theater course will focus on creative expression through theatrical performance and design. Students will become skilled at employing: acting techniques, movement and body control, proper vocalization methods, and the development of characters from different periods and styles of drama. Students will explore historical and cultural studies in theater and opportunities to see live professional theater. Course work will include theater etiquette, vocal and physical warm-ups, theater vocabulary, actor discipline, improvisation, mime, characterization, monologues, scenes, play analysis of classic plays, theater history, play production, and production design 

    GRADES

    Major grades: performance and design projects, tests (auditions or demonstrations), play reviews = 45%

    Minor grades: daily classwork, theater vocabulary quizzes = 25%

    Participation: weekly = 30%