As I tried to make clear, it's not my place to give a teaching encompassing those parts that might fall under the heading of "general Buddhism," because the Professor will already have covered such matters and won't want me to spend class time re-tracing them. This includes the life story of the bodhisatta and discussion of the 4NT. Instead, I'd like to focus on the things that make Theravada unique--including (as in the case of the "Three Marks") concepts that may have traction in wider Buddhism but are not likely to have been discussed and/or receive special emphasis in the Theravada. It's not meant to be a sermon on the Dhamma, nor a General Buddhism overview, but a general overview of Theravada, and laying down distinctions that will separate and distinguish it from the later discussion on Mahayana.
Here's a good, more specific question I would pose to the group: what are some good seminar questions/discussion questions to spark conversation among the students? Questions I would pose to them and invite them to discuss.
A question for you friend. How did you determine the 3 principal suttas?
I didn't mean to definitively label them as being "principal," especially not in a way that was intended to demote the rest of the canon to secondary status. However, in a few readings I have encountered, they are grouped together as the three cardinal discourses of the Buddha. E.g.: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/nanamoli/wheel017.html
. Obviously the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta has specials tatus among suttas, and the eminence of the Anatta-lakkhana and aditta-pariyaya suttas is attested to, if nothing else, by the frequency with which they are chanted, as compared to other Suttas.