Presentation on theme: "1-17-13 To facilitate our opening discussion, please respond in writing to the follow questions by answering the first on the front of your index card."— Presentation transcript:
To facilitate our opening discussion, please respond in writing to the follow questions by answering the first on the front of your index card and answering the second on the back of the card: What does it mean to “read” a text? What does it mean to “teach” a text? Hold on to your cards for now, but I’d like to take them up later.
Last week, I asked these questions (but I think we never discussed your answers): Why/how do YOU typically read literary texts (such as novels)? Why/how do TEACHERS typically use literary texts in class? Let’s start with these questions before moving to tonight’s “starter” questions. Now let’s change the focus slightly: What does it mean to “read” a text? What does it mean to “teach” a text”? What’s the difference between “teaching” and “using” a text?
In case my point (or my claim, if you prefer) isn’t clear… You can USE texts for various purposes without having to TEACH them. To teach content-area material: Students can read a common text, different groups can read commons texts, or each student can read a different text, and those “untaught” texts can provide background (or enrichment) for class discussions. To practice reading, a skill vital to all content areas: Allowing students in-class time to read texts of their own choosing, with little or no formal assessment, helps develop fluency, focus, endurance, and (possibly) a more positive attitude toward reading. Such reading can also improve vocabulary and general knowledge, and it can contribute to a culture in which reading is an accepted and expected practice.
Book Talks No more than 3 minutes long, max For content or recreational books Tell us the topic, but minimal plot summary Goal is to generate interest (You can give us details in a review.)
Last week’ assignment: Read Woods Runner. While you read (or after you finish the book), make a list of facts about the American Revolution that were new to you (or that you think would be new to your students), or that were presented through fiction in a way that was significantly different from the way those facts would be presented in a textbook. As time allows, read some additional YA novels related to the American Revolution. In groups of 2 or 3, compare your lists of facts. What did you learn? How might this information affect a social studies or history class discussion of the time period? How useful would this information be in, say, a high school American Lit class? A middle school social studies class? An upper elementary class? If you read “additional YA novels,” what did you read? How did you find or locate the books? How potentially useful were they? How might you get students to read them?
Only YOU Can Prevent Readicide
Before we discuss books, let’s talk about something (else) fun: Consider the parallels between and a cookie a novel: Created by cook/author Certain ingredients common to all cookies/novels, with slight variations in each cookie/novel Created to be consumed and enjoyed (and maybe shared) COOKIES
List the ingredients common to cookies Explain the purpose of each ingredient Research your assigned ingredient – sugar, butter, chocolate, or flour – for an oral report to the class Report; take notes Take a quiz! If you didn’t pass the quiz, get remediated… Let’s study cookies! So take out some paper… (Are you excited about the cookies yet?)
Major Causes of Readicide: Schools value development of test-takers more than they value the development of readers Schools are limiting authentic reading experiences Teachers are overteaching books Teachers are underteaching books Readicide, p. 5
Test Prep & Testing Time Learning Time Test Prep, Testing Learning Test Prep, Testing Learning Schools value development of test- takers more than they value the development of readers.
Schools are limiting authentic reading experiences. Who chooses your reading material? To what extent do you use “study questions”? To what extent do you study the author and/or historical background? Why do you read? (That is, what are your purposes for reading?) How do you respond to what you read? (Write a paper? take a test?) Reality Check: Who chooses your students’ reading material? How often are students required to use “study questions”? How often are students required to do background study? Why do students usually read? How are students required to respond to what they read?
Standard E4-1: The student will read and comprehend a variety of literary texts in print and nonprint formats. Indicators E4-1.1Compare/contrast ideas within and across literary texts to make inferences. E4-1.2Evaluate the impact of point of view on literary texts. E4-1.3Evaluate devices of figurative language (including extended metaphor, oxymoron, pun, and paradox). E4-1.4Evaluate the relationship among character, plot, conflict, and theme in a given literary text. E4-1.5Analyze the effect of the author’s craft (including tone and the use of imagery, flashback, foreshadowing, symbolism, motif, irony, and allusion) on the meaning of literary texts. E4-1.6Create responses to literary texts through a variety of methods, (for example, written works, oral and auditory presentations, discussions, media productions, and the visual and performing arts). E4-1.7Evaluate an author’s use of genre to convey theme. E4-1.8 Read independently for extended periods of time for pleasure. Students in English 4 read four major types of literary texts: fiction, literary nonfiction, poetry, and drama. In the category of fiction, they read the following specific types of texts: adventure stories, historical fiction, contemporary realistic fiction, myths, satires, parodies, allegories, and monologues. In the category of literary nonfiction, they read classical essays, memoirs, autobiographical and biographical sketches, and speeches. In the category of poetry, they read narrative poems, lyrical poems, humorous poems, free verse, odes, songs/ballads, and epics. The teacher should continue to address earlier indicators as they apply to more difficult texts.
How often do you model reading “independently for extended periods of time for pleasure”? How much class time do you devote to this standard?
Teachers are overteaching books. Readicide Factor: The Overanalysis of Books Creates Instruction That Values the Trivial at the Expense of the Meaningful Readicide Factor: The Overteaching of Academic Texts Is Spilling Over and Damaging Our Students’ Chances of Becoming Lifelong Readers Have you ever had someone “slog through to the end” of a book even though everyone was clearly bored? If so, what did the students learn? What “collateral damage” might occur in such situations?
The Kill-a-Reader Casserole Readicide, p. 73 Teachers are overteaching books. Take one large novel. Dice into as many pieces as possible. Douse with sticky notes. Remove book from oven every five minutes and insert worksheets. Add more sticky notes. Baste until novel is unrecognizable, far beyond well done. Serve in choppy, bite-size chunks.
Teachers are underteaching books. Too much is not good but too little is also not good. Don’t turn them loose with NO instruction... …but leave room for them to stretch a little.
So what does “not too much, and not too little, but just right” look like? Get them interested. Get them started. Make sure they can handle the text on their own. Let them go. Check in to make sure they’re doing OK. Book talk or similar hook. Close reading of early chapter(s). Ask informal questions about plot or character. Really. Maybe let them talk in groups. Again, assessments can be informal.
Riding a bicycle: Watch someone ride Ride w/training wheels and someone holding on Ride w/training wheels but w/o additional help Ride w/o training wheels but with someone running alongside & holding on Ride with someone close by, but not holding on Ride independently Maybe wreck occasionally, but get back up & try again Teaching a skill in class: Teacher does skill while students watch Teacher does skill while students assist Students do skill while teacher assists Students do skill while teacher watches Students do skill independently Maybe wreck occasionally, but get back up & try again
Gallagher’s Three Ingredients to Building a Reader 1.They must have interesting books to read. 2.They must have time to read the books inside of school. 3.They must have a place to read their books. Readicide, p. 84
Step 1: Have interesting books available (yes, IN the classroom!)
Steps 2 & 3: Provide time (in class) for pleasure reading, and, as much as possible, provide a comfortable place for pleasure reading. Make books – reading them, discussing them, recommending them to each other – a normal part of the classroom culture.
For the content you teach, list some topics or specific works for which it might be useful to have students read, either individually, in groups, or as a whole class, an “extra” (or “supplemental,” “enrichment,” or even “extra credit”) book. Make It Personal (to your classes): If you teach Am. Lit., something about the Civil Rights movement might provide good background for King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” If you teach science, biographies of Darwin might provide good background for understanding the debates about evolution. If you teach newspaper, novels about free speech or prior constraint issues might add depth to class discussions of those topics. If you teach 4 th grade, you might simply list the units in your curriculum, then generate search terms to help you find relevant novels.
As time allows (or for as long as you’d like to stay)… *use computer lab to look for books for your unit (for this class) or for whatever classes you currently teach use “listopia” feature on Goodreads post request on English Companion Ning surf the library catalog For next week: Read Between Shades of Gray and any other WWII books you can. (Note: We’ll do Holocaust literature later, so you might focus on other WWII books for now.)