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Text Selection for Reading Alan Pulverness Norwich Institute for Language Education, UK.

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Presentation on theme: "Text Selection for Reading Alan Pulverness Norwich Institute for Language Education, UK."— Presentation transcript:

1 Text Selection for Reading Alan Pulverness Norwich Institute for Language Education, UK

2 Reading survey 1.What are the best three books you have ever read? 2.In your ideal book, what would the main character be like? 3.What are your favourite genres, or kinds of books? 4.Who are your favourite authors? 5.How do you decide whether or not you’ll read a book? 6.Have you ever liked a book so much that you re-read it? 7.What do you think someone has to do to be a good reader? 8.What do you think are your strengths as a reader? 9.How would you like to improve as a reader? 10.Do you know the title of the next book you’d like to read? 11.How do you feel about reading and about yourself as a reader?

3 Criteria for text selection Suitability of content Exploitability Readability Variety Authenticity Presentation

4 Criteria for text selection Suitability of content Finding out about students’ reading tastes Selecting texts for classroom study

5 Criteria for text selection Exploitability The purpose of the reading lesson Integrating reading skills - flexibility of technique - utilising non-textual information - word-attack skills - text-attack skills Simulating real-life purposes Other integrative tasks Using longer texts

6 Criteria for text selection Readability Assessing the students’ level How much new vocabulary? Structural difficulty Calculating the readability index Cloze as an indicator of readability A word of warning!

7 Why do Barrington Stoke books work? Great stories by top authors Printed on high-quality cream or off-white paper, which is more restful on the eye Specially modified font to encourage a smooth read No right-hand justification - the varied length of line helps readers to keep their place Challenging yet familiar vocabulary Clear and direct language structures Well-spaced text and short chapters Tested by children reading at the appropriate reading age

8 No to Age Banding! I don't mind anybody having an opinion about my books. I don't mind a bookseller deciding they are for this age group or that, or a teacher giving one of my books to a child because they think it is appropriate. But I don't want to see the book itself declaring officially, as if with my approval that it is for readers of 11 and upwards or whatever. I write books for whoever is interested. When I write a book I don't have an age group in mind. Philip Pullman (2008)

9 No to Age Banding!... the neat sorting-out of books into age ranges, so dear to publishers, has only a very sketchy relation with the habits of any real readers. Those of us who are blamed when old for reading childish books were blamed when children for reading books too old for us. No reader worth his salt trots along in obedience to a timetable. C S Lewis (1952)

10 Criteria for text selection Variety Over time Within the lesson Recycling language Authenticity Real messages Coherence and textual organisation Grade the task not the text! Simplification?

11 He had been home for a year now. He was totally blind. Yet they had been very happy. The Grange was Maurice's own place. The back was a farmstead, and the Wernhams, who occupied the rear premises, acted as farmers. Isabel lived with her husband in the handsome rooms in front. She and he had been almost entirely alone together since he was wounded. They talked and sang and read together in a wonderful and unspeakable intimacy. Then she reviewed books for a Scottish newspaper, carrying on her old interest, and he occupied himself a good deal with the farm. Sightless, he could still discuss everything with Wernham, and he could also do a good deal of work about the place – menial work, it is true, but it gave him satisfaction. He milked the cows, carried in the pails, turned the separator, attended to the pigs and horses. Life was still very full and strangely serene for the blind man, peaceful with the almost incomprehensible peace of immediate contact in darkness. With his wife he had a whole world, rich and real and invisible. Maurice had been home for a year now. He was badly scarred and totally blind, but they had been very happy. Grange Farm was Maurice’s own place. The farm workers lived at the back of the house, while Isabel lived with her husband in the comfortable rooms at the front. They had spent most of their time alone together since his return. They talked and sang and read together. She wrote short pieces for a newspaper and he did some work on the farm – simple work, it is true, but it gave him satisfaction. He milked the cows and looked after the pigs and horses. Life was still very full for the blind man, peaceful in darkness. With his wife he had a whole world, rich and real. Maurice had been home for a year now. He was badly scarred and totally blind, but they had been very happy. Grange Farm was Maurice’s own place. The farm workers lived at the back of the house, while Isabel lived with her husband in the comfortable rooms at the front. They had spent most of their time alone together since his return. They talked and sang and read together. She wrote short pieces for a newspaper and he did some work on the farm – simple work, it is true, but it gave him satisfaction. He milked the cows and looked after the pigs and horses. Life was still very full for the blind man, peaceful in darkness. With his wife he had a whole world, rich and real.

12 Criteria for text selection Presentation An authentic look Looking attractive Reproduction for the classroom Copyright issues

13 Many Dealings of Bill Clinton Are Under Review By DON VAN NATTA Jr. and JO BECKER Over the weekend, former President Bill Clinton enthusiastically endorsed the prospect that his wife, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, might join the Obama Administration as secretary of state. “If he decided to ask her and they did it together,” the former president said, “I think she’ll be really great as a secretary of state.” Mr. Clinton delivered those remarks at an international economic symposium in Kuwait City sponsored by the National Bank of Kuwait, which said the former president would “share with a select audience his perspective on the issues likely to shape the future prospects of the region.”DON VAN NATTAJO BECKER

14 Checklist for choosing texts for classroom study 1. Will the text… …tell Ss something new? …introduce them to new ideas? …make them think about something they hadn’t thought about before? …help them understand the way other people live/think/feel? …make them want to read for themselves?

15 Checklist for choosing texts for classroom study 2.Does the text challenge Ss’ intelligence without too much linguistic challenge? 3.Does the language seem natural (i.e. without forcing in too many examples of target language? 4.Does the language reflect written or spoken forms? 5.If there is new vocabulary, is it worth learning at this stage (and not too much)? Can its meaning be inferred from context? Can any of it be replaced by simpler alternatives?

16 Students’ choices Exploring reading tastes & histories The Book Box (The Book Basket) Surfing Tasters Genre corners Titles Covers Blurbs

17 The reading cycle READING (Reading time, setting, hearing it done, doing it yourself) RESPONSE (“I want to enjoy it again.” Formal talk, Book gossip) SELECTION (stock, availability, accessibility, presentation) Enabling teacher

18 Book stocks Availability Accessibility Central stock? Class representatives? Class library? Advice from librarians? Funding!

19 Display Stimulating interest Implicit recommendations Choice of site Visual appeal Initial impact Maintenance Availability Themes & topics Exhibitions Equipment & fittings

20 Display

21 Browsing & Reading time Formal & informal browsing times DEAR

22 D Drop E Everything A And R Read

23 Browsing & Book talk Formal & informal browsing times DEAR or SSR or SQUIRT! “Have you read…?” Book graffiti boards Magazines Selection panels Reading clubs Student organisers ‘By-the-way’ chat “Try this!” Booklists

24 http://www.britishcouncil.org/arts- literature-bibliographies-tbooks.htm

25

26 Browsing & Book talk Formal & informal browsing times DEAR or SSR or SQUIRT! “Have you read…?” Book graffiti boards Magazines Selection panels Reading clubs Student organisers ‘By-the-way’ chat “Try this!” Booklists Mix & Match Websites encompassculture

27 On-line resources

28 http://readingmatters.co.uk This site is about books and ideas for children and teenagers. You can use the interactive book finder form to find a book that’s right for you.

29 http://www.booktrusted.co.uk Book Trust is an independent charity that encourages people of all ages and cultures to discover and enjoy reading. It provides free resources and recommendations for teachers, librarians and parents about books for young people of all ages.

30 http:// askchris.essexcc.gov.uk/adult/ A mixture of the knowledge and enthusiasm of Essex Libraries staff Recommendations from readers and reading groups across Essex When you Ask Chris to suggest what you should read next, you’ll be tapping into the options of hundred of readers

31 Categories include: BBC Raw Action Packed Love and Families Contemporary Non-fiction Crime Quick Reads Essex Book Festival Science Fiction/Fantasy Fresh Start A Sense of History Frightening Teenage Great Group Reads Travel the World Humour You can vote for books on the site, too!

32 http://www.storiesfromtheweb.org This site is mostly for young readers. On entering the site you see the following: Enter site for readers aged 0-7 Enter site for readers aged 7-11 Enter site for readers aged 11-14

33 http://newwriting.britishcouncil.org This site is a companion and key to New Writing. It features texts, author interviews and teaching materials.

34 www.whichbook.net On the front page you see a selection of moods and purposes of you visit to this site. You can pick up book recommendations according to your mood or the mood you’d like to read about!

35 http://www.cool-reads.co.uk The cool-reads site was built up with the help of hundreds of readers around the world. “Books for 10-15 years old readers by 10-15-year-old reviewers”

36 http://www.rif.org Here you can find: Motivating kids to read Choosing good books School connections Activity search Tips and tricks

37 http://www.reader2reader.net/ The site is really informative. It begins with the categories: Browse – Quick ways to discover good books suggested by other readers Chat – Suggest books for the next live chat session or share your reading experiences

38 http://www.theirreadingfutures.org.uk./ skills_l/index.html The site is extremely informative and is packed with various means of interaction among readers. It consists of the following categories: Changing Libraries Planning and Evaluation Getting Your Message Across

39 http://www.storiesfromtheweb.org/ sfwolderarea/index.asp Review it! Share your views about books you’ve read. Interactive Join in with games, competitions, discussions and more!

40 http://www.carnegiegreenaway.org.uk/ shadowingsite/teachers This site invites children and young people -to read the shortlisted books -assess them by the same criteria used by the librarian judges -share their views with other reading groups

41 http:www.cool-reads.co.uk The cool-reads site was designed and run by Chris and Tim when they themselves were at the cool-reads age of 10-15. It is an example of how to initiate and set up an on-line reading group.

42 http://www.4ureaders.net E-claire You can suggest your own Book of the month. Book Brother You decide which book stays on the virtual bookshelf and which book goes The Lads The books lads tend to like

43 http://www.grouchy.com/angst Here readers can talk about books together on their own message board. Send mail about books that have changed your life: “ … it made me evaluate what I was doing to myself and my parents. It completely changed my life.”

44 http://www.storiesfromtheweb.org Here you can: -share you views about books you’ve read -get creative and have your writing displayed in the SFW Gallery

45 alan@nile-elt.com


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