Presentation on theme: "Fact or Fiction: Teaching with Historical Fiction"— Presentation transcript:
1 Fact or Fiction: Teaching with Historical Fiction Teaching American HistoryIn Miami-Dade CountyDecember 14, 2012Fran Macko, Ph.D.
2 Framing the Session To what extent is history completely factual? What strategies promote students’ understanding of historical truth?How does historical fiction contribute to an understanding of what is factual in history?
3 What is historical truth? For students, the concept of historical truth is a complex one.To say that history deals with true events and fiction with invented ones isn’t always helpful.To support students in understanding historical truth, they need to understand the three different kinds of truth: literal truth, artistic truth and historical trueness.
4 What is literal truth?Literal truth is an account that can be verified, such as an event that actually occurred at a certain time.With a partner, list 2 examples of literal truth about the Civil War.What resources would provide students with examples of literal truth?
5 What is artistic truth?Artistic truth is an account that can’t be verified, but seems true based on what we know about human nature.With a partner, list 2 examples of artist truth about the Civil War.What resources would provide students with examples of artistic truth?
6 What is historical trueness? Historical trueness is an account that cannot be verified, but is likely to have happened based on what we know about the historical context.With a partner, list 2 examples of historical trueness about the Civil War.What resources would provide students with examples of historical trueness?
7 Why teach with historical fiction? Literal truth, the verifiable kind, is almost always emphasized in non-fiction, while artistic truth and historical trueness, the non-verifiable kinds, are almost always emphasized in historical fiction.By teaching with sources that emphasize artistic truth or historical trueness, students can be introduced to the more personal, social and cultural side of history.
8 Historical Fiction and the Common Core ContextualizationEstablishing time, scope and sequenceUnderstanding the big pictureEstablishing the values and beliefs of the timeCraft and StructureIdentifying and defining key termsDetermining the main ideaIdentifying the author’s bias or point of viewKey Ideas and DetailsAssessing the reliability of the informationEvaluation of argument and reasoningComparing ideas within and across textsIntegration of Knowledge and IdeasAnalysis of multiple sources and perspectivesUnderstanding multiple perspectivesAssessing different interpretations over time
9 Why teach with historical fiction? What is the value of teaching historical fiction?Turn and talk with a colleague and come to consensus on 2-3 reasons.
10 Why teach with historical fiction? Engages student interest.Levels the playing field.Provides details of daily life.Focuses on individuals over events.Presents the complexity of issues.Provide multiple perspectives.Bridges the gap between narrative and informational text.
11 What are the features of quality historical fiction? Turn and talk with a colleague and come to consensus on 2-3 features.
12 What are the features of quality historical fiction? Quality historical fiction should:Present a well-told story that doesn’t conflict with historical records.Portray characters realistically.Present authentic settings.Artfully fold in historical facts.Provide accurate information through illustrations.Avoid stereotypes and myths.
13 What are the challenges of teaching historical fiction? Turn and talk with a colleague and come to consensus on 2-3 challenges.
14 What are the challenges of teaching historical fiction? Historical fiction provides limited access to the broad range of historical interpretation.Many examples of historical fiction present the dominant interpretation of history or that which is found in most textbooks.This interpretation, or selective tradition, often excludes the voices of minorities, and as a result, limits student access to the truth.
15 Historical fiction is often “presentist”. The authors give the characters present-day thoughts, beliefs and concerns, thereby presenting an inaccurate view of the past.
16 Historical fiction often contains historical inaccuracies. Historical fiction reflects the historical context, the author’s purpose, and ideological predisposition.The prevailing cultural attitudes of the time in which the novel is written may influence the author’s attitude toward the events.
17 To effectively use historical fiction to support students in understanding history, they need to: understand what historical fiction is and what they can expect to learn from reading it.know that historical fiction and non-fiction present history in different ways.question what they read.
18 How do history texts differ from fictional texts? How do history (informational) texts differ from historical fiction (narrative)?Turn and talk with a colleague and come to consensus on 3 differences.
19 Goals of the Historian The goals of history: Separate fact from myth or inaccuraciesMake educated inferences about the past using cultural cluesConsider multiple points of viewTo achieve these goals, the historian:Identifies and analyzes primary sources
20 Goals of the Author of Fiction The goals of fiction:Entertain the readerCreate an emotional connectionConvey a message or themeCreate memorable characters and plotTo achieve these goals, a writer often uses:Poetic licenseInvented dialogue and language
21 What are some guiding questions for reading historical fiction? Guiding questions for reading historical fiction include:How does this book help me understand life in the past?Could the events described have happened? What evidence do I have?Which events really happened? How do I know?Which characters really existed? How do I know?
22 What is the Fact or Fiction Strategy? Pairing historical fiction with non-fiction on the same event allows students to experience the three kinds of historical truth: literal, artistic and contextual or historical trueness.In this strategy, students read historical fiction to savor the story, and to sort fact and fiction.As they read, they sort the information into three categories: fact, fiction and not sure.
23 After compiling their lists, students work in pairs or small groups to discuss and verify, where possible, the information on their fact, fiction and not sure lists.As a class, they share and discuss their lists for further verification of the information on the fact and fiction lists.Finally, they compile a class list of questions based on the items on the not sure list.
24 Using the class list, students read the paired non-fiction text and clarify the information on their not sure lists, marking the facts with a check.Questions that are not answered as a result of reading the non-fiction text can be the basis of additional research.
26 Across Five Aprils by Irene Hunt The Civil WarAcross Five Aprils by Irene Hunt
27 Step One- Compiling the Lists Read your chapter from Across Five Aprils.Make three lists based on your knowledge of the Civil War:What is factual?What is fiction?What you are unsure of?
28 Step Two- Comparison and Discussion With a partner, share and discuss the items on your lists with your group.Come to consensus on what is fact, what is fiction and what remains not sure.
29 Step Three- Group Discussion What did your team identify as:Fact?Fiction?Not Sure?What non-fiction resources would students use to fact check?
30 Step Four- Checking for Understanding Working with your partner, fact check your list and move any items to the correct column.What items remain in the “not sure” column?Create research questions based on your list of “not sure” items.What non-fiction resources would you use to pair with the historical fiction?What information intersects both fiction and non-fiction?
31 Classroom Application Where and how could you use historical fiction in your classroom?What adaptations could you make to the strategy of paired texts?How might you use video and film as examples of historical fiction?
32 Final Thoughts High quality historical fiction: Engages student interestProvides details of daily lifeFocuses on individuals over eventsPresents the complexity of issuesProvide multiple perspectivesSupports students in understanding the differences between narrative and information text