Things to think about: Among the many points that we have been talking about this semester is the idea that any kind of reading is good reading, though not always for the classroom. Fortunately, YA graphic novels offer both engagement and erudition at every turn. There is some great stuff out there. This week, please consider Hey Kiddo as a text worth teaching in a classroom. Take into consideration the supplementary reading for this week on using graphic novels in the classroom. And consider the ways that visual rhetoric--the ability to identify meaning in visual--is an important skill that we can help our students to learn.
In about 300 words, consider the reading from this week (Hey Kiddo, teaching the graphic novel), how can using visuals in a classroom--graphic novels, film, television, art, photos--in the ELA classroom help our students become better readers of all “texts?" Consider our test class as you respond. Respond meaningfully (roughly 100-200 words) to at least one other classmate. Try to avoid the "I totally agree" response.
This Week's Class: You are teaching a class of 30 8th graders at Whitman Middle School. Here is a class picture. The class you are teaching is majority white. There are two students who identify as African-American. Just over ½ of the class are young women. None of the students are first generation American, but a few students have grandparents who immigrated, mostly from Ireland. More likely, the majority of students have great-grandparents or great-great grandparents that came from to the US during the great migration in the late 1800s—Italy and Ireland mainly. Your classroom is well-equipped. Students have ipads for use in the classroom and all of the students have internet access at home as well as at school. You maintain a teaching website where parents can check assignments. The parents at Whitman are, more or less, invested in their children’s education and pay attention to what is going on in the classroom. You have 7 students on IEPs ranging from high-functioning spectrum to ADHD mix. Two student are on IEP for cognitive processing problems.
Post questions, concerns, etc for the week. If you have a question, it's probably true that your classmates do too.
Teaching poetry to young readers and writers can be challenging and also exciting. Prior to spring break, we spent two weeks looking a verse--poetry and a novel written in verse. We close out looking at verse and young adult readers with The Poet X, which mixes a bit of both.
Your prompt this week asks you to think about how you would engage students with poetry. You can consider all of the texts we've explored over this time, but do be sure to include The Poet X.
This Week’s Prompt: Let’s say that you managed to convince the faculty and parents at Brockton High School to let you teach The Poet X in a 12th grade English class that meets the outcomes for the International Baccalaureate Programme. Th IB is sort of like an internationally recognized version of AP. You can read about it here. Some quick facts about Brockton High (from Wikipedia, so, you know, grain of salt) and in general:
It's the week before Spring Break. It's midterms. Let's be kind to ourselves and the universe. Let's write poetry together. For, this week, please post an original poem. There are no other rules.
There will be other weeks we can talk about how we could teach poetry (the week we come back from Break we are reading The Poet X) as readers, but one way we help our students to read poetry is to write poetry, is to give students the right to be poets.
It's a brave act to write knowing people will read your work and so lessons where we ask our students to share their work in a safe setting is one way we help them to be brave thinkers, readers, and writers. One way we make safe spaces is to be brave and vulnerable with our students as well. When we write with our students we show them our process and we show them the all writers and readers have some sort of process. And, in that way, we help them to figure out reading writing processes of their own.
USE THIS SPACE NOW UNTIL THE WEEK AFTER SPRING BREAK (so until 22 March 2020). . .
If there was ever a time that I thought you might use this space, this is it. Here is a good space to use to crowd source tips and tricks, get answers to clear up confusion, ask questions about how to complete your Pecha Kucha.
Trust me, if you have questions, other people do to. And it's in everyone's best interest to get that information out to everyone. If you ask me a question via email that is not specifically private, this will be the space that I answer it.