Teaching Secondary English: Readings and Applications

By Daniel Sheridan | Go to book overview
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Your paper will consist of the following parts: (1) a lesson plan; (2) an explanation of the choices you made, including some discussion about students, goals, and context; (3) an earlier version of the plan, accompanied by a discussion of what you did to test it and how you changed it; and (4) an evaluation of the plan's strengths and weaknesses, including a discussion of your role in its execution. Attach to the paper appendixes that might help a reader understand it (a copy of the literature, activity sheets, etc.).

Note: An assignment like this would seem to favor a traditional approach to teaching—that is, to lead you away from the workshop approach. But this is not necessarily the case. You might wish to situate yourself in a workshop setting and plan a mini-lesson or two. Or you might have decided on some adaptation of the workshop that would be reflected in your planning. In any case, your paper should make clear your approach to literature instruction.


For Further Reading

Adams, Peter. “Writing from Reading: 'Dependent Authorship' as a Response.” In Readers, Texts, Teachers, edited by Bill Corcoran and Emrys Evans (pp. 119–152). Upper Montclair, NJ: Boynton/Cook, 1987. Adams describes variations on “dependent authorship, that is, assignments in which students work within the confines of a text, extending or altering it.

Albritton, Tom. “Honest Questions and the Teaching of English.” English Education, Vol. 24, No. 2 (May 1992, pp. 91–100). A sensible discussion of the way English teachers ask questions, urging us to make them honest.

Ash, Barbara Hoetker. “Reading Assigned Literature in a Reading Workshop.” English Journal, Vol. 79, No. 1 (January 1990), 77–79. This essay is referred to in Application 2.3.

Atwell, Nancie. In the Middle: New Understandings about Writing, Reading, and Learning. 2nd edition. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, Boynton/Cook, 1998. This new edition is less dogmatic and in some ways more complex than the first edition of In the Middle. A “must read” for English teachers.

Beach, Richard, and James Marshall. Teaching Literature in the Secondary School. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1991. A comprehensive textbook on teaching literature.

Corcoran, Bill, and Emrys Evans, eds. Readers, Texts, Teachers. Upper Montclair, NJ: Boynton/Cook, 1987. A good collection of essays from a reader-response orientation, including the Peter Adams piece in this bibliography.

Dias, Patrick. “Literary Reading and Classroom Constraints: Aligning Practice with Theory.” In Literature Instruction: A Focus on Student Response, edited by Judith A. Langer. Urbana, IL: NCTE, 1992, pp. 131–162. This essay is referred to in Application 2.2.

Hynds, Susan. “Challenging Questions in the Teaching of Literature.” In Literature Instruction: A Focus on Student Response, edited by Judith A. Langer. Urbana, IL: NCTE, 1992, pp. 78–100. This essay is referred to in Application 2.1.

Karolides, Nicholas, ed. Reader Response in the Classroom: Evoking and Interpreting Meaning in Literature. White Plains, NY: Longman, 1992. An excellent collection of essays by Robert Small, Nicholas Karolides, Deborah Appleman, James Davis, Robert Probst, and others. Many of the essays contain examples of using particular works in secondary classrooms.

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