Academic journal article Language Arts

A Reason to Read: Linking Literacy and the Arts

Academic journal article Language Arts

A Reason to Read: Linking Literacy and the Arts

Article excerpt

A Reason to Read: Linking Literacy and the Arts by Eileen Landay and Kurt Wootton, Harvard Education Press, 2012, 247 pp., ISBN 978- 1- 61250- 460- 5

In A Reason to Read, the performance cycle is described as a framework for utilizing the arts throughout instruction. It is a way to involve students in making meaning as they read and write in academic settings. The cycle consists of building community, entering text, comprehending text, creating text, rehearsing/revising text, and performing text. After a performance, the cycle begins again. The performance cycle was developed by authors Landay and Wootton through the ArtsLiteracy Project-a collaboration between artists, performers, and teachers who work together to motivate and encourage literacy development in students from elementary school through high school in the United States, Brazil, and Mexico.

Shirley Brice Heath, whose work was clearly an inspiration to the authors, wrote the foreword. The introduction follows, framing the performance cycle within current pedagogical theory and research. Beginning in chapter one, Landay and Wooton walk the reader through the performance cycle. Classroom vignettes paint a detailed and inspiring portrait of arts-infused teaching and learning, followed by a discussion of why and how to teach this way. Chapters one through seven include detailed descriptions of teaching methods and how they can be implemented in any classroom. …

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