English Journal

Articles from Vol. 105, No. 2, November

A Lesson in Etymology
Going back to the Latin root,the word insincere means "not not wax."Let's replace this double negativewith the positive assertion "with wax."The insincere have got wax in their ears.Which is why they cannot not hear unclearly.The not not wax clogs their...
A Non-Freaked out Guide to Teaching the Common Core: Using the 32 Literacy Anchor Standards to Develop College-And Career-Ready Students
A Non-Freaked Out Guide to Teaching the Common Core: Using the 32 Literacy Anchor Standards to Develop College- and Career-Ready Students Dave Stuart Jr. San Francisco: JosseyBass, 2014.To be appropriately appreciated, Dave Stuart Jr.'s Non-Freaked Out...
Brown Girl Dreaming
Brown Girl Dreaming Jacqueline Woodson. New York: Penguin. 2014. 336 pages. $16.99. Grades 4 and up. ISBN 039925217. Winner of National Book Award, Newbery Honor Book, SLJ Best, Coretta Scott King Award, Robert F. Sibert (Informational category) Honor...
Caring Critical Literacy: The Most Radical Pedagogy You Can Offer Your Students
As a first-year teacher in Baltimore City in 2001, I heard stories from my students that overwhelmed me. Care was often sidelined in their personal lives even as external and structural factors placed them in the position of care-giving for others. Many...
Discovering the Guests at Gatsby's Party
It all started when I was listening to students' reports on aspects of the 1920s as an introductory activity to reading and studying F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. When a student in the Period 4 class gave a report on sports and recreation in...
Dodging the "R" Word: Research as a Tacit Process
When I begin my research courses, I ask my graduate students to close their eyes and imagine a researcher. When I ask them to share their images, they typically offer two: a man in a lab coat or a pile of books. In several years of teaching research...
From the Editors
For education among all kinds of men always has had, and always will have, an element of danger and revolution, of dissatisfaction and discontent.-W. E. B. Du BoisA picture can tell a thousand words, but a few words can change its story.-Sebastyne YoungResearch...
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces Isabel Quintero. El Paso, TX: Cinco Puntos, 2014. 284 pages. $17.95. Grades 10 and up. ISBN 978-1-935955-94-8. William C. Morris Award for a first-time YA author, SLJ Best Book, Booklist Editor's Choice, NYT Best book, YALSA Best...
I'll Give You the Sun
I'll Give You the Sun Jandy Nelson. New York: Dial, 2014. 371 pages. $17.99. Grades 10 and up. ISBN 9780803734968. Publishers Weekly Best, Booklist Editors' Choice, SLJ Best, Time Magazine Top YA, NYT Notable Book, Stonewall Honor Book.Jude and Noah...
Inquiry in an Age of Query
I type inquiry into a search engine. In 0.36 seconds, I receive nearly 290 million results. The first result is a rectangular box that contains the definition of the word, followed by another dictionary definition, a Wikipedia entry, and a webpage from...
Investigating a Different Way: Critical Scientific Literacy
Helping multilingual students examine and talk about scientific informational texts is challenging. Proponents of content-area literacy believe that students should use consistent literacy tools across content areas (Shanahan and Shanahan). In contrast,...
Keeping the Mic On: Emboldening Voices through Discussion-Based Inquiry
At a preparatory workshop session with 32 predominately African American high school students in the Emerging Scholars program, we introduced a clip of a Congressional hearing where Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) muted the microphone of Rep. Elijah Cummings...
Lights, Camera, Write: How Scene Writing Can Help Students Write in Multiple Genres
A New Perspective on WritingScene Description: An English 9 classroom. It's the start of last period of the day and students are eager to go home. Desks are grouped in pods of four; a variation on the rows of eight that students are used to seeing.Character...
Metrical Considerations
Heaney exemplifies the Old English,Finds his métier in the mother tongueIn the once upon a time of rhymesHe had to, he said, perform this featTo save himself from America'sTo save all others from the fen,By those false prophets of poeticsViolating the...
Photos as Witness: Teaching Visual Literacy for Research and Social Action
A photo is a small voice, at best, but sometimes-just sometimes-one photograph or a group of them can lure our senses into awareness. Much depends upon the viewer; in some, photographs can summon enough emotion to be a catalyst to thought.-W. Eugene...
Preparing Our Close Readers for the New Literacies
New Literacies is now considered an old term, one attributed by many to David Buckingham in 1993 when email was all the rage. But one would need to go back further to 1970 to see the term new literacy in print for the first time, in Edgar Dale's address...
Putting Research Center Stage: Performance-Driven Student Inquiry
One day last year, a sophomore student lay on the floor of my classroom, head under a desk, computer on the floor before her. Several scattered articles, sheets of notes, and a copy of Shakespeare's Othello created a nest around her. Occasionally, a...
Putting Research on Stage: Playwriting in the English Classroom
The paint of the drama studio was peeling in several places and more than a handful of ceiling tiles were missing. The stage was a mere eight inches off the ground and some sections didn't meet at the same height.A closer look revealed much more. The...
Research as Creative Practice: Two Metaphors for Teaching and Learning
The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.-Herbert Gerjuoy1In June and September of 2014, we collaborated with teachers from local high school districts whose students...
Revolutionizing Inquiry in Urban English Classrooms: Pursuing Voice and Justice through Youth Participatory Action Research
Use only credible and reliable sources.Include objective evidence to support your claim.You will lose points if you do not follow MLA formatting.Never use first-person voice.We admit it. As high school students, we followed these guidelines when writing...
The Crossover
The Crossover Kwame Alexander. Boston: Houghton, 2014. 237 pages. $16.99. Grades 6 and up. ISBN 9780544107717. Newbery Award, Coretta Scott King Honor Award, YALSA Top Ten, VOYA Perfect 10, SLJ Best Book list, NCTE Huck Award Honor Book.The Crossover...
The Impossible Knife of Memory
The Impossible Knife of Memory Laurie Halse Anderson. New York: Viking, 2014. 384 pages. $18.99. ISBN 9780670012091. SLJ Best Books, NYT Best, Booklist Editors' Choice, YALSA Top 100.Hayley Kincain has never led a conventional life. Since the death of...
The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights
The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights Steve Sheinkin. New York: Roaring Brook, 2014. 191 pages. $19.99. Grades 9 and up. ISBN 978-1-59643-796-8. National Book Award Finalist, Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Winner, SLJ Best...
To Teach Writing, You Too Must Get Your Ass Kicked
"So, like, I think I'm gonna send this to the NCAA and stuff."One of my first-year composition students, I'll call him Jason, jokingly spoke these words through a sly little grin as he edited his exploratory essay on whether or not college athletes should...
Trespasser No More: Students as Columnists
Much of students' scholastic lives are devoted to what Tillie Olsen called the "trespass vision." It is spent examining topics and values that are foreign to their interests and that rarely are part of their daily discussions or lives. It is consumed...
Venturing More Than a Guess: Self-Actualization through Literary Seminar and Research
Literary and social commentary icon Mark Twain once defined a "classic" as "a book which people praise but don't read." Many English teachers would add to that definition that people-their students, in particular-don't want to research and write about...
We Were Liars
We Were Liars E. Lockhart. New York: Delacorte, 2014. 227 pages. $17.99. Grades 9 and up. ISBN 9780385741262. NYT Best, Hornbook Fanfare, SLJ Best, YALSA Top Ten.We Were Liars is a modern sophisticated suspense novel about three generations of a grand...
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