Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Conversations in Literature
Conversations in Literature — Workshop

Individual Program

1. Responding
as Readers

2. Envisioning

3. Stepping In

4. Moving Through

5. Rethinking

6. Objectifying
the Text

7. The Stances
in Action

8. Returning to the

Support Materials

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Returning to the Classroom


Key Points

Learning Objectives

Background Reading

Homework Assignment

Classroom Connection

Ongoing Activity
Additional Reading

Key Points

  Reading literature is about exploring universal human experiences, such as love, the power of life, relationships, death, success, and misfortune.

  All readers, no matter what their reading ability, can engage in the envisionment-building process.

  Literature instruction must involve discussion and questioning.

  Conversation in an envisionment-building classroom provides opportunities for respectful challenges and conflict.

  Classroom community members help one another to develop their own understanding through dialogue and questioning, pushing along one another's envisionments.

  "Received interpretations," or ones that are widely known in the literary community, are still important in the envisionment-building process, as long as students are first allowed to develop their own interpretations.

  There are "misreadings" where students create a faulty understanding. In these cases, students must be asked to back up their interpretations with logical reasoning and with textual examples. The community often reins in the misunderstanding through dialogue.

  The questions teachers ask in an envisionment-building classroom are key to the process. These questions need to help students enter the text, move around in it, take lessons from it, and then objectify their responses from a critical perspective.

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