Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Making Meaning in Literature Grades 6-8
Conversations in Literature — Workshop

About Making Meaning in Literature: A Workshop for Teachers, Grades 6-8

Individual Workshop Descriptions

1. Introducing our Literary Community
2. Encouraging Discussion
3. Going Further in Discussion
4. Diversity in Texts
5. Student Diversity
6. Literature, Art, and Other Disciplines
7. Assessment
8. Planning and Professional Development
9. Starting in September...

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Student Diversity


Key Points

Learning Objectives

Background Reading

Homework Assignment

Classroom Connection
Ongoing Activity

Additional Reading

Extension: Classroom Connection

Student Activities
Try this activity with your students:

  • As a whole class, brainstorm a list of characteristics that make human beings individual. This list might include things such as culture and ethnicity, family structure, siblings, likes and dislikes, hobbies, where they live or have lived, pets, important experiences they have had, and many other factors.
  • Ask each student to list 10 to 20 specific characteristics that combine to portray who they are as a human being.
  • Ask students to choose a way of presenting these characteristics visually or verbally to share with the class.
  • Discussion should focus on how these individual characteristics combine to make us unique human beings with unique points-of-view.
  • Additional discussion might focus on how understanding the multiple perspectives offered in our communities helps us broaden our own view of the world, but at the same time embodies the possibilities for conflicts that require thoughtful resolution.

Teacher as a Reflective Practitioner
What are your own diversities? Use the Teacher Resource "Bringing Diversity to the Foreground" [link to pdf] to list the various characteristics that make you the person you are. How do these characteristics influence your view of the world? Of your classroom? Of yourself? Of your students? What are the implications for you as a learner and a teacher?

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