Reading novels cover to cover helps students build confidence

“Literary fiction is an art that seeks to create an immersive experience for the reader, but we often don’t approach it that way with our students. We parcel out books in pieces and ask students to analyze them along the way without the ability to understand a work in its entirety. This is sort of like asking students to interpret a corner of a painting. Without the entire context, it lacks meaning and can become frustrating.”

So, this 7th grade English teacher came up with an idea, and put it into action in her class:

“Let students read novels in their entirety. Then let them talk about what they find interesting in the book, facilitating the group’s exploration of the text.”

“Leading a whole-novel study is like throwing a boomerang. If the boomerang is carved well, and I aim it properly, it will take a journey and come back to me. If the literary work is artfully written and meaningful to students, and I support the class well, they will arrive at all the learning objectives I am responsible for teaching and then some. What’s more is that they build stamina, confidence, critical thinking, and the habit of reading whole books by themselves.”

More: http://www.edweek.org/tsb/articles/2012/02/29/02sacks.h05.html

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