Friday, March 21, 2008

Playing with Literature

Our school is switching to an on-line book service, so we have had to turn in our book lists for next year this week. So I have spent the last few weeks thinking about texts, and it really has been fun. So often I get on auto-pilot as a teacher -- doing what I did last year but just trying to make it a little better. Thinking instead about the what we are reading (not just how I teach what we are reading) has pulled me away from the trees to see the forest. It is actually a daunting task to put my mind around. I have some control over what the students read from 6th through 12th grades, and to think about how my fellow English teachers and I are in charge of the exposure to literature that our students will get is a bit staggering. How can we introduce every genre, every diverse author, every great title? It is these choices that we must make that define our students' experiences as readers, and I hope I can do them justice.

So for now, we are replacing The Once and Future King and Frankenstein, while also considering How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents for incoming ninth graders' summer reading. Do you agree or disagree with these ideas? Other titles to suggest instead?


  1. My only comment would be that it often seems like summer reading titles are ones that might appeal more to girls than to male readers.As a former English teacher, but also parent of a boy ;), that often occurs to me these days.

    I'd recommend something challenging but suspenseful.

  2. Thanks, Carolyn, this is a great thing to keep in mind.