Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Engaging With Literature: A Workshop for Teachers, Grades 3-5

About This Workshop

Asking Questions: An Interactive Guide
1. Foundations

2. Looking at Literature

3. Starting Classroom Conversations

4. Classroom Dialogues

5. Using Art and Other Disciplines To Enrich Classroom Conversations

Introduction »

Key Points

Learning Objectives »

Background Reading »

Homework »

Classroom Connection »

Teacher Reflection »

Ongoing Activity »

Additional Reading »

6. Beginning the Year

7. Many Students: Many Voices and Abilities

8. Reacting to Students' Work

9. The Professional Teacher

Site Map

Workshop 5. Using Art and Other Disciplines to Enrich Classroom Conversations

As they write about the text, students further explore ideas they have discussed with their classmates.
Key Points

  • Students can express themselves and their understandings about literature through writing, drawing, dramatic activities, and music.

  • Alternate ways of response to literature help students move from literal to more complex understandings.

  • Alternate response modes help readers enrich understandings of the text and of themselves.

  • The processes students engage in as they plan a dramatic performance—developing interpretations and choosing how to present those interpretations—may well have more value than the performance itself.

  • Drama helps both the performers and the actors develop rich understandings of character and motivation.

  • Not only do alternate response modes help students express current ideas, often they cause them to generate new ones.

  • When students share their work, their particular responses often influence and expand the responses of their classmates.

  • Writing is an effective response mode because it can be private and allows students to focus on ideas that they are in the process of working out.

  • Writing slows down thinking, allowing students time to get their complete idea on a page.

  • Often spending in-depth time on a particular text has more lasting value for students than trying to "cover" a number of texts quickly.

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