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Thread: R Lit Big Picture

  1. #1
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    R Lit Big Picture

    I have been teaching the R lit class in our co-op this year (we're currently in y2). This is my first year as a lit teacher, so the learning curve has been rather steep for me. I've enjoyed the year tremendously and have seen a couple of our students truly relish the works we've read this year.

    Since it is my first year as an R lit teacher, I simply planned and taught work by work. I would notice once and a while how we reviewed and applied concepts we learned earlier to later works, but had no master plan. However, as I plan for next year, I would like to be able to see the big picture of what literary concepts we will cover, which we teach for the first time, which we loop back to during the year, etc. This would be particularly helpful when I plan which class topics we will address each week. For example, I would be sure to include a class topic which introduces a concept if I knew that it would come up again in specific weeks down the road. We simply do not have time to do every class topic every week, so I do need to cull. Also, next year about half the class will be younger, beginning level R students, while the other half will be returning students. Therefore, I'll need to be careful to lay a foundation of concepts that will come up again and again.

    I realize that there is a chart on the Loom that gives me the lit terms and Poetics readings for the year. I also use the weekly threads. What I really need is a chart of class topics by week juxtaposed with the Loom chart. Even some sort of summary document that tells me, for example, "during the weeks we read Huckleberry Finn, we will cover xyz topics," would be enormously helpful when planning the year.

    Has anyone put something like this together? Does Christy have such a thing that is shareable? Many thanks,
    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  2. #2
    Hi Monica! I'm glad you survived your first year AND enjoyed it! :-D

    I haven't created anything like that, no. However, it's a good idea and wouldn't be hard for me (or you or anybody) to incorporate. I think you'd find it pretty easy to do if you take the chart that you mentioned (the one in Teaching Rhetoric Literature on the Loom, right?) and scribble the titles in the margin for the specific weeks. I looked at and saw that there is margin there in the pages.

    You don't have to flip through the curriculum to find the titles, either: they are all arranged by week in the chart that comes right before the one you mentioned. So, if you flip back a few pages, you should see the color-coded chart that you can use to decide which books to cut. So, if you look at the colored chart, you will see all the titles in the correct weeks. I estimate it might time me just ten or fifteen minutes to rewrite those titles in the margin of the appropriate weeks in the terms and Poetics readings chart.

    I'll see about including the titles in these charts for our next Global Update, but since that won't happen until January 2015 (ish), I'm afraid you might need to make your own cheat sheet in the meantime. Thanks again for the good idea! God bless your Year 3!

    Christy

    P.S. If I've totally misunderstood what you are asking, please set me straight! ;-)
    Last edited by cjsomerville; 04-04-2014 at 01:27 PM.

  3. #3
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    Hi Christy,
    Yes, I have penciled in all the titles in the margin of the document. I guess what I feel I am missing is a column that lists the class topics from the class plans for each week. The class topics aren't necessarily identical to the lit terms taught in that week, and the Poetics reading assignments don't necessarily tell me what we are discussing. I'm thinking of something that I could look and see which weeks we were honing in on characterization, for example...or all the weeks we were discussing satire, or the characteristics of an epic, or which modes we would talk about in the various week plans.

    This may not make much sense to anyone but me, and I can do this myself by just going to each week plan and noting the 5 or so class topics you have in the lit discussion with any pertinent subtopics. Had I done that this year, I might have known which topics were going to be reviewed and repeated throughout the year and which may have been addressed only in a specific week or specific work. It will help me capture the vision and overall goals for the year for our class.

    Truth be told, the value to me will probably be more in the making of such a chart than in simply working with one someone else made. I like charts! I also find that I am processing the information as I build the chart.

    Does any of this make sense?

    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  4. #4
    That makes lots of sense to me, Monica! My mother always made me do lots of charts when I was in high school, and I found exactly what you describe: having to organize the information for yourself in a way that makes sense to you is (ironically) almost more valuable in the end than if somebody handed it to you!

    However, just as a small "cheat sheet" of sorts for that process, I think you'll find that the MAJOR Lit analysis concepts that are taught and reviewed every year are the ones found in Book I, Part IV of Poetics. Appendix A, of course, lists all the Lit vocab that we use ever, period. But everything that is pretty universal and will be used in each year goes in that Part IV section, where we first explain the basic literary analysis categories, etc.

    I don't know if that helps, but it's what I often use when on the other end of things designing a new year-plan. I think, "What concepts do I need to be sure to get in here?" and then I say to myself, "Well, everything in Part IV, for sure!" ;-)

    God bless you for being a mom who is willing to do the work of self-education so that you can give your kids a better education! That's a big deal and a huge proof of faithful parenting. I honor you for it!

    Christy

  5. #5
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    Thanks...that helps a lot! If I outline that section of Poetics for myself, I have the basic roadmap and can check off concepts as I plan the year. I made a loose outline last year but never bothered to track which weeks we covered what. Had I done that, I would have that big picture firmly in my mind now. Live and learn!

    Thanks,
    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

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