One way to help students become climate stewards is to model how reading paired climate texts enhances our ability to both problem-spot and problem-solve. In our haste to offer solutions, we may insufficiently consider the root causes of environmental problems. While reading Neal and Jarrod Shusterman’s novel Dry, my students and I pore over local […]
In last month’s post, I described how writing flash stories helped my students process the contents of an informational text. As we turned to a news article about a disturbed landscape, I wondered: How could recasting the details of a news article in the form of a flash ghost story help students understand its implications? […]
In Sharon Olds’ poem “Ode to Dirt,” the speaker opens with an apology, explaining I thought you were only the background for the leading characters—the plants and animals and human animals. Thinking about parts of nature in isolation from other parts is an all too familiar tendency. The act of overlooking the role of soil […]
When I was a drama student in high school, a theater teacher offered this important reminder as we choreographed stage blocking for a scene: “Every story has stakes.” These words were intended as a helpful cue to all the actors on the stage – to focus on conveying the risks involved as a character made […]
Reading Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower in the year 2020 was a slightly eerie experience: so much of what Butler has presented in her fictional novel set in the 2020s is happening: uncontrolled fires, resource depletion, and rising sea levels. Last year, the novel appeared on the New York Times bestseller list, twenty-three years […]
“Don’t forget to cast your ballot!” “Vote!” We just passed the most important time of this year: election day. According to the New York Times, this year’s election and candidates led to heavy, and record-breaking, voter turnout, and there were many measures in place to ensure ballots were counted in time. We’ve had crazy high […]
Everyone is obsessed with true crime lately. True crime podcasts, true crime TV shows, true crime movies, true crime documentaries. I feel like every time I turn around, I see another preview for another true crime series on Netflix. And, here’s the thing, I’m totally down for it. My podcasts, my list on Netflix – […]
Image via Davide Restivo on http://commons.wikimedia.org While designing a short story unit for my AP English literature students this past August, I was eager to identify stories that acknowledged the environmental challenges that we are currently facing. I’ve always had faith in literature’s ability to help us enter into an imaginative awareness of what others […]
Struggling writers have fun–and write better–when the emphasis is on creativity before mechanics.
Narrative Journalism provides a robust genre to help your students explore voice and strengthen their narrative and informational writings skills.