dialectic journals n.
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Dialectic Journals

Dialectic Journals

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Dialectic Journals

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  1. Dialectic Journals Mrs. Fogelson PHHS English Warm-up: What are keys to a good conversation with someone? Should they copy everything you say? Should they pay attention to your words or not? How can conversations with others make your life better?

  2. What is it? A dialectic journal is a conversation between you and what you are reading. You simply write down passages that make you think or interest you and write about your thoughts. This process is an important way to understand a piece of literature. By writing about literature, you make your own meaning of the work in order to truly understand it. When you do this yourself, then the text belongs to you--you have made it yours. The passages are there for everyone to read; however, the connections and interpretations are uniquely yours. You are neither right or wrong in your response. So be willing to take risks and be honest.

  3. What is it for? • cite significant text as evidence for your thoughts • bring your own background and experience to the reading; • construct your own meaning from the text of the novel; • provide direct feedback to yourself and your teacher on your thoughts and understanding as you read; • gain insight into the plot, action, and significance of events and details in the novel. • provide a springboard for Socratic Seminar •

  4. How do I use it? Left Side • Left side—in text citation. Write the line that you find significant because of • the action in the story line • the conflict that arises • the word choice or imagery used • characterization presented • Mood, style, or tone • Author’s background • Connection to personal experience or other texts • Your opinion about the author/character/event/writing • Etcetera, etcetera, and so forth

  5. How do I use it? Right SideThis is where your thoughts go. They should be at analysis, evaluation, or creation level. Some sentence starters might be… • I really like/dislike this idea because. . . • This idea/event seems to be important because. . . • I think the author is trying to say that . . . • The author is using (literary element) to… • If I were the author I would change/improve this part by… • This passage reminds me of a time in my life when . . . • If I were (name of character), at this point I would . . . • This part doesn't make sense because . . . • This character reminds me of (name of person) because . . .

  6. Examples • The following examples are from evaluations of “The Cask of Amontillado” and “The Tell Tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe. • Think: • Why are these citations significant? • Why are the responses significant? • When you write your own response, use your sentence starters if necessary.

  7. What does it look like?

  8. What does it look like?

  9. What does it look like?

  10. Closure • How do you think using dialectic journals will help you connect to literature?