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Is literature difficult to learn?

Is literature difficult to learn?

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Is literature difficult to learn?

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  1. Literature Group asks… Isliterature difficult to learn?

  2. What is it anyway? • Problem and Solution • Story about us, the reader (Holten, 1997) • Indeterminacies and ambiguities • Irresolution (Srikanth, 2004, p.182)

  3. From the viewpoint of literature majors – Liang and Youn • No one, single interpretation • Use of imagination • Extensive use of prior knowledge • Knowledge of formats of different genres • Knowledge of literary terms • Cognitively demanding

  4. How about in L2? • Difficulty in grammar • “For hadn’t Leslie, even in Terabithia, tried to push back the walls of his mind and make him see beyond to the shining world-huge and terrible and beautiful and very fragile?” (Excerpt from Bridge to Terabithia, cited in Chamot & O’Malley, 1994).

  5. Written representation of oral language "'Because if he'd 'a' had one she'd 'a' burnt him out herself! She'd 'a' roasted his bowels out of him 'thout any more feeling than if he was a human!'“ (The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Chapter 12, pg. 78)

  6. Words that could be used as different parts of speech • Knight • Tilting Metaphoric expressions • “A caterpillar is an upholstered worm.” • “Dad is the super-sized band aid…” • (http://www.teachervision.fen.com/poetry/literary-techniques/5453.html)

  7. Lack of cultural background knowledge • “In his head he drew the shadowy castle with the tortured prince pacing the parapets.” • “Tilting and horsemanship had two afternoons a week…” • “Now it occurred to him that perhaps Terabithia was like a castle where you came to be knighted.” (Chamot & O’Malley, 1994)

  8. Pragmatic expressions/words no longer used • “Roller Derby is similarly indicative of poor judgment…” (excerpt from A Teaspoon of Courage) • “O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?” (Romeo and Juliet, 2.2)

  9. Learning Literary Terms/Formats (www.dowlingcentral.com)

  10. Important Skills in Literature • Characteristics of literature text • 1. complex • 2. combined • 3. controversial • 4. connected • 5. communicating • 6. conventional

  11. Language Skills (Other Subjects VS Literature)

  12. In the literature class, students have to…. • Elementary Level : • Read stories for specific level • Read children’s literature (level un-controlled) • Write mainly about their own experiences • Write to a specific audience/prompts (p.285) • Secondary Level: • Read literary works, contemporary and classical • Write more about factual information that they learned from other content areas (planning, composing and revising) (p.285) Chamot & O’Malley 1994, p.282

  13. The literature classroom looks like: • Before the class • Pre-reading • Identify the possible theme • De-contextualized the text • highlight important paragraphs • During the class • introduces the theme • explains the plot • analyzes the genre • exchange interpretations

  14. The literature classroom looks like: • Classroom Activities: • Role-plays • Poem Reading • Assessment/Assignment • Open-ended essay questions • Research Papers

  15. Reference: • Brinton, D. M. (2001). A Theme-Based Literature Course: Focus on the City of Angels. In Murphy, J. & Byrd, P. (Eds.), Understanding the Courses We Teach (pp.281-308). Ann Arbor : The University of Michigan Press. • Chamot, A. U. & O’Malley, J. M. (1994). The CALLA Handbook. Rending, MA: Addison-Wesley • Davison, C. (2005). Learning your lines: Negotiating language and content in subject English. Linguistics and Education 16, pp.219-237. • Hammond, J. (2006). High challenge, high support: Integrating language and content instruction for diverse learners in an English literature classroom. Journal of English for Academic Purposes 5(4). pp.269-283. • Holten, C. (1997). Literature: A Quintessential Content. In Snov, M. A. & Brintin, D. M. (Eds.), The Content-Based Classroom (pp.377-387). White Plains, NY : Longman. • Sasser, L. (1992). Teaching Literature to Language Minority Students. In Richard-Amato, Snow, P.A. & Snow, M. A. (Eds.), The Multicultural Classroom (pp.300-315). White Plains , NY : Longman. • Srikanth, R. (2004). The Soil Under the Gravel: ESOL Learners and Writing About Literature. In Zamel, V. & Spack, R. (Eds.), Crossing the Curriculum (pp.181-195). Mahwah, NJ : LEA. • http://www.teachervision.fen.com/poetry/literary-techniques/5453.html • www.dowlingcentral.com