Round and round we go: teaching English in spirals

Reflecting English

spacing(1)Images: @jasonramasami

I have always struggled with setting learning objectives for my English lessons. At times they seem useful, at other times not. When they allow me to zoom in on disconnected, isolated knowledge and skill, such as grammatical structures or punctuation rules, they give clarity and emphasis to planning. Yet when I am teaching a chapter of a novel, a complete poem or a scene from a play – or teaching students to write an extended text – they fail to capture the breadth of what I would like my students to learn. More often than not I will stick to a title: ‘Chapter 2 of Of Mice and Men’, for instance.

The reason is that literary texts require immersion. For any lesson on a text or part of a text, I usually like my students to know and think about some or all of the following:

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