Crossing Over: Teaching Meaning-centered Secondary English by Harold M. Foster

By Harold M. Foster

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Additional resources for Crossing Over: Teaching Meaning-centered Secondary English Language Arts (2nd ed.)

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This text, and the theories behind it, celebrates diversity. Even if a teacher has the class read the same book, that teacher can and should promote multiple and diverse interpretations. Of course, effective teachers provide many opportunities for students to select their readings from diverse and rich sources. As classrooms become increasingly ethnically and culturally diverse, literary experiences should mirror this diversity, not only so that that African-American < previous page page_17 next page > < previous page page_18 next page > Page 18 students can read about African-American experiences, but so that all students can read and learn about African-American experiences, as well as Hispanic, Native American, Laotian, Korean, and so on.

For a while, schools influenced by “romantic” critics would experiment with a form of progressive education that included: ▪ A complicated system of class scheduling that allowed for flexibility, giving teachers some power over class size and the amount of class time. ▪ Elective courses, often with themes such as sports literature or science fiction. ▪ Increased use of paperback books, leading to a somewhat expanded selection of school literature. These experiments of the 1960s were largely attacked in the backlash era of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Students receive responses to their writings, which help shape and craft the writings based on the writers’ needs and personalities and based on the audience the writing is addressing. These responses help students shape and craft and revise the public statements. These responses come from teachers, tutors, and peers. ▪ Editing help. Students get feedback to help them edit their public statements into logical, clear, organized, error-free statements. ▪ Use of technology. Student writers are given every opportunity to learn how to use word processors and computers as technological tools in the writing process.

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