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Inspired English
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Inspired English
Raising Test Scores and Writing Effectiveness Through Poetry and Fiction



November 2004 | 160 pages | Corwin
"The author introduces new pedagogical approaches in teaching language arts, using fiction and poetry to enhance the student's critical thinking. This is a thoughtful, practical, and innovative book that will foster academic success."
Maggie Yadegar, Associate Dean
National University, Los Angeles Campus

"A 'must have' publication for the beginning teacher of English. The author gives explicit discussions, providing directions for formulating, presenting, and evaluating each phase of the lesson being taught."
Lois Gibson, Associate Professor Education (Retired)
Southeastern Louisiana University

Lessons that spark the imagination and fuel academic success!

Teachers of English at the high-school and middle-school level face greater and greater challenges as the pressures of standardized testing collide with the realities of declining literacy and unmotivated students. This manual-written by a teacher for teachers of all experience levels-is the perfect companion for those looking to reinvigorate their language arts curriculum and fully engage and inspire all students.

LaCroix shows teachers how they can use poetry and fiction to generate student interest and promote higher-level thinking skills through analysis and interpretation of great works. Arming teachers with all the necessary tools to plan and prepare effective lessons, this user-friendly guide ensures that even the most reluctant students can share in the joy of literature while becoming better readers, writers, and test-takers.

Features that will aid new and veteran teachers alike include:

  • Twenty proven, ready-to-use lessons complete with rubrics, reproducibles, and reteach ideas
  • Straightforward descriptions of three effective lesson plan types, including the LaCroix Model
  • Concrete examples of how to supercharge students' vocabulary, critical thinking, rhetorical writing and public speaking skills for higher test scores and lifelong success

Spark student interest with rich literature presented within the context of LaCroix's powerful and dynamic instructional plans, and watch as their achievement levels soar!


 
Preface
 
About the Author
 
Opening Letter to Reader
 
1. The Plan
The Hunter Model  
The Generalist Model  
The LaCroix Model  
Key Resource 1.1 The LaCroix Model  
 
2. The Design
The Purpose  
The Objective  
The Crucial Setup  
The Critical Materials  
Key Resource 2.1 Sample Syllabus  
Key Resource 2.2 Teaching Poems  
Key Resource 2.3 Chaser Poem Rubric (4 Point)  
Key Resource 2.4 Bio Poem Rubric (6 Point)  
 
3. The Preparation
Skills to Be Taught  
Procedural Lesson 1: The Poetry Notebook  
Procedural Lesson 2: The Dramatic Reading  
Key Resource 3.1: Poetry Book Requirement  
Key Resource 3.2: Dramatic Reading Rubric  
Key Resource 3.3: Poetry Circle Grade  
 
4. The Lessons
Lesson 1: Understanding Character Through Tragedy  
Key Resource 4.1: Ladder of Responsibility  
Key Resource 4.2: Summary of Characters in Shakespeare's Hamlet  
Key Resource 4.3: Essay Scoring Guide for Student Response to Literature  
Key Resource 4.4: Literary Report Card  
Lesson 2: Conflict and the Heroic Journey  
Key Resource 4.5: Miracle on the Bayou  
Key Resource 4.6: The Heroic Journey  
Lesson 3: Finding Themes in Literature Through Art  
Key Resource 4.7: Boarding Flight 64  
Key Resource 4.8: Broad-Based Themes  
Key Resource 4.9: Paired Themes in Short Fiction  
Lesson 4: The Important Questions  
Key Resource 4.10: Blue Velvet  
Lesson 5: In Search of Poetry--Found Poems  
Key Resource 4.11: Young Chief Joseph's Speech to Congress (1879)  
Key Resource 4.12: Sample Found Poem: Chief Joseph Speaks to Congress  
Lesson 6: "Poetry Is..."--An Introduction  
Key Resource 4.13: Poetry Is...  
Lesson 7: The Power of Words--Interpreting Poetry  
Key Resource 4.14: Changing Impressions  
Key Resource 4.15: "The Day is Done"  
Key Resource 4.16: "The Psalm of Life"  
Lesson 8: "I'm Nobody! Who are you?"--The Poetry of Emily Dickinson  
Key Resource 4.17: The Poems of Emily Dickinson  
Key Resource 4.18: Summation of Emily Dickinson's Life  
Lesson 9: A Self-Portrait--The Bio Poem  
Key Resource 4.19: Bio Poem Formula & Example  
Key Resource 4.20: Matt's Bio Poem  
Key Resource 4.21: Bio Poem Worksheet  
Key Resource 4.22: Character Traits  
Key Resource 4.23: Bio Poem Rubric (Six Point)  
Lesson 10: "All the world's a stage"--Shakespeare and Figurative Language  
Key Resource 4.24: Similes, Metaphors and Personification  
Key Resource 4.25: Shakespeare Poems  
Key Resource 4.26: "A Split Tree Still Grows"  
Lesson 11: "Once Upon a Midnight Dreary"--Edgar Allan Poe: His Life and Works  
Key Resource 4.27: Lecture Notes on Edgar Allan Poe  
Key Resource 4.28: Edgar Allan Poe  
Key Resource 4.29: "Annabel Lee"  
Key Resource 4.30: "To Helen"  
Key Resource 4.31: "A Dream Within a Dream"  
Key Resource 4.32: Excerpt from "The Raven"  
Lesson 12: Life's Lessons in Verse  
Key Resource 4.33: Teaching Poems  
Key Resource 4.34: "The Village Blacksmith"  
Key Resource 4.35: "To thine own self be true"  
Key Resource 4.36: "If Tomorrow Never Comes"  
Key Resource 4.37: "O Great Spirit"  
Key Resource 4.38: "To be, or not to be"  
Lesson 13: A Poetry Potpourri  
 
5. The Final Touches
Suggestions for a Successful Poetry Recital  
Key Resource 5.1: Poetic License  
 
Closing Letter to Reader
 
Index

"The author introduces new pedagogical approaches in teaching language arts, using fiction and poetry to enhance the student's critical thinking. This is a thoughtful, practical, and innovative book that will foster academic success."

Maggie Yadegar, Associate Dean
National University, Los Angeles Campus

“A ‘must have’ publication for the beginning teacher of English. The author gives explicit discussions, providing directions for formulating, presenting, and evaluating each phase of the lesson being taught."

Lois Gibson, Associate Professor Education (Retired)
Southeastern Louisiana University
Key features
  • Contains 20 step-by-step lesson plans complete with reproducible materials and scoring rubrics.
  • Excellent resource for beginning English teachers, and more experienced teachers with reluctant, unmotivated or struggling students.
  • Strategies presented for developing Poetry and Fiction units are easily translated for the development of other required units.
  • Will cluster well with our other reading and writing offerings.
  • Strategies and lesson plans have already been tested and refined in the modern classroom setting.
  • Lesson plans developed so that most touch upon at least 5 of the 6 strands of the required language arts curriculum.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Preface


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