Thursday, January 18, 2007

Reading, Teaching, and Juxtaposition

Throughlines: Juxtaposition III

As I read this thoroughly interesting post and the responses, I was struck by a theory/practice connection. Of course, I already want to believe that theory and practice are always implicated in each other, so I might be more inclined to find or create connections that no one intended.

Nonetheless, look at how the ideas of juxtaposition and intertextuality lead to ideas about the art of teaching and the necessity of flexibility. While we can get lost in following the paths that these ideas suggest (see "Planning"), I think we learn the most when we're exploring with students "where the new track is leading."

2 comments:

DianeWagener said...

I actually found myself feeling guilty when reading these posts. I very much agree with the need to "go with the flow" but sometimes find myself sticking to "the plan" so that all six classes stay on the same "path" and get through the content together as if they were one. I want to be flexible and I know I can be more so!

Just like a single word can "work" alone or together with another and one student can work alone or together with another... one class can work alone or together with another. It is truly an art form in which daily decisions translate into the ongoing picture.

Barbara Cambridge said...

In my NCTE staff blog entry today I wondered aloud if the six challenges reported by MCRC in a study of high school reform resonated with NCTE members. A point that was disconcerting to me was that "Teachers benefit from well-designed curricula and lesson plans that have already been developed." I am wary that such a finding could translate into support for scripted lessons. This dialogue about the interrelationship of a plan and flexibility speaks to the point: planned lessons can help, but the "art form" of responding to students is essential.