General Interest Submissions
We publish articles of general interest as space is available. You may submit manuscripts on any topic that will appeal to EJ readers. Remember that EJ articles foreground classroom practice and contextualize it in sound research and theory. As you know, EJ readers appreciate articles that show real students and teachers in real classrooms engaged in authentic teaching and learning. Regular manuscript guidelines regarding length and style apply.
Preventing Bullying Behaviors
Deadline: November 15, 2011
Publication Date: July 2012
Gaining social status becomes an increasing focus during the teen years. Students need to develop strategies for dealing with bullying, and as English teachers we can help students to learn positive communication strategies to establish relationships, gain success, and help others. English teachers can create positive change by making bullying a topic in the ELA classroom: How have you used particular works of literature to examine bullying behaviors and problem-solve alternative approaches? How have you used writing and writing assignments to help students to examine their role in protecting the feelings of others, respecting differences, and preventing harassment? Which media images are most effective for generating classroom discussion about empathy and forgiveness? Classroom management strategies can also address bullying: What are ways that teachers can routinely provide reminders, space, and time for students to rethink comments and behaviors that are offensive to others? What methods have you found effective for teaching students to communicate civilly in groups and positively influence the behaviors of others? We should also consider forms of bullying that take place outside the classroom: What role do English teachers have in increasing awareness of problems that can arise from social pressures communicated through texting and social media websites? In what ways can bystanders be encouraged to speak out against bullying rather than being impressed or entertained by it? It’s also important to consider addressing the problems of those who exhibit bullying behavior: How do we avoid stereotyping the bully as a dysfunctional outsider and instead increase awareness of how aggressive behaviors can be hurtful to others? Can we identify various types of bullying behaviors to offer more positive strategies for gaining status, leading others, and working together?
Characters and Character
Deadline: January 15, 2012
Publication Date: September 2012
Do you love Lady Macbeth? Are you sympathetic to Shylock? Do you think Huck is hilarious? Are you serious about Scout? Do you find Iago instructive? Are you half-hearted about Hamlet? Does Hester Prynne stir your passions? Do you think Nora is a doll? Are you apathetic toward Holden? Does Blanche expect too much from strangers? Would you prefer not to deal with Bartleby? Would you like to take Tom and Laura under your wing? Is Ahab your white whale? This issue of English Journal is dedicated to those characters we love to teach. Love them or detest them, these are the characters that get our students talking. What literary characters from classic, contemporary, and YA literature and nonfiction texts do you enjoy introducing to your students? What writing assignments have you created to engage your students in instructive and interesting character study? What characters have you put on trial, used as fodder for debate, or impersonated in your classes? What character traits would you like your students to develop (or avoid), and how have you used literary or historical figures to help your students to understand and build these qualities? How have you helped students develop personal qualities that are likely to make them healthy, happy, and successful?
What reading and writing assignments have you designed to help students become productive, critically literate citizens of our democracy? How have you encouraged students to explore the topic of character on their own, examining for themselves the kind of characters they would like to emulate?
Speaking My Mind: We invite you to speak out on an issue that concerns you about English language arts teaching and learning. If your essay is published, it will appear with your photo in a future issue of We welcome essays of 1,000 to 1,500 words, as well as inquiries regarding possible subjects.
Student Voices: This is a forum for students to share their experiences and recommendations in short pieces of 300 words. Teachers are encouraged to submit the best responses from their classes, not whole class sets, please. Individual students are welcome to submit as well. Current questions:
--What can bystanders do to prevent bullying of students who are different (or perceived as different) from others? (Deadline: November 15, 2011)
--What is an important lesson you have learned from a fictional or historical character you have read about in English class? (Deadline: January 15, 2012)
Teacher to Teacher: This is a forum for teachers to share ideas, materials, and activities in short pieces of 300 words. Current questions:
--What literature fosters the examination of bullying behaviors? (Deadline: November 15, 2011)
--Who is your favorite literary character? (Deadline:January 15, 2012)
Teacher photographs of classroom scenes and individual students are welcome. Photographs may be sent as 8" × 10" black-and-white glossies or as an electronic file in a standard image format at 300 dpi. Photos should be accompanied by complete identification: teacher/photographer’s name, location of scene, and date photograph was taken. If faces are clearly visible, names of those photographed should be included, along with their statement of permission for the photograph to be reproduced in EJ.
Cartoons should depict scenes or ideas potentially amusing to English language arts teachers. Line drawings in black ink should be submitted on 8 1/2" × 11" unlined paper and be signed by the artist.
For information on writing for the EJ columns, see the Columns and Column Editors page.
For EJ Submission Guidelines, click here.
For more information, contact English_Journal@notes.cc.sunysb.edu.