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English Journal, Vol. 88, No. 5, May 1999

Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 88, No. 5, May 1999

Table of Contents

Issue Theme: Teaching English in the City

  • Making It Real: Girls' Stories, Social Change, and Moral Struggles

    David Schaafsma, Antonio Tendero, and Jennifer Tendero

    Abstract: Describes a year-long project created and undertaken by a group of 14 eighth-grade girls to conduct interdisciplinary research on teenage sexuality and pregnancy. The project involved reading and discussing fiction and nonfiction, conducting interviews with teenage mothers, writing and publishing a booklet, and mentoring a group of fifth- and sixth-grade girls.

    Keywords: Secondary, Diversity, Research

  • "Headed into More and More Important Things": Transforming a World Literature Curriculum

    George E. Newell and Marcia Sweet

    Abstract: Describes how the curriculum of a tenth-grade world literature class, with an emphasis on literary genres, was transformed to a curriculum concerned with ethical choices and their consequences within an array of individual and social contexts. Shows how this conversation about ethical choices and dilemmas in her students' lives transformed how the author taught literature and writing.

    Keywords: Secondary, Literature

  • "It's a Lot of Hectic in Middle School": Student-Teaching in an Urban Classroom

    Jim Meyer

    Abstract: Relates the experience of a college professor who spent two months as a student teacher in an eighth-grade language arts classroom in an urban public school. Discusses middle school teaching verses college teaching, coming to know the students, discipline, student testing, accountability, teaching writing, the failure of teacher-training programs, and teacher testing.

    Keywords: Secondary, Diversity, Research

  • The Last Nine Weeks: Helping Seniors Say Goodbye

    Bonnie Molnar

    Abstract: Describes a unit for the final nine weeks of a senior English class which helps seniors say goodbye. Discusses how reading Sandra Cisneros' "The House on Mango Street" and writing their own versions of excerpts of it (along with other class activities) helps students define what they are leaving and come to terms with it.

    Keywords: Secondary, Literature

  • Actively Experiencing Shakespeare: Students "Get on Their Feet" for Henry IV, Part One

    Herbert M. Meyer and Lee Thomsen

    Abstract: Discusses how a literature and multimedia course for 11th and 12th graders used active-learning experiences to engage students with Shakespeare's "Henry IV, Part One." Describes how shouting Hal's soliloquy; constructing a chart of character relations; rewriting a scene in their own words; performing, filming, and critiquing a scene; and writing computer slide-show essays developed thoughtful appreciation and analysis.

    Keywords: Secondary, Literature, Technology

  • Lucy in the Chocolate Factory: From the Business World to the High School Classroom

    Carol Westreich Solomon

    Abstract: Offers observations on the author's experience of the past two years as she returned to teaching high school English after over 20 years of training adults in business in government to improve their writing. Reflects on the differing demands of these work environments, and on how the canon itself and approaches to teaching classics have changed over those 20 years.

    Keywords: Secondary, Writing

  • Losing the Product in the Process

    Lawrence Baines, Coleen Baines, Gregory Kent Stanley, and Anthony Kunkle

    Abstract: Describes three basic variations on the process approach to teaching writing witnessed while observing over 300 secondary English teachers: the "classic" process approach, the "antigrammarian" approach, and the "five paragraph" approach. Argues that the idea of error must be allowed back into the classroom, and that lockstep allegiance to a set of sequential steps must be loosened.

    Keywords: Secondary, Writing

  • Quiet Times: Ninth Graders Teach Poetry Writing in Nursing Homes

    Randi Dickson

    Abstract: Describes a community project (based on Kenneth Koch's book "I Never Told Anybody") in which students in a ninth-grade English class paired up with nursing home residents, making regular visits to encourage them to write poetry. Discusses finding a place, getting ready, working together, and what students learned about writing poetry and about life and aging.

    Keywords: Literature, School-Community Relation, Writing

  • Revising Beyond the Sentence Level: One Adolescent Writer and a "Pregnant Pause"

    Elizabeth Blackburn Brockman

    Abstract: Relates a student's experience writing a college application essay. Argues that switching topics should be redefined as global revision, a "pregnant pause" providing evidence of recursivity, and that adolescent writers who talk about their emerging texts are more likely to reconceptualize their written documents.

    Keywords: Secondary, Writing

  • Books about Book Collecting for English Teachers

    Ken Donelson

    Abstract: Offers comments from collectors and dealers on the wonders and all-around fun of collecting books. Presents a short annotated list of books about book collecting and notes one book that will make readers want to collect books. Lists a baker's dozen of other sources on book collecting and presents three quotations to end the matter.

    Keywords: Secondary, Literature, Reading

  • From the Secondary Section: Student Rights Should Dictate Class Size

    Richard Luckert

    Abstract: Describes the work of the National Council of Teachers of English Task Force on Class Size. Addresses the issue of class size by outlining the needs and rights of students (at all grade levels and in each classroom) that can only be granted when appropriate class size and teacher workload are granted.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Insights for Interns

    Abstract: Observes that kids and teachers are sabotaged by the way urban schools are funded, organized, and run. Advises city teachers to never assume students cannot learn something the teacher wants to teach, to teach literature that both teachers and students will love studying together, and to remember that students themselves are a valuable resource.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Teacher to Teacher

    Abstract: Offers three brief descriptions, from three high school English teachers, of unusual or alternative forms of assessment they use successfully in their classrooms: a system of tokens in an alternative school; a literary digest; and creating CD soundtracks for novels read in class.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Young Adult Literature: Rescuing Reluctant Readers

    Chris Crowe, editor

    Abstract: Discusses the attitudes and issues of reluctant readers by describing the author's son Jonathan, an intelligent young man who came to hate reading. Offers advice for teachers from Jonathan regarding how they can help students enjoy reading more. Presents annotations of 11 new or overlooked young adult books worth reading.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Letters to EJ

    Abstract: Available in print version only.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • From the Editor

    Virginia R. Monseau

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Speaking My Mind: Tenement of Failures: A Teacher’s Lament

    Jane Ellen Glasser

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary


    Bobbi Ciriza Houtchens, Editor

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary


    Jeanne Marcum Gerlach, Editor

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary


    William Greenway, Editor

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Professional Links: Literacy in the Middle Grades

    Louann Reid, editor

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary

  • Talk About Books

    John Manear, editor

    Abstract: Abstract for this article is currently not available.

    Keywords: Secondary

* Journal articles are provided in PDF format and can be opened using the free Adobe® Reader® program or a comparable viewer. Click here to download and install the most recent version of Adobe Reader.

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