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INBOX Ideas - Previous Revision

Using NCTE Award-Winning Publications in Your Classroom

A number of teachers, authors, and researchers were presented with awards last week during NCTE's 103rd Annual Convention. This week's INBOX features some of the awards for books and journal articles and suggests how you can use these publications in your classroom.

Nonfiction: Look to the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children to find the best nonfiction titles for your students. See the "Children's Literature Review" in Language Arts to learn more about this year's winner: Monsieur Marceau: Actor without Words written by Leda Schubert and illustrated by Gérard DuBois. Learn more about teaching with content-rich nonfiction and informational texts with resources from NCTE and

Poetry: NCTE established its Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children in 1977 to honor a living American poet for his or her aggregate work for children ages 3–13. This year's winner is poet and author Joyce Sidman. She is the author of many award-winning children's poetry books, including a Newbery Honor winner and two Caldecott Honor books. View more from NCTE and about teaching poetry.

Secondary Classroom: The Paul and Kate Farmer Writing Award is given for articles in English Journal written by classroom teachers. In one of this year's winning articles, "Cultural Awareness Logs: A Method for Increasing International-Mindedness among High School and Middle School Students," the author demonstrates the use of Cultural Awareness Logs (CALs) for investigating various literary texts and world cultures within the English classroom. The lesson plan Assessing Cultural Relevance: Exploring Personal Connections to a Text invites students to evaluate a nonfiction or realistic fiction text for its cultural relevance to themselves personally and as a group. In the second award-winning article, "Changing the Lens: The Necessity of Visual Literacy in the ELA Classroom," the author makes the case for visual literacy as a pedagogical approach to critically consuming the countless images that students encounter on a daily basis. In Judging a Book by Its Cover: The Art and Imagery of The Great Gatsby, from, students explore The Great Gatsby's allusions to art and its use of visual imagery and conclude their study by designing their own cover for the novel.

Service Learning/Social Justice: The winner of the CEE Janet Emig Award for exemplary scholarship for an article in English Education and the winner of the Alan C. Purves Award for an article in Research in the Teaching of English had something in common: service learning and social justice. The lesson plan The Great Service-Learning Debate & Research Project asks students to debate the issue of incorporating service learning into their school's curriculum.

Adolescent Literature: This year the CEL English Leadership Quarterly Best Article Award went to Joyce Stallworth and Louel C. Gibbons for "What's on the List . . . Now? A Survey of Book-Length Works Taught in Secondary Schools," in which the authors share their investigations of how secondary English teachers engage young adults in reading quality literature from a plethora of genres and across time periods. Listen to the Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers podcast series for reading recommendations that can be passed along to teen readers. Each episode features in-depth recommendations of titles that will engage and excite these readers.

See the NCTE website for information on all of the awards and a complete list of 2013 winners.

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A Professional Association of Educators in English Studies, Literacy, and Language Arts