Category Archives: Essays/Readings

This category describes readings of any kind for either teachers or students.

H. Lynn Erickson on Coherence in Curricula

“…But a coherent curriculum also fosters through the grades, in a deliberate and systematic design, increasing sophistication in critical content knowledge, conceptual understanding, and complex performance abilities. The current emphasis on meeting national and state standards requires thoughtful planning in curriculum design. We cannot afford to do dinosaurs and rain forests at three different grade levels. We need to use the precious time in schools to maximum advantage. This does not mean that we cannot do thematic, integrated units or bring relevance and active student engagement into the learning process. But it does signal the need for coherent curricular plans that achieve the desired outcomes for students–outcomes that are based on the realities of living, learning, and working in the 21st century, as well as the mandates of discipline-based standards and assessments.”

Excerpted from: Erickson, H. Lynn. Concept-Based Curriculum and Instruction: Teaching Beyond the Facts. Thousand Oaks, California: Corwin Press, 2002.

Ernest Hemingway

Here, first thing on a rainy Monday morning, is a short reading on Ernest Hemingway and its accompanying comprehension worksheet. It is a good general introduction to the author if you happen to be teaching one of his books.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Term of Art: Individualized Reading

“An approach to reading instruction developed in the 1950s as an alternative to basic reading programs; emphasizes student selection of reading materials and self-pacing in reading. With this method, the teacher adjusts instruction to student needs during small-group work and in individual conferences.”

Excerpted from: Turkington, Carol, and Joseph R. Harris, PhD. The Encyclopedia of Learning Disabilities. New York: Facts on File, 2006.

Winston Churchill

I can think of a number of settings where this reading on Winston Churchill and the comprehension worksheet that attends it might be handy. So there they are if you want or need them.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

114 Sura of the Koran

“There are 114 sura or ‘chapters’ within the Koran. These are named and numbered, but the names (such as The Cow or The Light) have no importance other than as a memory tag linked to some unusual feature. The chapters are not ordered by age of delivery or location (either Mecca or Medina), but in reverse length, so the shortest chapters begin the Koran and the longest end it. There is no narrative flow; indeed, at times one could almost imagine the Prophet’s revelations to be addressed to 114 different types of human, for each chapter is a development or a condensation of the same essential theme: how to live and love both mankind and God.”

Excerpted from: Rogerson, Barnaby. Rogerson’s Book of Numbers: The Culture of Numbers–from 1,001 Nights to the Seven Wonders of the World. New York: Picador, 2013.

Abstract Expressionism (n)

“An umbrella term which refers to that direction in abstract art characterized by spontaneous and individual abstract expression in a non-objective manner. While the term was first applied to certain of Vassily Kandinsky’s early experimental paintings, it mostly refers to artists working in the 1940s and 1950s, including Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock. Sharing a similar outlook rather than a style, these artists sought total freedom for psychic expression on the canvas. Believed by some to be the first truly American art, the movement is also called the New York School because its international center was New York City. The influence of abstract expressionism extended into the 1970s with Lyrical Abstraction.”

Excerpted from: Diamond, David G. The Bulfinch Pocket Dictionary of Art Terms. Boston: Little Brown, 1992.

A Learning Support on Historical Ages and Eras

While I’ve used it for text for classroom posters, I’m not sure how otherwise useful this learning support on historical ages and eras really is in the classroom.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.