This political season has me thinking about the importance of teaching democratic skills to children. In fact, I’ve been thinking about it with the kind of starry-eyed civic hope that maybe only elementary school teachers can summon. It’s the kind of hope a person gets when they are in position to do something about something thatContinue reading “7 Ways to Strengthen Democracy Through Language Arts”
Category Archives: Literature
Translation with Nine Year Olds
I’ve been doing poems using words in Spanish or French with my students for several years, and have been trying to figure out a way to do our own translations. They love working with words in other languages, but it’s always felt a little daunting to do a whole translation, given that I have rustyContinue reading “Translation with Nine Year Olds”
Food for an Eager Writer
My first year of my second stint of homeschooling, the year I was fourteen, I was given Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones for Christmas. I was also given a huge stack of Enviromints. If you aren’t versed on ’90’s health food store candy, Enviromints were squares of minty chocolate wrapped in gold foil. EachContinue reading “Food for an Eager Writer”
Sonnets: Shakespeare wrote ’em so why can’t we?
Sonnets are a staple of English-language poetry. They can also be intimidating to introduce to children, because of their density and formality and because lots of the best ones were written a long time ago. However, I’ve been teaching them — after a solid foundation in other poetry — for several years now, and whileContinue reading “Sonnets: Shakespeare wrote ’em so why can’t we?”