English Literature for Teachers This assignment presents a sequence evolve evaluated English lessons, aimed at Year 11 students, displaying Social, Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties (SEABED). The case study student is a Year 11 boy identified as ‘ H’ for the purpose of this assignment. He has ADD, Speakers and mental health Issues which required hospitalizing during the Year 9 Summer Term. This has resulted in an extensive amount of authorized absence affecting his grades across the curriculum. Despite these difficulties, his current English National Curriculum, writing level is a strong AAA ND his predicted GEESE grade Is currently D.
With a reading age of 16 years and 6 months at the baseline tests carried out In April 2012, H does not struggle with reading, fluency or comprehension. He has a Statement of Educational Need which details his specific academic, social, emotional and behavioral requirements. Statement Objectives: 1. To promote the development of his social communication and social skills so he Is able to express his feelings and develop and maintain effective and purposeful relationships with his peers and adults. He will be encouraged to Join in group concussions, activities, and collaborative group work. 2.
To promote the development of his attention and concentration skills so that he is able to follow group Instructions and maximize his potential. Staff need to check his understanding of tasks and airframe if necessary. Tasks need to be broken down into component parts so he can attempt them independently. Alternative methods of recording are needed, such as access to a laptop for extended writing tasks (Cox, 2012). H is keen to raise his current National Curriculum level and maximize his GEESE result. His writing target in the front of his English workbook indicates to him the acquirement to move forward towards C.
The assessment foci include technical accuracy, punctuation, cohesion within and between paragraphs and appropriate, effective vocabulary. The Wilfred Owen war poetry module commenced at the beginning of term, giving H seven weeks to comprehend the context and complete his GEESE controlled assessment task. My assignment will focus on a sequence of five lessons, within the poetry module. Aimed to extend He’s communication and social skills and enable him to understand the concept of empathy. This is aimed at the achievement of statement objective 1 .
At the end of the five lessons H will be able to write a ‘ letter home from the trenches’ using understanding, compassion and empathy. The poem used for these five lessons is Dulcet et Decorum est.. The poem is a particularly suitable for teaching compassion and empathy. With a diagnosis of Speakers, H may have difficulty in three main areas; social communication, social interaction and social imagination (The National Autistic Society, 2013). H is challenged when he is asked how he may feel in a situation that he has not experienced first-hand.
Wilfred Owen uses powerful textual features to describe the errors of war in which the suffering and futility about which Owen protests is depicted (Whitehead, 2012). The first stanza details the perspective of a battalion of soldiers who are supposedly marching to their rest. Owen uses many sound techniques such as sibilance and alliteration; in line 2 “ knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,” this describes the physical impairments the soldiers were experiencing. The language used is disturbing as Owen describes in lines 5 and 6″Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots, but limped on blood- shod.
All went lame, all blind”. Whitehead, (2012) emphasizes the barbaric nature of this as helpless men limping and staggering blindly try to find some shelter. The structural techniques used by Owen of rhyme and rhythm are broken up with enjambment so that the ‘ marching soldiers appear to be stumbling, out of sync and losing control. The second stanza depicts a gas attack, Owen using an intimate tone to convey the brutality of this event. Bloom (2001) suggests “ the physical and psychological sufferings of the war are more vivid to the reader, who is invited to share the eyewitness perspective of the narrator” (p. ). Omen’s use of simile, “ And floundering like a man in fire or lime… ” Allows an intense image of agonizing death to be imagined in a concise way. The concluding line of stanza two “ He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning” conjures a sensory image, allowing the reader to visualize the experience of the soldier’s excruciating death. The final stanza recreates the image of the dying man being unceremoniously thrown into the back of a wagon, a re-occurring nightmare relating the warfare effect of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Owen finishes his poem with an appeal to humanity to stop romanticism’s he war and persuading young, naive, would be soldiers to their horrific deaths. He emphasizes that people are being fed fabrications by saying “ The old lie: Dulcet et Decorum est. Pro patria mort” It is sweet and meet to die for one’s country. Omen’s objective was to attack the notion that sacrifice is sacred (Bloom, 2001). H will need to have an understanding of these literary devices to write his final piece effectively.
Using the powerful and emotive language in the poem in conjunction with various teaching methods over the five lessons, aims to enhance He’s empathy to the point hat he is able to produce a meaningful and thoughtful letter home. L. O. (learning outcome) To understand what life was like during WWW In this first lesson, I introduced Dulcet et Decorum est. by reading it aloud, (Headway, Farrell & Young, 2001) this gives life to the words and tone can assist in conveying its dramatic capture the ear, imagination and the souls of their listeners”. Subsequently the class discussed what they initially believed the poem to be about.
A fact file exercise was used enabling students to choose a World War 1 topic or fact. They then investigated, independently, their chosen fact on www. Gastroenteritis. Co. UK . The class then came together and discussed their findings. These included the ordinary clothing, food and medical issues faced by all. (Kamikaze, 1989 in Perfect 1999: 729) offers “ that poetry, like all art is grounded in the everydayness of experience”. We watched WWW Hell in the Trenches (Youth: online) which acted as a visual depiction of Dulcet et Decorum est..
The Year 11 students typically play the latest war video games and they have recently studied Saving Private Ryan, a film about the Omaha Beach landings. They are somewhat disesteemed to battle scenes due to 21st century technology and inline gaming availability. Mill (1996) proposes “ emotions are perhaps largely the product of our culture and our specific social experiences; literature may enable readers to become more conscious and more critical of the emotions they feel” (p. 8). Finally we re-read the poem as a group. I encouraged the students to pick out the phrases they felt were depicted in the film.
Consequently the students were able to marry funds of prior knowledge with this topic. Due mostly to their interest in the gaming community; they have some familiarity regarding artillery, firearms and warfare (Athenians, 1998). The poem’s structure and use of literary devices throughout, along with the use of emotive language “ creates a virtual world for the reader to inhabit vicariously’ (Barron & Eisner, 1997: 98). Merging visual and audio presentations on this topic engendered questions in discussion that allowed the students to explore their response to the poem and share them with their peers.
He’s statement objectives were both encompassed within the lesson. The fact file exercise encouraged his independent learning. The collaborative discussions facilitated an understanding of other’s emotions and experiences. H was able to observe, listen and relate (Sellers Schultz, 2004) by using language that is not Just basic but communicative and academic (Headway, Farrell & Young, 2001). This allowed H to achieve the lesson objective by gaining understanding into what life was like during WWW and increase his capacity for empathy.
To ascertain whether H, and the class, had developed their knowledge of WWW, I created a working wall of phrases, words and dates. Initially, I asked what previous knowledge and ideas had already been brought to the lesson. I then annotated the working wall with facts from the History Learning Site. As a group we then constructed a feelings’ word wall with relevant emotive words from the poem. L. O. To understand the meaning and effects of propaganda Lesson 2 builds upon the knowledge learnt in Lesson 1 during which a variety of techniques to illicit empathy were used. This lesson concentrated on the notion of ‘ propaganda’ and its’ effects.
By understanding how propaganda was used to encourage young men to fight, H has the opportunity to gain a greater (2001) infers “ Jingoistic sentiments were widely circulated in the popular pro-war propaganda and poetry that filled the pages of newspapers and magazines wrought England” (p. 1). Using several WWW propaganda posters as a visual aid, we discussed and dissected what the images conveyed. Analyzing pictures expressing pro war sentiments can be effective by allowing learners to become accomplished at generating mental images which can substantially improve their comprehension of a subject (Sellers Schultz, 2004). Augusto, 1994 in Sellers Schultz, 2004) advocates “ extended visual thinking in childhood is crucial for development of intellect”. The class compared the final two lines of Dulcet et Decorum est. against the posters, powerful in their irony. The Latin phrase and the propaganda posters have the same message of glorifying war and overt patriotism; this is in stark comparison to the rest of the poem which is barbaric in its description of the soldier’s death. I introduced the concept of ‘ cowardice’ and ‘ guilt’ to the students; they are required to understand how these feelings can affect a person’s actions.
Again, I used www. Historiographers on the interactive whiteboard as they have a page dedicated to this particular topic and the students’ reactions were annotated onto our working wall. The students were very dismissive of the cowardice and guilt sentiments used y the propaganda posters, insistent that they would not have been tricked’ into joining up for the war. I explained that the real horrors of the war were hidden from the general public recounting the information related to the ‘ Britain the Defense of the Realm Act’ and the limitations on Journalists.
It was difficult for the students to imagine how uniformed the British public were, considering how accessible news and social media is today they could not envisage the lack of information available. Headway, Farrell & Young (2001) advise “ we must be open to students’ differing espouses and remember that responses vary based on cultural differences” (p. 803). They go on to suggest that group work which facilitates co-operative learning can highlight important vocabulary and help students to interpret and focus on a text’s meaning. The class and H fully understood how propaganda was used to affect people’s perceptions during WWW.
They still could not conceive that the same mechanism would be effective on them, despite my protestations that they would have known no different. The L. O. Was achieved for this lesson but He’s empathy development had probably not improved a great deal from lesson one. L. O. To understand how writers use literary techniques to develop meaning This lesson built upon the previous two by teaching H and his class how literary techniques are used to convey various emotions. Mill (1996) believes that students develop a sense of meaning which is directly related to the “ stylistic high points” (p. 7) they encounter in a poem.
As Year 1 1 students they are not unfamiliar with these The apparent failure of SEABED students to develop academic literary skills does not stem from a lack of intellect but from the inaccessibility of the school syllabus to students who are not in the mainstream culture (Mill, 2002). Expectations for this Year 11 group are high. They are all striving for their Gases and have responded well to the prospect of sitting the exam. Palpable et al (2003) concur by suggesting “ when low-track students have an opportunity to respond to more rigorous academic work, they make more progress than when they encounter a diluted academic curriculum” (p. 94). The lesson started with another reading of Dulcet et Decorum est.. This time the class Joined in with the reading. Reading together familiarizes the students with what the words, rhythm and rhyme should sound like, and this engages their reading comprehension and ability to make sense of the poem (Headway, Farrell & Young, 2001). The lesson objective was to focus on the literary techniques used so I gave the students ‘ literary device’ cards. These have the various techniques written on them, giving a definition of each one, and they enable the students to see what each device means without having to memories them straight away.
Poetry makes use of powerful language and literary techniques such as structure, simile, metaphor and sound devices like onomatopoeia and sibilance to influence its interpretation Cocoons, 2005). We discussed the different literary techniques and matched them with corresponding lines of the poem, explaining the reasons for the use of each one specifically; this supported the students in evaluating critically what they were hearing and reading. They were able to give attention to explicit and implied meanings including bias, objectivity, and opinions (Andrews, 2001).
The task involved a dramatic convention, similar to ‘ Placing the Word’ (UDF Drama Pack: 3) but in this instance each student held up a literary device card. On hearing a line of the poem which related to their particular literary device the dent had to stand up. This turned out to be a memorable and hilarious lesson. The poem had to be re-read several times due to honest confusion, students standing up or sitting down at the wrong times. At the culmination of the lesson we finally completed a reading with everyone standing up on cue when their device was read out.
Using this somewhat unfamiliar approach to the GEESE syllabus had a profound effect. Working together as a team, we created a literary group which engaged with the poem in creative and supportive ways with a commitment to excellence (Cumming, 2007). It has been suggested by (Sellers Schultz, 2004) and (Cumming, 2007) that poetry can be effective in promoting personal growth, motivation and conceptual development. By taking students’ personal experiences into consideration they will comprehend the meanings of such literary techniques as metaphor, alliteration and assonance rather than view them as specialized knowledge.
Despite this particular lesson’s focus on the literary techniques used by Owen, H and his classmates were again able to empathic with the WWW soldiers. The unique qualities of the poem, its focused content, strong emotional connection ND powerful imagery (Headway, Farrell & Young, 2001) all aided them to think critically and interpret the meanings. The class, and H, were more confident by the end of the lesson when questioned on Wilfred Omen’s feelings regarding the war, due to the sequence of learning so far they were assertive about what the poem was progress when teaching can be related to what the student already knows” (p. 84). L. O. To develop empathy with characters as real people The fourth lesson in this sequence concentrated on developing He’s empathy skills. Students chose two ‘ situation cards’ to write about. In the previous three lessons we deliberated upon the emotive language used to elicit empathy. Having achieved this, they embarked on some writing of their own. Initially, as a group we examined each of the eight situation cards available. Through this, the opportunity arose to discuss and develop the student’s oral abilities (Offset, 2011).
Throughout the class discussion, each card evoked negative feelings. These were written on the white board as an aid memoir for independent writing. Studying the poem allowed us to explore the negative emotions and their implications. In turn, this helped the dents to reformulate the meaning in a personal way (Mill, 1996). H picked two of the situation cards to write about (Appendix 1) and chose some associated words from the white board. From this base, he was able to produce very personal text using all the skills learnt during the other lessons.
His realization that there was ‘ no choice’ but to carry on gave understanding to the senseless death he would probably face in that situation. His second situation card used the term ‘ cowardly. He wrote that fighting for his country would make him carry on’. The full impact of the poem ad a profound effect on the way H viewed the situation; “ literary language is designed to stimulate the imaginative faculties” (Barron & Eisner, 1997: 97). He’s ability to empathic fully with a soldier’s feelings reveals that the lesson was successful.
Despite his dance during lesson 2 that he would not be affected by patriotism or propaganda, his letter shows that for him, the poem had been able to “ embody the meaning of humanity’ Cocoons, 2005: 136). When given the chance to immerse himself in someone else’s situation he showed that he was able to empathic fully. L. O. To rite a letter home from the trenches using realistic characters and emotive language The culmination of all previously learned skills were encompassed in the final lesson. H was asked to write a letter from the perspective of a soldier in the trenches.
The poignant language use in Dulcet et Decorum est. allowed H to develop compassion and understanding by better comprehending the living and fighting conditions of the soldiers. Since the first lesson, He’s empathy skills have developed major. Had he merely been presented with a fact sheet of WWW statistics and watched a film clip of the fighting, he may not have picked up on the emotional nuances that Owen wrote about so passionately. Ante (1990) infers “ facts simply told me what things were. Poetry told me what they were about and sometimes even what they meant” (p. 7). I suggested to the class that they imagine themselves to be Writing in Role’ a method in which students compose a text from the view point of another (UDF Drama Pack: 4). He’s finished piece, (Appendix 2) used evocative language, a truly personal response describing his emotional reaction to the poem we studied. He writes about his character in the first person, describing his surroundings with clarity. He mentions the dreadful atmosphere, the effects on his fellow comrades; makes allusions to his state of mind and the fear of his own imminent death.
Throughout the letter he His letter ends, similarly to Dulcet et Decorum est., by stating quite simply that dying for your country is a waste of life. In my opinion, H fully realized the lesson objective, which overall was to experience and thereby understand the concept of empathy. These new skills scaffold his learning, ensuring he is able to tackle the controlled assessment task with confidence. Using the multi-strategy approach to these lessons purported H by replacing traditional teaching methods with discussion based tasks.
He was encouraged to make predictions, use dramatic conventions, clarify understanding and use evidence gathering activities to support interpretation and encourage independent writing skills (Palpable et al, 2003). The sequence of lessons was successful. H was proud of his finished letter and continues to bring a buoyant attitude to the English classroom. He has achieved personal excellence bringing an immeasurable positive effect to his attitude to learning.
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