Monday, February 15, 2016

The Argument for Low-Readability Fiction in High School

I know, I know as teachers we are to push our students to stretch their minds and do things they never thought possible.  But sometimes, we just need to chill.  Sometimes Shakespeare and Dickens don't cut it.

Sometimes students need something that they can read easily and quickly.  Consider using low readability literature when:

1. Your main goal is to teach a literary concept or critical analysis.  Using high-interest low readability literature is a great way to get students to discuss and analyze literature in a nonthreatening environment.  You may be surprised to find that some of your below-grade-level readers actually have exceptional high-order thinking and analytical skills.

2. The majority of your students are at or below grade-level.  There are some students who got through the entire school day without being successful at anything.  When these students are presented with a text that they can read without struggle, they are more likely to see reading as an enjoyable experience.

In conclusion, I am not saying to ditch Shakespeare and Dickens because they are actually pretty good dudes.  All I am saying is give low-readability literature a chance.

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