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Cocktail Parties, Character Continuum,
and Mapping Changes (Available as MS Word document)
"Here are three activities I use to break up the routine of discussion
in class, especially when I sense that the class
needs an infusion of energy. They require students to get up and move
around the room, and force them to take responsibility for the conversation.
The instructions are a little long, but the activities themselves are not
complicated at all." Contributor: Suzanne Gigante.
Ambiguity and Evidence
in Nella Larsen's Passing
"This is a classroom activity which asks students to think about ambiguity
in the plot of a novel and practice using evidence from a literary text.
It leads right into a paper which asks them to do the same work, but on
their own." Contributor: Alice Rutkowski
Close Reading Activity
for Fiction (Available as MS Word document)
A set of questions designed to stimulate close reading of fiction;
designed for Wuthering Heights, but easily adaptable to other texts.
"I split the class into four groups, and each group worked on a different
passage. [For the following session], we'll regroup, and each group
will present their answers to the questions. It's worked well so far, and
the two groups that finished before time was up actually spent the rest
of class discussing the book in their groups (without being asked to do
so)." Contributor: Mendy Gladden
Evaluating Plot (Available
as MS Word document)
"The following discussions/activities have been designed as part of
a unit on plot as a structuring device in fiction. By this point
in the course, Iím also trying to get my students to begin to engage with
literary criticism." Contributor: Betsy Winakur
Bishop and Walcott
"[These activities] are from ENGL 383 with Paul Cantor, and involve
from 15-20 students each." Contributor: Jason Coats
Group Presentation on Allen Ginsberg
"A role-play activity designed for a group of four students."
Contributor: Katherine Bootle
This activity gives students practice in unpacking the implications
of poetic images. Contributor: Chris Jackson
This activity tries to teach students about poetic meter. Contributor:
Metaphor (Available as MS Word document)
"This activity follows activity/discussion re: imagery in general.
Students have read and discussed excerpts from Poundís 1913 statements
re: the importance of the image. Also, by this point, students will
have defined metaphor/simile as forms of literary comparison, and they
will have had some practice identifying such comparisons in poems."
Contributor: Betsy Winakur
Sound (Available as MS Word document)
"The following discussion/activity has been designed to begin a unit
on poetic sound." Contributor: Betsy Winakur
(Available as MS Word document)
"The following discussion/activity should take place toward the end
of a larger unit on poetic language." Contributor: Betsy Winakur
Public Speaking Exercises
Activities for teaching public speaking. Contributor: Dona Yarborough
The Claim Game
(Hypertext version | MS
This multi-part activity teaches students some criteria for constructing
effective literary-critical claims, and it includes a game that students
really tend to enjoy. You can come back to the game at various points in
the semester, particularly if you want to discuss a text toward which students
are for some reason indifferent. Contributor: James Kim
Claims, Reasons, and Evidence
This activity teaches students the basic structure of academic argument.
Contributor: Julie Pal
Refining Claims and Close
Readings (Available as MS Word document)
This activity helps students refine their claims about and close readings
of literary texts. "I developed this activity to help my students
focus on how the textual element they were interested in affected the meaning
of the novel, not just their experience of it. At first it struck
me as a little ham-handed, but it seemed to work surprisingly well.
Students can do it individually or in groups of no more than three."
Contributor: Mendy Gladden
This page was created by James Kim and is maintained by Mendy Gladden.
Last updated on May 8, 2002