Texts for Life

Texts for Life
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When I taught Basic English 12, students often questioned why we read or wrote anything. They often were the students who planned on entering the workforce right after graduation, and graduating from high school was their most pressing concern.

Instead of just telling them to shut their mouths and do the work, I thought about it a bit, and I decided to have them tell me why reading and writing is important, using texts that they would eventually use. That's the part I don't provide for you in the download. You will need to go to the library and get books like auto repair manuals, drafting guides, and home maintenance books. Real-life books for non-college-bound kids. And don't get super easy ones. Use the chance to show them that reading and writing is important, even in their future fields. In fact, I usually had them tell me their future plans before I went to the library. Then I'd know if I needed a book on cosmetology or astrology.

15-question form for each book. I had my students fill out a front and back, so two books, and then a discussion.

This would be a good assignment for 9th graders on the way in, too, since that might help them to avoid becoming seniors who don't want to read. It's also good for gym teachers and social studies teachers/coaches. And administrators, depending on what they taught prior to administration. Actually, if you're in charge of getting others to buy into reading and writing across the curriculum, you'll need something like this to prove your point, or else you'll have to tell the teachers to shut their mouths and do the work.
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