English 341: It’s Like This

Site Log-in only (email Kim if you need password reset)

Calendar

Course calendar can be found above and HERE.

Author: Brent White

A universe of friends to choose from

A universe of friends to choose from

When I think of middle school, I can’t help but think about how anxious and nervous I was to befriend others. Feeling unsure of what was to come felt nerve racking and scary at times, however the friends you make seem to pop up in your life even when you least expect it. Friendships with kids who live totally different lives to the one you are familiar to, these friendships are full of exciting new experiences that truly form you into the person you are. This book is about embracing your differences and sharing those interesting talents or interests that make you different. I feel that this book does a really great job giving readers an immersive experience into the mind of different kinds of middle school students. I also love how much story telling there is between Virgil and his Lola (grandma), expressing the importance of storytelling and what kinds of life lessons you can learn. I think that storytelling will be something I try to practice and do with my students and hopefully my own future children.

Lessons to be learned

Lessons to be learned

The first book of the well known Lemony Snicket series, has been a refreshing revisit to the book series I adored as a middle school student. I think that a lot of people can learn independence from this series, the main characters, two sisters and a brother who were struck with tragedy and left to fend for themselves. This series is dark, mysterious, and forces the readers to hope that the lives of the children will get easier on them; which Lemony makes quite clear, will not be happening. I think that people of all ages who love a suspenseful and edgy book. Also I feel like this book shows that children are capable of far more than they may think, they’re imaginative and intelligent!

There are so many sources that we as teachers should provide children to get them excited to read and share reading experiences. I love that Miller explains the importance of reading out loud with students creating a reading enviornment for them. When I was a high school student, I don’t feel that I was really encouraged to read by teachers like I was when I was in elementary school, so I felt that it wasn’t really necessary to read for pleasure but this book is definitely disproving that thought.

 

Why is Storytelling Needed?

Why is Storytelling Needed?

Stories are meant to tell an important event, portrait feeling they have about their own life using life lessons that they feel are important, and also to teach one about tradition and the part it plays in people’s learning. I say people because stories, no matter how silly, are not just meant for children. Everyone can learn life lessons big or small at any time in your life, you’ll never know the things you don’t know so there will never be a time where there is nothing left for you to learn. And that the beautiful part about life, constantly learning and improving to make life enjoyable and safe.

When Robert Coles says, “The whole point of stories is not ‘solutions’ or ‘resolutions’ but a broadening and even heightening of our struggles.” he means that the ending of the story or really anything the main character does to resolve their problems really isn’t what is meant to be taken away from the experience. He wants the readers to dive deep into the true meaning behind the story, find the reason the story is being told in the first place. Plus who ever said that the best part of a book was the ending, clearly hasn’t read a good book that throws you into highs and lows like a wild and crazy roller coaster all throughout the middle of the book or story. 

Many different themes could come out of the way that you tell the little red riding hood story, whether it’s not to trust strange people on the road, not to stray from the path that you know, whether or not you should be a strong upstanding woman, and many other possibilities. The best part about a story is the parts that reach out to you and the parts you take on with you forever.

 

 

 

Brent White: What makes a reader?

Brent White: What makes a reader?

Hi guys! My name is Brent White. I’m a senior at Chico, and I’m studying to be a math and science elementary school teacher. I’m from the small town of Ripon, where they are literally known for two things, one being the giant water tower with Ripon written across in all caps, and the absurd amount of almonds that are grown in the town. In high school I was a three sport athlete, playing football for two years, cross country and soccer for one year each, but the sports I played the most were wrestling and track. Sports are super fun and a great way to get the wiggles out!

 

I never really saw myself as a reader until getting to college and realizing just how much we all have to read in our everyday lives. I feel like a “reader” can be anyone who is able to take in the information being provided to them. It doesn’t have to be physical books that their reading as long as there are words being read often, which honestly is pretty much unavoidable.