Topic | Help with High School Literature

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  • Crystal
    Participant

    I could really use some help from experienced CMers who have been through high school. My ds is in 10th this year and I am really struggling with what qualifies as high school “literature” and how to implement it without “curriculum.” Last year we just read books. This year he is doing My Fathers World Ancient History and it is going fine, he is reading ancient lit. Doing comprehension type questions, vocabulary and writing some essays. He is not particularly bent toward “school” so I have made some major modifications to fit his style. Less is more with him, smaller bits of concise information help him learn, and discussion. So my question is where can I find help for me, the teacher. I want literature to be reading and discussion, perhaps an essay now and then, and learning enough about literary devices and terms to recognize it when we see it. Sadly I am a high school drop out myself so I am not at all equipped. Is there anything out there that can help me? I have my eyes on Teaching the Classics, I already have Reading Strands and the Well Trained Mind. Next year we will not be using My Fathers World so I will be on my own and I want to have some meaningful conversations with him about what he is reading. Any ideas?

    retrofam
    Participant

    Teaching the Classics is good.

    For composition we use Writing Strands(old one) or Wordsmith Craftsman.

    We also talk about literary elements in movies.

    Tristan
    Participant

    Agreed, Teaching the Classics is great if you are looking to have discussions, they have questions ready to apply to any book you are reading. The key though is that YOU need to read the same book to be able to discuss them.

    Crystal
    Participant

    Thanks Tristan and Retrofam, I think I will try to find a used copy between now and next fall.

    Tristan I have been thinking about how I could have these AMAZING discussions while still teaching my other kids, housework, laundry, etc…. I was kinda thinking I would use our family read aloud time books for those types of discussions. I will also have a 9th grader and a 6th grader along with my 11th grader so I think I could squeeze in a couple appropriate for high school but not inappropriate for 6th. Then I would have him read his own literature and maybe use the Notgrass guides, which I already have. Sort of a mix of what I really want and what I can actually accomplish. We wont pick every book apart, just a few so college English is isnt all Greek to him, sorry, couldnt resist the dumb joke.

    Tristan
    Participant

    It sounds like a good plan! And in Teaching the Classics they are big about being realistic about how many books you can read and discuss well in a school year – one is better than none!

    College English – Oldest is a freshman in college and she’s found that the classes vary. She’s in college composition, so the focus is on writing. BUT she is also in Classics of Western Literature, and that has her reading, writing, and discussing a lot of books, including things like the Illiad, the Odyssey, and Dante. We had already read several of the books on the list for that class and it’s gone great so far. We never read anything from Dante though, and she is NOT a fan. LOL. She was always homeschooled and has found the transition from home to college a couple states away to be doable, with classes easier than she expected. (Of course, she doesn’t have a math class until next semester. 😉  )

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