Friday, February 29, 2008
We have dozens of writers around the country, many who are former English teachers, who help us develop the many different classroom resources that we're able to put out each year.
This year, we're starting a new tradition of nominating the off-site writer who's done some of the best work this year. It's a difficult decision to make but our Sr. Editor and New Product specialist agreed that this year, Ms. Richardson has gone above and beyond in writing products this year, and we have a lot more projects that she's working on for us.
By Eva Richardson this year:
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner - Teaching Unit
Animal Farm - AP Teaching Unit
The Grapes of Wrath - AP Teaching Unit
Animal Farm - Multiple Critical Perspectives Guide
The Grapes of Wrath - Multiple Critical Perspectives Guide
Great Expectations - Multiple Critical Perspectives Guide
Friday, February 22, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Many of you may be benefiting from Reading is Fundamental's program of inexpensive book distribution for over 4.6 million children, so I thought you might all be interested in the latest news from RIF.
Since Prestwick House is an authorized distributor of materials for RIF, with our inexpensive Literary Touchstone Classics and other classics, we're kept up to date on the goings-on at RIF headquarters.
We were upset to recently receive an E-mail letting us know that RIF's budget for this program has been completely eliminated by the new Bush budget.
The good news is that RIF and their supporters are fighting to get their money back. See what RIF is doing now to get their budget of $26million re-instated and see how you can help RIF.
1) "The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson
2) "Hills Like White Elephants" by Ernest Hemingway
3) "A Rose for Emily" by William Faulkner
...grow up to be stunted creative writers in college.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”
Valentine’s Day isn’t just an excuse to eat chocolates out of a heart-shaped box. For the civic-minded, February 14th* is also a time to honor the life of Frederick Douglass—a well-known abolitionist and a champion of human rights and education.
For English educators in particular, his life’s story is a study in the transformative power of literacy.
As a twelve-year-old boy, Douglass was transformed from a slave into an aspiring human rights activist when he secretly taught himself to read. In fact, his experience with books affected him so profoundly that he would later call education “the pathway from slavery to freedom.”
Within a few years, inspired by what he had read,
And that’s precisely why slaves were strictly prohibited from learning to read in the first place. Slave-owners knew that literate people are free people. They won’t be subjugated for long.
You can read more about Douglass’s extraordinary life in his autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass .
But keep in mind that Douglass is only one of many African-American writers whose words will inspire your class in February and throughout the year. Here are a few other suggestions from among our favorite novels, poems, plays, and nonfiction works.
African-American Poetry, An Anthology: 1773—1927 (from Phyllis Wheatley to Langston Hughes)
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, the autobiography of Harriet Jacobs
The Souls of Black Folk, W.E.B. Du Bois’s legendary treatise
Their Eyes Were Watching God, a novel by Zora Neale Hurston
A Raisin in the Sun, a play by Lorraine Hansberry
Beloved, a novel by Toni Morrison (recommended for mature classes)
Contemporary Young Adult:
Gifted Hands, the autobiography of Ben Carson
The Color of Water, an autobiographical novel by James McBride
Slam!, a novel by Walter Dean Myers
The Rose that Grew from Concrete, a poetry anthology by Tupac Shakur
*Douglass didn’t know for sure the day, or even the year, of his birth. He adopted February 14th as his birthday because his mother called him her “little Valentine.”