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I taught the Misfits at the beginning of this year and will do so again next year. It is a great novel, and my administration was supportive of the themes and characters, so much so they invited James Howe to speak! I think that the image presented in The Misfits is fairly well done and the identities of the characters a reality in the world of these kids, so no controversy came up. I will admit though that the less mature kids were a bit awkward.
I use the novel in my grad class. I don't use it in my 8th grade class, but it is on my bookshelf. Certain topics still are not well received. The practicing teachers in my class consistently feel that they would not use the book in class, but would use it as a read aloud or choice book.
The book is a conversation starter and is excellent. Hilary's suggestion is perfect.
I love the book and it has been a perfect lit circle choice for the grad Adolescent Development class.
Hi, I'm not sure if I'm posting in the correct place, so forgive me, but I used Misfits when I taught 7th and 8th as a read aloud and it was everyone's favorite read aloud of the year, every year! I sent a letter home to parents and told them about the characters and explained why I thought it was important to read the book as a read aloud, and that I would have several discussions throughout the book. I only had a few parents with concerns, but once we talked about it (and they read it) they were fine with it. It's a wonderful book and should be in everyone's hands. I LOVE it! Cheers, Hilary
Kathy, I've only read the summary of the book and think it would be an interesting one to read in the guided setting of a classroom. Since it's summer, why not ask your adminstrator(s) to read the book before you decide to add it to your reading list for next year. Sometimes when they have the opportunity to read the book without the pressure of a parent for a decision, adminstrators see the value of the literary work and can develop a set of responses to support and defend your decision to teach what could be a controversial book. If nothing more occurs, those reading it will be more aware of issues middle school students face.
Just curious. I am thinking about using The Misfits in my classroom this year. I was wondering if anyone who has used this was given any grief by parents or administrators about there being a gay character in the book. I teach in a more rural area so I am a little concerned.
What technology do students have access to in class, in the building? How frequently? What subject(s) do you teach? Answers will help us tailor our recommendations.
Hi Anna - I just caught this - you might post it up in the discussion forum so it can be archived with a URL!
Love these!!! Thank you and I am going to use these for our teachers.
If you're like most diligent teachers, you remain alert for visual aids to help you design lessons thata will inspire your students to expand their thinking and that will invite them to use a range of ways to show what they're learning. The verb wheel below is one that you could share with your students and ask them to choose products and performances that will show how much they're learning about the topics and skills you're required to teach.
In the days ahead, you'll be looking for ways to align your lessons with COMMON CORE STANDARDS, you'll want to include as much choice as you can to retain students engagements while meeting the curriculum goals you're charged to reach each school year. This wheel can help you and your students.
As students consider the options and write the rationales for their choices, they may be thinking more deeply about the subject matter than they would if you already have done all the hard work of designing assessment assignments. Moreover, when students do the choosing, they're more likely to give more time and thought to completing the assignment well, thus making it more interesting for you to read, view, and grade.
See other ideas on my website TEACHING ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS.
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