Making Curriculum Pop

Maureen Bakis's Blog (10)

What is a "good" graphic novel and why should we use comics in the classroom?

I do some of my best thinking when I first wake up in the morning. This morning I woke up in Burlington, Vermont and decided that I would write something today about  comics as a medium of storytelling and about comics in education.

So here are my thoughts....

Some of my graphic novel cohorts have expressed concern about a backlash against the comics in education movement.  Coincidentally enough, I am  teaching Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics right now to my students. We…


Added by Maureen Bakis on December 4, 2011 at 8:24pm — 2 Comments

Graphic Novels and State Standards

I just finished writing an article for Diamond Bookshelf Magazine about how graphic novels meet the text complexity standards in the Common Core State Standards for ELA and Literacy. When I first wrote my graphic novel curriculum, graphic novels were not listed on the suggested texts in the 2001 Massachusetts State Standards document, but lo and behold, they…


Added by Maureen Bakis on November 11, 2011 at 7:33am — No Comments

Cross Grade American Born Chinese Project

When my colleague at Masco suggested we co-teach American Born Chinese, I jumped at the opportunity. Since I challenge my students to argue whether or not ABC is appropriate for middle school readers, actually talking to eighth graders about the issues in the novel sounded like a perfect idea! We plan to use my course ning network to foster discussion between both grades, and at the end of the unit the kids will meet in person. That is a very brief overview of the project.…


Added by Maureen Bakis on November 11, 2011 at 7:30am — No Comments

My Q2 Graphic Novel Project

My students are 17 years of age and older....


Project Directions

Reading List



Added by Maureen Bakis on November 11, 2011 at 7:28am — No Comments

Teaching Miller's Dark Knight Returns

My colleague came into my classes today to discuss DKR, and as usual, the kids had loads of questions that led led to informative discussion about the DC Comics universe, contrast between Marvel and DC, the 1980s, Miller's unique rendition of the Batman mythos, and much more. To be honest, this is the second time I have taught this text to high school seniors and our discussions only scratch the surface of really understanding this novel. There is just so much to talk about that is… Continue

Added by Maureen Bakis on February 10, 2011 at 12:13pm — 1 Comment


I am looking forward to seeing people at the NECAC in Rhode Island in March.  it will be nice to meet people I see post online in person and hear them present. I am doing a lesson demonstration on The Arrival and sitting on a panel with Robin Brenner to talk about the connection between teachers and librarians when using graphic novels in the classroom. Please say hi if you are there!

Added by Maureen Bakis on January 27, 2011 at 7:26pm — No Comments

Teaching Maus- My favorite

eginning Maus this week. I already assigned Scott Russell Sanders' "Under the Influence" and since I just finished Persepolis and exploring the genre of memoir, students can build on what they know. Funniest comment this week? A students said, "hey, where are the pictures?" when I handed him Sanders' all-print essay. I replied, "in the words." This is my attempt to show non-readers/reluctant who are now loving graphic novels that other great literature and stories exist in print too!!… Continue

Added by Maureen Bakis on January 27, 2011 at 7:20pm — 1 Comment

Harvard's Graphic Novels and the Middle East Conference

Wow! Whata great program I attended at Harvard University's Center for Middle Eastern Studies last Saturday. I learned so much from all who presented and I hope I shed some light on the use of teaching graphic novels in the high school English classroom! I am really excited about the next two events where we will DRAW and meet graphic novelists. Should be fun!…


Added by Maureen Bakis on January 27, 2011 at 7:20pm — No Comments

Independent reading list

I am psyched to see which titles the kids read and enjoy. Since I couldn't sleep due to the untimely consumption of a brownie last night, I made a list of titles with live links for the kids to click on and find more information, videos, author interviews, websites and reviews related to the title. I actually think this was very nice of me to do. I want them to choose wisely and make an educated selection so they enjoy their choice. I plan to make time in class for them to conduct book… Continue

Added by Maureen Bakis on November 23, 2010 at 9:00am — No Comments

Sharing the Blog love and love of graphic novels!

I am going to begin sharing my classroom activities and reflections about teaching comics/graphic novels in my blog here at MCpop. I teach 12th graders in Massachusetts. I created an English course called The Graphic Novel ---graphic novels all year, every day, all the time!!! It is a required course as part of our grade twelve ELA curriculum. Students can choose to take my course, gothic lit, global lit, poetry, or AP English. All courses are offered for both college prep and honors credit.… Continue

Added by Maureen Bakis on November 23, 2010 at 9:00am — No Comments


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