Sunday, September 25, 2011

What Curriculum?

Three years ago, I created a Sports Literature course as a Senior elective. The course offered the opportunity to explore culture and sports through novels like The Sun Also Rises and non-fiction like Friday Night Lights. Though sports are a part of those two texts, the greater value comes from the themes they present to the reader. Interestingly, The Sun Also Rises has a Lexile score of 610 and Friday Night Lights comes in at 1260. Readability has rarely been an issue in the four previous semesters.
However, it seems that this year the elective course is filling the role of credit recovery. It is already clear that these two central texts to the course will be problematic for the majority of the students. So I am left scrambling to figure out what to do. The secondary problem is that very few of the students are into sports--or doing homework.
This leaves me wondering what to do when the curriculum for a course is absolutely not going to work for the students placed into the course.


At 5:55 PM , Blogger Karen said...

For some lower lexile/easier reads check out novels by Mike Lupica - he write YA books as well as novels for adults.

At 5:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like someone took one look at Sports and Reading in the course and thought-
oh yes! just what these kids need.
Oops. I guess they neglected to get input from the horse's mouth.

I hope you get some suggestions on text, literature that may work.

You need reading for those who dislike it, and on a topic they are not interested in?
Can you change the topic?

Perhaps students can suggest readings they have experience with to others in the group and do a set of various readings on a theme; then look for how they are related. Just a quick thought.

Are these students really interested in getting the credit?
It's a dance between how far you can push and how far they will reach.

Good luck to you!

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