History of Love 3 - Three Ways to Discuss pgs 19-45

 "The train pulled into Oxford Station, and my mother got off, leaving behind a trail of sand."

Lesson Overview 

Though I usually teach the same books and stories with additions here and there - the discussions (and group work or any activity for that matter) are always altered, changed, or reinvented.  On this page I will show (and give the materials for three very different ways that I had discussions on the reading assigned for that day.  For more on different class discussion methods, go to this page.

Discussion Method #1 - A Vertext

Most Recent Vertext for pages 18-45    

The first vertext of the year.  A vertext (I believe I coined the name) is simply a  presentation of quotes from the assigned  reading (given in the order of the reading).  You pull out quotes (or sometimes comments on bigger ideas) that will lead to discussion.  I start at one end of the room - the student in the first desk, in the first row reads the quote aloud - and then anyone in the class can comment on it or ask a question about it.   The student should also read the page number (it's given) so that everyone can turn to that page in their books.

 Students also frequently comment on the comment that the first student made - and one quote can lead to an entire discussion.  The great thing about this approach is that the teacher is not asking pointed questions (though they are putting up pointed quotes...).  The majority of the critical thinking comes from the students.  

Sometimes - depending on how a particular class is good or bad at everyone speaking up - I will also ask that the student who reads the quote aloud, also makes the first comment or question on it.

Discussion Method #2 - Dividing the Reading

In this method, the class is divided into rows (what is usually called columns) and each row is assigned a section of that day's reading.  For their given section, each student is to come up with THREE separate things for three different parts of their reading.  The first two are either a comment or a question (ie or two comments or two questions).  The third thing they are to come up with is a quote from their reading that they thought was "cool", "interesting", "puzzling" etc.  

Each of their three things should be significant (Ah - here's were taking notes while they read comes in handy) and should potentially lead to discussion.  They are to write these three things down (that's really important).

The cool part of having Three separate things to find is that if another student who came before them in their row picked one of theirs - they still have two more. 

You give the class about 5-10 minutes to find their three things - then begin with the first student in the first row and go through the entire class.  The great thing about this method is that it is completely student-centered (I hate that term).  The student comes up with the question or comment - other students comment or reply to what they had to say.  The teacher is merely a facilitator.

Discussion Method #3 - Ringmaster Teacher

PLEASE NOTE: THESE  START AT THE BEGINNING OF THE BOOK - you should pick up with them from wherever you last left off.  See a previous lesson for instructions - the text with my notes served as a guide for the questions, comments and ideas that I ask - though I was always ready for and often elicited the students ideas, questions, etc.  Over the years - as I wrote notes in this text - the previous years' notes and questions become incorporated into the lesson.   Again - you will find that these instructions are flexible - and I had to be - they kept changing the amount of time that we had in the classroom.
NOTE: Some of these student comments will make it into  a  Vertext for a following year.


Most Recent Handouts & Quizzes  

Reading Quiz through pg 45  Docx  PDF  - ha!  Note the EC - it's a Current Event question about George Bush - back when this  class also had a Journalism component to it.

Audio Visual Content


Remote Enhancements 

Both the Vertext and the Divided Reading Slide work very well for enhancing Remote Learning.


Class Recordings (for registered members)




The History of Love Day 4 - Group Work thru page 65.  Students will work cooperative in small groups to put together what we've been doing and to connect some ideas that they may have missed individually.


  The History of Love Day 2 OR The History of Love Day 1 (depending on how far you got)

Thoughts on the Lesson 

The important thing here is to have a great discussion.  However, the teacher feels comfortable is, in my opinion, the best possible way to do it.   Students love Ringmaster Teacher - I love the other two methods - though I do think I'm pretty proficient at being a Ringmaster.  I just think the other ways make the students think and retain better.