Google Lit Trips:...
Follow
Find
34.5K views | +6 today
Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading
An Educator's Reading List of Contemporary Literature, Literacy, and Reading Issues. Visit us at http://www.GoogleLitTrips.org
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Day Jobs: How Famous Authors Made Ends Meet

Day Jobs: How Famous Authors Made Ends Meet | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

WAIT! DON'T READ THE ARTICLE FIRST

 

This is sort of fun. Want to try guessing before checking out this slide show for the answers?

 

Do you know what these famous authors did BEFORE they made their living writing?

 

J D Salinger

Kurt Vonnegut

T S Eliot

Douglas Adams'

James Joyce

Stephen King

Robert Frost

Harper Lee'

William Faulkner

 

_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  

 

Want a hint? Among the following are all the right answers plus two that are not true for any of the authors. Can you match them up?

 

Worked as a circus clown

Changed light bulbs filaments in a factory

Was as a hotel security guard

Was as a postmaster at a school

Sold magazines door to door

Was the entertainment director on a luxury liner

Worked on the Colonial and Foreign Accounts desk at a bank

Was a professional singer

Managed a Saab dealership

 

 

As I gave it a shot missing more than I guessed correctly, I couldn't help but think about the inspiration this article might provide, not just to kids with dreams of being published, but with all kids with dreams, any dreams.

 

I wondered if kids sometimes take a long time coming to the realization that there is a difference between dreams and fantasies. Dreams can come true; fantasies may be less likely.

 

A great lesson to be learned is that we all have the power to improve the odds of fantasties becoming dreams and of dreams becoming realities. 

 

I used to have one of those black background with white letters "Wait to be seated" sort of signs in my room where I'd put inspirational sayings up for a week or so before changing them.

 

Two of my favorites...

 

"Those who are thirsty should not sit on a rock in the middle of a field hoping that a cow will back up to them."

 

"There are quicker ways to get to the top of an oak tree than sitting on an acorn."

 

 I suspect that these authors neither sat on said rock or said acorn. Wonder how they managed to get from such "other work" to having their dreams come true. 

 

Perhaps something for all students with hopes and dreams to think about.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Regency Delight ~Jane Austen, etc.~: The Lines of Literature Paraphrase Challenge

Regency Delight ~Jane Austen, etc.~: The Lines of Literature Paraphrase Challenge | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

___________

I sure have mixed feelings about this one. The default response of course is to be annoyed by the underlying implication that dumbing down  the eloquent to the mono-syllabic, can be interesting and even amusing. And, I'm even a bit disappointed in the example used because it completely loses the satirical implication that this is strategy for women on the hunt can employ rather than a suggestion that wealth makes one needy.

 

However, there is a seed of interest in the concept. neverthe less. I'd still like to see the exercise expanded to include a bit of a debate over the advantages and disadvantages of the original and the revised. Perhaps that might even lead to a conversation about the beauty one can come to appreciate in the well crafted sentence.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Insane art formed by carving books with surgical tools

Insane art formed by carving books with surgical tools | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Using knives, tweezers and surgical tools, Brian Dettmer carves one page at a time. Nothing inside the out-of-date encyclopedias, medical journals, illustration books, or dictionaries is relocated or implanted, only removed.

 

 

 

__________

Wouldn't this be a cool logo for my GoogleLitTrips.com project?

 

But there are others in this collection of carved book sculptures and they are incredible to say the least. 

 

 

-  -  -  -  -  -  -

 

I had to snicker just a bit when I saw this website.

 

A couple of weeks ago I caught a bit of teasing for creating an iPhone charging station out of a book. "How could someone who loves books as much as you do desecrate one?" was the running taunt. My defense which was strong or weak in the ears of those who heard it was that I thought (and still do) that it was an incredibly cool concept because rather than seeing a jumble of charging cables on public display, my daily view was books, books, books beautifully arranged promoting books in the eyes of passersby rather than white wires.

 

I jokingly suggested that the sacrifice of one book to promote reading probably was counterbalanced by the tree I'd saved everytime I bought a new book for my iPad. 

 

But all kidding aside, I get it. There's a sacredness to books and history records too many book burnings to ignore the larger implications of book destruction.

 

But, this morning, in my meanderings I discovered this site. And, all I can say is that there is a beauty in books discovered here that transends any criticism of desecration. I wish I had one of these to passby everyday in my life of loving literature.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

 

 

more...
Jonathan Jarc's comment, February 22, 2012 12:24 PM
So beautiful. I just want to stare at these for hours...
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

LIT LISTS

LIT LISTS | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

__________

Lottsa People Love Lists, that's for sure. Here's an interesting collection of Lit Lists. 

 

I like that the lists are not organized by genre but by, well... "things" one might be interested in. Or, perhaps, I might suggest to my students, things you might not know you're interested in, but might be intrigued by...

 

Besides being lists, this list of lists, might be the seed of some interesting ideas for promoting interest in reading beyond one's current areas of interest. What if students were given an opportunity to brainstorm just the titles of lists they'd like to see and then invited to brainstorm those lists?

 

Women explorers perhaps, unlikely heroes maybe, head spinners possibly, left-handed authors perchance, how about athletes who are heroes off the field? or stories about characters who beats the odds? Who knows what they might come up with?

 

Among the lists in this list of lists...

Five of the best books on jazz

Top ten siblings stories

Ten of the best bankers in literature

Tess Gerritsen's five favorite thrillers

Ten top science fictional bars

Ten of the greatest kisses in literature

Ten literary lessons in love

Five top true love stories

Ten of the best bouts of insomnia in literature

Top ten literary frenemies

Dylan Ratigan's six favorite books

Five notable books about predictions

 

In thinking about this as a potential concept for a classroom activity, I think I'd attempt to subtly corral the possibilities to lists that encourage interest in reading rather than lists the promote the kinds of negative feelings reluctant readers already have about reading. I wouldn't want lists like...

Books I hated

Dumb stories my teacher made us read

Books that cure insomnia

 

But, this is a delicate balance between preempting self-discouraging lists and the auto-discouraging impact of actually saying something like, "Let's make all positive lists. NO LISTS THAT ___________"

 

This might be done by including some sort of student generated "marketing" of the books on their list followed by opportunities for students to read a book from a list of their choice and make a short 3 minute or less public endorsement for that book. This could be in class presentations or online reviews in a class blog, a personal or group wiki or even in one of the many online reading sites such as Goodreads (www.goodreads.com/) or similar sites such as those listed on the book-clubs-online site:

http://www.book-clubs-resource.com/online/.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

No Facebook in office!

No Facebook in office! | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
9GAG is the easiest way to have fun!...

 

 

 

 

__________

I came across this site today. I really can't endorse it as it has a high juvenile silliness quotient as well as a noticible questionable and inappropriate quotient, but this particular page struck a note.

 

Let's stop pretending that the world of reading is not moving into its future. It has and will and some conversations about why that isn't good are of fading interest.

 

There are more important issues relating to the trajectory of both reading and technology. 

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Why books and movies are better the second time

By Natalie WolchoverLife's Little Mysteries 
New research reveals why people like to reread books, re-watch movies and generally repeat the same experiences over and over again.

  

""Because re-experiencing offers a way to look at oneself through the same lens but with different eyes, it offers many therapeutic benefits," Russell wrote in an email. "So long as one is actively conscious of the re-experience (and it's not a passive, uncontrollable addiction), it can offer many self-reflexive opportunities."

 

__________

 I used to tell my students it was impossible to read the same book twice. This, of course, was met with near shock and adamant denial, particularly among the avid readers in the room. I'd let the noise continue, smiling at the energy of those who loudly shouted that they'd read this book or that book "many times!" While, those who knew you couldn't re-read a book if you'd never read a book in the first place. And, don't be fooled it's remarkable how many high school students have gotten themselves through to high school without actually ever having read a book, "unless Dr. Suess counts" as one of my students once confessed. But that's another story isn't it?

 

Anyway, once the fury of the avid died down, I'd calmly inquire as though it was some sort of contest to be won, who thought they'd re-read the same book more times than anyone else in the class. Claims of "I've read ______ at least 100 times!"

 

"Oh really? Is that true or are you exaggerating?

 

"Well, I don't know how many times but I'll bet it was at least 10 times!"

 

"Okay, I know it's hard to remember exactly how many times it might have been, but trying to be realistic, or at least close, anyone know that they've read a book more than 10 times?"

 

It was always interesting to witness the enthusiasm of the avid readers. And, equally interesting to watch the non-readers' eyes as the lights went on as they came to the realization that they were perhaps not so much the norm as they had thought they were. 

 

But, to relieve them (slightly) I casually invited them back into the conversation by broadening the question to include re-watching movies. The seed had been planted with books and watered with movies, and everyone now at least felt welcome in the conversation. 

 

After awhile...

 

"Why?" I'd ask.

 

(Paraphrasing the near universal response)

"Because it's so good! Duh!"

 

"Yes, but the second time, you already know how it will turn out don't you?"

 

(Again, paraphrasing the near universal response)

"Because I always saw stuff the second time that I missed the first time."

 

"Is that WHY you re-read or re-watched it a second time?"

 

Okay... enough dialogue...

 

Lights would begin to twinkle above more and more students' heads as they realized their motive was simply to re-enjoy the story rather than to actually anticipate "seeing stuff they missed."

 

Within a short time, the realization spread throughout the room, "Ah! well I guess it is the same book or movie, but since I missed so much the first time, it's sort of like reading a different book isn't it?"

 

It never took long to get them to connect the experience of re-reading a book to the illusion that the sun appears to go around the earth as evidenced by sunrises and sunsets. It's really quite the opposite. As it is actually the earth that goes around the sun, so it is that it is not the book or movie that changes, it is we who change between readings. 

 

To educators this is not a great "Ah Ha! moment." But, to many students it is eye opening and intriguing to "feel" the realization that as they live they change; as they see they see more; as they see more they understand more; as they understand more they see that their physical growth is far less dramatic than their mental growth. 

 

And this realization tends to lead them to giving themselves permission to start opening new doors with much more eagerness than ever before because now they were more often "looking for meaning" in not only books and movies, but also in their day to day life experiences.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Journalists' way

"But what is the difference between literature and journalism?
Journalism is unreadable and literature is not read. That is all"

Oscar Wilde

 

 

__________

There was a time when I was more attracted to a well turned "bon mot" than I am today. Too often, as seems to be the case in this instance, cleverness trumps actual thought provoking insight. And when the cleverness is entertaining, it may well distract us from questioning the veracity of the comment itself leaving us to pass on the clever, not realizing that we may be passing on the shallow and unquestioned comment's content. Seems a bit dangerous to me.

It's like politicians who rely upon populisitic quips to gain favor, playing to the superficial delight of an ill informed audience while perhaps accomplishing a less respectable attempt to decietfully pass off disinformation.

Yes, there is a seed of truth in Wilde's bon mot, but that is what makes this clever remark dangerous. How many will laugh at the cleverness not really understanding that it is they who are being criticized, not journalism or literature?

 

Having taught a Satire class for decades, I came to the conclusion that one shortcoming of satire is that those who need it don't get it and those who get it don't need it.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Ghanaian Writer Taiye Selasi on the "African" in "African Literature" (Jaipur Festival 2012)

Ghanaian Writer Taiye Selasi on the "African" in "African Literature" (Jaipur Festival 2012) | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

 

__________

Yes it's Black History month in the United States. It is an opportunity to enrich and inform our students about the treasures of multi-cultural literature. But, this short video takes it to the global level reminding us that the African (not just the African-American) Literary heritage is rich and varied, and not to be reduced to a single story representing an entire continent. 

 

Watching this video of a vibrant and passionate contemporary Ghanaina author, raised in Nigeria, speaking of the broader 21st century global literary scene might even speak more directly to today's youth, than reaching for the historically more distant heroes of African-American-specific authors traditionally focused upon during Black History month.

 

It is not an either or situation. It's not Langston Hughes vs. Taiye Selasi. It's strategy. What is the quickest way to engage contemporary students in multi-cultural literature? How do we stimulate interest in the totality multi-faceted treasures of any branch of literary heritage? 

 

By default, we tend to start with long ago history and work our way towards the contemporary. There is of course a certain logic in understanding the building blocks and the evolution of what has been created from the previous contributors to any field of study. But, I sometimes wonder if that approach relies too heavily upon an academic interest that is not necessarily of interest to contemporary students because it expects them to begin at a starting point that is simply too distant from their existing zones of proximal development. It might be worth considering that in the 21st century internet connected world, global IS local. Is it possible that is it possible that for today's American students 100 year old African-American literature is actually  for more distant 21st century global literature?

 

What if we began "near" (as in contemporary) and worked our way towards the "distant" (historical)?

 

What if the strategy was to reach just beyond what our 21st century students are already aware of and expanded an existing engagement rather than asking them to leap over centuries and expecting them to be as receptive to what we know is important, but what we also know is often quite distant from any existing interest?

 

Of course teaching and learning in chronological order or in reverse chronological order can both be effective and engaging when orchestrated by excellent educators. The challenge is to be engaged and engaging. 

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Who is Your Literary Crush?

Authors describe their literary crushes from some of history's greatest novels. Get more on Jack Murnighan at SimonandSchuster.com: http://authors.simonandsc...

 

 

 

__________

 

Though boys and girls seem to become interested in love stories at very different ages, there may be possibilities here for high school students. 

 

I wonder if riffing off this concept to ask questions like, "If you could add yourself to the cast of characters in a book you've read, which book might that be and what difference would your presence make in the story?

 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

On a not-so-different note, there is a phenomenon experienced by many teachers of literature that seems to be one of those elephants in the room sort of things. Loving literature and loving the teaching of literature can sometimes be almost mutally destructive forces.

 

We become literature teachers because we have developed a passion for literature. Yet, while we spend our careers hoping to sell the love, we do so in an arena where we are often faced by resistance, sometimes quite intense, from those who are, shall we say, "hard sells"?

 

And the truth is, this challenge can at times wear away at our passions. Perhaps it's a variation at the pessimistic, ""Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you."

 

The solution may not be to give up in the face of a challenge, but rather to find ways to replenish our love of literature and thus our resolve to love even those students who have yet to discover "the love."

 

Whether this video works for your students or not, perhaps it will provide a needed dose of "Vitamin L."

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Romance Novels: 10 Greatest Kisses In Literature

Romance Novels: 10 Greatest Kisses In Literature | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
By Emily Temple for Flavorwire: It’s the season of romance, and you know what that means — you’d better start gearing up to give that special someone a stars-and-fireworks-worthy kiss come February 14th.

 

 

 

__________

Well, they say a picture is worth a thousand words. I don't disagree, but sometimes a few beautifully comibined words are worth millions of pictures.

 

Imagining the images can stir both the mind and the heart.

 

I suppose that's why we speak so much of imagery when we teach great literature, romantic or otherwise.

 

 ~http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Will Booze for Books Shake and Stir Communities?

Will Booze for Books Shake and Stir Communities? | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
These days, to youth librarians, Harry Potter, Anne of Green Gables and Hop on Pop are not just kid's book titles but also cocktails.

 

 

 

__________

I've had little if any appreciation for people who believe they are incredibly insightful and interesting when they have neglected to recognize what too much alcohol will actually reveal about them.

 

The controversy generated by this fundraiser by American Library Association's Young Adult Library Services Association does seem a bit less well conceived than I'd like to believe it was meant to be.

 

Granted, a lot of great literature was written by people with strong involvement with mind altering substances. (see: http://www.toptenz.net/top-10-substance-addled-writers.php)

 

However for the most part, it's easier to appreciate the greatness of a piece of literature "IN SPITE OF" the weaknesses of its author than it is to defend promoting booze as a partner in the promotion of reading.

 

For me... I just don't get it.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

THE COMPOSITES

THE COMPOSITES | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Images created using law enforcement composite sketch software and descriptions of literary characters. All interesting suggestions considered. Include descriptive passages if you can. Read more on...

 

 

____________

Makes me grin.  

 

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Functional bathtub made from books - Boing Boing

Functional bathtub made from books - Boing Boing | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

__________

: - )

Whattya think about this? 

Bathe in Books?

Marinating perhaps.

 

I'd love to spend a few minutes with a group of reluctant readers discussing this level of love of reading.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Merced high school students to wage 'Battle of the Books' - Local - MercedSun-Star.com

Merced high school students to wage 'Battle of the Books' - Local - MercedSun-Star.com | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Ruth Saldivar, a senior at Merced High, is interested in one day studying criminal psychology. So she was intrigued by one of the titles in this year's Battle of the Books among the five high schools in the Merced Union High School District.

 

 

 

__________

BRAVO! Bravo to any school exploring ways to enhance reading engagement!

 

What's your school doing "extra" to promote the love? What's one more thing your school and community might do to even go further?

 

Heck! If a little town like Gilroy, California can create an internationally recognized Garlic Festival, it's worth a shot isn't it?

 

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Name your price vending machine sells books

Name your price vending machine sells books | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
If there is one thing I have learned, books, especially textbooks in higher learning institutions, do fetch a handsome price if they are brand new, which explains the rather thriving second hand market.

 

 

 

_________

Now here's an idea! What if all college campuses had a few of these around? And, what if someone organized a way for today's sophomores could sell their freshmen texts and get a cut of the sale? Everyone would win LOCALLY.

 

I don't know if it would really work, but I just have to love anyone willing to think of another way to encourage reading, any reading!

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Travel Fiction: Eight Books That Make Us Want To Travel

Travel Fiction: Eight Books That Make Us Want To Travel | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
You wake up one morning and there it is: Spring sunshine, pushing us over the crest of Winter, opening up the possibilities of the year. And like mice sniffing our way out of hibernation, our first thought is always: where shall we go now?

 

 

__________

First... several of the books in this article are certain to be considered by many to be "off limits" for integration into any classroom. This is particularly true in these times when societies seem more divided and less tolerant of others' opinions of what is and what is not appropriate in classrooms.

 

That said, I've scooped this article nevertheless for a couple of reasons. First travel fiction is metaphor. Winding up in other places (or reading about characters who wind up in other places) puts us in contact with other ideas and other ways of seeing not only the rest of the world, but of seeing our own corners of that world with new eyes and minds.

 

My GoogleLitTrips.com project has always been anchored at the metaphorical harbor where literal journeys meet life journeys; where existing experiences and understandings absorb and are changed by new experiences.

 

Whether we are sitting in Plato's Cave not really quite "getting what's going on before our very eyes" or ensconced on our couches watching Star Trek reruns, we are less knowing than those who have left the cave and/or gone "where no man has gone before" or as StarTrek: The Next Generation rephrased it, "where no ONE has gone before," we think and understand more when we think about things we've not thought about before or in ways we've not thought about them before.

 

But, as I mentioned, these are not necessarily the titles that one might often find in classrooms. This got me thinking about the need for educators to have perhaps at least two reading lives; one being the "teachable readings" another being the wonderful books we read that are however, probably outside the "allowable" parameters as established by school boards and various community norms deemed appropriate for "children." You know, those great books that happen to include sprinklings of the "f," "n," "c," "d," or "v"-words that, like trump-cards automatically overshadow in some minds any possibility for value.

 

And, I'm actually okay with this dilemma. I am not particularly receptive to other parents telling me were the line for appropriate parenting of my children is, and I don't really believe that teachers should feel too comfortable imposing their own  determinations of what is or is not good reading for their students' parents to accept.

 

But that is the grand dilemma. If literature takes not merely our bodies but also our minds on journeys into areas beyond our existing experiences and understandings, then by definition it requires us to be willing to risk going "where we have not gone before" and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that there is risk and danger in such treks. 

 

If we take the responsibility of helping our students to explore areas of the human condition beyond their existing experiences we also must accept the responsibility for taking great care in making certain that we are also careful to consider the "downside risks" as perceived by their parent that are associated with any experience into the unknown. 

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Learning to Love Airport Lit

Learning to Love Airport Lit | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Great literature has its place, but it’s not on a plane or in an airport.

 

 

 

__________

This article quickly takes a turn I had not expected. It builds a case for reading "JunkLit" and against reading "GreatLit."

 

And yet serendipitiously, it did stimulate thoughts that have swirled in the back of my educator mind for awhile. I have too often seen well-intended teachers drip scorn upon a students' enthusiasm for reading because the student happened to be enthusiastic about "JunkLit." Typically, the student, too hurt or too embarrassed or too gracious to say anything, betrays his or her true thoughts with a facial expression that reveals the sting. 

 

I've always felt that there is an art to to expanding our students' enthusiasm for reading to higher and deeper levels of reading engagement that does not have to rely upon expressing distain for the their existing enthusiasm for "less high and more shallow levels of reading engagement. It's a delicate balancing act to be certain.

 

And yet... the author argues FOR the value of moving from the higher and deeper levels to the lower and shallower levels of reading engagement. At first a resprehensible thought. But, perhaps it is worth contemplating that reading snobbery may have a downside.

 

I'm not certain that I buy her articulation of that downside, but as an educator, I did pause to wonder if by my self-imposed restriction to "not waste my time with 'that JunkLit'  (or similarly, that 'JunkTV,' or those 'JunkWebsites,' or those 'JunkSocialNetworks,'....) that like it or not, I might be inadvertently distancing myself from truly understanding "where their zones of proximal development" actually are. And, thereby also inadvertently doing nothing to counter their less sophisticated tendency to perceive my enthusiasm for the benefits of higher and deeper intellectual stimulation as irrelevant in the "real" world as they are at the moment prepared to perceive it. 

 

 

 - - - - - - - - -

Yet at the same time... when I got to the following quote, I was dismayed at how the author could in the same paragraph drip scorn upon books that purport to suggest advise we ought to recognize as worth taking without question as she herself shows no indcation that there may be those of us who have some doubts about the advise she offers. It may be the experience of having read more "GreatLit" that might have provided her with a means of actually realizing that practicing compassion might be exactly what she might want to do when stranded in Cincinnati ...

 

"Don’t even think of tackling titles like “The Power of Kindness” or “Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life’s Most Important Skill.” You will have failed to develop your better self the moment you are afflicted by the power of unkind strangers bearing Elite Status Membership, shoving you aside in their skilled race to a new boarding gate. I’m all for compassion, but it’s not what you want to practice when you’re stranded in Cincinnati."

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Much Ado About Nothing ~ Hip-Hop Animation by Flocabulary ~ Presented by READ magazine

This video was produced as part of READ magazine's "Much Ado About Nothing" social media theater LIVE performance on Facebook, April 26-28, 2011. READ magazi...

 

 

 

__________

So many cool thoughts generated by this video!

 

1. Just in case you think YouTube is worthless. Catch up!

 

2. Research shows that when students attempt to take information that came primarily through one media /sense and then repackage it to come through another media/ (sense as in this repackaging of "text" into visual and audio formats, that the repackaging requires active synthesis.

 

3. Although this video has very high production values because it was created by professionals with budgets, it is always almost shocking how much technical talent most students have today. 

 

4. If my students do this sort of project, aren't I essentially "dumbing down" the classics?

 

Only if we dumb down our expectations for the quality of their content.

 

5.  When reading is more about universal themes that can be connected to elements of students' contemporary world that they care about than about fear of failing or belief that passing a test, then engagement soars. 

 

6. And worse, by the way, when reading is perceived as being a dreaded task for which passing or failing a test is the primary "incentive" like it or not, then is there not some possibility that we're planting the seeds of the weeds that ruin the wonders of the garden of reading that Voltaire would have us cultivate?

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List from Books and Literature
Scoop.it!

The Future of the Book Is the Stream

The Future of the Book Is the Stream | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Cloud storage is paving the way for books that are sold not by title, but by time.

 

 

__________

Well, I'm not so sure this is as good an idea as the article's author makes it out to be. But, of course I don't read many books that aren't potentially worth a second look. When I think about my relationship with my books, paper or digital, I'm always reminded of The Velveteen Rabbit. You know the story about the stuffed rabbit that over the years becomes worn with love? That "love patina" that can't be described because it's curled pages, flowing with marginalia, highlighted and post.it'ed with scribbles and reminders of most moving or thought provoking passages.

 

Yeah, even my digital books are treasures. I love the ease of color-coding my highlights, writing all the marginalia, having bookmarks so I can jump to favorite passages.

 

I've even taken to listening to a lot of audiobooks. I miss the ability to highlight and keep marginalia, but they have a couple of advantages paper and digital text don't have that also make them "keepers."

 

I hate yardwork unless I'm distracted, and listening to an audio book while doing the yardwork is multi-tasking at its best for me. I rarely have time to sit down for a good six-hour read, but I can do six hours of yardwork and get through an entire book. AND, for whatever reason, my tendency to "reread" a favorite book in audio format is several times more frequent than it is with paper or digital text. 

 

Of course, I'm one of those people who never sold a college text book either. But, I'm a book keeper myself. Because even if I never get around to reading them again, I still like being near my old friends.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~


Via nickcarman, Lisa A.F. Barefield
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Roll Over, Chuck Berry: How a Longtime Rock 'n Roll Editor Became Obsessed With Beethoven

My exposure to classical music was limited, by choice, and Beethoven was little more than a key "droogie" in A Clockwork Orange. But then, as I approached my 60th birthday, something happened. My life has gone from "Roll Over, Beethoven" to just...

 

 

 

__________

It's amazing how often a common theme emerges as I'm meandering around looking for articles to scoop for this topic. 

 

This article struck a particular note for me, perhaps because I'm essentially the same age as the author so his examples are not all that different from those in my own awakening.

 

Though having nothing to do with reading, the article's focus upon the author's evolution of musical interest as it traveled from an intense interest in contemporary music to an intense interest in classical music, certainly parallels my belief that teaching a love for reading might well be successful if we started with existing contemporary interests and expanded that interested beyond the contemporary to an interest in the less contemporary predecessors' shoulders upon which existing interests stand.

 

I don't particularly argue against the more traditional default mode of starting at the beginning and working towards the contemporary. Too many great educators have had great success using this mode. However, there is much to consider in the underappreciated reverse-chronological order approach as well.

 

When designing learning experiences, I suppose that it might be worth contemplation to wander back through our own development of a love of reading (and for that matter the development of any of our greater passions) to recall what experiences led to that love. My guess is that some contemporary connection started an expansion of related connections that eventually led to an interest in the related breadth and depths of the field of interest that reached far beyond the local and contemporary.

 

I remember my interest in the Bob Dylan preceded, but led to my interest in Woodie Guthrie which led to my interest in Alan Lomax and then to Steinbeck and the progressive writers and artists who preceded Steinbeck. 

 

And a great serendipity for me was the often circular nature of the course of these events.

 

I remember loving Mad Magazine long before appreciating the deeper satire of National Lampoon which eventually prepped me for receptiveness to Voltaire and Swift. But, in a wonderful turn of events, my interest in Voltaire and Swift, led me back to an interest in Vonnegut as a contemporary author I'd not yet discovered.  

 

As the expansion of my small/local neighborhood of interests led me to a larger/broader world of interests, I began to experience "the transports of delight" provided by "Ah Ha! Moments" that sparked in my mind with significantly increased frequency.

 

I think it is not coincidental that all of this happened simultaneously with my realization that I no longer thought that school was, for the most part, boring. 

 

I'd just been foolishly less interested when I thought that caring about learning's primary value was to do well on the test rather than learning to do good in the world.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

 

 

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Maya Angelou's Black History Month Special

Maya Angelou's Black History Month Special | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

"Maya Angelou, one of the most storied poets in our nation, celebrates Black History Month by hosting a special program on public radio. Special guests that include Mary J. Blige, Professor Nikky Finney, Congressman John Lewis, Dr. Julianne Maveaux, and ambassador Andrew Jackson Young"

 

 

__________

Maya Angelou has done it again. She has created a Black History MONTH Special that is truly special. She has put together a month of fascinating broadcasts that go far beyond the "glancing nod towards" the contributions of African-Americans in all of our lives. Each of six noted African Americans will be profiled in a one hour program which will be broadcast on different dates throughout the United States. The project is enhanced by this website that provides a wealth of information about each of the featured guests.

 

Don't let the opportunity pass you by to "celebrate" the contributions of African-Americans. What you choose to do in celebration of Black History Month will either make a difference... or, alas, it won't. 

 

It is not a time for lip service.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Books On Screen: Our Favorite Bookish Love Scenes From Films

Books On Screen: Our Favorite Bookish Love Scenes From Films | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

"This may seem peculiar, but do many of us not share the same fantasy of private jokes, mutual favorite songs, and, most importantly, a common love for literature? Hardcover books have become badges to be worn, like black fingernail polish or sorority letters. On subways and in coffee shops, showing off the cover you’re currently skimming can be a silent pick-up line."

 

 

 

__________

So how's this for a possible bumper sticker?

"Lit Lovers Love Longer!"

 

 ~http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Study: New kids' books lack connection to nature

Study: New kids' books lack connection to nature | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it
Study's authors hypothesize that children are more isolated from the natural environment than ever before.

 

 "But does this really mean that my kids are not connected with nature? That just doesn't make sense -- my kids love hiking and playing outdoors and can't get enough of websites, magazines, and movies that feature animals. It seems more likely to me that the most recent nature-themed books are so steeped in eco "messages" that they are no longer enjoyable for kids to read. The Poky Little Puppy didn't have a hidden eco-agenda. It just followed a slow-moving puppy on his adventures in the "wide, wide world."

 

__________

What an interesting contemplation....

I was particularly interested in the author's consideration that kids might not find nature connected books all that interesting, ironically because contrary to the intentions of the authors themselves, the constant "eco messaging" detracts from the enjoyment of reading stories set in nature.

 

Perhaps we should keep in mind even when we mean well, we need to consider how we market our good intentions.

 

 ~ http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Literature is more powerful than history: Arfa Syeda Zehra | Entertainment | DAWN.COM

“Literature is a binding force between the people and more powerful than history, as it absorbs history and turns it into something bigger.”

 ~ Arfa Sayeda Zehra

(in interview at the Karachi Literature Festival)

 

 

__________

I have to admit that the title of this article certainly caused me to do a double-take. It's a short article and its actual focus seems a bit "away from" the promise of such an intriguing headline. I almost decided to "Skip Scooping" it. However, when I read this quote, I knew it was something every teacher of literature might find worthy of pause and consideration.

 

 ~http://www.GoogleLitTrips.com ~

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by GoogleLitTrips Reading List
Scoop.it!

Karachi Literature Festival - About Us

Karachi Literature Festival - About Us | Google Lit Trips: Reading About Reading | Scoop.it

__________

The international news about Karachi seems so often to paint such a negative picture of this country. 

 

Yet how much press does the "upside" of Pakistanian culture get? It's a complex world out there. Can we afford to take only a simplistic "good guy/bad guy view"? 

 

As much as I love books, what does it mean when I find myself not recognizing the names of any of the writers mentioned? 

 

If the 21st century truly requires a global understanding, then perhaps we should either make the effort to understand a broader view of our global neighbors or begin to emphasize to our students that in such complex times, we can sometimes not always know enough to justify loud and adamant opinions.

 

Literature may well be the bridge between skeptical global neighbors that we have so far found difficult to locate.

 

 

 

more...
No comment yet.