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Wednesday, 5 April 2017

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Welcome to UNIT 6:4! 

Review: Previously in Unit 6:3, we discussed about how to interactively teach the sub topic, ‘Identifying and Analysing Setting, Main Plot and Characters’ in Form Three. In that sub topic, we discussed how the students can identify setting, main plot, and characters in a selected text.

In this Unit 6:4, we will learn how to teach the sub topic, Identifying and Analysing Setting, Main Plot and Characters’ in Form Four. In this sub topic, we will practically focus on how to guide students analyse characters, setting, and plot of a text given.


(Also: For Literature in English Subject, Check out my Literature in English Blog. Also check out My Diary for Diary Writing Inspiration and More! )
                                                                    
THE FOLLOWING IS THE COMPREHENSIVE TEACHING GUIDE ON THE SUB TOPIC:

A: INFORMATION OF THE TOPIC:
1. Topic: READING LITERARY WORKS
2. Sub Topic: Identifying and Analysing Setting, Main Plot and Characters
3. Periods per sub topic: 16
4: Class: Form Four.
B: HOW TO TEACH THE TOPIC:

GENERAL INTRODUCTION
The aim of the sub topic is to make students able to describe characters, setting, and plot in literary works studied. This sub topic will always test Form Three students to apply the knowledge of analysing stories they acquired in Form Two in Class Readers. Of course, there are some other aspects to consider when it comes to literature such as Introduction to Literature and other aspects, but these aspects will be covered in sub topic 3 of this topic, that is, Identifying Main Features of Different Genres, where various aspects will be covered according to the particular genre (Novel, Play, and Poetry).

It is expected that Form Four students now have that experience of analysing literary works. In this lesson, Form Four students are to be reminded of the ways of analysing literary works they learnt in previous academic year, and give them a lot of activities to do.

ACTIVITIES & GAMES TO FACILITATE A LESSON:

ACTIVITY 1: BRAINSTORMING ON THE SELECTED LITERARY WORK
In this activity, a teacher is going to select a literary work to read.
To implement that, the teacher can guide students to brainstorm on the following:
  • The cover (The underlying meaning or implication of the cover of the book ),
  • The title (The title’s meaning or its relevance; figurative, symbolic meaning),
  • Author (The short background or biography of the writer),  
  • Background/setting, (The time and place where the story happens), and
  • Blurb of the book to be studied (The author’s information and short introduction to the book)

Also a teacher can guide students to predict the story. It is the time students say something of what will happen in the story especially after having discussed all the preliminary information of the book above. This helps to set a mood of what is to be expected.
Finally, in this activity, a teacher winds up what is expected by only giving unfinished stories or questions that will make students tempted to read the whole story of the book.

ACTIVITY 2: ANALYSING A LITERARY TEXT WITH CHARACTERS-RELATED STUDENTS GROUPS.
At the beginning, a teacher can briefly discuss with students on patterns applied when analysing literary works.
In this activity, a teacher can give the students a part of text or a whole text to read.  A teacher can guide students to form groups whose names are characters taken from the text to be read and analysed.
For example; from “Passed Like a Shadow”, the student groups can be formed by taking the names of the characters from the book. The Reading groups can be formed from the book as follows:

  1.       ADYERI GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 1
  2.       VICKY GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 2
  3.       UNCLE ARAALI GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 3
  4.       TUSIIME AND KUNIHIRA GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 4
  5.       BIRUNGI GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 5
  6.       AMOTI GROUP.  Reads and analyse Chapter 6
  7.       DAVID GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 7
  8.       ALIGANYIRA GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 8
  9.       JOHN GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 9
  10.   ATWOKI GROUP. Reads and analyse Chapter 10

IMPORTANCE OF NAMING STUDENTS’ GROUPS WITH CHARACTERS’ NAMES
As it can be seen, these groups have been formed to reflect the content of each chapter. The name of each group means that the dominant character is the one with the group name. For example, Chapter 1 is dominated by the actions of Adyeri and it has been named ‘Adyeri Group’ and Chapter 10 is also dominated by Atwoki although he is also available in every part of the book. But the reason to name this chapter with Atwoki’s name is because all what he expected to achieve is falling down.
This technique of forming groups with characters’ names from the book helps students to learn more quickly. They master the names and actions of the characters quickly than any other methods.

This is just one of many book reading techniques and it is effective when there is a shortage of textbooks, that is, when the ratio of textbooks in question is not one student per one book (1:1). Thus, even if there are five books for more than fifty students, the groups can be formed and chapters can be apportioned to groups, in this case, one group can read more than one chapter.

There is also collective reading. In this case, a teacher may not guide students to form groups. He/she can even use one book to read aloud to students or have students read in turn, but this can sometimes be ineffective. The group reading like the one above can be very effective when it is well managed by the teacher.
GUIDING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS
Students are required to answer the set comprehension questions for each chapter.
Students are also required to discuss passages read and conduct group discussion about the chapter.
For each Chapter, each group should read independently while you supervise them. Students in groups to read aloud their particular passages in groups or read silently as a teacher have guided them to do. At the end of reading, analysis and discussion, one student in the group should be identified as a person/character with a particular name of a group.
After reading, each group should now analyse the chapter independently by answering the following questions:
  1.    Write one sentence to explain what the chapter is about. (The chapter is about……)
  2.    What is the setting of the chapter’s story?
  3.    What is the chapter’s Narrative technique (Is it Old/Traditional style, Straightforward, flashback, or foreshadowing?)
  4.    What is the Narrative Point of View? (Is it first person point of view, third person point of view, or any other point of view?)
  5.    Comment on the Language used. (Is the language used Simple, mixed, or complex?).
  6.    Comment on the Figurative Language/ Figures of Speech applied by the writer in the chapter?
  7.    What are other literary styles used by the writer in the chapter? (Literary Techniques/Styles like Dances, Songs, etc.)
  8.    What are issues or themes found in the chapter? (Main theme- is the dominant idea of the whole book, but sub-themes or issues- issues stemming from the dominant idea)
  9.    What is the Message or messages found in the chapter?. Message is the big idea of a story. It is the most important idea in a book that a writer wants to tell his/her people.
  10.   What Lessons can be learnt in the chapter? (Morals/teachings). Lesson is what an author wants the reader to learn from a story. It is the author's message or moral lesson to the readers.
  11. Is the story in the chapter relevant to the contemporary societies like Tanzania?


ACTIVITY 3: GROUP PRESENTATIONS AND DISCUSSIONS OF QUESTIONS.
In this activity, the groups will present what they have discussed. After presentations (Groups presentations of 11 questions shown above), there will be a time to ask general questions from the whole class, and questions to a particular person called ‘hot seat person’ who is to be selected by each group and should bear the name of the group.
For example, the questions about a ‘hot seat person’ ‘Aliganyira’ Group of Chapter 8 can be like this:
  • Why did you divorce your wife?
  • Why are you superstitious?
  • How do you feel that you are responsible for your wife’s death?
  • Why can’t you allow your wife to decide?

During group presentations, students and the rest of the groups should be encouraged to take notes of what others are trying to present. In this way, they will be able to make their own notes from their fellow students who are presenting. To make sure they have good notes, after the finishing all presentations, a teacher can allow students or groups to exchange their notes on particular chapters. It is expected that after, under teacher’s good guidance and supervision, all students will have the notes of all chapters together with full analysis of each one.

ACTIVITY 4: ROLE-PLAYING SOME PARTS OF THE NOVEL READ AND SUMMING UP THE SUB TOPIC.
A teacher should guide students to role-play some important parts of the novel. It is not that each group should prepare its own role-play, but rather it is better to dramatise one play for the whole class. In the novel, ‘Passed Like a Shadow’ there are a lot of interesting parts for dramatization. Some of them are:
  • The misunderstanding between Vicky and Tusiime and Kunihira.
  • The conflict between John and Abooki.
  • Atwoki and David.
  • And many more interesting parts.

AN EXAMPLE:
ROLE-PLAY: Atwoki and David:

ATWOKI: I feel so shy when it comes to girls.
DAVID: Why? Aren’t you famous enough?
ATWOKI: It’s not like that.
DAVID: So, what are you so nervous?
ATWOKI: I’m afraid of the ‘Slim’.
DAVID: Oh, no! You can’t be serious! As for me I can tell who is a clean girl!
ATWOKI: Sure?
DAVID: Yes!

6: CONNECTION: Beyond the Sub Topic. This sub topic on analysing literary works help students to focus on making summary of what they have read; paraphrasing skills; and ability to make inferences of what they have read.

7: NOTE: There are two approaches used by English teachers in teaching literary works in Form Three and Form Four. The first approach is Comparative approach in which a teacher teaches similar literary texts in the same category like novels in Form Three. For example, he/she may teach ‘Passed Like a Shadow’ followed by ‘Unanswered Cries’. Another approach is that a teacher may teach a single text from each genre in Form Three and teach the remaining pairs in Form Four. This is to say, a teacher may teach one novel and one play in Form Three, and teach another novel and another play in Form Four so that to make complete pairs of literary texts.
This is the matter of debate. As teachers, we can discuss on which way is the best for us.

This sub topic takes 16 periods that is almost two or three weeks. For these activities, the groups formed can take more time. Thus, for these group activities, students can be given more time to finish and present their works.

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