Part of the final that I wrote for last year's World Literature class, comprised of mostly seniors, was a question asking what they would add to the class if they could. Students are good at reinforcing what a teacher already knows, and I was convinced that I needed to represent more cultures in the readings for this class.
How? How does one travel the world in nine months?
Liz Harrigan, one of the teacher-examples from this chapter, nailed it. Let the students do the exploring. Could it be this easy? I don't have to slave over shoehorning more Latin American, Africa, Asian, and European authors into my already-dense curriculum?
This idea really got me going. I know that student blogs are not a new concept, but I love the way that Harrigan implemented them, and I equally love that her guidelines were included (105). With a little tweaking for my college-bound seniors, I think this is definitely a take-away from this book that I can use in my classroom.
Question for my colleagues. I think students could do this two ways:
1. For each of the four semesters, choose a book from a different region. This way, students are getting a range of perspectives.
2. Students can choose a region that interests them, and deeply study that region only. This way, the student gains deep knowledge of one region.
Should I offer these two options, or, would you stick to number one only?