Children Literature in TESOL

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Selected literary texts for students’ use in an ESL classroom; designing a series of language arts activities based on the said texts and producing an accompanying rationale for the design of the activities ( approx. 2500 words)

1. Choose two (or more) children’s literature texts either on a similar theme or written by a renowned author of children’s literature.

2. Discuss/ compare the appeal of your chosen texts to children. You may consider some of the following questions in your discussion ( questions listed are neither prescriptive nor exhaustive) It is important that you draw connections between the texts chosen for analysis, and their contributions to children’s development in general and their language acquisition in particular.

Does it tell a good story? Will children enjoy it? Is the plot original? Is the plot plausible and credible? Is the plot well constructed? Is there a logical series of happenings? Is there a basis of cause and effect in the happenings?

Are the time and place in which the story takes place clearly indicated? How does the setting contribute to the mood and atmosphere of the story?

Does the story have a theme? Is the theme worth imparting to children? (Worthwhile issues for children to reflect on may include: caring for the environment, violence, bereavement, powerful emotions such as anger and sibling jealousy, etc.) Does the theme emerge naturally from the story through text and illustration, or is it stated too obviously?

Are the characters convincing and credible? Do we see their strengths and weaknesses? Is the behavior of the characters consistent with their ages and background? Does the author avoid stereotyping? Is there character development or growth?

Style & language:
Is the point of view from which the story is told appropriate to the purpose of the story? Is the language used authentic? How can the texts be exploited to enhance pupils’ language development?

Do the illustrations enhance or extend the story? Are the pictures aesthetically satisfying? How do the illustrations and the printed texts interact to convey meaning?

3. Plan a series of language arts activities ( at least 4) through which (one of) the chosen texts (is) are taught to a class of ESL children ( state the level explicitly). Discuss how the activities can enhance the children’s linguistic development, extend their imagination, broaden their experiences, knowledge and understanding and/or evoke emotional and aesthetic responses through the chosen stories/story.
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