LANGUAGE ARTS

MONTH NINE

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OBJECTIVE: TO HELP CHILDREN NOT ONLY LEARN THE MECHANICS OF READING AND WRITING, BUT TO HELP THEM LOVE READING AND WRITING

"We both read without being taught. No power on earth could have kept us from ferreting out the momentous secrets that lay between the cover of books. We never heard that there was an alphabet that had to be learned before we could read. We played with out letter-blocks and picture-books quite by ourselves, and presently divined the relation between the spoken and printed words. Thrilling two-line tales in large type with explanatory pictures proved the necessary missing link, and then with one intrepid leap of mind we seemed to land in the heart of a book. There might be a few puzzles in it, a few questions to ask, but we could dig out the story quickly enough, you may be sure of that!

"In this way books grew to be a vital part of our life. Books, books, books! There was always plenty of time (incredible statement!); therefore books before breakfast, after playtime, before bedtime, between-times."

(from My Garden of Memory, the autobiography of Kate Douglas Wiggin, best known for her Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm. The 'we' refers to Kate and her little sister.)

WATCH

Dr. Brad Wilcox Speaks at EETC 2012

John Milton, who gave the world Paradise Lost, rejected the idea of school compositions, calling it "forcing the empty wits of children to compose themes, verse and orations, which are the acts of ripest judgment, and the final work of a head filled by long reading and observing."

"Wouldst thou write a living book thou first must live."  

"I know of nothing which so tends to accuracy of thinking and self-expression as the writing habit. It increases one's vocabulary and one's facility of expression. The very act of writing a thing tends to fasten it upon the memory, to impress it, to clutch it in the mind."                 ​                          --Orison Swett Marden

READ

Delphian Reading:

  • X: Survey of American Literature (pp247-362)

Research/Articles:

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From the Life of Beatrix Potter

"If you really want to write, why don't you start with a journal?"

From the Story of Louisa M. Alcott

"The Alcott children were encouraged to keep diaries in which they wrote down their thoughts and feelings and fancies, and even at [a] very early age Louisa's journal was a record of deep feelings and of a child's sacred emotions."

LISTEN