A Personalized Approach to the Teaching of Literature at the Elementary and Intermediate Levels of Instruction



ABSTRACT  The development of linguistic skills and literary appreciation are common goals in many language courses. The techniques used in these courses, however, often do not take into account the students' personal reactions, their linguistic limitations, and their lack of critical or analytical skill. The personalized approach presented in this article takes into account both the author's intentions and the students' interests and linguistic level. The levels of analysis presented are: (1) engagement or involvement—students express personal feelings about the literary work, its characters or events; (2) interpretationsstudents justify motives, find evidence to support generalizations, solve problems, and make predictions; and (3) evaluation—students judge the quality, worth, and significance of all or part of a literary work. Classroom activities of varying linguistic difficulty (e.g. ranking, agree/disagree statements, completion items, direct question, and roleplaying formats) provide ways for students to develop these analytic skills.