Issue Theme: Death in the English Classroom


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Issue Theme: Death in the English Classroom

Call for Manuscripts

From the Editor
Julie Gorlewski

High School Matters: Celebrating the Heart of Life
Dan Bruno
Abstract: Members of the Secondary Section Steering Committee comment on topics of importance to English language arts educators.

2016 Honor List of Prize-Winning YA Books
Alleen Pace Nilsen, Don L. F. Nilsen, and James Blasingame Jr.
Abstract: Authors review their selections for YA books published in 2016. The Honor List is meant to be shared with students, and this year is especially relevant for colleagues who teach history and social studies.

“Give Sorrow Words”: A Lesson Learned
Carol Aten Frow and Miranda Rae Filak
Abstract: The authors discuss how teachers can help students to grieve through the power of writing.

Ethical Concerns of Using Texts Involving Death in the English Classroom
Eric Ekholm
Abstract: In this article, the author uses lesson reflection as a way to consider ethical issues that accompany teaching with texts that include death. More specifically, the article examines the relationship between moral education and analytic or skills-based education.

Everything’s Jake
Genée Ciurus Major
Abstract: This article explores the compassion created when students ask essential questions about life and death. The author describes her personal journey with her students as they experience what it means to be human.

Dealing with and Writing about Death
Gregory Shafer
Abstract: This article focuses on the death of the author’s sister, the discussion and project that it inspired, and the many essays that emanated from the experience.

One Teacher’s Experiences: Responding to Death through Language
Lisa Beckelhimer
Abstract: The author argues that English teachers are in a unique position to respond to death through writing, reading, and speaking. She describes four experiences and offers specific, language-based responses guided by experience and literature.

Associative Mourning: Learning to Lose through Literature
Brittany Rose Collins
Abstract: This article reviews current literature regarding the practices of reading and writing about death. Findings are aligned with the author’s personal experience of learning to lose through literature, tracking her progression from student to educator in relation to literary mourning.

The Absolutely True Diary of My Accidental (and Successful) Unit Studying Death
Lori D. Ungemah
Abstract: The author argues that research in English education needs further exploration on the purposeful implementation of grief, death, and dying within English curriculum.

Teaching Night: Humanizing the Story of the Holocaust
Elizabeth Spalding and Brandi Calton
Abstract: This article offers suggestions for teaching Night in ways that engage students, challenge them to think critically, but most importantly enable them to develop empathy for the victims of the Holocaust, thereby combating Elie Wiesel’s archenemy—indifference.

Liberatory Grief: The One Truly Serious Pedagogical Problem
Eric S. Piotrowski
Abstract: The author explores how regular writing practice and conscious conversations help students struggling with loss, grief, trauma, and myriad associated difficulties including anxiety and self-harm.

Poem: How to Survive Your Father’s Death
Thomas C. Crochunis

Poem: Homecoming
Mitchell Nobis

Poem: My Mother Returns to High School
Todd Friedman

Poem: This Just In
Cecil Morris

Book Reviews
Jason Griffith; Brian Conant

Continuous Becoming: Moving toward Mastery: Exploring Capital Punishment with One-to-One Technology
Tracy Tensen
Abstract: “Continuous Becoming: Moving toward Mastery” offers suggestions, ideas, and experiences to help novice and veteran teachers discover their own road maps toward mastery.

Disabling Assumptions: Using Shakespeare to Debunk Myths about Disability
Jeff Blair
Abstract: This column explores how paying attention to disability—both to the rich contributions made by people with disabilities and to the sometimes negative attitudes in society that can interfere with those contributions—can foster classroom interactions that are more democratic, more inclusive, and more equitable.

Carpe Librum: Seize the (YA) Book: Reading against the Grain: Re-Shaping the Meaning of Excellence in Children’s Literature Awards
Rob Bittner
Abstract: This column serves as a space dedicated to conversation about Young Adult Literature and to celebrate adolescents, their reading, and their experiences by reviewing the texts that engage them.

Lingua Anglia: Bridging Language and Learners: Building Resilience: Refugee Students in the Language Arts Classroom
Pamela J. Hickey
Abstract: “Lingua Anglia: Bridging Language and Learners” discusses critical, transformative, and powerful ways to support students’ acquisition of Standard English.

Speaking Truth to Power: Revisiting Lou LaBrant’s We Teach English (1951): Debating Whole-Class Novel Instruction, and More
P.  L. Thomas
Abstract: "Speaking Truth to Power" seeks to explore the experiences and possibilities that arise when educators speak Truth to power.

Soft(a)ware in the English Classroom: Mr. Browne’s Final Lesson Is on Infinity
Tom Liam Lynch
Abstract: “Soft(a)ware in the English Classroom” seeks to identify the ways in which our teaching and learning lives are influenced by software.