This text is designed specifically to meet the needs of preservice teachers who have had little experience working in middle-grade classrooms. Three ideas are central:
* teaching language arts at the middle level is a complex activity that demands expertise in the use of a variety of strategies,
* reading and writing are key processes of language arts study, but so are speaking, listening, and viewing/visually representing, and
* teaching the processes of effective communication is crucial, but middle school students must also begin to learn the content of the field--literature, language, and media.
Teaching Language Arts in Middle Schools gives balanced attention to various teaching strategies, processes, and content, demonstrating how all of these connect to improve students' abilities to communicate. In this text:
*Research and theory are summarized and applied to practice
*A non-prescriptive approach is integrated with practical information
*Debates in the field are acknowledged
*Additional reading and research are emphasized
*The author's voice and point of view are explicit
"I can see the book being taken up by teachers on award-bearing courses and becoming a book to dip into for a fresh perspective on pupils' learning."
—British Journal of Educational Psychology
"There is a definite need for this book….It will be a welcome resource for the students I work with because it provides a realistic picture of the middle school classroom and offers them a wide variety of appropriate structures and strategies to use in the classroom."
—Nancy B. Mitzelle
The University of Georgia
"My students will really like this text….Kingen does not talk down to readers….She speaks directly to them and does not become overly didactic or pedantic. The balance of background information and ideas for teaching works; it offers what I think is absolutely necessary for preservice teachers--research review, theory, and practice."
—Carol A. Pope
North Carolina State University
"The most comprehensive text on the teaching of language arts in the middle grades of which I am aware….The style of writing is very friendly and conversational. I like the mix of theory and practice….This text covers the spectrum of topics that I believe need to be included in teaching middle school literacy/language arts to the MTV generation of students….I particularly like the chapters on 'Teaching Visual Literacy' and 'Teaching Media'….A very timely contribution."
—Josephine Peyton Young
Arizona State University
Contents: Part I:Foundations and Principles. Centering on Students. Teaching Middle School. Literacy Learning and Teaching. Part II:Teaching the Processes of Language Arts. Teaching Reading. Teaching Writing. Teaching Speaking and Performing. Teaching Listening. Teaching Visual Literacy. Part III:Teaching the Content of Language Arts. Teaching Literature. Teaching Language. Teaching Media. Part IV:Connecting Teaching and Learning. Integrating the Language Arts. Interdisciplinary and Integrative Teaching. Integrating Into the Teaching Profession.