ERIC Number: ED370106
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994
Reference Count: N/A
Shaping Conversations: A Study of Continuity and Coherence on High School Literature Curricula. Report Series 1.11.
Applebee, Arthur N.; And Others
A study examined curriculum decision-making in the classrooms of accomplished teachers of English in grades 9 through 12, focusing on aspects of structure, content, and ways of knowing and doing that combined to create a sense of a "curriculum" rather than a series of disconnected lessons. Four classrooms were studied each semester for two years at two high schools, one in New York State and the other in New Jersey. Selection of participants emphasized diversity rather than representativeness. Data included interviews with teachers and students, classroom observations, and institutional and classroom artifacts. Results indicated that (1) the establishment of a set of conventions for what was appropriate to discuss and how discussion would be carried out was a critical first step in creating a sense of coherence and purpose within the literature classroom; (2) such coherence existed in all classrooms examined; (3) another layer of coherence and a sense of direction was established in some classrooms, in which experiences that came later in the curriculum were informed by those that came earlier and which led to a rethinking and reshaping of earlier experiences; (4) teachers varied from class to class in the extent to which they planned their curriculum around relationships within a larger conversational domain; and (5) students' engagement was highest and their perceived understanding of the domain was greatest when domain structure and discussion conventions worked together to support students' entry into significant conversations about interesting issues. (Three tables of data and questions on the student interview schedules are attached. Contains 29 references.) (RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Research Center on Literature Teaching and Learning, Albany, NY.
Identifiers - Location: New Jersey; New York