Our children are now back in (virtual) school and whether it is homeschool or blended learning through big schools, there will always be – reaction papers. Reaction papers are the usual assignments given to junior and senior high students to practice their English writing skills. While many students enjoy reading the book or watching the movie assigned, they dread putting their thoughts on paper. They have a hard time starting the intended homework because they do not know where or how to begin! Our newest online program called Cool Critics will help your child with literary appreciation and essay writing.
What is Literary Appreciation?
Ogenlewe (2006) posits that ‘literary appreciation refers to the evaluation of works of imaginative literature as an intellectual or academic exercise.’ In this process, the reader interprets, evaluates, or classifies a literary work with a view to determining the artistic merits or demerits of such a work.
Donelson and Nilsen (2009) echo this sentiment and add that it is the process by which one ‘gauges one’s interpretive response as a reader to a literary work’. This means that the reader is able to gain pleasure and understanding of the literature, understand its value and importance, and admire its complexity.
Literary appreciation focuses on the adequate grasp of the definitions and applications of traditional literary devices such as plot, character, metaphor, setting, and symbolism which may be encountered within texts.
The Cool Critics Program , as the name implies, teaches your child how to look at literature with fresh eyes and give feedback about it with substance. Our children may look “cool” or have no care in the world, but you will be surprised how deep they can think about the topic they are passionate about. With this program, they will be taught how to formulate their own opinion and put them down comprehensively in writing. As a full fledged critic, your child will not just be satisfied with putting “I like it” in their reaction paper. Every written English assignment they submit will be thorough, discussing all the elements in the literature assigned to them and diving deep into themes. In this program, they will be taught how to identify the elements of the story and its characteristics.
The Cool Critics Program is for teens 13 to 16 years old with a good grasp of writing in English.
The program is composed of 12 sessions and each lasts for 1 hour with a 5-minute break.
Classic to contemporary authors like Hans Christian Andersen and EB White will be studied for their themes and style. Elements of the story and what makes them good will also be discussed. Finally, within the 12 sessions, 3 major critique or reaction paper writing exercises will be conducted every after 4 sessions. Students will be reviewing The Giver by Lois Lowry for their final paper and the teacher will guide them, one by one, how to improve their written work.
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