Tag Archives: literature

Reflection.

25 Aug

 

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Well, now that I have your attention. As an addition to studying Children’s Literature Studies (ESH151) this semester, I have been required to write a reflection on my engagement in the unit so far. I have managed to complete all required tasks on time, and enjoy the subject as a whole. Along with this, I have thoroughly enjoyed re-visiting books that I read, or was read too as a child. I have also gained a decent amount of experience in finding what good quality children’s literature is but will still continue to develop this further. This unit has opened my eyes to a world of literature, and the elements involved in texts more than I could have ever imagined.

Stop

One important thing I need to stop doing in relation to my engagement in this unit (and others!) is to stop holding myself back to contribute to discussions, and doubting my abilities to do so.  I have the knowledge to involve myself in these conversations but just hold a fear of failure and lack confidence. Throughout this unit so far, we have covered a range of content in a small amount of time – I need to stop leaving things until the last minute; I need to plan my time more effectively to ensure I spend equal amounts on all my units.

Start

Something that I will start doing within this unit is to read beyond the set readings for the week and to start to build myself with a deeper knowledge (and collection) of quality children’s literature. If I start to search beyond these readings, I may notice that my writing may improve and become stronger academically. I feel that doing this weekly will not only help  improve with my writing, and understanding of  children’s literature but will also help me with my future studies, and quite likely to be a positive in the profession as I will be able to reflect on prior thoughts and ideas.

 

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Keep

Finally, to continue with my engagement in this unit I will keep focused on building a personal library of quality children’s literature. I have been borrowing many books from the local library, and this has introduced me to some great children’s literature; also some not so great. This has encouraged me to read from a variety of authors that are all individuals in their writing, and illustrations to consistently expand my knowledge of all types of literature. I will also continue to learn from others, and I will keep my mind open to the thoughts and ideas that my peers may have. I will keep continuing to be active in my learning and embrace any opportunities that may arise.

This unit has definitely provided me with essential skills that will be put to good use in the future as a practicing teacher. I now realise how important the elements of children’s literature are, and I am definitely looking forward to the remainder of this unit! 

 

Week 2

28 Jul

“Everyone knows what children’s literature is until asked to define it.” (Nodelman, 2008, p. 139)

There are many authors who have written great children’s literature books, some of which have made the world of literature change forever. Children’s literature are generally picture books that are written by adults for children. We consider them to include not only stories but sometimes songs, poetry and information designed to engage children in several ways. It is defined as a creative type of art that is a unique adaption of a novel because of its use of the plot, characterisation and motivation. (Winch, Johnston, March, Ljungdahl & Holliday, 2010, p. 365-370). Children’s picture books are a great source of literature as they can mentally take us to all types of places, all around the world. Although, literature is not just reading, writing, speaking and listening – it carries on further than that through voices that are written, that can be read, that are listened to and that speak across culture, space and time. It can build a community and a shared imagination from school, the country or even the world.  (Winch et al, 2010, p. 460).

Children’s literature is vital for improvement in a child’s language development. As children grow, mental development happens at a rapid pace and when they begin to acquire language at a young age it is generally formed from adult exposure. From the beginning of this experience children’s literature can motivate and engage readers to form an early progressive literacy experience. As parents read and share books with their children they can offer variety, and create links with real-world contexts. All children should be encouraged to participate and value pictures as it can influence and enhance verbal and visual language.  For example, in A bus called heaven (Graham, 2011) it includes practical, age appropriate language and the chance for adults to communicate about what is happening in this story, therefore building verbal language skills.

Children’s literature can include all types of language features that are key elements for language development from making predictions to working on pronunciation or sound effects right down to life lessons, or teaching social skills. Repetition in picture books is also an excellent element in order for children to develop language skills. For example, in the book Koala Lou by Mem Fox the line “Koala Lou, I DO love you!” (Fox, 1988) is repeated on a number of occasions. As children become familiar with this line, they can jump in and say the line out loud in the appropriate spots. As an adult encourages young people to participate in reading a book, they can also help predict the next event.  Books written for children use relatively short sentences that are rich in vocabulary and with the engagement of an attentive adult they can easily notice what a child is drawing their attention to and build on it with conversation. (Dickinson, Grittith, Golinkoff, & Hirsh-Pasek, 2012).  Therefore, building interest and attention in book reading can enrich the children’s live and language development. All children should be exposed to literature throughout their lives as it is a key element for life’s experiences.

References:

Dickinson, D., Grittith, J., Golinkoff, R. & Hirsh-Pasek, K. (2012). How Reading Books Fosters Language Development around the World. Child Development Research, 1, 1-15. doi:10.1155/2012/602807

Fox, M. (1998). Koala Lou. Melbourne, Victoria: Ian Drakeford Publishing

Graham, B. (2011). A bus called heaven. London, England: Walker Books.

Nodelman, P. (2008). The Hidden Adult: Defining Children’s Literature. Baltimore, Maryland: The John Hopkins University Press. Retrieved from http://books.google.com.au/books?id=wKosfJZhUwQC&pg=PA139&lpg=PA139&dq=%22Everyone+knows+what+children’s+literature+is+until+asked+to+define+it.&source=bl&ots=zugiw7pVQB&sig=KgySCOOJonz5f2TPzPy0OrsjCbE&hl=en&sa=X&ei=MMn0UfKdK8erkwWu1oCQBA&ved=0CD0Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q&f=false.

Winch, G., Johnston, R., March, P., Ljungdahl, L., & Holliday, M. (2010). Literacy: Reading,writing and children’s literature (4th ed.). South Melbourne, VIC: Oxford University Press