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As always, Burke provides pre-service and practicing teachers with realistic
guides to make literature more meaningful to students. The reality is that  schools have required reading lists, and on those lists are canonical titles  that every teacher struggles with getting students engaged. By accessing  students' prior knowledge, the texts become more meaningful to them and allows  for more successful connections. Like many great ideas, however, he encourages
teachers to know the needs of their students and make the proper modifications  based on those needs as well as the teacher's strengths. Not only that, but his  rubrics and sample lessons are only meant as guides, not lock-step criteria that  has to be covered exactly.

Something that I really appreciate about  Burke is that he does a really good job of incorporating current research within  his texts to show the validity of his approaches to teaching literature. Not
only do I enjoy the research, but I appreciate his effortless writing style.  He's not really coming up with anything too innovative; however, he is showing  English teachers that students can learn doing activities other than  whole-class-discussions-turned-lecture. The goal should be to get students to  share how much THEY know, not showing them how much WE know. Regardless of the  Scholar Academic Ideology, students aren't sponges waiting for us to impart  knowledge; they have their own, and we need to let them construct it.




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