Editorial: Teaching Language Arts is Border Crossing

Leyton Schnellert

Leyton Schnellert is Co-Editor of Update and and a part-time Faculty Associate, Field Programs, Faculty of Education, SFU.

Teaching is political and personal; individual and relational; responsive and bureaucratic. Perhaps we, as English Language Arts Teachers, are better prepared to live and understand these dichotomies than other teaching disciplines, for we specialize in multiple interpretations, suss out unreliable narratives, and use context to guide our meaning making (versus an arbitrary set of rules). True, our field was once bound by “correct answers” and “standard interpretations” (and, to be honest, reducing a student’s writing to a mark out of “4” still smacks of a certain essentialism); however we have moved beyond that era (often called formalism and New Criticism for those of you keeping track).

Writing Palettes: An Exercise in Writing, Seeing, and Breaking Writer’s Block

Harold Rhenisch

Harold, lives in 150 Mile House, BC. He won the Confederation Poetry Prize, 1991, and the Arc Poem of the Year Award and the Critic’s Desk Award for best long poetry review, 2003. He has been a five-time runner-up in the CBC/Tilden/ Saturday Night Literary Contest and won the BC & Yukon Community Newspapers Association Award for Best Arts and Culture Writing, 1996. (more…)

Tell us what you are teaching

What are you teaching?

Remember the BCTELA Novel Title Collection Project? When we shared the titles of the texts we were teaching and expanded our sense of what we might teach? Well, it has been reborn… as a wiki!

Come check it out. It’s new, which means everyone’s help is valuable as we work to add and share the texts and ideas that we teach:


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