Tuesday, February 19, 2008

5: A week in the reading life of a deaf teacher of english

When you teach, your reading life is necessarily a tangled mix of subjects: I read books my students should read at their age so as to build connections and help them find books they will personally like, which requires sometimes reading things I don't normally find interest in (but young teen books are often far more positive than adult books, which is a plus.)

I read the theory-books of education and Deaf Studies that feed what I do in the classroom and shape how I teach reading and how I involve American Deaf culture and ASL (the same way, I imagine, a school which specialized in a bicultural Spanish/English environment would try to involve works by Latino/Latina authors and explore the relationship of Spanish to English.) I also read the books you read because... well, when you're an English teacher, you like reading, and that's reason enough.



There's an interesting story behind that last book. It was left to me by my great-Aunt Gloria when she died; I was 13. For some reason I decided there was a reason she left it to me, so I took to reading every short mystery contained in the book. The list is considerable; I think it must comprise most of Christie's Hercule Poirot short stories. It was picked up one day by sticky fingers (or an accidential cleaning lady) in the MSSD cafeteria, and I never saw another copy until I hit the Church rummage sale with MS this past Sunday. Of course I picked it up right away, and it's startling how much of the structure of the stories I still remember, and how much it reminds me of childhood.

Reviews will be forthcoming, as the books get done.

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