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Rather short interview lesson - need advice

Discussion in 'English' started by serendipity1982, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. Hi,

    I have an interview on Friday and need advice. I have been asked to teach a Yr9 mixed ability class on narrative writing. This needs to be either focussing on the opening or characterisation. I am assuming I am going to be using KS4 criteria as this sounds like a controlled assessment. I have been out of the profession for a while now.

    They have asked me to teach for 25 minutes. What on earth can I do in 25 minutes? Does anyone have any ideas? I'm thinking the starter needs to be something I can do without the computer as I don't want to fiddling with that and wasting time. I can get that up and running once I've given the kids something to do.

    25 minutes. Arrrggghhh! lol

    Any advice would be great,
  2. Hi,
    If you focus on character you could have descriptions of different characters on the desk and pupils could try drawing the characters using the descriptions.
    Or give pupils a picture of a character and get them to write a description. You could create a word wall for lower ability pupils and a list of devices to use for the higher abilities.
    Or a set of different descriptions from well know books/films and get pupils to guess who they are.
    Or in pairs they could play charades or something to make it more interactive.
    Good Luck
  3. fantastischfish

    fantastischfish Established commenter

    I like this. Then they could try to 'unravel' the description to come up with some 'success criteria' for a great description.
    Remember though, that by 'characterisation' they don't just necessarily mean describing a character. This will inevitably lead to a dreary lesson with kids describing height, hair colour etc. And no doubt at least one other candidate will do the same thing.
    Consider teaching characterisation, not as something that happens at the start of a story in a paragraph, but as something that occur throughout a story. The way a character moves, their language, their voice, their opinions, their sense of humour etc.
    One idea could be to bring in a selection of random items - the more varied and weird the better - and ask students to come to the front and choose an item (not necessarily taking it back to the desk; more than one student could select the same item). Then ask them to fill out a sort of pro-forma about the character: their job, how they speak, words they use, the way they move, the types of clothes they wear, etc.
    It would be interesting to share at the end and see the different characters created by students choosing the same object.
  4. Great ideas!! I have found some super examples of extended characterisation but unfortunately don't know where to look for any famous examples. I need to keep to narrative writing.
  5. fantastischfish

    fantastischfish Established commenter

    Dicken's description of Scrooge is a good examples because is focuses very little on what he looks like (although some time is spent on this). Instead, he spends ages talking about others' reactions to Scrooge when he passes them in the street etc, even animals will not walk past him.
    Why not give two examples and ask students to say which they prefer and why?

  6. Consider teaching characterisation, not as something that happens at the start of a story in a paragraph, but as something that occur throughout a story.[​IMG]
  7. fishtail

    fishtail New commenter

    If you focus on openings, there is scope to play 'match the opening to the stry' where you have a description/blurb for a book and then the opening, and have to match the two. The students then have to decide what clues they used to decide on the match--which focuses them nicely on narrative craft.[​IMG]

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