We inaugurate a fantastic new series by Derek Mainhart, who is setting out to write up an entire year’s curriculum for a comics class at the secondary level: middle school and high school. From what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to be entertaining, well-planned, and incredibly useful.
Mari Ahokoivu featured on our blog a month or so ago with her wonderful direct drawing activity. Now she’s back as a (we hope) regular contributor with a look into to her history as a teacher and her teaching philosophy. When she asked, “Can I draw the post?” I knew we had a winner! Look for parts 2 and 3 in the next week or so.
I proposed a comics workshop to my university. I intend to teach students how to make comics and self-publish them, going from script to art to folding, stapling and selling their own comics. The only problem is, I’ve never done this before.
My work focuses on the process of reading comic books, rather than on the readers. When I started down the path of focusing on reading, I encountered the false assumption that “anyone can read comic books.” Even people who did not consider themselves comic book readers thought they knew how. In teaching with comic books and graphic novels, I have found that I have had to teach many of my students the ins and outs of how to read comics.
I’m an English teacher from Cambridge, England. I work in an 11-18 comprehensive school, teaching students across the full age and ability range. Like most English teachers in the UK, almost all the reading I do with students in the classroom involves purely print-based texts. However, for a while I’ve been wanting to explore how teaching comics might work in an English classroom.
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