Louise Rosenblatt • Literature as Exploration (1938) • Reader’s engage with a text as a transaction. • The reading of a text is an EVENT in which the reader gives the text life. • Each reader has an individual experience with a text. • Teachers should foster students’ trust in their own interpretation.
Transactional Reading Journals • Jude Ellis built upon Rosenblatt’s theory to develop the Transactional Reading Journal. • Encourages students to engage in an active personally meaningful exchange with text. • Their engagement with the text is captured in their journals which can be shared with each other and the teacher.
Possible Journal Entry Assignmentsrelating to Steal Away Home • Write a letter to one of the characters in the story in your own voice, asking them questions then write their response to you. • Write a short story describing an encounter between two characters in the story, one from the past and one from the present. • Pick a meaningful passage from the book and change the outcome, rewrite this part of the story with detail. • Write a story in which you find a secret room in your home, what will you discover?
Create a piece of writing that describes a personal reaction to a character, place or event in the text. • Make a prediction early in the book. Revisit this entry and write another comparing and contrasting your prediction to the actual ending. • Write a journal entry in Dana’s voice, describe her thoughts and feelings about what she has discovered. • Write a journal entry in James’ voice expressing how he feels about his mother’s choices as well as his father’s, his feelings and thoughts regarding these. • Choose a ‘five star quote’ from the novel describe its significance to you and to the story.
Draw two pictures one depicting Lawrence in 1856 and one depicting how you imagine it now. • Write a short story describing one of Ms. Lizbet’s journeys either in her voice or third person. • Predict how you think Mr. Weaver will react when he discovers that his home as been a safe house. • Create a correspondence between a character in this novel and a character from another piece of literature we have read. • Describe who you most admired in this book and why. Create a medal of recognition you would give them.
Works Cited • Church, G. The Significance of Louis Rosenblatt on the Field of Teaching Literature. • Inquiry, 1(1) Spring 1997, 71-77. • Pressley, M., El-Dinary, P., Gaskins, I., Schuder, T., Bergman, J., Almasi, J., Brown, R. • Beyond Direct Explanation: Transactional Instruction of Reading Comprehension • Strategies. The Elementary School Journal, 92(5), May 1992, 513-555. • Probst, R. Transactional Theory in the Teaching of Literature. ERIC Clearinghouse on • Reading and Communication Skills. Retrieved from ERIC database. ED284274. • Reading Strategies retrieved from • http://www.brunswick.k12.me.us/bjh/reading_strategies/sample_reading_ • strategies.htm • Ruby, Lois. Steal Away Home. Aladdin Paperbacks. 1994