Much has been written about the value of knowledge retrieval practice in English literature -it is impossible to think critically about a text until you know it very well. However, I think it is now time to also consider how this knowledge might be connected and organised. In other words, what kinds of mental representations – orschema –should our students be building? What shape should these take for individual texts? What shape should these take for the subject as a whole? And how do we ensure the smooth transfer of this knowledge to the extended essay format which isfavoured by summative examinations?
Each text is represented by a number of interwoven knowledge frameworks. These include:
- knowledge of plot, events, character, setting – and associated inferences;
- knowledge of the text’s thematic breadth and its ‘big ideas’;
- knowledge of the writer’s methods and devices;
- knowledge of contextual factors.
These frameworks also sit…
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