Love Hurts, Lit Helps: How English Class Can Teach Teens to Improve Their Relationships, Friendships, and Communities

Love Hurts, Lit Helps: How English Class Can Teach Teens to Improve Their Relationships, Friendships, and Communities

by Andrew Simmons

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Love hurts. Breaking up is hard to do. For all the joy that relationships and friendships can bring, showing romantic interest, establishing boundaries, and expressing identities as partners and friends isn’t easy for teens. They navigate an often ugly social universe. Even commonplace struggles can derail academic focus and harm emotional health.

English teachers hope to give students communication skills, a love of literature, a passport to an intellectually vibrant life rich in opportunity. Through discussions of canonical works of literature, assignment ideas, anecdotes from teaching, and student perspectives, this book outlines how an academically rigorous English class can also heal, empower, and provide wisdom for teens weathering storms in their social lives.

English class is health class. Widely taught novels brim with rich lessons about courtship, love, heartbreak, sexuality, bonds, and belonging. Learning to write stories, reflections, and arguments, speak confidently, and listen critically gives students powerful tools for self-expression, advocacy, and empathy in their relationships and friendships.

The stakes are high and the rewards far-reaching. Students with healthier social lives do better academically, but they also end up becoming more responsible, caring grown-ups capable of improving an adult society that too often feels unsafe and tragically bereft of compassion.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781475848304
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 01/24/2020
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 164
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Originally from Kentucky, Andrew Simmons is a public high school English teacher and writer in Northern California. He has written for The Atlantic, Edutopia, Vox, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and other publications.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Foreword: by Thomas Newkirk



Part I: Texts

Chapter 1. Of Mice and Men

Chapter 2.Othello

Chapter 3.The Odyssey

Chapter 4.Hamlet

Chapter 5.Beloved

Chapter 6. (More) Contemporary Selections: Jennifer Egan, Junot Diaz, and Sandra Cisneros

Part II: Skills

Chapter 7. Storytelling, Reflection, and Argument

Chapter 8. Speaking and Listening


Appendix: Major Assessments and Relevant Common Core Standards


About the Author

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