Teachit English, Again and Again

As very recently posted, I have these mixed feelings about Teachit English.

Again, I was surprised to see in today’s Teachit English the following:

unseen poetry

I remember well writing my comment on this excellent book by Trevor Millum, but had no idea it was being used to promote. But let’s be clear, I am delighted for this to be the case.

Again, I am ever so slightly miffed at this promoting taking a line that isn’t quite what I had originally stated. I do know it is for the purposes of editing for an ad and so on – I DO get this – but where I was at pains to foreground the book’s rooting in encouraging students’ reading and enjoying of poetry for its own sake as well as for the preparation of examination study/response, this edit privileges that exam aspect. Yes, I know that’s the necessary selling pitch for today’s extensive expectation to prepare students for examinations…

This is my full comment:

A humane, comprehensive resource. Written by a poet and teacher with considerable experience, so there is deep understanding of poetry as well as how this is examined at GCSE. The ‘Teaching notes’ are detailed and informed, and the ‘Student workbook’ activities are sensitively structured to encourage personal understanding and engagement with the poems, closely aligned to providing students with the exam skills that will best convey this as well as meet assessment requirements across all of the major examining bodies.

NB [returning to this later]: Reading again, I am trying to remain calm. This is actually a misrepresentation of what I was saying. The edit suggests my comment is focused entirely on examination preparation. It isn’t. Indeed, it is precisely because Millum’s work seeks to engage students personally with the poems to then inform their knowing for examination response that I do not make that exam prep the focus of my comment.

Perhaps my original and the edited version would make a good lesson, exploring how meaning/message can be altered and manipulated by editing. Fake News?

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