A great post from Cost of College:
Share My Lesson is a new online resource for teachers developed by the American Federation of Teachers and TES Connect. . . . When I recently checked out this new website, I found that among its most popular writing lessons for high school students was one designed to allow ”students to construct a Facebook page for a character from a text or some other context“.
Really? In the context of complaints from college professors and employers about students not learning to write in school, it’s a bit disappointing that the most popular online lesson is one that does almost nothing to teach fundamental writing skills. Do students really need to be taught better Facebook posting skills?
Granted, this exercise could serve to help students draw out information about a character that they otherwise would have difficulty doing. It could be lots of fun, actually. ”Miss Havisham went from being in a relationship to single.” “Atticus Finch is having another tough day in court.” Dorian Gray: “Er. Does anyone know how to un-tag yourself from a picture??”
Part of this lesson’s popularity could be attributed to the fact that it’s shiny and new. Maybe it’s not the end of the world that high school students are spending time creating Facebook pages for literary characters. It probably has its place. I just have this nagging feeling that too many of these types of fun assignments are taking the place of the more traditional ones that teach fundamental literacy skills.