How did you develop a love for reading? Do you remember the first book you read, or a story which you simply couldn’t put down? In ALF, one of the objectives of our English lessons is to introduce students to novels and poetry, and to encourage them to read independently. We are delighted that our fellows are already becoming voracious readers!
In this post, 10th Standard Fellow Ashwini shares her experience of English classes at ALF:
Reading is a tool that improves our English and vocab skills. And reading different types of books enhances even more of our communication power. In ALF, we read books that help us a lot and allow us to think outside of the box.
The book ‘Esperanza Rising’, written by Pam Muñoz Ryan, is an inspiring story of a girl named Esperanza. Esperanza is a Spanish word that means ‘hope’. It is the story of a daughter of a rich man who is used to all luxuries and all the material and emotional happiness in life. But then due to bad fortune, they come down from riches to rags. But even then it shows Esperanza could find all the emotional happiness possible, and that she became wealthy by heart.
Our teacher, Mangala Ma’am asked us to read one chapter for homework, but I couldn’t control myself further and read almost all of it as I was so curious to know what would happen next! It is really an excellent book.
We read the book in class in groups that combine to make a ‘literature circle’. After reading a chapter or a certain amount of text, we discuss about the things that may happen next, or about the characters. We prepare discussion questions where we put forward different opinions about the question asked.
We have four groups in the literature circle, the Connectors, Summarizers, Word-finders and Discussers. The connecters connect the incidents in the book to things in real life, or to other books we have read.
The Summarizers summarize the chapter to make sure we all are clear on it, the Word-finders find new words and figures of speech in the text, and Discussers prepare questions for the class to discuss.
This is a good way to learn English because everyone gets a chance to speak out their opinions, we learn to work as a team, and also we get a chance to use the new words we learnt in the lesson.
I recommend you to read Esperanza Rising!