Jump to content


Question about Lightening Lit

Recommended Posts

I would like to order LL7 for my 6th grader this year who is a strong reader. Thing is, she has read all the novels already. I think that she can use this to her advantage since she is already familiar with the books. :)


However, I am wondering if I should order LL8 for her instead? Is it a huge step up from LL7 to LL8? Out of the LL8 list, she has only read the Hobbit and has expressed that she would prefer to cover books she has not read but isn't against doing LL7, if that makes sense.


Or, do you think we should do LL7 for sure since having read the books will be a great help?


Your advice is very appreciated!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I did not find the actual work involved to be harder. The problem I see is your dd will not get the literary info and writing topics that are covered in LL7 which I feel are necessary skills and info. The two LL courses, 7 and 8 sort of go together to give you complete covering of literary terms and writing types. One thing you can do is go through LL7 fast by just doing the writing work. Then do LL 8.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tough call.


Normally, if DD was 7th or 8th grade and had read all the LL7 books I'd say sure, skip on to LL8. HOWEVER, your DD is young. The choice of works covered in LL7 are more engaging and work very well with a younger student. In contrast, some of the poetry, 2 of the 3 short stories ("A Crazy Tale", "Wakefield"), and 2 of the 6 novels ("Day of Pleasure", "To Kill a Mockingbird") of LL8 are just flat out for an older student (grade 8-9). I'd hate to see a student's love of literature be dampened or killed off by starting formal literary analysis with works that are too hard, and not as immediately interesting or engaging...


And since DD is still young, I would take into consideration her emotional/academic level -- is she ready (and interested) to start moving into gentle formal analysis? OR, would she be better off enjoying one last year of "reading for fun" a mix of books:

- the better-written works designed for 5th/6th/7th graders

- historical fiction

- works that are "second-tier" classics (as in, they are not formally analyzed by a majority of educators) -- works by Alexander Dumas, Sir Walter Scott, Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Louisa May Alcott, Edith Nesbit, the Anne of Green Gables series, etc.


Also, it sounds like this would be your DD's first outing with a more formal approach to literature/literary analysis? Then having previously read all the works is not necessarily a bad thing. Before, DD read the works for fun. Now, DD would read the works to learn how to "dig deeper". Familiarity with the works will make the transition into reading for analysis easier.


My only concern would be that LL7 might not be "meaty" enough to have DD feel it was worth reading the books a second time. If that seems to be the case, you can always add in additional individual lit. guides to "beef up" your study of the works, and give you better discussion. Also, it sounds like your DD is a very solid reader, so she would probably finish LL7 early. That would give her time to read works she would enjoy that she hasn't seen before.



Okay, bottom line (and not really knowing your DD): I think if it were me, I'd shoot for a compromise: assuming DD was ready, I'd go ahead and do LL7 -- BUT, I would also include works she hasn't read to also accommodate her preference.


And I would include those "unknown" books in one of two ways (whichever fits DD best):


1. let DD just browse the library and discover books, OR, your book basket of works she'd enjoy (see ideas above) for her to choose from all year




2. select 2-4 works unknown to DD and intersperse with LL7; get some good lit. guides to go with those works, and continue to practice the literary analysis techniques learned in the various units of LL7 on these additional works



BEST of luck in making the best decision for your family! Whatever you decide, here's hoping you and DD have a wonderful literature journey! Warmest regards, Lori D.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great, concise review of LL7 and LL8 and how they work together! :)



One thing you can do is go through LL7 fast by just doing the writing work. Then do LL 8.



The only danger I see here is, because this particular student has not previously done literary analysis, she would be missing the crucial *practice* that comes from learning how to read / think / analyze. That's what doing LL7 is all about -- a very gentle beginning step in doing all of those things. At a high school level of Literature, students need to be able to slow down, re-read, and annotate, in order to understand how the literary devices are working and how to find deeper themes in the piece of writing.


If the goal is to move into more formal Literature and literary analysis, then it would not be desirable to encourage a student to skip past the critical practice, just to be able to read works that are new. Yes, that is a basic motivation of reading for all of us; and it is GOOD to have much of our reading just for enjoyment. BUT... when it comes to "doing Literature", there has to be enough maturity to move to the next level, to be able to read for more than just "what happens next".


If this particular student really just wants to read new books, that may be a sign she's not quite ready to take start really "doing Literature" -- and that's okay! Plenty of time to get more formal later. Maybe this is the year for "Literature" to be about "discovering new worlds". :)



Hope I said that clearly -- in NO way meant to dismiss or attack you or your post, Down the Rabbit Hole! :) Warmest regards, Lori D.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...