About Alex Springer

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So far Alex Springer has created 6 blog entries.

A New School Year: Here Comes the Fear Again

I’m starting my fifth year as a high school English teacher.  I have a M.Ed. in Educational Psychology, I’ve established myself as a solid member of a department that could give the X-Men a run for their money, and I’ve gained enough political clout to be relocated from a small, windowless classroom (which I affectionately [...]

By | August 20th, 2013|Featured, High School, High School, Management|1 Comment

Teaching Through Trickery: A Snapshot of Theory vs. Reality

During my first year of teaching high school, I inherited a remedial reading class that consisted of about eighteen unmotivated juniors.  Having just finished a graduate program in educational psychology with emphasis placed specifically on reading and literacy, I saw this as an opportunity to take all of those research-based best practices and make readers [...]

Kill Your Idols: A Case for Contemporary Literature

When I go out to eat, I often eavesdrop on the conversations of my fellow diners.  Not long ago, I listened in on a particularly interesting discussion that involved two teachers.  They were discussing a familiar quandary among English teachers: What are the virtues of teaching classical literature to a generation who just doesn’t get it? It’s a question I’ve asked myself from time to time.  Do my students need to read Hemingway? Does The Scarlet Letter possess some profound effect over their future happiness and success? Or are they so far removed from the characters in events in classical literature that it’s doing them no good? After opening this can of worms, I realized that this hero worship of our artistic predecessors extends beyond literature.  If I searched the words “best bands of all time” online, I would be hit with hundreds of sites extolling The Beatles, Bob Dylan and Led Zeppelin.  Nirvana might sneak in there at some point, but still, you’re looking at a twenty year gap between them and today’s musicians.  Does this mean that our generation is devoid of artistic merit that will be discussed and taught about in schools? Or are we romanticizing a bygone age because we’re too cynical to believe that contemporary art, music, and literature will ever be as viable as the classics? […]

By | February 6th, 2013|Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Literacy, Uncategorized|6 Comments