Effective Traditional Methods In The Modern Teaching Of Literature

Literature being a subject entirely dependent on the assigned texts can be challenging and heavy for students, especially memorising quotes and criticisms for examinations.
The hype of using various new technologies at first appearance would complicate some basic lessons, as the priority appears to be given to implementing technology.
Then it struck me that the most straightforward traditional methods my teachers used are imprinted in my mind as most memorable and effective. So let’s look at how these traditional methods are still effective and relevant in modern teaching.

What’s modern teaching?

modern teaching
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The new teaching approach is more activity-based and centres the learner’s mind, immersing them in the learning process. Curriculum instruction and planning are done in the modern teaching style, with the learner as the primary objective.

Students actively participate in the process to increase their knowledge and hone their abilities; this is known as a constructivist method.

On the other hand, the mentor or instructor merely directs and helps them to focus on the subject’s objectives. This is accomplished through participation in activities and the use of current, cutting-edge teaching approaches.

Why is modern teaching of literature important?

Because of its relevance in the current period, modern teaching is undoubtedly the need of the hour. Moreover, the revolution in science and technology necessitates big ideas even though it might be a lot of work to cope with, especially when dealing with obstacles that arise in progress.

As a result, it is critical to provide students with knowledge and opportunities to enhance their abilities from the start.

Modern education pushes us to offer new concepts and ideas. Various current education approaches seek to foster creativity and inventive thinking. It encourages students to think outside the box and come up with new ideas. That is why modern education is riddled with technological devices that allow students to share their ingenuity and creativity.

How to incorporate traditional methods into modern teaching?

modern teaching in class
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So, I started looking at methods to innovate those methods to suit the online nature of our current lessons.

Use collaboration tactics

One of the major issues that teachers face is low engagement from students that brings down the efficiency in learning.

Hence, to increase classroom engagement, one innovative approach when I introduce a text is the students get to decide how they want to unravel the text collectively.

Once I’ve given them the module and text learning outcomes, they tell me if they want to start with the structure, style, settings, plot, etc. This also enables them to interact amongst their peers as well as with the teacher.

Students have shown appreciation for giving them a choice on how they want to learn rather than always being the teacher’s presumed choice.

The power of curiosity itself will then drive their need to explore the parts of the text naturally. Most of my job in this context involves asking them questions to either prodding them further or bringing them back to the focus of the topic.

Learning through games

Game-based learning is one of the teaching methods that teachers use to cultivate interest among the students. For example, I discovered an online jigsaw maker which allows me to create puzzles with my choice of images.

In the set induction, students complete the puzzle and guess which scene it is and how it significantly affects the play.

Students have become more excited to share their speed of completion of the puzzle, and that excitement is carried on to the format of free discussion that follows.

They are also more aware of the textual potential for the multiple interpretations different directors and producers have. This breaks them free from the rote learning methods of the text.

Use storytelling

Do you remember how we loved listening to stories? However, with students already listening to lectures the whole day, they’d only zone off.

When I used to be a student, I enjoyed it when my teacher would use something besides the boring old PowerPoint slides. So when I had a chance, I started creating my comics for the text and triggered problem-solving tasks.

To my surprise, my students were interested in how I was doing it and picked up the skills for their study method. It certainly is a smart way of remembering the plot and essential quotations needed for their exams.

What are the skills needed to pursue a degree in literature?

pursue a degree in literature
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Here are some of the skills you need to pursue a degree in literature:

Good written and oral communication

A crucial talent you need to obtain a literature degree is being skillful in both written and oral communication.

This is because you will be asked to identify the audience, develop an argument, explain a concept, and give background information on a range of problems.

To communicate your information and concept precisely, you will need to consider grammar and substance.

Able to adapt well

Because language plays such a large role in our lives, flexibility is crucial in this sector. Adaptability is a talent that refers to a person’s ability to modify his actions, path, or approach to things to suit a new scenario.

To succeed in this area, you must be able to learn rapidly, put what you’ve learned into practice, and make informed judgments.

Great time management skills

Time management skills are necessary for every job to maintain a sense of balance in your life. Managing your time well may help you advance in your profession while also maintaining a sense of balance in your personal life.

Organisation, prioritisation, goal-setting, planning, delegating, and stress management are just a few of the time management abilities that may help you manage your time.

Final remarks

Students require dynamic learning spaces as the knowledge they are receiving becomes more active and student-centred. Additionally, they need learning environments that are incredibly adaptive and versatile to meet various requirements. I hope you are inspired to innovate other traditional methods too, and do share them with us!

Written by Hema Madhavan


18 October 2021


Arts and Culture