Some Ideas for Using VG in Literature and Composition Classrooms
If you teach a course that is not solely devoted to women writers of color, or if you are a teaching assistant and have no say on the compiling of the syllabus and a reading list you can still use the Voices from the Gaps website and give your students assignments compatible with the VG project that will allow them to have their work published.
Here are some types of assignments that could be used in teaching a course that is not your own or does not focus on women of color:
- The most straightforward approach would be to ask students to write reviews of poems and short stories by the authors featured on the VG site.
- A more research-oriented task would be to focus on some points of author pages and look for more material on places, people and events mentioned in the biographies of the featured authors.
- When the reading list is large and work load is heavy students could be asked to create picture stories of authors’ supplying photographs to the existing author pages.
- The previous task could be made more creative if you asked students to find pictures that could illustrate novels, stories and poems rather than biographies of the VG authors -- pictures based on the material life presented in the texts: photographs and drawings of clothing, dwelling, interior design, furniture, hairstyles, types of transportation, arts and crafts, street scenes, pictures from family albums, picture postcards, advertisements etc. of the period. This assignment would make students read more closely for details of material life focusing their attention on the historical specificity of the narrative studied. It would also help them, as well as those who would benefit from their work, to visualize the texts.
- The task of visualization could be supplemented by creating a sound backdrop for specific texts, and students could be asked to research into the musical culture of the period or record sounds that are described in the text. This assignment provides good material for class presentations.
This page submitted by '''Masha Zavialova''' on 9/16/04.