I just posted this thread on the English Teachers Chatboard. Hopefully someone responds...
"Visual Arts in the Literary Study of Where the Red Fern Grows"
I am a senior English Teaching student at Brigham Young University, and I am currently taking a class that focuses on writing about literature in the digital age. This class have given me the opportunity to research aspects of an independently chosen novel that are relevant to me. As a future teacher of language arts, I wanted to focus on an old childhood favorite, Where the Red Fern Grows.
Through my research I have become highly interested in visual interactions with the text; that is, I have come to believe that a language-only reaction to Where the Red Fern Grows (a written or oral response) falls flat when compared with visual arts reactions. Written responses (including Facebook and Twitter feeds) are often, "It is such a sad book." Visual responses, I have found, are much richer. (See http://picturebookreport.com/category/where-the-red-fern-grows/).
Now, here is what I would like to know. Have any of you had any experience with teaching Where the Red Fern Grows in your English or language arts classroom? Did you incorporate any visual arts into the lesson plan (including pictures (painted, taken by a camera, whatever), sculptures, videos, etc.)? Was it beneficial in the students' interaction with the story? Any thoughts, ideas, or experiences will be greatly appreciated.