Welcome to The Words Academy – I hope you find the material helpful!
The website emerged from an understanding that I should share my knowledge with students and teachers who would find it useful. If it helps you in anyway, I am glad. Share it with those you think might find it useful – thank you!
https://www.instagram.com/asaph_quotes/ – Quotations and Reflections for daily life!
Hi everyone – The Words Academy is our attempt to spark a renewed interest in English and Literature among students in Sri Lanka. I hope that the content and services provided through this website will be a scaffolding for students to reach higher in Literature appreciation as well as Language competency.
At the WORDS academy you can access high quality support material for AL and OL English Literature – Model Answers, Essay Writing, Writing Skills, Vocabulary and much more!
Preparing for the English Literature examination requires 4 main skills.
The categories are briefly described here. Further details will be uploaded.
Familiarity – How well do you know the story? The plot, the characters, the incidents, the emotions, struggles and victories of the text. Have you read the whole text – how many times? Have you selected QUOTATIONS in preparation for exam questions?
Appreciation – This involves the literary techniques that are used by the writer. As a student of literature you need to know poetic devices and rhetoric devices used by writers to make their writing more effective. You need to understand the effects that these devices create. In your answers, you will have to mention how the use of literary devices can emphasize a particular theme – and the context questions will ask you about these devices directly, so you have to be prepared!
Comprehension – Are you familiar with the themes and the other significances of the text? What does it symbolize, what issues does it address, what sort of questions does it raise? Your understanding about the deeper layers of the story – your reading of the story – is one of the most important parts of your learning. If this is not learnt well, your answers tend to become more like a summary or a paraphrasing of the text.
Expression – Writing skills. Writing a formal essay requires a certain register, tone, vocabulary and phrasing. Learning this will benefit you for a lifetime. At WORDS academy this area is considered one of the most significant parts because the majority selecting English Literature for O/L’s won’t pursue a career in literature – but their competency in English will be crucial for their success. This is why we give special attention to it. We work to elevate your expression so that your brilliance will be displayed in the paper and beyond!
Execution – Exam preparation. Writing an essay in exam conditions is a totally different experience to writing in your free time at home (with snacks and drinks beside you, and the extra time that you’re generous to give yourself!) Therefore, being familiar with exam conditions in writing a literary paper, and preparing for it is important! But don’t worry – here at WORDS academy, it is just another part of the program.
O Level English Literature
I have developed content for many texts – While teaching at a reputed international school, I continue to create content to help students and teachers engage in Literature with more confidence and efficiency. Explanations, Quotations with elaborations, Model Answers, Answer Writing Techniques and Vocabulary that relate to the themes of the texts are some of the content in the books that I have been working on. I develop these resource material in a way that students can use it not in a mechanical, by-heart-it-till-you’re-sick-of-it kind of way, but in a meaningful and pragmatic way where students will gain understanding and be able to apply it to any question asked in a relevant manner.
I believe that O Level English Literature should also be an opportunity for students to improve their competency in English (which is the global/business language in the world – at least till it is replaced by Chinese). To this end, I always will give feedback to the students on how they can enhance their expression and make it more effective and professional.
At the same time, I believe that in English Literature for OL, the practical use of the language needs to be taught as well. Presentation skills, discussions, argumentative skills and debates are some of the things that I get the students to engage in, using the texts in the syllabus. When we can ‘kill two (or more, actually) birds with one stone,’ it is a shame how we as teachers fail to optimize the collective time and energy in the classroom.
I hate teaching boring classes. So I always make it ENGAGING and ENTERTAINING. I will make you learn in a way that will make you laugh, but also remember. One technique that I use is the FLIPPED CLASSROOM technique. I use my variations of course, but basically it is where the student will be given the responsibility of teaching the students under my guidance. It is similar to a presentation but more informal. This ensures that the student retains and responds to the text effectively.
BRAINSTORMING is something I encourage the students to do. Often times I group them and provide large sheets and Marker pens so that they can freely brainstorm as a group (which develops their team work and communication as well, thereby bolstering their confidence). This technique vastly improves their thought patterns as they visually set out the various aspects that revolve around a certain text or verse. Continuously doing this improves their critical thinking skills and their brain functioning as their minds are trained to branch out their thoughts freely, which leads to innovative thinking.
Another technique I developed (maybe there is such a technique – but I organically developed it) is the IMAGE based system. Each text contains POWERFUL points which can be pictured vividly. These images and moments in the story or poem capture the essence of the themes that the text illumines. Since powerful images are so easily absorbed by the mind, this technique effectively transforms those images into memory points to which I pour the information the students need to learn. When writing an examination, tapping into those images will unlock the details that are packed behind them.
Something I find effective and necessary for any teacher is the ability to CONNECT the text to the audience – the student. Making it a part of their experience in the human condition (the shared cup we all partake in) makes the texts so enjoyable and interesting. At times this needs a bit of localizing.
Let’s READ something together.